2021 Honda Civic Type R
Honda’s performance-level Civic, the Type R, is making news these days: it will be significantly revamped for the 2021 model year to be lighter, faster, and more agile than ever before. To give a brief history lesson, in 2017 the Honda Civic Type R set the world record front-wheel drive lap time at the Nürburgring Nordschleife (AKA Green Hall) in a mere 7 minutes and 43.8 seconds. In 2019, though, the Renault Mégane RS beat that mark with a hair-raising time of 7 minutes and 40.1 seconds. As close as it was, a defeat is a defeat, and Honda’s engineers vowed to make some changes. So far, it has lapped the Suzuka International Racing Circuit in Japan in a precise 2 minutes and 23.993 seconds, making it the fastest front-wheel drive vehicle to complete a lap at the Formula 1 race track.
Lighter Than Ever
Honda has gone to great lengths to make sure that the 2021 Civic Type R is more track-focused, and the first step toward this was to reduce its weight by 46 pounds. They replaced the wheels with lighter aluminum BBS ones and took out the rear climate-control ducts, the cargo area cover, the rear wiper blade, and the sound-deadening materials.
The 2021 Honda Civic Type R isn’t just getting a weight cut, it’s receiving some new performance upgrades. Two highlights are a more capable processing module that sends ten times the amount of data to the dampers per second and lighter two-piece front brake rotors and brake pads with a reworked compound. This transition to a two-piece rotor will help prevent heat damage. Also, updated lower ball joints that have been improved for reduced friction will enhance turning, and the rear control-arm bushings have been made 8% stiffer than on the previous Type R.
Additional changes include a brand-new Phoenix Yellow paint color, gloss-black exterior accents, dark chrome badging in the rear, and an upgrade to Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. The Honda LogR datalogger app, introduced for model year 2020, will return to measure your track performance in real time and will transmit on-board computer data to your smartphone using the car’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connection. After your drive, you can review the data log to see how your lap times compare. Plus, the Auto Score feature allows you to play back your sessions through the app and check your scores on acceleration, braking, turning, straightaways, and overall performance. You can even compare your scores with those of professional Honda drivers to see how you stack up.
Pricing and Release Date
The 2021 Honda Civic Type R will likely go on sale early this fall, but keep in mind that only 600 units will be sold stateside, each with its own numbered plaque. Pricing information hasn’t been disclosed yet, but we expect it to be a tad more than the current Civic Type R’s base MSRP of $36,995.
*(NHSTA) Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s New Car Assessment Program (www.safercar.gov). Model tested with standard side airbags (SAB).