Limited to 39 units for now
Hear this one out, all ye Civic faithful - the sixth iteration of Honda's high-performance hatchback is finally here.
Revealed at Honda Cars Philippines Inc. (HCPI)'s thanksgiving party at Karrera Showroom in Alabang, the 2023 Honda Civic Type R represents the pinnacle of the eleventh-generation Civic line.
For starters, the all-new Civic Type R is designated under the model code FL5 and is no longer made in Honda's Swindon, United Kingdom plant. Instead, the hot hatchback is now being made in Saitama, Japan. This marks the first time since the third-generation FD2 that a Civic Type R is built in the Land of the Rising Sun.
As expected, the latest metamorphosis of the Civic Type R smashed the records set by its predecessors on various racetracks around the world. Honda made the 2023 Civic Type R lower, wider, and more powerful than the outgoing FK8 model.
The all-new Civic Type R is based on the hatchback version of the eleventh-generation Civic, and together with the standard models, the FL5 follows a less aggressive approach in design with less prominent grille openings and cooling intakes in front.
Like its predecessor, the all-new Civic Type R has widened fenders. But this time, Honda integrated a wider shape to the bodywork instead of adding a plastic flare to achieve a wider look, especially at the rear. In addition, the signature triple exhaust has been retained, along with the rear diffuser and spoiler, which have been redesigned. Lastly, Honda chose smaller 19-inch wheels compared to the previous 20-inch alloys on the FK8 but widened the FL5's contact patch as it now uses 265mm tires instead of 245s.
In terms of size, the FL5 Civic Type R now measures 4595mm long, 1890mm wide, and 1405mm tall, making it 38mm longer, 13mm wider and 29mm lower than the FK8. In addition, the wheelbase has been stretched from 2700mm to 2735mm, while the front and rear wheel tracks have been increased to 1625mm and 1615mm, respectively. Furthermore, from 132mm in the FK8, the FL5's ground clearance is lower at 125mm.
With all things considered, these changes effectively gave the FL5 a lower center of gravity. And despite growing in size, the all-new Civic Type R only gained 38 kg of weight over the outgoing FK8.
Inside the all-new Civic Type R, occupants are greeted with the signature red upholstery on the bucket seats, carpets, and floor mats, while red contrast stitching can be seen on the leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift boot. Also, the red H badge appears on the steering wheel, while the usual aluminum pedals and shift knob adorn the Civic Type R's interior. Lastly, a special Type R badge is placed on the dash with the corresponding model number.
A specific interface has been installed for the fully digital instrument panel and infotainment screen to display the car's vital statistics, as well as store data such as lap times and G-Force readings.
The 2.0-liter K20C1 VTEC Turbo four-cylinder engine has been carried over from the previous model, but it now produces 320 PS and 420 Nm of torque. Its 6-speed manual transmission with rev-matching was likewise retained, but its final drive has been changed to increase top speed and lower highway cruising revs.
As with the latest Honda models in the country, the all-new Civic Type R comes equipped with the Honda Sensing driver assist system. These include features like adaptive cruise control (ACC) with low speed follow, lane keep assist (LKAS), lane departure warning (LDW), collision mitigation braking system (CMBS), and adaptive LED headlights.
HCPI says the 2023 Civic Type R is limited to 39 units (the 40th unit is not for sale). The price tag is a cool PHP 3.88 million.