Hel­luva Honda

The new Type-r is set to tear up ‘the green hell’

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Car News - KARLA PIN­COTT karla.pin­cott@cars­guide.com.au

ANEWHonda Civic Type-R hot hatch will tar­get the fron­twheel-drive pro­duc­tion car record for Ger­many’s fa­mous Nur­bur­gring cir­cuit, known as ‘‘ the green hell’’.

‘‘ With the ap­pli­ca­tion of tech­nolo­gies de­vel­oped through Honda’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in the World Tour­ing Car Cham­pi­onships (WTCC), the all-new Type R will aim to be­come the fastest front-wheeldrive ve­hi­cle on the Nur­bur­gring,’’ Honda’s global CEO and pres­i­dent Takanobu Ito promised. It will have to beat the 8 min­utes 7.97 sec­onds set by a Re­nault Me­gane RS 265 Tro­phy in July 2011.

Some me­chan­i­cal spec­i­fi­ca­tions are likely to be re­vealed at this week’s Paris Mo­tor Show. For the rest we’ll have to wait for next year’s Geneva sa­lon.

The pre­vi­ous Type-R was pow­ered by a high-revving 148kW/193Nm four-cylin­der VTEC engine with a CO fig­ure of 219g/km that meant it fell vic­tim to Euro 5 emis­sion stan­dards. The British-built car was dis­con­tin­ued in 2010.

These cars were all nat­u­rally-as­pi­rated but, with Mr Ito re­fer­ring to WTCC tech­nol­ogy, it’s highly likely the new hot hatch will em­u­late the Eu­ros with tur­bocharg­ing in the form of the 1.6-litre four­cylin­der that pow­ers the WTCC Hon­das.

The last Type-R model sold here for about $40,000. Honda must keep it be­low that to be com­pet­i­tive against the grow­ing com­pe­ti­tion and to re­gain lost sales.

Mr Ito says the new Type-R is part of a model as­sault that in­cludes a new mini SUV based on the next Honda Jazz plat­form, a small open sports car, a fuel-cell car, and a hy­brid all-wheel-drive Leg­end.

Honda Aus­tralia is on the Type-R case. ‘‘ It is only con­firmed for Europe at the mo­ment, but it’s on our wish list and pretty high up,’’ di­rec­tor Stephen Collins says.

‘‘ We’re look­ing at that, plus some other things. We’re con­stantly in dis­cus­sion with Ja­pan re­gard­ing these types of cars. We launched the (hy­brid) CR-Z not that long ago and it is our sports car fo­cus, but the role of Type-R is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent to the CR-Z.

‘‘ The Type-R is also never go­ing to be huge vol­ume, but it adds an im­por­tant state­ment to Honda. OurDNA is rich in ex­cit­ing, sporty cars and the Type-R ful­fils that pur­pose.’’

Blown away: Atur­bocharged Civic is en route

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