What would you pay to own the fastest front-wheel drive production car to ever lap the famed Nurburgring? Us, along with countless others, were wondering the same when word got out that Honda Malaysia Sdn Bhd (HMSB) would actually be importing the car into the country…
Well, 60, yes sixty people could not wait, and placed a booking for the new Civic Type R (CTR) without even knowing the final on-the-road price! And for them, and us alike, the wait is finally over. HMSB has officially launched the all-new Civic Type R, the most powerful Honda model ever to be introduced in Malaysia, the one that successfully set a new lap record of 7 minutes 43.80 seconds at the Nurburgring Circuit in Germany in April 2017.
At the launch ceremony held at the Malaysia Autoshow 2017, newly appointed Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of HMSB, Toichi Ishiyama (below) said, “At Honda, we are committed to offer products that are of high value and also advanced in technology to provide joy to our customers. But we have also taken pride in ensuring we retain the core fundamental value in all our products which embodies the elements of ‘Fun to Drive.’”
“The All-New Civic Type R is a global model that not only carries the most advanced of automobile technology, but also expresses Honda’s Racing Spirit & ‘Fun to Drive’ DNA. This is what makes Honda unique – we strive to ensure all our models provide the Joy of Driving to our customers” – Toichi Ishiyama.
Full press release of the new Honda Civic Type R here: Press Release All-New Civic Type R
First Impression: Driving the Beast from Green Hell…
As part of the unveiling and official launch of the new CTR, the media were given an opportunity a day before to have a very quick go at the new record-breaking car, at a parking lot in MAEPS, just a teaser for us of sorts, to have a quick feel of the car, but to me it was more cruel than necessary. Because everyone wanted to drive it home afterward, me included…
The CTR has always been a bit of a unicorn insofar as Honda cars are concerned, right up there with the likes of the NSX, S2000 and for poorer fan-boys like me, the CRX even. The advancements in driving technologies that abound today, have thankfully stayed away from the new CTR, which is still sans-Hybrid and comes with a 6-speed manual gearbox.
Ensconced in specially designed bucket seats, and strapped in tight with red seat-belts, the makes absolutely no attempt to hide its true nature both from an interior and exterior perspective. If the multitude of wings and winglets as well as acres of carbon-fibre on the outside don’t impart the message, the interior surely will. You can read more about the specifications in this CTR E-Brochure.
Make no mistake, this is as far from a ‘Civic’ as you can possibly imagine. In fact, if I may be so bold, think of the CTR as a banshee-wailing S2000 in a 5-door hatch body and you’d not be far off the mark.
Despite being turbocharged – the screaming 2.0 VTEC engine alone would have been adequate – the latter provides the necessary oomph to get off the mark from low-rpms, and just after 1,500rpm the turbo spools-up with no lag, and then, well, hold-on. This thing takes-off from a standing start so quickly, wheel-spin is a given, in the first three gears.
But it’s not all about the power. While the CTR does have a ‘Comfort’ mode for daily-driving, it’s in Sport mode were the fun really is. The 20-inch alloys do an admirable job insofar as soaking up bumps is concerned, but let’s face it, this is a Type R, if you want comfort, spend half the money and buy a CR-V.
To say the CTR handles well would be a gross understatement, it handled brilliantly around the tight test course set up by the organisers, the rev-match works wonders to ensure smooth down-shifting, auto-blipping the throttle to appear like you’ve just heeled-and-toed as masterfully as Ari Vatanen.
The rev-match can be switched-off if so desired, but lest you’re the aforementioned, ‘beating’ the computer is going to be a big challenge, but a fun challenge for owners to pursue nonetheless. Maybe if you beat the computer, the additional 10bhp becomes available? Now that would be cool. You need to ‘earn’ the additional power…but no, it doesn’t.
In case you didn’t know, the units sold here have actually 10bhp less than the overseas models, and that’s because the CTR here has been tuned to provide optimum power on RON 95.
That’s right, you don’t even need RON97 or Petron’s RON100 or Shell’s V-Power Racing for the new CTR, just lowly RON 95 will suffice. Psst! We learned that this model can run on RON 91 even, and you’ll still get 310bhp.
Hideki Kakinuma, Assistant Large Project Leader in-charge of the new CTR’s development was at hand to explain a lot of these things to us, and we also learned that despite being the one in charge of the development, once the car went into production, he actually had to go to a Honda dealership in Japan to place an order for one! No such thing as preferential treatment over there, even for the ‘father’ of the new CTR! He’ll be getting his unit sometime next year…
Stay tuned for the full test drive report coming soon! (Full list of Honda Dealers selling the CTR after the gallery)
NOW watch the new CTR in action at the aforementioned Green Hell!
Honda Civic Type R & MAI Launch Photo Gallery…
List of Honda Sport Dealers
**Customers can place their booking for All-New Civic Type R at the listed dealership below.
|No||Region||Honda Sport Dealers|
|1||Central||Autoworld Asia Sdn Bhd|
|2||Central||Botanic Auto Mall Sdn Bhd|
|3||Central||Global Amity Sdn Bhd (Bangi)|
|4||Central||Kah Motor Co Sdn Bhd – Selayang|
|5||Central||Sri Utama Auto Sdn Bhd|
|6||Central||USJ Car Express Sdn Bhd|
|7||Central||MH Prestige Auto Sdn Bhd|
|8||Central||Peringgit Sri Motor Sdn Bhd|
|9||Central||Tenaga Setia Resources Sdn Bhd|
|10||Central||The Millenium Auto Carriage|
|11||East Coast||Syarikat Tan Eng Ann Sd Bhd|
|12||East Malaysia||Syarikat Labuan Automobile Sdn Bhd|
|13||Northern||Ban Hoe Seng (Auto) Sdn Bhd|
|14||Northern||Formula Venture Sdn Bhd|
|15||Northern||Kah Motor Co Sdn Bhd – Sg Pinang|
|16||Northern||Lee Motor SP (Car Div) Sdn Bhd|
|17||Northern||Yooi Cars Sdn Bhd|
|18||Southern||Ban Lee Heng Motor Sdn Bhd (Seremban)|
|19||Southern||Syarikat Motor GS Tay Sdn Bhd|
|20||Southern||Yong Ming Motor Sdn Bhd|