2017 Honda Civic Type R Reclaims Front-Wheel Drive Lap Record at Nurburgring
New Type R stands as quickest front-drive production car at the ‘Ring.
The 2017 Honda Civic Type R has recaptured the Nurburgring lap record for a front-wheel-drive production car on April 3. With a lap time of 7:43.8, the newest Civic eclipses the prior record of 7:47.19, set by the “hometeam” Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S. In-car footage from Autocar shows that the driver manages it in relatively drama-free fashion.
The turbocharged Civic makes 306 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque from its 2.0-liter engine with VTEC. It will tip the scales at a little more than 3,000 pounds, having shed 35 from the previous Type R. That previous Euro-spec 2015 Type R had set the front-wheel-drive Nurburgring lap record at 7:50.63. The six-speed transmission features lower gear ratios and a redesigned multi-link rear suspension that improves braking stability and reduces body roll.
Further improvements include a 38 percent increase in torsional rigidity and an aerodynamic design to improve both stability and drag reduction. An Adaptive Damper Suspension (ADS) adds additional stability in coordination with the Type R’s +R Driving Mode, which squeezes maximum performance from the suspension, engine, and electric power steering. A limited-slip differential rounds out the performance upgrades.
The record-setting car was a pre-production example that included a rollcage for safety with rear seats and dashboard display removed to offset the cage’s weight. “The car was using street legal, track-focused tires,” said Honda in a press release. The driver is not identified anywhere and is also wearing a non-descript helmet and firesuit.
U.S. sales of the Type R will begin in “late spring,” according to a Honda press release. However, Type R production began in March in Swindon, England, which will be the Civic hatchback’s global manufacturing hub. The turbo VTEC engine comes from Honda’s Anna, Ohio, engine plant.