With the latest Civic Type R, Honda ups the hot hatch ante yet again

By J.G. Pasterjak
Apr 3, 2024 | Civic, type R, Civic Type R, Track Test | Posted in Features | From the May 2024 issue | Never miss an article

Photography Credit: Chris Tropea

Don’t flip ahead. We know you really just want to jump to the lap time on the newest Honda Civic Type R, but trust us: Take the ride first.

Yeah, lap times are important and, in the case of the most recent iteration of the hottest Civic, impressive, but they don’t tell the whole story. So before you peek at the …

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Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
4/3/24 9:32 a.m.

Glad to hear Honda has, somehow, managed to make the Civic Type R even better than the last one.

Chris Tropea
Chris Tropea Associate Editor
4/3/24 9:33 a.m.

I did not drive the Type R on the track but on the road it was a really good daily driver. If I had to go out and buy a new car today it would be hard for me not to buy one. 

nsxmr2elises2000 PowerDork
4/3/24 11:21 a.m.

honda fanboii forever 

GR is much more raw and better imho

CrashDummy Reader
4/3/24 11:31 a.m.

1. Lap times aside, can you comment on how this car compares to the Elantra N? What are the big differences in performance driving and daily driving?

2. Do we have a sense of what it actually costs to buy one of these? Is Honda working on ramping up production to meet demand? 

gearheadE30 Dork
4/3/24 11:59 a.m.

Saw my first example in person last week. It looks much classier than the previous generation. I really wish the hood extended all the way to the grille - that horizontal hood shut line across the front is extremely noticeable on that white car and it really stood out in person. Some kind of gold/bronze wheels on the one I saw, that was a massive improvement over the stock black ones. 

I was in my 924, which is a very small car. I parked between the Civic and a Charger. The Civic looked almost as big as the Charger, which surprised me more than it probably should have. 

Mezus New Reader
4/3/24 1:01 p.m.

In reply to CrashDummy :

I test drove the new Type R and went with an Elantra N. I am very happy with my decision. I'll share some thoughts.

What I liked more about the type R: the shifter, the engine produced power more effortlessly, the hatch (for dog transport). 

What I didn't like about the type R: the red color seats are painfully loud, I think it looks like a 15 year old picked them, especially since the back don't match. I think they would age poorly. The suspension is too hard on its softest setting, making it unlivable. I don't like the thought of buying a car knowing that I have to replace a suspension controller to get livable ride. The car did not seem as customizable for drive settings. I did not think it was worth anywhere near the 56k that the dealer negotiated down to - at that price point I can get a much nicer car. 

What I liked about the Elantra N: The rear end felt more playful, it has tons of rear seat room. More compliant suspension, but still get very hard in hardest setting (maybe too hard for optimum lap times). Seems overall like a better daily driver. The warranty, and that the owner's manual discusses track setup. I can't think of a better value car. It's not nearly as flashy. More customizable drive settings. 

What I don't like about the Elantra N: It has some weird issue that makes it extremely difficult to drive off smoothly in 1st gear. I, and multiple experienced manual transmission drivers, have been unable to do it. You pretty much need to keep the revs up or it will stall. It doesn't have a garage door opener. The exhaust is too loud even on the quietest setting. Octane learning, not a hatch. Less aftermarket support (difficulty finding aftermarket wheels with the correct offset), smaller community tracking it. 

IKR New Reader
4/3/24 1:57 p.m.

Seems like a fantastic hot hatch.......but in my area one dealer wanted ~78K and the cheapest dealer had two, both priced around $62K. For me, once we start talking about that amount of money I'll spend that much plus whatever I need to get into the next class sports car. I do want a real test drive though!

300zxfreak Reader
4/3/24 3:06 p.m.

Squozen ?

DavyZ New Reader
4/3/24 3:34 p.m.

The styling is much less JDM boy-racer than the previous versions, so I really like the more curvy-subtle approach in this go around.  Prices? Well....if the dealers are wanting way over sticker, I would be looking at alternatives too.  Even higher end used cars as well, especially between $60K-$70K.  Hmmm, what else could I buy for that much money? 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
4/3/24 4:36 p.m.
300zxfreak said:

Squozen ?

Perfectly cromulent word.

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