Is another record in the works? Quite possibly.
The hot hatch is a dying breed. As the buying public chooses crossovers instead of compact hatches, we're seeing the death of cars in the US like the Fiesta ST, Focus RS, and several more. But there are still a few stalwarts who refuse to give in, and perhaps the most hardcore of these is the Honda Civic Type R. It took some time before it finally reached US shores, but ever since it did, Americans have been obsessed. Now, an all-new Civic Type R is prepping for its time in the limelight, and Honda has officially teased the new hot hatch hitting the Nurburgring while giving us official confirmation of when the new car will be revealed.
In a short 38-second video clip titled "The wait is nearly over" we see and hear a heavily-disguised 2023 Honda Civic Type R prototype squealing its way around the Nurburgring at full tilt - no doubt attempting to set a new front-wheel-drive lap record around the hallowed Green Hell.
A brief but epic montage of mechanics tightening nuts and bolts, fitting wheels, and torquing them to spec follows, along with a few choice phrases like 'Refine the very essence of an automobile' and 'Realize the ultimate "joy of driving"' flashing on screen as the Type R tackles the 'Ring's most famous corners, including the Karussel. Onboard footage shows a driver wrestling with a squirming steering wheel before the final wording appears: "Keep making it better. And keep pushing. Beyond yourself. Civic Type R. Coming in Summer 2022."
The brief video is accompanied by an even briefer release caption from Honda, telling us that the new Type R will be the most powerful and best performing Civic Type R ever built. The 2023 Type R has already set new front-wheel-drive lap records around Suzuka in Japan and will no doubt be eyeing the Nurburgring record as well, which currently stands at 7:40.1 as set by the Renault Megane RS Trophy-R in April 2019.
The Type R's previous best effort sits 3.7 seconds adrift at 7:43.8 set in April 2017. Being the most powerful iteration of the nameplate, we're expecting the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder to carry over, surpassing the previous outputs of 306 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque.
In addition to a big, fixed wing and three exhaust pipes, fans can expect a six-speed manual to be the default gearbox. Although the shadowy interior clips don't show a manual shifter or the driver reaching for it, the shots of the steering wheel are devoid of paddle shifters.
We'll find out more as Honda kicks the teaser campaign into higher gears ahead of the official reveal, possibly later this month if earlier reports are to be believed. The Type R will make its American debut at the Indy 200 in July.