The look inside and out is slightly revised, but Honda also gave the Civic Type R performance upgrades that we hope will improve an already great track car. Those include revised front suspension settings to reduce friction and improve steering feel, new dampers for a more comfortable ride, and stiffer bushings that Honda says will improve grip.
New two-piece rotors and different brake pads are meant to improve high-speed braking and reduce fade, while the standard 6-speed manual transmission has shorter throws between gears and a new shift knob. A larger front grille also improves engine cooling but doesn’t increase output of the 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 from the previous 306 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque.
Honda promises more refinement and safety, too. The cabin gets a new Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, a new shift knob, and Active Sound Control that changes the sound inside based on the Comfort, Sport, and +R modes. The Honda Sensing group of active safety features also becomes standard throughout the Civic lineup. It includes forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warnings, adaptive cruise control, active lane control, automatic high beams, and road departure mitigation that steers the car back into its lane if it’s about to leave the road.
Performance upgrades to sharpen the track capabilities include 18-inch BBS wheels that help shed 18 pounds in unsprung mass, deleted content in the cabin (sound deadening material, tonneau cover, etc.) to further reduce weight by 28 pounds, specially tuned dampers, and recalibrated steering. The 2020 Civic Type R will reach dealers in the spring with a starting price of 37,950. That’s slightly higher than the 2019 model’s 37,255 base sticker. The 2021 Civic Type R Limited Edition will arrive late this year. Pricing for this model will be announced closer to the market launch.