Honda's hardcore Civic Type-R

A harder, R26.R-rivaling Honda Civic Type-R hot hatch is due thanks to Mugen

Honda’s new-age Civic Type-R hasn’t quite delivered the highs its predecessor managed, but Japanese tuner Mugen could be about to solve that problem.

It is set to breathe on the three-door Civic hot hatch with tweaks from the Mugen RR we drove last year (pictured). That’s good news; it is one of the fastest front-wheel-drive cars we’ve piloted, both on road and track. It set a blistering 1min29.3sec lap around Bedford Autodrome’s West Circuit, with the only quicker front-driver being the Renaultsport Mégane R26.R.

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In fact the R26.R is the car that will be firmly in the sights of a Mugen-spec UK Type-R. The rear seats and a host of equipment will go, while there’ll be suspension tweaks and hopefully the upgraded Brembo brakes, smart 18in forged alloys and lightweight Recaro buckets from the Mugen RR, too.

The RR sees the Civic’s 2-litre VTEC engine modified to develop 237bhp (from 198bhp) while torque is increased around ten per cent to 160lb ft. Those figures are delivered typically high in the rev range – peak torque doesn’t kick in until 7000rpm, for instance, ensuring the VTEC’s characterful power delivery remains.

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Mugen’s hardcore Civic Type-R is likely to top the £35K-mark all in, with prices dependent on how rough and ready you want it to be. Tweaks could be available as retro-fit tuning to existing Civic’s, too, making a Mugened CTR more attainable.

Click here to read our review of the Mugen Civic RR. We've just acquired a limited-slip diff-equipped Civic Type-R Championship White on the evo Fast Fleet, too. You can read its first report in Issue 133, on sale June 24 2009.

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