The record-breaking hot hatch is on a record-breaking roll

The Honda Civic Type R has broken another front-wheel-drive lap record to add to its growing list of records it already has under its belt. This time around, the Civic Type R went to Silverstone in the U.K. to claim a new lap record for a front-wheel-drive production car with a time of 2:31.320, beating the previous record that was held by the previous-generation Civic Type R.

The Honda Civic Type R continues to terrorize race tracks all over the world

The Honda Civic Type R continues to terrorize race tracks all over the world. As if breaking the production car lap record for FWD cars at the Nurburgring, Spa, and Magny-Cours weren’t enough, the hot hatch went to Silverstone and added another lap record on its mantle. Three-time British Touring Car Championship winner Matt Neal sat behind the wheel of the Type R and was quickly convinced with the capabilities of the Civic Type R. "Where I found the real advantage of the Type R was in the high-speed corners – the stability which is a combination of the aero and the new advanced suspension system,” he said. “Into corners like Copse and Stowe at the end of the Hangar straight, you can carry big entry speed with supreme confidence."

By my count, that’s four lap records that the Honda Civic Type R now owns. It set the Nurburgring lap record back in April 2017 with a lap time of 7:43.800. A few months after that, it went to Magny-Cours in France to set a record there with a time of 2:01.510. From there, the hot hatch’s globe-trotting tour took it to Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium where it set a lap record of 2:53.720. Now, the Silverstone lap record has fallen to the mighty Civic Type R. To be fair, though, it actually beat the lap record that was previously held by its predecessor.

The Honda Civic Type R Smashes New Record, This Time at Silverstone Exterior
- image 785502
The Civic Type R went to Silverstone in the U.K. to claim a new lap record for a front-wheel-drive production car with a time of 2:31.320

Moving forward, the Civic Type R will continue hitting race tracks all over the world as part of the Type R Challenge that Honda set up. Former F1 world champion Jenson Button and former Jordan F1 driver Tiago Monteiro are still scheduled to have their own runs with the Civic Type R as it continues its quest to hold as many production car lap records for FWD vehicles in as many tracks as possible.

It’s an incredible achievement and a testament to the capabilities of the Civic Type R that these lap records are all falling by the wayside. But now’s not the time for Honda to start celebrating its success because it looks like Renault’s cooking up a new version of the Megane RS Trophy that’s going to give the Civic Type R a run for its money. Word has it that the French automaker is developing its hot hatch with the intention of reclaiming the production car lap record for FWD vehicles at the ‘Ring. If Renault somehow gets the job done, we could be looking at the start of a hot hatch rivalry the likes of which we haven’t seen in quite some time.

For now, though, it’s the Civic Type R’s moment in the spotlight. It’s a well-deserved achievement, too.

Honda Civic Type R Performance Specifications

Engine Type Turbocharged In-Line 4-Cylinder
Turbocharger Single-Scroll MHI TD04 with Internal Wastegate
Boost Pressure 22.8 psi
Displacement (cc) 1,996
Horsepower (SAE net) 306 HP @ 6,500 RPM
Torque (SAE net) 295 LB-FT @ 2,500-4,500 RPM
Fuel economy (City/Highway/Combined) (mpg) 22 / 28 / 25
Curb Weight (lbs.) 3,117
0 to 60 mph 4.9 seconds
Quarter-mile 13.5 seconds at 108 mph
Top Speed 169 mph

Further reading

2017 Honda Civic Type R High Resolution Exterior
- image 719354

Read our full review on the 2017 Honda Civic Type R.

2016 Honda Civic High Resolution Exterior
- image 651097

Read our full review on the 2018 Honda Civic.

no article
- image 742500

Read more Honda news.

Press release

Following two successes in the Honda Civic ‘Type R Challenge 2018’ at the Magny-Cours and Spa-Francorchamps circuits the high-performance hatchback has set a new 2 mins 31.32 secs lap record for a front-wheel drive production car at the Silverstone GP circuit in the UK, beating the benchmark set by the previous generation Civic Type R in a similar challenge in 2016.

The Type R was piloted by three-time British Touring Car Championship winner Matt Neal, who is currently campaigning a Honda Civic Type R in the 2018 BTCC with Halfords Yuasa Racing.

The Silverstone GP circuit is a thrilling 5.89km track featuring fast straights and high-speed corners, combined with more technical sections that demand pinpoint placement of the car. With tremendous outright pace from its optimised 2.0-litre VTEC TURBO engine, the Civic Type R provided blistering performance to enable Neal to make the most of the straights and accelerate quickly out of the sweeping corners.

Furthermore, the speed of the circuit means that aerodynamic characteristics are key – and Civic Type R’s best-in-class balance between lift and drag delivered a significant benefit. In the car’s +R mode, the Adaptive Damper System produces a firm and flat ride, enabling more speed to be carried through Silverstone’s flowing curves.

Speaking about the lap record, Matt Neal said: “Where I found the real advantage of the Type R was really in the high-speed corners – the stability which is a combination of the aero and the new advanced suspension system. Into corners like Copse and Stowe at the end of the Hangar straight, you can carry big entry speed with supreme confidence.”

Continuing his commentary on the Type R itself, Neal added: “There isn’t just one point that makes this Type R the best in its class – it’s across the board. It’s a completely new platform from its predecessors from the ground up, and Honda have scrutinised and improved every area from the stability of the handling with the multi-link suspension, the aero, the centre of gravity which is lower, it’s wider, it’s longer, the feedback the driver gets through the steering, the power delivery of the engine – it’s a step forward in every direction.”

The driver line-up for the remaining Type R Challenge 2018 circuit record attempts will include former Formula 1 World Champion and current NSX Super GT driver Jenson Button (UK) and WTCR driver Tiago Monteiro (Portugal).

The new benchmark time for the Silverstone circuit is the fourth lap record to be claimed by the new Honda Civic Type R. In April 2017, a production development car became the fastest front-wheel drive production car ever around the Nürburgring Nordschleife, with a lap time of 7 mins 43.8 secs. Following that, the ‘Type R Challenge 2018’ started with WTCR driver, Esteban Guerrieri, setting a new 2 mins 1.51 secs lap record for a front-wheel drive production car at the Magny-Cours GP circuit in France, before Bertrand Baguette clocked 2 mins 53.72 secs in the same car at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium.

The new Honda Civic Type R retains the heritage of Honda’s high-performance hatchback bloodline and is the fastest accelerating and quickest car in its class. The latest car to sport the famous ‘red H’ was part of the all-new tenth-generation Civic’s development programme – the largest in Honda’s history – and was engineered to deliver the most rewarding drive in the hot hatch segment, both on road and on the race track. It features a lightweight, highly rigid bodyshell, low centre of gravity, and sophisticated dual-axis strut front suspension system, which reduces torque steer and enhances on-the-limit cornering.

View the full press release Hide press release
Press release
What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: