I want cake and I want to eat it

CAR (UK) - - Our Cars - @Khur­tizz

MOD­ERN CARS are of­ten crit­i­cised for giv­ing driv­ers un­nec­es­sary lev­els of choice but I’m start­ing to crave a few more choices on my Civic Type R.

The Honda has three dis­tinct per­for­mance modes, with +R be­ing the most ex­treme, Comfort the soft­est and Sport float­ing some­where in the mid­dle. Each mode trans­forms steer­ing feel, en­gine re­sponse, sus­pen­sion and more. But where you can mix these on other cars, you can’t on the Type R.

In +R mode, the Civic’s steer­ing comes into its own, chan­nelling in­cred­i­ble lev­els of road-sur­face de­tail through the wheel. But on the M25, the firm, race-ready +R sus­pen­sion isn’t what you want. In­stead, you want the softer and less in­tense Comfort sus­pen­sion.

But there’s no way of com­bin­ing the two – so you have to make do with Comfort’s less in­for­ma­tive steer­ing. And be­cause Comfort changes the en­gine char­ac­ter too, you’re forced to drive a very dif­fer­ent car just be­cause you don’t want to feel every M25 crevice. Sport mode pro­vides a com­pro­mise be­tween the two, but the lack of cus­tomi­sa­tion is jar­ring. It’s a sig­nif­i­cant over­sight in a Type R that’s sup­posed to be eas­ier to live with, and a key area the Civic Type R lags its ri­vals. Maybe one for the next gen, or a soft­ware up­date?

Civic’s styling has all the grace of a hand grenade. Power de­liv­ery is equally sub­tle

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