Honda Civic Type R Reclaims Nurburgring Lap Record

Dan Ilika
by Dan Ilika

We knew the hotly anticipated 2018 Honda Civic Type R was going to be fast, but just how fast is beginning to become much clearer.

According to Honda, the Type R lapped the famed Nürburgring in 7 minutes 43.80 seconds, setting a new record for a front-wheel drive production car. That time around the 12.9-mile (20.8-kilometer) track is some seven seconds faster than the previous version of the Civic Type R sold in Europe, and more than three seconds faster than the previous record holder, the Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S.

It’s important to note that the record-setting lap around the ‘Ring was completed in a pre-production car, but Honda insists the example used was “technically representative” of the 2018 Honda Civic Type R that’s set to go on sale here this summer. The automaker says a roll cage was installed for safety reasons, but it didn’t improve the car’s rigidity compared to the production version. Likewise, the unspecified gain in curb weight as a result of the roll cage was compensated for by removing the infotainment system and rear seats. Otherwise, Honda says the record-setting car is pretty close to the production version.

The Ford Focus RS-fighting Type R, the first of its kind sold in North America, gets its power from an American-made 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that’s good for 306 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. The engine comes mated to a six-speed manual transmission that features lower gear ratios compared to the last version of the car, which help improve acceleration.

ALSO SEE: 2017 Ford Focus RS vs Volkswagen Golf R

Other differences compared to the Type R that was previously offered in Europe include a curb weight that’s nearly 35 lb (16 kg) less — the last version weighed about 3,000 lb (1,361 kg) — and a 38 percent improvement in torsional rigidity.

The team here at is about as hyped about this new Civic Type R as you are, and we can’t wait to get behind the wheel to check it out for ourselves. Look for a full review to hit the site in late June, and until then check out the video above to whet your appetites.

Dan Ilika
Dan Ilika

Dan is's Road Test Editor, a long-suffering Buffalo Bills fan, and a car guy since childhood. He enjoys long walks on the beach and long drives just about anywhere the road, track or trail will take him. You'll see him driving around evaluating cars and in front of a camera talking about them. Dan is a member of the World Car of the Year jury.

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  • Floppie Floppie on Apr 24, 2017

    It's laughable to compare this with the RS. It's front-wheel drive.

    • Dan Ilika Dan Ilika on Apr 24, 2017

      I'm not sure what's laughable about it, @mikecronce:disqus. Letting the drive layout dictate whether they're competitors or not is like saying the Jaguar F-Type and Porsche 718 Series aren't competitors because the former is supercharged and the latter turbo.

  • Nauticalone Nauticalone on Apr 24, 2017

    That's fast. I'd still take the VW! Subjectively I prefer the VW's styling. Still a very good car here by Honda and many will like it for sure.