Warm up your typing fingers and don your flame-proof suit, things are about to get ugly in internetland; Honda just dropped this video, and they’re claiming that the newest Civic Type-R is even faster than the VW Golf Clubsport S.
After the Lamborghini furore last month, Honda are playing this claim pretty straight. They’ve uploaded the video below and even labelled it as “VBox” footage. The VBox is de facto industry standard equipment for recording data and video from cars driving fast in circles, and it’s the same as we use in our own Milltek Sport GT86 Cup car.
And the laptime? A blisteringly fast 7 minutes 43.80 seconds from the standard SportAuto/Industry T13 pit lane exit to the T13 finish line. Watch it for yourself here:
Now before CarThrottle make a list of “9 cars slower than the 2017 Honda Civic Type-R”, let’s talk about why the new car is so much quicker than the not-really-that-old-yet Civic Type-R FK.
Firstly it has more power, this EU-spec machine producing a claimed 320hp. The previous lap record holder Golf Clubsport S claimed 315hp and 7 minutes 47 seconds, but we can never really know what ANY manufacturer is doing with power. Especially with turbo’d cars. Ask anybody who bought a Clubsport S how much power their ‘stock’ car made on the dyno, and you’ll get a surprising answer. (HINT: It’s more than 315hp!)
Secondly, and more importantly, the new car is lower, wider, longer and enjoys wider wheels, a wider track and even a new multi-link rear-suspension. These are the real differences that will help get those 6-seconds back from the last version.
Finally, the Nordschleife is definitely faster this year. New upgrades over the last couple of years have had a cumulative effect and every laptime has fell.
Honda are being pretty open about the spec of the car, and they’re trying to get ahead of any cheating accusations straight away.
- The car is caged, but they claim it’s a floating cage which doesn’t affect the rigidity of the car in any way. This is not unusual, and I’ve driven several prototypes with cages like this. Typically, the safety cell sits inside the car, and every point of contact is a big rubber bush, kinda like your motor mounts.
- Yes, they did remove the rear seats and infotainment, but they claim in their press release that it perfectly offsets the weight of the extra cage.
- Tyres remain officially a mystery, but if I was willing to bet £5, I’d put it on Michelin Pilot Sport Cup2 in the very latest compound. That squeal of understeer is very familiar to me. Honda officially say “the car was using road legal track-focused tyres”, but that’s probably because Bridgestone or Dunlop won the OEM contract for this model. Sorry, Continental.
You can read the official release here, it’ll be rehashed and reworked and all over the internet by lunch time. 😉