Will We Ever See an All-Electric Civic Type R from Honda?
The answer might surprise youby Tudor Rus, on LISTEN 02:50
There’s nothing we can say to further boost the Civic’s (and subsequently, the Type R’s) icon status among car nuts. But times are changing and with the current push for electrification, even such a revered moniker as the Type R is likely to adopt the trend sooner or later.
Recent info in that direction comes from within Honda’s official ranks. Apparently, there are folks over at Honda who believe in the possibility of an all-electric Type R-badged car, especially since the Japanese carmaker should begin mixing its performance-oriented cars with less polluting powertrains.
Don’t expect an all-electric performance Honda too soon
Speaking to MotorTrend, Honda’s Civic Type R project leader Hideki Kakinuma suggested that “an electric Type R is possible.” He goes on to develop his argument by saying that an all-electric performance Honda, regardless of its shape and name, has to deliver on one important area first and foremost, and that’s the ability to offer “the excitement the company requires from a Type R-branded vehicle.”
Of course, it’s too early to really discuss about a Type R model motivated by a battery pack and one or more electric motors. The Japanese are only now testing the water with the Honda e, but the all-electric supermini is hardly what you’d call a high-performance vehicle.
The Honda e makes 134 horsepower and 315 Newton-meters (232 pound-feet) of torque coming from an e-motor fed by a 35.3-kWh Lithium-ion battery pack. It can go from naught to 60 mph (96 km/h) in nine seconds and further up to a top speed of 90 mph (145 km/h). The WLTP-measured max range is 137 miles (220 km).
|Honda E Base||Honda E Advance|
|Electric Motor Max Power||134 HP||152 HP|
|Electric Motor Max Torque||232 LB-FT||232 LB-FT|
|0 → 62 mph (seconds)||9||8.3|
|Max Speed (mph)||90||90|
|All-electric range (WLTP)||138 miles||138 miles|
Mind you, despite its tiny size, the Honda e isn’t exactly light - it tips the scales at 1,514 kilos (3,337 pounds), whereas the Civic Type R weighs 100 kilos (220 pounds less, at 1,414 kilos (3,117 pounds). That’s not exactly sports car material, is it, now? That’s why we’re telling every performance EV fan out there to not jump for joy just yet.
That said, here’s something delicious for the gearhead in you on the Type R’s ICE capabilities. Mr. Kakinuma believes that the current Civic Type R setup can be pushed beyond the current 306-horsepower, 295-pound-feet of torque output while keeping the front-wheel-drive configuration. When and if that will happen, though, remains a secret for now.
|Engine||2.0-liter turbocharged i-VTEC four-cylinder|
|Horsepower||306 HP @ 6,500 RPM|
|Torque||295 LB-FT @ 7,000 RPM|
|Fuel economy city/highway/combined||22 / 28 / 25|
|0 to 60 mph||5.7 seconds|
|Top Speed||169 mph|