Review: 2018 Honda Civic Type R

After 2 decades, the 2018 Honda Civic Type R is FINALLY on American shores.
Well, boys and girls, it’s finally here. The new Honda Civic Type R, which was first revealed at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, has finally hit dealer showrooms and is on sale now in the U.S. of A. 2017 marks the 5th generation of the Type R variant of the Honda Civic and the 10th generation overall for the Civic, which has been in continuous production since 1972.

 

The 1973 Honda Civic epitomized the practical, affordable, environmentally-conscious, and budget-friendly economy car. Driving it was just as fun and engaging as walking or taking the bus.
A LITTLE HISTORY LESSON…

The original Honda Civic made its debut on July 11th, 1972 (as a 1973 model), replacing the N600 as the subcompact economy entry in Honda’s vehicle lineup. It was an immediate hit right out of the box in its native Japan, overtaking its domestic rivals from Nissan and Toyota. The Civic also achieved international success in both England and the United States as it specifically catered to motorists who were affected by the 1973 Oil Crisis and had grown jaded of the increasing banality of traditional, full-sized land barges. The Civic’s mass appeal as an inexpensive, fuel-friendly, and reliable (albeit, boring and uninspired) commuter car, combined with Honda’s growing reputation for hardiness, legions of Civic aficionados and Honda brand loyalists were formed as a result. In 1997, Honda’s famed Type R performance treatment was finally applied to the Civic, granting the little economy car to oin the legendary NSX supercarDC2 and DC5 Integra, and CH/CL Accord in the Honda Type R stable of high-performance vehicles. The Honda Civic Type R remained unavailable in the North American market since its initial release but now, just in time for the first Civic Type R’s 20th anniversary, the newest iteration of the Civic Type R has finally made its way to American shores to do battle against other performance-oriented “hot hatches” such as the Volkswagen Golf R and the Ford Focus RS.

 

This instant rice cooks in just 5.9 seconds.
SO, WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL?

The Type R badge indicates the ultimate level of Honda-bred factory performance. Akin to BMW’s M-SportMercedes-AMG, the Lexus F Sport brand, and (to a lesser degree) Cadillac V-Series and the Chevrolet SS designation, Honda’s Type R incorporates advanced factory modifications to production cars in the name of performance. Optimal engine tuning and suspension setup, weight reduction, and enhanced braking and handling capabilities are the ingredients that go into breeding a Honda car that’s worthy enough to wear the exclusive red Honda H emblem. The Honda Civic Type R was already long available in the Japanese Domestic (JDM) and European markets, but was always restricted from entering the North American market. Reasons for this include the differences in structural architecture for North American-spec and the Japanese/European versions, US government-imposed crash safety, emissions, and fuel-economy regulations, and possibly an effort by Honda themselves to eliminate any potential product overlap with their own Acura brand. To compensate for their own refusal to sell the Civic Type R in North America, Honda positioned the Si (Sport Injected) trim level (which began with the 1985 Civic CRX) over time to incorporate an increasing blend of performance and comfort amenities, but not to Acura-esque levels. That’s not to say that the Sis were Zonk prizes. Sis have went on to amass their own devoted following across the worldwide Tuner landscape. But for the JDM enthusiast in America, the Civic Type R remained an unattainable treasure, much like the Australian-only duo of the FPV GT-F and HSV GTSR for Muscle Car fans.

 
My, my. We certainly have come a long way, haven't we?
Unlike Honda Civics of the past, the current 10th generation now utilizes a single globalized platform on which it is built. The term ‘globalized platform’ means that a specific model (or models) built in multiple factories across the world use the same architecture as opposed to separate, regionalized constructs. In the case of the Honda Civic, they’ll all have the same bones, regardless of whether they come from Canada, the US, or the UK. The Honda of the UK Manufacturing plant in Swindon, Wiltshire is the birthplace of the new Type R, as well as all 10th generation Civic hatchbacks and the Civic-based CR-V compact crossover SUV.

Appearance-wise, the 10th generation Honda Civic (also known as FC/FK) is a polarizing vehicle. It’s one of those ‘love it or hate it’-type designs that attracts as strongly as it repels; a stark contrast to the comparatively sedate and almost-comatose styling of the 8th and 9th generations from 2005 to 2016. Depending on your point of view, the Type R either builds upon or grossly exaggerates Honda’s current design philosophy which is clearly inspired by the reborn NSX. The chrome brightwork found on the base model’s grille and window trim is replaced with solid black accents. REAL carbon fibre—not the fake stuff that can be bought in THAT AISLE at THAT STORE—can be found as it makes up the side skirts, front splitter, and that cartoonishly ridiculous-looking rear spoiler that, according to Honda, actually serves an aerodynamic purpose. There’s even a finned row of vortex generators on the roof that smooths airflow coming out the back, a functional inlet scoop on the new aluminum hood to extract engine bay heat while adding front downforce, functional front bumper air curtains and front side fender vents, new widened fender flares that coincide with the larger 20” black alloy wheels, and topped off with a questionable triple tailpipe exhaust (more on that one, later). The interior is typical FC/FK Honda Civic fare, save for all-new racing-style front bucket seats, Alcantara faux suede inserts along the interior touchpoint, and the juvenile red accents and carbon fibre-look trim that’s all part of the trademark Type R look. Exterior paint colors include Crystal Black Pearl, Rallye Red, Aegean Blue Metallic, Polished Metal Metallic, and Championship White; a Honda hallmark since 1992. And, of course, that iconic red Honda H badge.

 

More than just decals and stick-on plastic bits and bobs.
We’ve discussed this skin. Now, let’s talk about the guts. This is what separates the Type R from lesser Civic models. In addition to the structural improvements Honda incorporated into the FC/FK Civic in the name of smooth airflow and chassis rigidity, the Type R replaces the entire front end suspension with extensive use of lightweight aluminum and a new system called Dual-Axis. Like GM’s HiPer Strut and Ford’s RevoKnuckle, the Dual-Axis front suspension is designed to help quell the bane of wrong-wheel drive vehicles: torque steer. Front-end twist is suppressed while fortifying ability and steering feel. Out back, the multi-link rear suspension that replaces the previous torsion beam (dead axle) improves ride quality and at-speed stability. 20” black alloy wheels with 245 width tires grip the road while the bespoke Brembo high-performance brake setup brings it all to a dead stop. Integrated brake ducts from the front end to the wheel wells prevent the Brembos from overheating. The standard Civic’s electric power steering has been retuned and revised with a new variable ratio to deliver a more direct steering feel and response. An electronic adaptive suspension features G-sensors and four-wheel continuously variable electromagnetic dampers while Honda’s optimized Agile Handling Assist stability program keeps the Civic Type R planted in high-speed turns, plus adds selectable driving modes to suit the driver’s preference. Under the hood resides the heart of the Type R; the 2.0L VTEC TURBO K-series engine named K20C1, the first Honda Type R engine to be built in America. Churning out an unbelievable 306 horsepower and 295 pound feet of torque, this little 4-cylinder—with the help of a massive turbocharger and other assorted engine programming hocus pocus—makes more power than many V6 engines and some V8s from not too long ago. An air-to-air intercooler, 2-piece water-cooled cylinder head manifold, and internal cooling channels in the engine block keep rising temperatures in check. Power is delivered VIA a 6-speed manual transmission featuring a helical limited slip front differential and an auxiliary transmission oil cooler. A lightened flywheel and special gear ratio optimized for performance connects the driver to the machine with greater throttle response and speed control. Spent gasses are sent through the previously-mentioned custom triple-exit exhaust that terminates at the rear of the vehicle and placed within the center of the rear diffuser. The two main pipes expel exhaust fumes while the smaller center pipe controls the tone and volume of the exhaust. It works in a similar fashion to cutouts and the active butterfly valves, only using exhaust gas pressure versus electronically-controlled solenoids.

That red 'H' emblem lets 'em all know that YOU MEAN BUSINESS! Unless, of course, the car next to you is wearing an M-Sport, AMG, GT3, GT-R NISMO, F Sport, V, Z06, SS, 1LE, Shelby, or SRT badge. Oh, Well. If it's any consolation to you, at least you paid less and get better gas mileage.
Together, this formula of new sheetmetal, new bones, new guts, and new brain(s) is what gives the Honda Civic Type R the credentials to sit atop the Type R ladder as the most powerful model in all of the marque’s storied history.

 

With a Nordschleife lap time of 7:43.80, the 2018 Honda Civic Type R is officially the World's Quickest Grocery Getter.
WHO CARES?

By now, most auto rags and every fanboy on the Internet has waxed poetic about the Civic Type R’s record-setting lap time of 7:43.80 at the Nürburgring Nordschleife. That’s faster than some of the world’s most decorated entries in the upper echelon of performance, including the Porsche 911 GT3Audi R8Pagani Zonda SFerrari 599, and the Lamborghini Murciélago LP640. Perhaps, most shocking of all, is that this feat was accomplished through the front wheels which, typically, is not an ideal drivetrain layout for true performance cars. Some of the world’s greatest supercars were beaten by a daily beater on the grandest stage of them all, the “Green Hell” of Germany’s Nürburgring Nordschleife. But what does that mean in the real world of daily commuting to and from work, going to the grocery store to pick up milk and eggs, or driving across state lines to spend a weekend with the relatives? Absolutely nothing. Sure, the stats all look good on paper and you’re bound to stir up some kind of pointless argument in the comments section of any car video on YouTube, but in all reality, it means nothing.

 

I'll bet you dollars to yen that this thing will never see track time and is destined to spend its entire life hardparked outside of Starbucks.
Remember: this is a still just a daily commuter, not a full-blown race car. It’s purpose is to live everyday life, not to compete against GTS Aston Martins, GT Le Mans Ferraris, and Daytona Prototypes on the banks and infield twisties of the Daytona International Speedway sports course. The 2018 Honda Civic Type R stickers for around $35,000. That is, of course, after you eliminate all those greedy, dishonest, bloodsucking dealerships who have the gall to charge up to an 80% premium over the MSRP.

$35,000 can buy you one of the most highly-anticipated new car releases in the past 10 years and a long-desired model that was never-before offered for sale in the United States. In comparison, the base Civic sedan starts at $18,840. The coupe, oddly enough, commands a 2.17% increase over the sedan for a base price of $19,250. The hatchback tops the Honda Civic hierarchy for a starting price of $19,900. Start adding options and moving up the list of available options packages and the price balloons up into the neighborhood of over $30,000. $5,000 more nets you the Type R. That’s quite a bit of coin for what is, at its very core, a basic front-wheel drive economy car. If looking at price alone, $35,000 can let you drive home in your choice of a new, 2018 base model Audi A3BMW 3-SeriesMercedes-Benz CLA-ClassCadillac ATS, or Infiniti Q50—all of which carry higher brand prestige and curb appeal than the lowly Honda Civic. On the other hand, absolutely NONE of them offer anywhere near the amount of raw power as the Civic Type R. None of them boast the same blend of performance and practicality as the Civic Type R, and none of them will be as cheap and inexpensive to maintain as the Civic Type R.

 

Against the AWD Ford, VW, and Subaru, the Civic Type R is the proverbial knife in a gunfight. But with 306 horsepower, it's quite a big knife that should be handled very carefully.
If you’re cross-shopping the direct competition, the top-dog Ford Focus RS commands a $2,000 upcharge against the Civic Type R. Hefty, but what you’re getting for the money is best-in-class power in an overall superior performing machine that, depending on your personal preferences, might be just a bit too extreme and downright violent for the everyday commute. The 2017 Volkswagen Golf R asks for only $600 over the Civic Type R, but offers legendary German chassis engineering and and the only dual-clutch DSG transmission of the lot while the current Subaru WRX STi (only $200 more than the Civic Type R) carries Subaru’s reputation for diehard reliability and is also the only competitor to feature the unique flat “boxer” engine design. The Focus RS, Golf R, and WRX STi all come standard with all-wheel-drive while the Civic Type R has to make due with putting its power through the same set of wheels that also steer the car. Ford and Volkswagen have available two lesser variants of their high-performance hatchbacks that also compete in the same segment as their beefier brethren; the Focus ST and Golf GTI, respectively. Both models are significantly less pricier than the Honda Civic Type R, nearly $10,000 less, but are also far less capable than the Honda and, at this point, probably far less desirable.

 

Granny shiftin' not double clutchin' like you should.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you, to decide what’s right for you and what you’re in the market to buy. Not your friends, not the musings of some self-absorbed writer in an overblown manufacturer-sponsored advertisement in any of the big name car magazines, not what the anonymous basement dwellers and social media trolls comment and post about on the Internet. It’s up to you, the shopper. The Honda Civic Type R is an automotive engineering marvel; a marriage made in Heaven between Japanese engineering and English-style sport driving dynamics, and a gift to the JDM Honda fans who kept the faith for so long while others across the globe got to enjoy what was never before accessible until now. Try one out for yourself and you be the judge. Tanoshinde kudasai, mates!

How does a CVT Transmission work

A question that some of us ask ourselves. Or have even been asked by friends or customers. I have a car with a CVT transmission and I have always wondered how a CVT actually worked. I knew it was belt driven but I didn’t know how the belt was driven and how one belt could do the work making it go through “gears”. Now that CVT transmissions are more main stream that they once were most of us have ridden in a car with a CVT. The number one thing we notice first is that there is not Shift/Step feeling as it switches gears. CVT Transmissions are made to give the engine efficiency under acceleration and going up hills. They also give you improved gas mileage and over the years the benefits are starting too finally out way the cons of owning one. CVT transmissions were not always the most reliable when they first started being introduced to cars but we will get into that later.

cvtstepwgn

CVT Transmissions have 3 main components. There is a Drive pulley, Driven pulley, and a belt. The belts are known to be either high strength rubber or metal. The two pulleys also have clutches and sheathes on them that will move one side of the pulley to make it wider or narrower depdnding on the ratio the cars transmission computer decides it needs to be in. By doing this you have an almost infinite number of ratios. When this happens the other pulley will do the opposite to change the ratio of how much output needs to make it to the wheels. Because of this you do not get any kind “shift” or “Stepping feelings”. The drive pulley is connected to the cars crankshaft. The driven pulley is called so because the drive pulley is turning it. That is known as the output pulley and the cars driveshaft is connected to that.

cvt-14

As you can see in the picture it is a pretty simple concept considering that of a normal automatic transmission that is a nightmare to even look at the inside of. There are multiple types of CVT transmissions but the main one we are going over today is the belt driven type.

The advantages of owning a CVT transmission are tremendous! I have to say I love my car and the loss of “Shift shock” and I always have power whenever I need it. No need to wait for the transmission to shift and get that power. You will also have improved fuel efficiency, there is always better control over emissions and the ride is exceptionally smooth. Some cons of owning one can be the expense of have to replace it and earlier CVT transmissions were not the most reliable. Although they are getting much better throughout the years some people have sworn off of them because of past reliability issues. Also the weak point of these transmissions is the belt. The quality of the belts has been questionable throughout the years. Some last forever and some break within 70K miles, I wouldn’t worry about it though because most manufacturers give a decent warranty on power train.

Finally I have a bonus question for you. What was the first u.s. production car to have a CVT transmission?

 

Sewage Sludge a new way to fuel your car?

A few Japanese companies are developing a way to turn  sewage sludge into reusable energy, by turning the sludge into hydrogen for use in fuel cells. Getting hydrogen from sewage is cheaper and cleaner than getting it the normal way. It can cut carbon emissions by 75% The process involves drying the sludge, the methane that is generated this way is then re heated to cook out the hydrogen gasses.

The companies that are collaborating in this process are Toyota Motor Corp. affiliate Toyota Tsusho Corp., Mitsui Chemicals Inc., Daiwa Lease Co. and Japan Blue Energy Co.  Toyota and Honda are planning on making new fuel cell vehicles in the future. Hopefully if these vehicles start being produced it can be a great way to reduce emissions in the U.S. The way to get hydrogen now is a very complicated and expensive process. If this new way works out, it will be a break through on getting the hydrogen gas.

What are your thoughts on this process of recycling waste into hydrogen gas? Do you think it will be a viable fuel source?

Thieves favorite cars to steal in CT

The National Insurance Crime Bureau has released their top stolen car report for 2011.  The most popular vehicle for a thief was  the 1997 Honda Accord and the 1998 Honda Civic. Every year the agency checks police records of stolen vehicles throughout the country and they compile a list of most popular vehicles that are stolen. In the national list of most popular cars stolen the 1994 Honda Accord and 1998 Honda Civic were among the top cars. In Connecticut 7 out of the top 10 cars were foreign vehicles.

There is a silver lining to this story and that is the reports show that there was a decline in car thefts in the country. Car thefts have not been this low since 1967 reported the FBI. A lot  of this has to do with new technology that deters thieves from stealing a car. Things like VIN etching, new security systems, and key code technology.

Here is the list of the top vehicles stolen in Connecticut.

Rank Vehicle Year
1. Honda Accord 1997
2. Honda Civic 1998
3. Acura Integra 1995
4. Nissan Maxima 1998
5. Toyota Camry 1999
6. Dodge Caravan 1999
7. Nissan Altima 2005
8. Toyota Corolla 1996
9. Ford Pickup (Full Size) 1997
10. Jeep Grand Cherokee 2000

 

 

 

The pros and cons of owning a CVT Transmission.

Today I am going to talk about the pros and cons of owning a CVT transmission. First of all I would like to explain what a CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) is. A CVT uses a pulley and belt system to change the vehicle’s drive-wheel speed and torque in relation to the engine speed and torque so as to provide an unlimited range of gear ratios. This is different from an automatic transmission in a way as that automatic transmissions have a set ratio and gears. The CVT essentially has an unlimited amount of ratios because of the way it works. Now that we have that out of the way let us go over some pros and cons of owning one.

The advantage you have of owning a CVT can be noticed in fuel mileage your car can get. Because the CVT can keep the engine at an optimal power range in order to keep fuel emissions low. CVT’s also provide quicker acceleration than a normal automatic transmission. You also don’t get any sensation of shifting so this makes for a very smooth ride when you are in stop and go traffic and under acceleration.

Now for the cons of owning a CVT transmission. Some people complain about a constant noise while driving, almost like the sound of a slipping clutch. The CVT in a vehicle could cost you a bit more money than a normal automatic. If you are new to owning a CVT it may take you some time to get used to driving a car without the feeling of it shifting. There have been complaints of lack of power but this is contributed to the CVT always keeping the car in optimal fuel saving range so you are not over stressing or opening the vehicle wide open and wasting gas. The final disadvantage is that it is a very complicated piece of machinery which could have the potential for higher repair costs.

My personal thoughts about a CVT are that I love it! I have owned 2 cars that have had automatic transmissions and two cars that have had CVT transmissions and I prefer the CVT over the normal automatic. The smoothness of the ride is incomparable to anything else. I love how I don’t feel it shift and you don’t get the jerkiness of an automatic transmission. I do a lot of highway driving and this transmission keeps the RPMS low and keeps my fuel MPG up. I have yet to do any maintenance on any CVT I have owned so I can’t comment on the price to fix it but that is also a good thing because I have not had to fix it. I also have not gotten any kind of noise with the CVT so I am not sure what other people are hearing. I hope this blog helped you in understanding the Pros and Cons of CVTs and please comment below on your thoughts.

 

 

 

 

Readers Ride : Marcie Ruiz’s 2000 Honda Civic

Marcie-Ruiz-2000-honda-civic

This weeks readers ride comes to us from Marcie Ruiz of Connecticut. Marcie has owned this car for over 9 years and continues to make upgrades to it every summer. As any car enthusiast knows, the Honda community is huge so standing out from the crowd can be very difficult. Marcie over came that by having Ron’s Automadness of Bristol CT give her Civic a unique pink and silver paint job that definitely stands out. Other exterior mods include an Eco 2 body kit, 17″ chrome wheels from Alloy Technologies, and Altezza tail lights.

On the interior Marcie had the interior trim painted to match the exterior pink color. Shes also added a 7″ Kenwood flip screen with DVD and has big plans in regards to finishing the rest of the sounds system. Marcie is a true Honda tuner at heart and will be sure to turn heads with her Civic for years to come.  Got a ride you want to see featured on our site? Let us know about it on our Readers Ride Submit form!

Now parting out 1993 Honda Accord – Stock# 100613 .



This is a 1993 Honda Accord for parts. This is stock # 100613. This Accord parts car has lots of good auto parts left on it. We sell hundreds of good used Honda parts every month. Click here to see parts from this exact car or search our store for the parts your looking for. Can’t find that hard to find Honda Accord part? Submit a parts request or give us a call at 800-973-5506