September 26, 2022

For 25 years, Honda has been competing on the very prime of the new hatch recreation. Right here’s your full Honda Civic Sort R information, masking all six generations to date…

It’s a double celebration for Honda’s Civic this 12 months. The usual humble grocery-getter has been round for 50 years now, whereas its famend sporty cousin, the Sort R, has been with us for 25.

All through that point, Honda has caught to the Civic’s front-engine, front-wheel drive roots, and in doing so, has regularly raised the bar for what a front-wheel drive sizzling hatch can do. Right here’s our Honda Civic Sort R information that will help you determine the completely different generations.

Honda Civic Sort R Information

Honda Civic Sort R EK9

The mathematicians amongst you should have found out by now that the Sort R’s story begins again in 1997: the 12 months that the EK9 technology Sort R made its public debut. Within the mid-nineties, Honda was making waves within the efficiency automobile scene due to its NSX supercar, which was additionally brandished with the Sort R moniker. The hype across the NSX was so giant that Honda determined to launch a collection of extra attainable Sort Rs, primarily based on the DC2 Integra, and the unassuming Civic hatchback.

The EK9 Civic Sort R was truly solely offered formally in Japan’s home market, however phrase of its skill unfold on a world scale. A 1.6-litre DOHC VTEC four-cylinder engine, designated ‘B16B’, geared up the Civic with 182hp – loads in a automobile which weighed simply 1050kg. In truth, in ‘horsepower per litre’ phrases, the B16B was one of many highest-performing naturally aspirated engines of its period, leading to a 0-60mph time of 6.7 seconds.

It wasn’t simply the case of slapping a fast engine into an everyday previous Civic although. A helical restricted slip differential and fully revised suspension have been added to the automobile, whereas the chassis was upgraded to a extra inflexible seam-welded monocoque. This gave the EK9 the kind of dynamic prowess that its powertrain deserved, and from then on, there was no wanting again.


Honda Civic Sort R EP3

The eye that the EK9 acquired worldwide didn’t go unnoticed, and so, for the Civic Sort R’s second iteration, manufacturing was elevated to suit demand from Europe too. To helps issues, manufacturing was shifted to the UK at Honda’s Swindon plant. Nevertheless, in contrast to a few of your favorite indie bands, not one of the magic was misplaced by going mainstream.

The EP3 Sort R debuted in 2001; the headline being a brand-new engine, which was a daring transfer contemplating how adored the B16B was. Instead although, the two.0-liter DOHC i-VTEC K20 unit surpassed expectation, with Honda’s line of Okay-Collection engines happening to succeed in iconic standing amongst JDM followers. Energy output was upped to 197hp for Europe, whereas the Japanese EP3 bought as a lot as 212hp – and a firmer chassis too. That’s to not say that the European-spec automobile was one thing to be sniffed at although.

The brakes have been equal to that of the Japanese market automobile, as was the close-ratio six-speed handbook gearbox. Excessive-tensile metal was included into the EP3’s chassis too, giving it a serious 80% improve in torsional rigidity over the outgoing EK9. Electrical energy steering was one other new trick up the Civic Sort R’s sleeve, whereas struts on the entrance and double-wishbone suspension on the rear gave the automobile a puppy-like playful allure. The automobile loved a unbelievable reception by the early noughties motoring press, who topped it finest at school.

Make sure you take a look at our EP3 purchaser’s information, tuning information in addition to the modified EP3s we’ve featured through the years!

The Honda Civic Type R Guide: FN2

Honda Civic Sort R FN2

With the bar set so excessive, it was all the time going to be troublesome for the automobile that changed the EP3. That job fell the way in which of the FN2, which from the offset divided opinion by the way in which it regarded. The chunky, ‘spaceship-like’ proportions didn’t naturally evoke ideas of sporting agility within the minds of some, and sadly its 1320kg kerb weight didn’t do a lot to quash their fears – in any case, that’s greater than 100kg heavier than the EP3.

Nonetheless, the FN2 Sort R does nonetheless deserve some plaudits. It’s a barely extra cleverly packaged automobile in comparison with its common counterpart, with the gas tank moved beneath the entrance seats to enhance inside house. The rear suspension was simplified from double wishbones to a torsion beam, however the automobile nonetheless handles higher than many would have you ever consider. Then there’s the engine. The spec of K20 discovered within the FN2 produces a single additional horsepower over the EP3’s energy unit – however hey, each little helps, proper?


Over in Japan although, the third-gen Civic Sort R was very completely different. As an alternative of the FN2 hatchback form, Honda’s home market bought a Sort R primarily based upon the FD2 saloon, which today is taken into account much more fascinating. Not simply due to the aesthetics and the rarity, however due to its underpinnings. The FD2 had an additional 24hp beneath the hood, extra highly effective Brembo brakes, and a bunch of different alterations which make it a typically extra interesting prospect.

That stated, the European-spec FN2 does not less than signify unbelievable worth in at present’s market. Typically the most affordable Sort Rs in the marketplace, they’re a good way to get into the world of sizzling Civics on a decent finances.

Make sure you take a look at our FN2 purchaser’s information, tuning information in addition to among the modified FN2s we’ve featured!

Honda Civic Sort R FK2

Quick ahead to 2015, and the automotive panorama is beginning to look very completely different. With environmental laws looming over Honda’s shoulders, the inevitable change to compelled induction arrived with the fourth-gen FK2 Civic Sort R. Realistically, this was the one solution to preserve emissions down, however horsepower up.

Nevertheless, as a substitute of viewing turbocharging as a dilution of the Sort R’s purity, Honda’s engineers embraced the tech to make it on of the FK2’s most interesting options. The ensuing K20C1 engine developed 306hp – a staggering quantity greater than the FK2. What’s extra, weight solely elevated marginally, that means that the FK2 might provide a much more explosive driving expertise.

To fight the newfound energy, Honda launched its Twin Axis Strut Suspension. This, mixed with a brand new limited-slip diff, would assist the automobile to beat torque-steer. But, regardless of all of those positives, the FK2 tends to be ignored. You may argue that its styling is only a bit too… secure.


The Honda Civic Type R Guide: FK8

Honda Civic Sort R FK8

The identical can most undoubtedly not be stated for the fifth-gen Civic Sort R. The FK8 took on a a lot sleeker silhouette, and with it a big array of extremely divisive aero elements. Some favored the unashamed aggression of the automobile’s design, whereas others felt it was far too ‘boy racer’ recent from the manufacturing unit.

No matter you consider the way in which the FK8 seems, you may’t deny that it’s a unbelievable automobile to drive. Arriving in 2017, the FK8 was adorned with new adaptive dampers to enhance its dealing with, whereas the K20C1 beneath its bonnet was boosted to 316hp. That wasn’t fairly the case over within the US although; as a substitute, the facility determine throughout the pond remained at 306hp. This was, nonetheless, the primary time {that a} Civic Sort R would formally be offered in America.

A flat underfloor labored in unison with all these wings and splitters to offer the automobile distinctive downforce, which translated properly into grip. Nürburgring lap information quickly tumbled at a powerful price.

Make sure you take a look at our FK8 purchaser’s information, tuning information, in addition to our evaluate of it and modified FK8s we’ve featured, too!

Honda Civic Sort R FL5

That brings us as much as the current day. We’re but to be taught what the brand new FL5 Civic Sort R is actually like. What we will inform you although is that, visually, it has actually reined issues in a little bit – and to our eye not less than, has turn out to be a extra engaging automobile because of this.

Tech-wise, the adjustments made are largely incremental. A extra compactly packaged turbo and high-efficiency exhaust ought to assist to enhance the automobile’s power-to-weight ratio. Honda are additionally promising a greater sound out of the again of the Sort R’s three central pipes. On prime of that, the gearbox has been considerably revised and strengthened too.

General although, the FK8’s dynamics wanted little in the way in which of enchancment. The principle job for the FL5 was to supply a extra interesting set of aesthetics, and we expect it’s achieved precisely that.

Tell us, from our Honda Civic Sort R information, which is your favorite sizzling hatch?