CAR 20 Most Wanted of 2014: Honda Civic Type R

Published: 18 December 2013

Honda’s got its mojo back: and here’s the proof. The 2015 Honda Civic Type R will be the fastest front-wheel drive hatch around the famed Nurburgring, Germany, circuit.

How do we know? Because Honda’s engineers will stop at nothing to ensure it. The current record, held by the RenaultSport Megane at 8:07.97, is the target for the Type R, which will have ‘at least 280bhp’ according to Honda – perhaps more than 300bhp, depending on which engineer you talk to… That’s a fair amount more than the 198bhp of the car it replaces, which ran a naturally aspirated 2.0-litre.

For 2015, the Type R will be turbocharged, a first for an R-badged Honda. The 2.0-litre four-cylinder also features direct injection and, of course, VTEC kicking in ahead of the 7000rpm redline.

Even better news is that there will be three pedals on the floor, as it will stick with a proper six-speed manual, and won’t resort to paddleshift only guise – speed and driver involvement, fancy that.

Wearing the Type R moniker means that this Civic comes with great expectations, though, and has to cut the mustard beyond the Nordschleife. It’ll weigh less, but still carry 1300kg, and will come in five-door form only in the UK – which will be its biggest market, too – and has a not-so-sophisticated torsion-beam rear end.

Yet it should still crack 0-62mph in less than 6.0sec all for a £25k ask when it arrives in showrooms. We can’t wait.

>> For Gavin Green’s first drive of the 2015 Honda Civic Type R, download the CAR January 2014 app or pick up a copy of the January 2014 issue of CAR