Is Honda trying to set a speed record?
A user called Motorhead (RIP, Lemmy) uploaded a spy shot of the 2022 Honda Civic Type R to the Civic Forum.
The all-new Type R is currently undergoing testing at the Nardo Ring Test Track in Italy. This magnificent facility fell into ruin a few years ago, but Porsche brought it back to life in 2019.
Nardo is typically used for high-speed testing, which is why Motorhead claims Honda is out to break the previous-generation Type R's top speed. We don't think that's the case. Honda is likely using Nardo to test the Type R engine's durability. It is summer in Italy at the moment, and Honda is known for doing proper endurance tests before putting a product on sale.
The image does show the less aggressive lights of the new Civic and what appears to be a more macho grille and redesigned front bumper. We also quite like the design of the wheels. A recent spy shot of the Type R shows the new rear wing. It's a bit more sedate than the outgoing Type R, not that it was a particularly tough trick to pull off thanks to more boorish design elements than a Mad Max movie.
The new Porsche 911 GT3 RS' wing is more subtle than the rear wing of the ongoing Type R. We do like that Honda kept the triple exhaust pipes, however.
Oddly, the all-new Type R has not been spied at the Nurburgring. Honda famously set the front-wheel-drive Nurburgring record back in 2017, and we're 100% convinced it wants to reclaim that title back.
Honda likely won't change too much to the hot hatch recipe. The turbocharged engine will probably be carried over with a slight power bump to satisfy the marketing department. It will have a manual gearbox, sending power to the front wheels only. This will likely also be the last Type R using internal combustion, as Honda is committed to changing over to EV only by 2040.