Honda Civic Type R 2023 Review

How fast is the Honda Civic Type R Hatch

Civic Type R – Honda launched the all-new Civic Type R earlier this year. The sixth-generation model comes at a time when the market is moving away from small, dedicated sports cars, which is a shame.

2023 Honda Civic Type R front bonnet and grill 1 First up it looks the part with low sleek 4 door hatchback design, huge rear spoiler, ultra-low profile tyres and a tri exhaust system.

I have to say it certainly attracted a lot of attention when I was driving it.

It also has a delightful exhaust note courtesy of the tri exhaust outlets.

The Civic Type R is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine that delivers up to 235kW of power and 420 Nm of torque. This drives the front wheels through a smooth six speed manual transmission.

While there isn’t an official 0-100kmh time it should do mid to high 5.0 second times.

The interior is sports car focused with red sports seats and trim, an abundance of information available through the 9-inch central touch screen and an Alcantara sports steering wheel.

Overall, the Civic Type R is responsive and a lot of fun to drive.

The latest model is priced from $72,600 plus the usual costs.

This is a Motoring Minute

I’m Rob Fraser

TO LISTEN TO THE CIVIC TYPE R RADIO REVIEW, CLICK BELOW

Civic Type R Video Review

Honda Civic Type R more thoughts

Many years ago, I owned a Honda CRX, a 1989 or 90 model I think it was. It was a practical hot hatch style vehicle. Essentially it was a go cart. Low to the ground, gripped corners like a limpet and useable performance when you worked the transmission. It wasn’t the fastest, but it was HUGE fun.

The hatchback styling was also immensely practical. We used to pack a lawn mower and whipper snipper in it and head to the beach house to mow the lawn.

Fast forward to 2023 and the latest Type R feels similar. It retains the hatch practicality; it grips like a limpet and is FUN to drive.

I must be getting a bit older (obviously), but the suspension sometimes feels a little harsh for everyday driving and the torque steer adds to the excitement.

2023 Honda Civic Type R profile 1

What is the Civic Type R look like?

I like it. Its low, wide and shows purpose.

Aggressive bonnet, grill, and wheel arches along with a bonnet scoop for air flow all add to the overall appeal.

Having a large rear spoiler and tri exhaust pipes leaves no doubt as to the intent of the vehicle.

2023 Honda Civic Type R driving 1

How about inside the Civic Type R.

The first thing you notice is the rich red body-hugging seats. They scream sports car.

Once you settle in, there is enough room for even my bear like frame.

In front of the driver is a thick rimmed sports steering wheel that frames the drivers’ instruments. These are clear and easy to read.

Central screen tends to stand out a bit but is functional and has excellent resolution and touch sensitivity.

Drivers can select from several screens that allow monitoring of performance and vehicle factors.

A heavily updated version of the Honda LogR data logger is available. This combines performance data from the onboard computer and in-car sensors with a new built-in vehicle app, rather than just the smartphone app available on the previous model.

LogR helps drivers monitor and record a variety of performance parameters in real time when driving on the track or other closed courses, helping to improve driving skills.

2023 Honda Civic Type R central screen compilation

Civic Type R features highlights

Honda Civic Type R is equipped with a wide-ranging list of new features and technologies, including:

  • Newly developed 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo engine with increased power and torque
  • Individual drive mode in addition to Comfort, Sport, and +R
  • Active exhaust valve
  • Wider 265/30/R19 size Michelin Pilot 4S tires
  • Customisable 10.2-inch high-definition full colour digital driver information display
  • Traffic Sign Recognition System
  • Intelligent Speed Limiter
  • Driver Attention Monitor
  • Knee Airbags- driver and front passenger
  • 9-inch Advanced Display Audio touchscreen system
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay
  • Wireless phone charger
  • Honda Connect
  • In-built Honda LogR
  • Satellite navigation
  • Acoustic windscreen
  • ‘Smart Clear Wiper’ windscreen wiper/ washer system
  • Auto-retractable door mirrors
  • Full suede-effect seat trim
  • Ambient door trim and front footwell lighting

2023 Honda Civic Type R drivetrain screen compilation

Civic Type R engine and drivetrain

The Type R is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine that produces up to 235kW of power and 420 Nm of torque. This drives the front wheels through a slick six speed manual transmission. The transmission lever is aluminium,

The Civic Type R’s helical-type limited-slip differential (LSD) helps to minimise wheel spin which puts more of the engine’s power effectively to the pavement.

The system never locks the speed of the two drive wheels together as would a locking differential, but instead allows different wheel speeds to accommodate the longer distance the outer wheel must travel when cornering.

This component enables the vehicle to accelerate harder on surfaces with uneven traction.

The specially tuned Adaptive Damper System helps the Type R excel by allowing different damping curves that adjust automatically to suit driving conditions.

This is all based on steering input, lateral G, and suspension stroke. The retuned system, along with updates to suspension geometry and hardware, improves handling and ride comfort over rough surfaces.

This includes comfort, sport and +R. Mechanical grip is also improved by adopting wider tires and wheels.

The new forged wheels are wrapped in stickier 265/30 R19 Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres that are specially developed for the new Civic Type R.

2023 Honda Civic Type R LogR 3

Drive Modes

With four available drive modes, the 2023 Civic Type R is more customisable than ever as there is now room to choose between Comfort, Sport, +R and a new Individual mode.

  • Comfort: A more relaxed mode for the highest levels of comfort. Reduced throttle sensitivity, maximum amount of steering assist, and a decreased suspension damping for smoother ride.
  • Sport: Designed for high-performance driving. Sport sharpens the throttle response. Suspension damping is increased for improved handling. Steering assist is decreased for better feel.
  • +R: For maximum performance, +R mode further increases throttle sensitivity, quickens rev-match speeds, and reduces steering assist. It also features a dedicated gauge cluster layout and enhanced engine sound.
  • Individual: Allows for the selection of individual settings including engine responsiveness, suspension, gauges, and steering assist.

2023 Honda Civic Type R driving 2

What is the Civic Type R like to drive?

Fun would be the first impression.

Its quick off the mark in the mid 5 seconds. However, its more about how responsive it is on the move.

Here the quick-shifting 6-speed manual transmission (6MT) with an automatic rev-matching system provides a smooth and active engagement for both upshifts and downshifts.

When this selectable feature is enabled, the Drive-by-Wire throttle system automatically adjusts the engine rpm during gear changes to match the next gear the driver selects.

The automatic rev matching has two operational profiles: Comfort and Sport. In Comfort, the rev match system uses a seamless profile, designed to give the Type R a smooth, comfortable shift feel.

In Sport and +R modes, the system switches to a more aggressive, quick-revving profile designed to complement the faster paced shifting of performance driving.

The new Type R has a lighter flywheel which also allows more precision and encourages spirited driving.

Under heavy acceleration, there is noticeable torque steer through the front wheels. It will catch you   guard the first time, but when anticipated adds to the overall excitement.

The other noticeable effect of selecting +R is that the suspension can be a little harsh on an older body kike mine. The youngsters will love it though.

Steering feel is well weighted and directly responsive.

The overall combination of driver inputs combines to make the Civic Type R a real sports experience.

2023 Honda Civic Type R Central screen 4

What about safety

Even though there isn’t an ANCAP rating Key Safety and Driver-Assistance features include:

  • Next-generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure optimised for oblique collisions.
  • The 11th generation Civic’s world-first use of a new driver airbag design, plus a segment-first passenger front airbag, are designed to cradle the head and control rotation; both are standard in the new Civic Type R
  • New knee airbags
  • New rear seat side-impact airbags
  • All-new standard wide-view, single-camera Honda Sensing® system
  • Traffic Sign Recognition (TSR) added to Honda Sensing®
  • Updated Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS)

2023 Honda Civic Type R rear spoiler 3

Honda Civic Type R final thoughts

In a world that is heading towards SUVs and EVs, cars like the Civic Type R restore order.

It looks great, feels awesome to drive and isn’t too expensive.

It’s a practical sports hatch that provides enormous fun.

2023 Honda Civic Type R drivers view of dash

What is good?

  • Stylish and practical
  • Engaging to drive
  • Stands firm against the SUV trend

What is not so good?

2023 Honda Civic Type R front wheel, tyre and brakes

Also look at.

Unfortunately, the small sports car segment is slowly contracting. Hot hatches were huge many years ago but are now being replaced by small SUVs or even electric cars.

Buyers could look at the Toyota GR Corolla, Subaru WRX, Hyundai i30N, Audi S3, Renault Megane RS, or even the Audi SQ2.  

If you don’t mind having no exhaust blip, then you could look at the Kia EV6 GT Line, Subaru Solterra, or Hyundai IONIQ5.

2023 Honda Civic Type R engine

Honda Civic

Model

Civic Type R

Model Price $72,600 MLP*
Engine 2.0L 4 Cyl Turbo Petrol
Drivetrain 6 Sp MT FWD
Battery Capacity / type N/A
Power 235Kw @ 6,500 rpm
Torque 420Nm @ 2,600 – 4,000rpm
Fuel ADR 8.9L/100km Euro 5
Fuel on Test 10.2 L/100k
Fuel capacity 47L
Range (WLTP) / efficiency 662km Max
Realistic range 550km on test
Fast Charge / Home (240V) N/A
Safety N/A
CO2 Emissions 203g/km
0-100kmh/Top Speed 5.5 secs / 270 km/h est.
Servicing 12 MTh / 10,000km – Capped
Warranty 5yr/ Unlimited km
Roadside Assist 5Yr. conditional roadside assist

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges)

2023 Honda Civic Type R front seats and dash 1

Overall Rating    

83/100

Behind the Wheel 8
Comfort 8
Equipment 8
Performance 9
Ride and Handling 7
Practicality 9
Fit for Purpose 9
Style / appeal 9
Technology/connectivity 8
Value for Money 8

2023 Honda Civic Type R dimensions compilation

Dimensions

 Civic Type R

Overall Length 4606mm
Wheelbase 2735mm
Width 1890mm
Height 1407mm
Wheels 19 X 9.5 Alloy
Tyres 265/30 R19
Max ground clearance Up to 123mm
Wading Depth N/A
Approach N/A
Rampover N/A
Departure angle N/A
Turning Circle KTK TBC
Boot Capacity Min 410L
Boot capacity Max 1212L
Battery Weight N/A
Kerb Weight 1429kg
Payload (kg) 371kg
GVM (kg) 1800kg
GCM TBC
Towing Capacity N/A
Tow Ball rating N/A

2023 Honda Civic Type R rear spoiler 2

Radio Segments Motoring Minute

Motoring Minute is heard around Australia every day on over 50 radio channels through the Torque Radio network.

Motoring Minute has an average daily audience of over 550,000 listeners. They are also syndicated through various news sites around Australia.

Additionally Motoring Minute is also broadcast as part of Overdrive Radio Program. This can be found weekly on the Community Radio Network across Australia.

Overall Rating
  • 8.3/10
    Rating - 8.3/10
8.3/10

Summary

Honda Civic Type R final thoughts

In a world that is heading towards SUVs and EVs, cars like the Civic Type R restore order.

It looks great, feels awesome to drive and isn’t too expensive.

It’s a practical sports hatch that provides enormous fun.

About Rob Fraser 2504 Articles
Rob Fraser – General dogsbody & Director Rob is the founder of the business. He constantly mutters something about way too many red wines one evening being to blame. Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive. He first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then. In addition to 4WD he is an avid motoring enthusiast and has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since his teens. He has owned way too many cars in his time as well. Having previously lived at the top of corporate life he retired in 2000 and hasn’t put a suit and tie on since. Cars are his passion so why not have a business doing what you love he figures. He has towed either a caravan or camper trailer to most parts of Australia, has run guided tours for camper trailers’ and instructed drivers in off road towing.