One reason I don’t think much of the Type R Civic…

Posted on September 24th, 2007 in Handling,Honda,Opinion,Power,Turbocharging by Julian Edgar

type-r-on-dyno.jpgToday I returned Honda’s Type R Civic to the Queensland office. I am quite happy to see it go: I think the Civic Type R is a pretty weak car – something I make clear in our road test that will appear in AutoSpeed in due course.

With a 2 litre naturally aspirated engine that revs to 8000 rpm and develops 148kW, it might look the goods on paper – but the reality is very different.

To go further, I think the idea that small, naturally aspirated engines can compete with turbo cars is the stuff of fairytales.

The Peugeot 206 GTi 180  and Ford Focus ST170 were similar cars in concept to the Type R Honda – all based around the idea that naturally aspirated, high revving engines have some intrinsic advantage over their forced induction competitors. That’s a purported advantage over turbo competitors that have more peak power – and vastly more average power through the rev range.

In these torque-less, high-revving naturally aspirated engines, you put your foot down and in relative terms, nothing happens. Revs wind up and up, and as they do, the acceleration finally starts to build. In turbo cars – like the Focus XR5 and the Mazda 3 MPS – you tromp it at anything over 2000 rpm and the cars immediately go hard. And then continue to go hard right ’til the redline.

But if you accelerate from (say) 1500 rpm, the response will initially be leisurely followed by a sudden increase in acceleration as the car comes up on boost.

The torque curve of a naturally aspirated engine is flatter: that is, there isn’t the rush of torque when a turbo comes on boost. Fans of small naturally aspirated engines will say that the flat torque curve allows better throttle control. That a certain movement of the throttle will give the same increase in torque at the wheels, irrespective of whether the revs are at 2000 or 4000 rpm.  That when you’re cornering on slippery surfaces, feeding-in power and feeling the front-end just starting to walk, the last thing you want is a sudden rush of power.

And if the naturally aspirated engines being fitted to these cars were large enough, or, to put it more accurately, had a sufficiently high ratio of torque to the car’s weight, this argument would be great. You could have decent acceleration from low revs and have excellent throttle control. This Eunos 30X was fitted with a 2.5 litre V6 and had excellent acceleration and throttle control. Going back even further, this V6 Laser was a similarly fantastic car to drive.

But these were six cylinder engines that, given the vehicles’ masses, were relatively large. The Type R Honda has only a 2 litre naturally aspirated, four cylinder engine powering 1345kg. And no amount of technical wizardry in cam timing and lightweight internals and a high redline can sufficiently compensate for the lack of torque.

dyno-graph.jpgAnd if you don’t believe me, take a look at this dyno graph (click on it to enlarge). It shows the power and torque outputs of the Type R Civic, as recorded on ChipTorque’s chassis dyno. Peak output of the Type R is a creditable 121kW at the wheels – and look at how flat that torque curve is! But hold on, what are the blue lines? They’re the outputs for a standard Mazda 3 MPS  – that’s the one with the 2.3 litre, direct injected, turbo and intercooled engine.

Not only does the Mazda have 32 per cent more power, on the dyno it has more than double the torque (the factory flywheel figures show it has having a little less than double). The result of that massive difference in torque is reflected in the shape of the power curves – at 80 km/h in fourth gear in the Honda you have 62kW available at the wheels. In the Mazda you’ve got 115kW available!

So while the Honda driver is revelling in his/her throttle control, the Mazda driver is so far ahead that the Honda can’t even be seen in the rear vision mirror…

Finally, the argument that a naturally aspirated engine will always have better throttle control than a turbo engine doesn’t even now have to hold true. With properly mapped electronic throttle control that incorporates accurate torque modelling, there’s no reason why a turbo engine can’t have extremely good throttle control.

The Civic Type R’s engine in my 850kg Honda Insight? Hell, now that would be some car…

Footnote: the Type R dyno run was courtesy of ChipTorque.

45 Responses to 'One reason I don’t think much of the Type R Civic…'

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  1. Matt King said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 8:22 am

    Wow, you love picking out various facts for the sake of an argument!
    For starters, WHO exactly has the idea that you can compare an atmo engine to a turbo one?

    Secondly, a high revving, low torque motor CAN overcome (some of) its torque deficit with appropriate gearing. Not all of course, you only have so much power you can gear to the wheels.

    Third, you compare a 2.0 atmo engine to a 2.3 turbo one. Well duh, it’s pretty obvious which will have more power and torque! (Now which one is easier to insure?)

    Then you claim that a turbo car needn’t have bad throttle resonse. I assume that the 3MPS isn’t an example you’re referring to there. I haven’t driven a Type R, but I have driven a 3MPS. Exiting a roundabout, it spooled up and changed lanes on me…

    Finally, I’ll finish with a quote (from you):
    “Power? It’s irrelevant to fun.”

  2. Julian Edgar said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 11:29 am

    From Honda’s press release for the Type R:

    “The Type R is powered by the naturally-aspirated, high-revving 2.0-litre DOHC i-VTEC engine, mated to a 6-speed manual. It produces 148kW at7,800rpm. So why didn’t we put a bigger, more powerful, turbocharged lump in there?

    “That question is answered in part by the Type R philosophy, a mantra followed in the approach to developing any new Type R. The philosophy says that all Type Rs must be pure, balanced and offer a smooth power delivery. For this reason, all Type R cars are supplied with normally-aspirated engines. .

    “The second part of the answer is just as simple: it’s not all about big power figures.

    “While mighty kW claims might make the headlines, Honda is more concerned about creating a performance car with balance. There’s absolutely no doubt that our engineers could strap a huge blower on to the i-VTEC engine and get monster results at the flywheel – but it would likely be at the cost of its smooth power
    delivery or stable cornering under acceleration.

    “Take a look at the table on the following page. It shows all of our potential rivals and their respective performance figures. Go on, take a close look – don’t mind us.

    “We’re not ashamed of our ‘lowly’ power claims compared to the competition. Quite the opposite: we’re proud to stay true to our engineering beliefs, and proud to stick closely to the Type R philosophy.”

    Honda is making the comparison, for all to see and comment on…

  3. Jason said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 12:18 pm

    Quoted by Matt
    …..(Now which one is easier to insure?)….

    Technically they are equally as “Ease to Insure”, but the MPS is generally cheaper…

    Just jumping on the internet and using two of the Largest companies on-line quoiting systems gave me prices without any problems – and as I suspected – The Type R is the more expensive to insure..
    Company 1 – Type R = $1320 / MPS = $1195
    Company 2 – Type R = $1550 / MPS = $1380

    Thats based on a 25 year old at Chatswood in NSW which is typical of the demographic for both models….

    Just becasue it’s a “turbo” doesn’t make it ‘hard to insure. Honda need to look at their parts pricing and maybe introduce something like Datadots across all of their models if they expect insurers to be more sympathetic to them. Also, The ‘typical’ Type R driver is different to the ‘typical’ MPS driver…

    Here is a real world example…
    The orginal Type R Integra Recaro seats cost about $10,000 to replace – Roman Autotek (Australian Importer and Distributor of Recaro) could “reproduce” them in the exact same trim and stiching with new factory rails for about Half that cost..
    It would have cost Honda an extra (approx) $35 per car to put anti-theft lock nuts on the seats, or about $70 per vehicle for Datadots – both of which would have helped to keep the theft rate of the seats down..

  4. Leon said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 1:38 pm

    I have a high revving low displacement motor in one of my vehicles and it goes pretty quick. Vehicle is a honda CBR250RR.
    Revs to 19,000 RPM happily and repeatedly and is a real rush to ride, but only because it weights in at 158kg (which is comparibly high for such a low displacement bike). My mate has a new civic typre R, I have been in it. My bike is more exciting, goes faster (in most situations) and gets better fuel economy and I am much more likely to kill myself.

    Another mate recently bought a nissan 180sx 2.0 ltr turbo similar weight as the civic type R. With the few very minor mods (exhaust, intake, FMIC, EBC, suspension, wheels, tyres) he bought it with it is significantly faster than the civic and seems to corner faster too. Painfully for the civic owner the 180 cost 1/4th the price and is still in excelent condition with less than 100,000 on the clock.

    I like honda but jeas i would live to see what could happen if they did put a turbo into something like the civic (as many of their customers have in the past to great effect but high cost).

    my 2c.

  5. Matt King said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 2:53 pm

    Julian, since when have you ever cared what a press release says?

    More pointedly, your post title is “One reason I don’t think much of the Type R Civic” – but you’re never really clear on what that one reason is.

    Are you upset that the marketing department are trying to fool people? (like that’s something new…)

    Are you disappointed that it’s not as fast in a straight line as some competitors? (again, refer to your own comments about power…)

    Oh, by the way, the 3MPS’s dyno curve (plummeting for the last 1000 rpm) is at odds with the statement: “And then continue to go hard right ’til the redline.”

  6. Matt said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 4:57 pm

    Hi Julian. I read your review on the Integra Type S, and you seemed to like that car quite a lot. I imagine the Civic Type R to be quite similar in terms of performance.

    How do you compare/rate the two?

  7. Julian Edgar said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 5:04 pm


    When I am writing a new car road test I certainly care about what the company making the car says the function of the car is. After all, that’s what they’re selling the car to do, and that’s what customers are therefore expected to understand that the car can do.

    One of the reasons I was underwhelmed by the Type R was its lack of performance in what is, ostensibly, a performance car. The other reasons are covered in the forthcoming road test.

    Re power and fun, I found the Suzuki Ignis Sport ( far more fun over the same roads than the Type R.

  8. Julian Edgar said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 5:31 pm

    I am not going to further pre-empt the full test. The point of the blog is that compared with its turbo competition, the performance of the Type R isn’t even in the hunt. Just as was the case with the GTi 180 and the Focus 170.

  9. Jimbo said,

    on September 24th, 2007 at 5:54 pm

    I think the point here is that if a performance car is to use a high-revving naturally aspirated engine, the engine needs to be of a large enough capacity relative to the car’s weight (or, more to the point, have enough torque – same thing when we’re talking NA engines) that at low revs, performance is still strong.

    Vehicles like the 350Z and Renault Clio Sport do it well – neither car is limp at low revs, and both have great throttle response, linear power delivery, a wide power band and cracking high-rpm grunt.

    Cars like the RX-8, S2000 and Civic Type R all suffer from having engines that are, essentially, too small, and as a result can feel weak at low revs, which is not acceptable given they are performance cars.

  10. Blair said,

    on September 26th, 2007 at 12:09 pm

    While I do not disagree with the concept of what you are trying to say, comparing Forced induction motors and Naturally Aspirated motors is not that simple.
    After many years looking at the equivalency between FI motors and NA motors the FIA has worked out the appropriate multiplier is about 1.7. For you 2 litre NA car to be fairly compared to a FI car you should be looking for something about 1.2 litres. The closest I can think of in this country is the new VW Golf GT, at 1.4 litres, though it has both a supercharger and a turbocharger. Little less power with 125 kW though more impressive is the 240 Nm of torque from less than 2000 rpm. Weight and concept is similar to the Civic. And guess what, when driven the same way in real world conditions (not Government testing that a has very little time at WOT) I bet they will use just about the same amount of fuel as well, which is a true measure of
    Your 3MPS, compare it to a 3.5 litre car of similar concept, weight and dimensions, after all that is what it is. To bad the R32 is not available FWD only.

  11. Winston said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 1:52 am

    The ‘type R’ we get from Britain blows, it’s based on the Jazz/Fit chassis, has no front lsd and weighs about the same as a Megane Turbo (being a heck of a lot faster on the straights and around corners, with lsd standard on the F1 edition). The JDM Civic R is a the real deal, not this British crap

  12. Alex Buendia said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 6:02 am

    Well some of the article sounds about right to me but if you want to enjoy the drive and sound give me a big true V6 or V8 or even V12 engine and I’ll pay you a turboed car…lol

    Anyway I had a crash and since I miss my MG ZS180 with its 2.5 V6 engine and man it’s true even with less power I’d eat any Type R for breakfast…yes I know my ZS even it was a longer based car was lighter than the Civic.

    Anyway I love all these debate about turbo or normally aspirated engine…never will have a true conclusion as they work differently no matter how hard the manufacturer tries.

  13. Ben said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 9:51 am

    Does no-one consider supercharging? A positive displacement supercharger on the 2.0L engine would deliver similar straight-line go to the Mazda3 MPS, with more low down torque, and better throttle response. They would also be able to have camshafts focussed more on low end emissions and torque than outright power. They can also keep their stratospheric redline, and the exhaust note would still be that of a high revving naturally aspirated engine.

    Just look at what the 4A-GZE was for its day. If they didn’t know, most people would have guessed at a 2.0L or larger engine under the bonnet.

  14. Aaron said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 12:18 pm

    My ex-girlfriend just bought one of these civic Type Rs. I own a Colt Ralliart.

    I really liked the Type R on paper and encouraged her to check it out.

    I drove it the other night and I think the following:
    – Its styling interior and exterior is very impressive.
    – Its absolutely feature packed and very clever inside and smells of “quality”. Its so much far ahead of something like a WRX for the same price in terms of refinement and gadgets.

    – Its very much a “chick’s car” in my book. It has all the bling and looks funky, modern and unusual.

    – Compared to the RColt, it felt like it had next to zero torque. I was immediately so proud of my 1.5MIVEC turbo engine. The RColt just feels oh so responsive around town compared to this thing. The RColt feels twice as practical and responsive whenever you need it. Put your foot down and the power is there.

    – If found the handling of the RColt to feel more direct and predictable, it just felt like a simpler car to drive and that I had more control over things.

    – Above 5500rpm when the VTEC LED came on, the Honda really got up and sang nicely. The note of the engine was superb and it was into its little happy zone through to 8000rpm where it would overtake other cars. But not by a huge massive amount or anything. You could really feel that the acceleration was coming from next to no torque relying on high revs and low gearing to make it pull. In those revs, yeah the power and gearing does make up for the low torque, but I found it not very practical to be in those revs all the time. Especially stopping and starting around in the CBD in 1st and second gear. The RColt would have blown the Type R away from the lights and around tight little corners and things like that I’m sure – well it certainly felt like it anyway.

    – I came away happy that the RColt was cheaper and felt more like a raw performance car.

    – But I can still appreciate the style and refinement that my ex loves about the Type R – I would take its funk and clever gadgetry over a bland/tacky WRX anyday. Yeah the WRX has a turbo and AWD, but they are so cheap and generic inside. The Type R has a certain status about it. But no, its not the best performance car if that’s all you’re concerned about.

    – The RColt has a very very bland interior and low feature list by comparison, but sure its $10-15k less now. I think Mitsu are giving RColts away for close to $25k now, they haven’t sold very well, I think due to little marketing effort.

    – The Type R engine was still a funny novelty and I enjoyed driving it, but yeah it had nothing on the 1.5L MIVEC turbo in the RColt for drivability.

  15. Jase said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 12:21 pm

    Hi Julian,

    Judging by this pre-review teaser (as well as many other recent reviews) you are hell-bent on being crossed off the press list of every carmaker around.

    Keep up the good work!

    When buying a new car last year I seriously tried to ignore your negative review of the my personal favorite. In the end I could not find a logical argument against your review and bought a just released model from the opposition instead which happened to be better at just about everything.

  16. Dean said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 4:56 pm

    G’day Julian,

    your review of the latest “Type R” , makes me all the happier to have stuck with my DC2R for 7 fun years.

    With 130kw atw and only 1040kg, it brings a smile to my face everyday I drive it.

    It seems the latest incarnation has completed the gradual softening of the R released to Australia.

    Hang your heads Honda Australia. You have lost your way with the Type R philosophy. This porky, blinged out attempt does not deserve the RED emblem. (Lay still Mr Honda)

    Get it off! And give cred back to the R for puck sake.

    Long live the “Killer B”

  17. Julian Edgar said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 5:05 pm

    Note: this blog is NOT a review. Our review of the Type R will appear in AutoSpeed in due course.

  18. Mark said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 5:33 pm

    Jase, what was the car Julian dissed and what did you buy instead (just curious)?
    Our family car, an Alfa 156 Sportwagon JTS is a 2 litre with “only” 121kW but it does generate 206Nm of torque due to the direct injection and high compression. I mention this because it weighs 10kg less than the Civic Type R and goes brilliantly with accessible torque throughout the range. I have owned another high revving 2 litre (manual FTO MIVEC) and it was great fun but I had to cane it to get any results. It weighed a lot less – about 1200kg, so the overall power and torque were quite acceptable (claimed 150kW and 200Nm). I understand Julian’s real point here to be that the Civic Type R is now so heavy that it needs a decent sized engine (remember that the original Type R weighed only 1087kg). I am guessing the old 2.3 litre VTiR Prelude engine would do a better job overall.

  19. Chris said,

    on September 27th, 2007 at 6:00 pm

    I own a Corolla Sportivo with a simliliar 1.8L VVTLI motor producing 141KW in factory form. I have had turbo’d vehcles in the past and I must admit they are incredibly expensive to maintain. The Corolla allows me to drive comfortably in every day conditions without the overall maintenance of a turbo’d vehcle, but when I give it a big hit, it performs well and @ 8000 rpm sounds like nothing else, sure it isn’t as fast as an mps, or a wrx for example, but without the pain of breaking gearboxes and going through tyres etc. Each to the own.

  20. Jase said,

    on September 28th, 2007 at 7:06 am


    Clearly this is not a review but the title is not promising!

    Mark, with a baby on the way, I was in the market for a small wagon at the prestige end of the scale. I had pretty much decided the Volvo V50 was the only one that ticked the right boxes. I have to admit, Julian’s review was really postitive about the drive-line. But where it really mattered, interior space, he was scathing. Shortly after, Saab released the 9-3 Sportcombi. The interior space, practicality and cohesion was a revelation, if not as sharp looking as the Volvo. The low pressure 2 litre turbo also performs much better in the real world than the figures suggest on paper. On top of which ESP was standard, but extra cost in the Volvo (from a company who uses safety as their mantra).

    Of course the beauty also of turbos is they respond well to tuning : ) whereas NA engines are nowdays pretty much close to their limits, esp ones like this Honda’s donk.


  21. matt said,

    on September 29th, 2007 at 2:27 am

    dean-although i agree with your point, since when did a stock DC2R put out 130kw atw?
    while its fair to say that the CTR isnt of Type R heritage its not really fair to be comparing it to a modified (and seriously if thats really ur ATW figure) DC2R

    what id like to know is of the people dissing the CTR, how many have actually driven it?

  22. speedmax said,

    on September 29th, 2007 at 1:49 pm

    Ok, Interesting comparison.

    It is been a long time since Honda brings a type r to Australia, it is indeed a improvement, they brought JDM spec civic type r to many region in asia, something they never done before..

    yes i have to admit, this may not compare to the
    fun to drive of dc2r
    or the aggressiveness of ek9 CTR,

    especially considering the weight, but k20a is a awesome engine very responsive, vtec anyone?

    Dude, its a honda, its not always about straight power..

    when don’t you bring it to the track do a full on review, chassis improvement, throttle response , handling and cornering capability.

    Bringing a stock Honda onto dyno is wrong for so many reason, bring it to a track / road. it is where is truly belongs….

  23. Ken said,

    on September 29th, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    I’ve had the 07 CTR FN2 for 2 months now and who cares if it’s not as fast as a turbo and whatnot. I have enough money to buy a new car every 2 months if I wanted to. So to all the people who fall in love with their old cars because they can’t afford to buy a new one and claim their old box is better and faster than newer generations, please, stop hating on new cars. People buy new cars for a reason – because they have money. The CTR is targeted at the sophisticated market who don’t believe in buying old cars and modifying it. And the CTR blows the whole competition to a million pieces on looks. So forget the ‘lack of’ and ‘not as good as’ speeches, the Civic Type R is in a class of its own, a class where no turbocharged cars deserve to be in.

  24. Julian Edgar said,

    on September 29th, 2007 at 6:29 pm

    “I’ve had the 07 CTR FN2 for 2 months now and who cares if it’s not as fast as a turbo and whatnot.”

    Well, when it’s supposed to be a performance car, lots of people.

    “I have enough money to buy a new car every 2 months if I wanted to.”

    Fantastic. So, what were your assessment criteria for new cars and why did you pick the Honda then?

    “The CTR is targeted at the sophisticated market who don’t believe in buying old cars and modifying it.”

    Well, not according to Honda, who make a major point that they had Honda Type R enthusiasts in so that they could look at their cars’ modifications! (This is before Honda settled on the specs of the current Type R)

    “And the CTR blows the whole competition to a million pieces on looks.”

    From some angles, perhaps, From other angles it looks awful – but beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    “So forget the ‘lack of’ and ‘not as good as’ speeches, the Civic Type R is in a class of its own, a class where no turbocharged cars deserve to be in.”

    Can you explain that in more detail? Like, what are the attributes of this class? Performance – no. Handling – no. Price – no. Equipment – no. Looks – maybe. Sound – maybe. Redline – yes.

  25. Dean said,

    on September 29th, 2007 at 6:44 pm


    sorry mate, was talking about my DC2R.
    Stripped interior and quite heavy on the mod’s list. ( with the right mods 130atw is easily achieved for the DC2R but a lot of $$$)
    I agree, it’s all about the drive, and with past R’s I will park my bum in it sometime, but no rush with this one.

    Welcome to the family CTR, but you will always be that weird cousin I don’t talk to.

  26. Ken said,

    on September 30th, 2007 at 10:36 am

    Me: “I’ve had the 07 CTR FN2 for 2 months now and who cares if it’s not as fast as a turbo and whatnot.”

    Julian: Well, when it’s supposed to be a performance car, lots of people.

    Me: If you don’t like it, don’t buy it.

    Me: “I have enough money to buy a new car every 2 months if I wanted to.”

    Julian: Fantastic. So, what were your assessment criteria for new cars and why did you pick the Honda then?

    Me: Looks, outstanding performance, features, looks, superior Honda brand relative to others, vtec (because turbo is for the naturally weaker car who needs a snap-on appliance for the purpose of answering to any Honda’s vtec) and looks.

    Me: “The CTR is targeted at the sophisticated market who don’t believe in buying old cars and modifying it.”

    Julian: Well, not according to Honda, who make a major point that they had Honda Type R enthusiasts in so that they could look at their cars’ modifications! (This is before Honda settled on the specs of the current Type R)

    Me: I refer to the old, modified Hondas. Not the new one. So when the ‘new’ CTR becomes ‘old’ in 5 years time, I would have gotten a new car anyway.

    Me: “And the CTR blows the whole competition to a million pieces on looks.”

    Julian: From some angles, perhaps, From other angles it looks awful – but beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    Me: I disagree. Oh, and the 3MPS? Disgusting – No poetry can describe that obese, dopey looking scrap metal only barely worthy of a car. Focus? One word says it all, it’s a Ford. Golf GTI? Ok, way better looking than 3MPS or Focus, but they ran out of paint to finish off the bumper. Astra VRX? Not bad either, but my sister can ride her tricycle faster on the track because at least she doesn’t have to worry about handling.

    Me: “So forget the ‘lack of’ and ‘not as good as’ speeches, the Civic Type R is in a class of its own, a class where no turbocharged cars deserve to be in.”

    Julian: Can you explain that in more detail? Like, what are the attributes of this class? Performance – no. Handling – no. Price – no. Equipment – no. Looks – maybe. Sound – maybe. Redline – yes.

    Me: Price – I don’t mind the price. I wished it was more so as to further restrict ram-raiders from ruining the image. Sound – don’t like it there’s always the MP3 player. Handling – no other FWD car can do any better. Equipment – you need to read the brochure. Performance – must I say more? Turbo is the answer to vtec, a form of steroids for the weak to boost performance. Say, hypothetically, snapping on a turbo onto the CTR – good luck keeping up. But to use forced induction is against Honda’s philosophy. What philosophy does MPS have? None. MPS is a rookie.

  27. David said,

    on October 1st, 2007 at 8:55 pm

    Dear Julian,

    I am a member and greatly enjoyed Autospeed. However, I think comments like Ken’s shouldn’t be here. The reason, simple, ranting is bad. Immature and close minded comments are useless for everyone!

  28. Julian Edgar said,

    on October 2nd, 2007 at 9:18 am

    Yeah, well he’s hoist by his own petard isn’t he…

  29. danny said,

    on October 2nd, 2007 at 10:37 am

    One word from reading this review… try reviewing Turbo cars only next time… I think that is your field Julian and I think you love them more than the N/A cars…

    Great job on the reviews (of turbos car only).


  30. Jason said,

    on October 2nd, 2007 at 10:38 am

    Thanks for a great laugh.. I was not looking forward to coming back to work after a long weekend, but you have certainly me smile this morning….

    So tell me – How long have you been working for Honda now ???

  31. speedmax said,

    on October 3rd, 2007 at 5:33 pm

    There is a reason, to trust a professional tunner

    CTR FN2 Australian spec 140kw on dyno

  32. Ben said,

    on October 3rd, 2007 at 6:27 pm

    Interesting to note those dyno graphs. 140kw is nothing to sneer at, but on the last graph, they compare it to a wrx on various boost settings. They make the point that the wrx on 17psi would be a good match for the civic. Which is fine on a dyno, but they then go on to say that the wrx has a traction advantage. They forgot the midrange torque, which is the crucial factor in any traffic light grand prix, or corner exit, or overtaking, or…

    That apart from that though, it was all good information. Especially seeing the camparo of the B16A. It would be interesting to see a fresh, standard B16A (would anyone would rebuild one standard, given the nature of the owners?) also thrown into the mix.

  33. fasthonda said,

    on October 3rd, 2007 at 8:11 pm

    I’m a passionate Honda Fan.I’ve recently bought a Honda Civic Type R.I just felt, over the other cars I tested ,than it provided the most fun and quite unique in the looks department.It has more than enough power for me and the handling/roadholding is great.
    I realise that the turbo cars are obviously more powerful-but,without their turbos -those cars would be a mere “shadow “of themselves.
    I will be contacting Honda Australia to try and convince them not to give you anymore Honda cars(not even a Jazz) for you to test.
    You just want be controversial.You’re not important enough to influence the market place whether you write a good or bad review.

  34. speedmax said,

    on October 3rd, 2007 at 8:48 pm

    I guest the blog post featured only a quick dyno run, how professional it is conducted is still questionable, no doubt that Mazada series 3 mps is a sweet car..

    That was a properly done benchmark.. especially the one against WRX on a relatively high boost.

    Those guys are professional tuners with good reputation, conducts a better dyno benchmark in my opinion, not to mention type r traditionally carries a very different view on performance.

    N/A you get good throttle response with generally a better engine design rather than throwing in a blow dryer, a totally different experience.

    To me, Honda FN2 is a awesome car in its engine refinement, tweaks applied to Fuel/ Air ratio, response and efficiency straight from the factory..

    Although, i am impressed with its power department, Disappointing with their decision on “no LSD” and “no champion white”, that is what the target audiences really wanted.

  35. Winston said,

    on October 4th, 2007 at 1:51 am

    <p>It’s just pathetic how all the Honda fan boys try ‘n defend the new Civic R when clearly it is step backwards from the the last 2 generations of Integra R’s. fasthonda is one example [edited to remove personal abuse] for trying to persuade Honda not to give press cars to Autospeed, who the hell do you think you are? The automotive press Nazi? </p>
    <p>Fact; for the same price you can get a Mazda3 MPS that comes standard with LSD! Although that lsd is a little too weak for the torque generated by the Mazda engine, it has an lsd and is torque limited in the first couple of gears.</p>
    <p>Fact; the Renault Megane F1 edition comes with an LSD standard, this thing out accelerates and out corners the Civic R, as proven on numerous European test tracks (we get the crappy British Type R no less), and final on-road price is similar to the Civic R.</p>
    <p>Fact; Renault Clio Sport has 147kw’s 2.0lt n/a engine, costs $5k less and weighs 150kg LESS than the Civic R, and more than matches it on the track in contemporary road tests as well.</p>
    <p>The new Civic R is a dud, no double wishbone suspension, no lsd and a torsion beam rear-end, with LESS power than the last Integra Type S. The Civic R we get is based on the Honda Fit/Jazz chassis but weighs more and costs way more than the most expensive Jazz available. But I’m sure Honda Ricers will continue to heap praise on ANY type R model despite being blown away at the lights by cheaper or similarly priced Astra Turbo’s, Focus XR5’s, Mazda 3 MPS, Golf Gti’s, Megane Turbo’s, Clio Sport and even a manual tranny Mitsubishi 380 will out accelerate a Civic R. The 0-100km factory claim of 6.6sec’s has never been achieved by ANY road testers, most managed the sprint a whole second slower no matter how hard they tried…typical of most high-revving Honda’s the new Civic R is a torqueless wonder for a 1345kg machine</p>

  36. David said,

    on October 11th, 2007 at 7:56 pm

    fasthonda said,
    I realise that the turbo cars are obviously more powerful-but,without their turbos -those cars would be a mere “shadow “of themselves.

    Why keep saying that turbo cars are useless “IF” we take the turbo off? We never ask n/a car lovers a.k.a Honda drivers to take their vtec off huh? I presume any Honda would be quite useless without vtec.

    Ken says,
    snapping on a turbo onto the CTR – good luck keeping up.

    Well that pretty much making it a turbo car isn’t it? of course its gonna be fast cos its turbo’ed.
    I really don’t understand when a Honda driver says their Honda will be so much faster than other turbo cars when its turbo’ed. So basically they are saying turbo cars are faster. Let’s not forget, F1 banned turbo cause they dont want too much power and speed which means N/A is naturally weaker than turbo. In the 80’s BMW’s F1 car had more than 1300bhp from a 1.5l V8 Turbo……enough said.

    The real issue is the price, if CTR is 10k cheaper then it would be a bloody nice car.

    Turbo cars are not as laggy as before so Honda drivers should try some before they start bragging about throttle response.

  37. James said,

    on October 13th, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    Vtec is part of the engine. You can’t remove it. Turbo is external to the engine. Remove that and you have a grandma car.

  38. mtlee said,

    on October 14th, 2007 at 11:27 am

    Before I brought a new FN2 I have also tests driven both the Astra VXR and Focus ST. Astra, very powerfull and fulls like a train, but gotta to say it corners really bad (and if u lived in UK with alot of twisty and rainy days u def. wouldnt want one) and its interior just doesnt matches its price tag. As for the ST brilliant sound track, bags of power again, brilliant handling.

    The reason for most ppl including me brought the FN2 is because we like it, we like the look, the interior and the VTEC. Modern day is about an all round package, not just power. Ppl should buy what ever they want simply because they like it.

    As for power (all stock), I do admit, that the turbo car will beat the NA off the line, but certainly would not be able to out run or even lose the FN2, especially when all three cars are rolling already, which i have experienced and tested, theres hardly anything between the a VXR, ST or Type R (bear in mind that both ST and VXR is turbo. And the ST is a 2.5 !!! and MPS 2.3 turbo). BTW, its a really bad comparison, even through its same car category, very different engines, should have tested the Mazda MPS against the ST and VSR, and tested the Type R to the Clio 197.

    Also I would like to point out 9/10 buyer dont even factors these stats or graphs in, they see it and thats it. Those guys are forking out a lump sum to buy something THEY LIKE. Otherwise everyone will be queueing up for an Ariel ATOM.

    Gotta say, its good reading material through, so funny that ppl get so upset for something that is so trival lol

  39. James said,

    on October 14th, 2007 at 12:34 pm

    Well said mtlee. I think you’ve put an end to this terrible comparison.

    People can buy what they like.

  40. Julian Edgar said,

    on October 14th, 2007 at 12:42 pm

    People seem to have lost the point. In Australia, it is HONDA who is making the comparison, saying words to the effect that their car doesn’t need a turbo because it already makes so much power and has so much performance.

    That’s simply rubbish. As it is in pretty well any naturally aspirated versus turbo hothatch comparison.

    If you like the Honda, hell, buy it! But don’t pretend it has a lot of performance. Instead enjoy driving what’s perhaps the best naturally aspirated 2 litre 4 cylinder ever built. (As I said in the original post, put it in a 850kg car and it would be unbelievably good.)

  41. mtlee said,

    on October 14th, 2007 at 10:03 pm

    Perhaps you are right for Australia that Honda is making comparison, but thats because its called marketing, hence they are bias. Everyone here is trying to make there point valid for the sakes of there own opinion. As I say at the end of the day, buyer have there own mind.

    Secondly as i say again modern day is about all round package and the price tag with it. In uk VXR is not even contending because of its handling and the interior, the MPS has a nice engine, interior but the exterior just look a little too weak. So i narrowed it down logically to ST or the Type R. I chose the R simple it ticks every box in my mind (which i think every buyer will have similar check list) and simple the i like the dashboard over the ST’s. But thats all my opinion and i keep it mine. If i had a little more money for pertrol, I would have went on to the next category, maybe I’ll think of a 350Z.

    To just prove my point that all round package of built is MOST important and just engine power, just check out the stats of sales and maybe do a survey (for uk anyway). I mean I do roughly 2k miles a month on both normal road and motorway, i only saw 1 MPS in the last 6 months and tonnes of Focus ST and Type R, the reason being is they got it right as an all round package. If Mazda’s RX8 had a twin turbo or even if the gave the MPS the current concept MPS Extreme look, hell yeah I would have brought one, but it hasnt, its got a look more then its power (no offence to RX8 owner) and more power then look for the MPS.

    I mean dont con yourself, Honda and everyone know its could built a better engine or faster car, they didnt, because they tried to balance everything that will market and sell, so they spent money somewhere else. But still I wouldnt say it lacks power (its just right, spot on right in the middle of hot hatch performance) and other part compensated it.

    Do you know why ppl above is critising, because they think you are dissing there car (you prob are), write a more all round review like the equipment guide, economy etc etc

    Then maybe ppl will less likely to react if you were just dissing there newly brought car. No offence, yeah I only added these two comments just because I throught it was so funny that these could even be an issue.

  42. Eric said,

    on October 16th, 2007 at 5:13 am

    Julian Edgar? who da heck is he? obviously he doesn’t understand the engineering of Honda engines… What are you basically comparing? Turbo vs N/A? Have you put these cars on the track yet? And do you know which hot hatch come out on top? Geez, it’s another one of those all brawn no brains type lover. The fact that honda is competing with a N/A 4cyl engine is something no other company would dare do. The K20A surpasses any other hot hatch engine in technology and makes more hp per litre N/A then they can dream of… The feeling of torque doesn’t mean its better. If everyone had turboed engines then wouldn’t that make everything seem dull and boring?? anyone can stick a turbo into any car make make the torque feeling you thirst for… geeez, I can’ t believe I’m reading this wirte up trash. You should stick to your torquey V8s mate and let someone else write some more in depths about cars. typical shallow comments from typical writer… lol

  43. Eric said,

    on October 16th, 2007 at 5:15 am

    Please don’t compare the UKDM and AUDM cars… JDM models are the true roots

  44. Eric said,

    on October 16th, 2007 at 5:23 am

    Honda cars is about balance, The UKDM CTR can’t even compare to the JDM CTR which is like comparing a vti with a type R. JDM model was 3 whole seconds quicker than the UKDM model around a small track that fifth gear tested. See it on youtube, 220PS, 1230kgs, 0-100 under 6secs. Fastest FWD car in the world. Why the heck are we comparing the technology of ford and honda? geez…

  45. Jason said,

    on October 16th, 2007 at 10:25 am

    Eric, Your website link says it all…

    You Honda fanboys always get upset when someone gives an (unbiased) negative comment about your beloved VTEC !! YO !!