Less than a month after Honda announced their Civic Type R refresh in the U.S., they invited us to Milan, Italy for an in-person look at the Limited Edition FK8 - a more track-focused version of the 5-door dynamo. Honda will produce just 1,000 models worldwide: 600 to the U.S., 100 to Canada, 100 to Europe, and 200 to Japan. The Honda Sensing integration mentioned in the 2020 mid-cycle refresh carries over to this new model as well.
Based on the 10th generation Civic's global platform, the FK8 quickly established itself as a contender at track events even in stock form. The Nurburgring lap time accomplishments were of course celebrated, but real-world experience over the last few years have certainly backed Honda's claims. So much so, in fact, that the hatchback's performance on the track has helped get the nod from even the most adamantly anti-FK8 enthusiasts. Honda promises this version is even more track-ready, and they plan to revisit the Nurburgring to prove its worth. In the meantime, they've already done extensive testing on Japan's famous Tsukuba Circuit, but the manufacturer noted that at the end of the day the 'Ring is an important part of modern Type R development.
- New color
- Less Weight
- Better steering feedback
- Upgraded dampers
- Lighter wheels
- Steering wheel and shifter update
- Datalogging and real-time driving analysis
All of the aesthetic changes that we saw earlier this month carry over to this version, including the larger grill treatment, which aids cooling by 13 percent, and there will be but one color option: Phoenix Yellow. The iconic shade has long been associated with the "R" moniker ever since it was first seen on the EK9 Civic, followed by the DC2 Integra Type R. Contrast to the bright hue is handled by a gloss black roof, mirror caps, and hood inlet treatment. The only other change to spot is the dark chrome "Civic" badge on the rear that will no doubt have numerous counterfeit versions floating around eBay in a matter of weeks.
The cabin remains on par with the previous model's, though this version receives a new alcantara steering wheel and weighted shift knob. In addition, the Limited models will include a numbered serial plate noting the origin of the country the car was sold in. The engine compartment and its inner workings remains unchanged.
The Limited Edition model is fitted with new forged aluminum wheels produced by BBS. Beyond the differentiated look, the new rollers are said to reduce unsprung weight by a total of 18 lbs. If you're upset by the large 20-inch offering, keep in mind the wheel's sizing and even its offset are by design - its specs relating to negative scrub in order to offer the best defense against torque steer and minimal steering effort on a factory setup.
Speaking of steering, in this instance it's been completely recalibrated and Honda reports that the effort results in improved control and feedback. Add to that the updated, model-specific dampers and the overall feel of this updated R should separate itself from the standard CTR the moment you hit the road.
To amplify the effect of the damping and steering changes, some of the car's weight has been stripped from the new model, but not at the cost of any major creature comforts. Sound deadening has been reduced and the rear wiper and cargo cover deleted. In addition, rear seat passengers will have to wait for the heat to make its way throughout the cabin as the rear heater ducts were also removed. The changes equate to about 28 lbs. of weight reduction, which, combined with the drop in unsprung weight and the steering/damping changes, should make a difference where it counts: on the track. Just to note, the European model will take things a step further with the elimination of the factory radio and air conditioning systems.
One of the most interesting upgrades that we discovered during Honda's unveiling of the Limited Edition is its new LogR Datalogging app - a first of its kind from the brand. Standard on all 2020 and up Civic Type Rs, the app pulls info, in real-time, directly from the car's ECU and that data is displayed on the factory audio/climate screen as "Log Mode" simultaneously records lap times and details. There's also an "Auto Score" function that monitors acceleration and braking as well as steering input to encourage smoother driving patterns. The algorithms that decipher the driving were developed in-house by Honda with the help of professional team drivers.
Once the driver has completed their session and unplugged their iPhone or Android, they can do a deep dive into their stats with information that includes previous drives, performance traces and even virtual replays using GPS mapping with highly-detailed vehicle info. The LogR system is unique in that it offers more in-depth detail as compared to 3rd party plug-in applications. Here's a look at the program in action.