Here's a bit of news we didn't expect today.

Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) has just announced that the new and improved Civic Type R is now available at dealerships. This is the first major upgrade of the very popular performance model from Honda since the vehicle was launched in 2017.

The new Type R has a long list of exterior updates with improvements made to the aerodynamic package. For starters, it gets updated front and rear bumpers, and new foglight surrounds that give it a sportier look. Honda says it's now more “symmetrical” in design.

Other notable changes to the Type R are not so visible. Honda says that the slimmer grille slats allow more air to the radiator which has likewise been improved for cooling. This was in response to global customer feedback about how the Type R runs a bit too hot when lapping circuits.

Honda Civic Type R PH facelift image

Inside, the most notable change is the steering wheel: Honda opted for the Alcantara wheel for the new Type R. The shift knob has also been swapped for a “teardrop”-shaped shifter. The shifter panel and dashboard inserts have also been changed to a glossy carbon fiber design with a red border. The seat design has also been updated with new bolstering done in black.

Honda Civic Type R PH facelift image

Other changes include improvements to the central touchscreen unit that has more buttons particularly for the climate control system; that too was a response to customer feedback. Honda also fitted the Type R with Active Sound Control or ASC. It's effectively a function of the audio system to amplify (in Sport and +R) or refine (in Comfort) the engine note in the cabin depending on the drive mode.

Honda Civic Type R PH facelift image

Debuting in the Civic Type R is the Honda Sensing safety package. It now has Adaptive Cruise Control, Collision Mitigation Braking System, Lane Keeping Assist System, Road Departure Mitigation, and Lane Departure Warning.

The powertrain remains the same: the 2.0-liter VTEC Turbo engine that has 310 PS and 400 Nm of torque. The gearbox is still a front-wheel-drive 6-speed manual with a rev-match function to simulate heel and toe downshifting.

The suspension and braking systems have also been improved with new 350mm Brembo front brakes and brake pads. The suspension's Adaptive Damper System has also been updated. The Civic Type R continues to ride on 20-inch wheels wrapped in low-profile tires.

Honda Civic Type R PH facelift image

Honda says the units of the new Civic Type R are actually in the country and are available in three colors: Championship White, Sonic Gray, and Racing Blue.

Honda Civic Type R (Late 2021) – PHP 3,210,000