Two years ago, the previous generation Honda Civic Type R (FK2) brought glory to Honda when it became the fastest front-wheel drive (FWD) car to lap the Nurburgring. Sadly, that was short-lived when Volkswagen came along and beat the Honda with the new Golf GTI ClubSport S.
Needless to say, Honda went back to the drawing board and tried again with the new Type R hot hatch. With a lap time of 7 minutes 43.8 seconds, Honda officially dethroned the Golf GTI ClubSport S by a massive 5.41 seconds gap. At the same time, it’s also 6.8 seconds quicker than its predecessor!
How did they do it? First, they shortened the gear ratios for its six-speed manual gearbox and the increased torsional stiffness by up to 38 percent, improving both steering response and cornering stability. The old torsion beam rear suspension was also ditched in favour of the lighter multi-link setup, shedding a whopping 16 kgs!
The record-breaking car was actually a development car, having no infotainment system or rear seats. In their absence is a floating roll cage that was added for safety reasons and by no means gave the Type R more rigidity. Regardless, Honda says the development car is technically about the same as the one going on sale.
Let’s all hope this record is there to stay for the time being!