Honda Civic Type R (FL5) review – performance and 0-60
Looks average on paper only due to the limits of front-drive traction. In the real world there’s plenty of performance
Perhaps the most impressive element of the Type R this time around is the small but very impactful changes that have been made to the engine. Like few, if any, turbocharged four-cylinder engines of the modern era, the Honda’s K20C1 engine responds almost like a naturally aspirated unit, building torque in a linear fashion alongside engine speeds.
The response of the engine is razor-sharp, and the new turbocharger internals help get that spinning with what feels like no lag of any kind. Despite the lack of the expected turbo whoosh in the mid-range, torque really is abundant right across the engine’s operating speeds, and the Honda feels quicker even than the figures might suggest.
Japanese and European-specification Type Rs feature the full-fat tune, producing 324bhp at 6500rpm. Models sold in American and Australian markets make do with a 316bhp version for the sake of the lower-octane fuels sold there. Torque is the same 310lb ft in both markets, produced between 2200 and 4000rpm. Its 0-62mph time is rated at 5.4sec, but unless the tyres are toasty warm and tarmac bone-dry, it’s a tricky figure to extract. Top speed is rated at 170mph.