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On the road with 2017 Honda Civic Type-R Touring, fans can’t get enough of it

That’s right, Honda classifies the most powerful production Civic ever as a touring car. So, after returning from a race course outside of Seattle, Washington...


I loaded up Civic Type-R with the essentials. Including a tooth brush, and extended the drive review - a few days, and a thousand miles or so. The response from the public is without exception positive; they can’t get enough of it.

Granted, I’m not a kid. And, although my wife chuckled a bit under her breath when Civic Type-R showed up at the house last Tuesday, that evening, I caught her sitting behind the wheel of Honda’s most powerful Civic ever, she was smiling. That’s the immediate effect that Civic Type-R has on the onlooker.

That Wednesday as I headed out of Eugene, Oregon, blanketed in the smoke of neighboring forest fires, at every stoplight, freeway lane change, and the inevitable gas stop, onlookers came up to the car, sometimes in pairs, wondering what it was, how much, and where they could buy one -- the driving public's interest in Civic Type-R is nothing short of astounding..

The redesigned Civic Type-R has that immediate effect on people. Honda design broke the mold on the release of the 10th generation platform Civic Type-R world car -- it’s the art of the automotive line personified. As to driving Civic Type-R , that’s a s story unto itself. But in short, it’s surprisingly comfortable on an extended drive.

There’s much more to Civic Type R than Race Mode. In-fact there are 3

While Honda News focused on the track prowess of the 2017 Civic Type-R world car, I actually prefer Type-R on the street. Granted, 305 horsepower and what I’ve discovered to be limitless torque leads to aggressive driving - to the point of neck strain from transitioning from windshield to rearview mirror. So far so good; while I’ve passed a highway patrolman or two, luck remains with me, no tickets. (yet)

But here's the thing that makes Civic Type-R so contagious: Due to some Honda engineering genius, when you're driving down the road at 75 mph in 6th gear, Type-R’s 2.0 Liter turbocharged VTEC engine is working its magic in the torque sweet spot, about 3,000 rpm or so. -- you’re within maximum torque range at cruising speed, resulting in a no-shift-needed freeway driving experience.

And, when being tailed by yet one more Civic Type-R admirer, with the press of the perforated .racing gas peddle, you’re gone! Thanks to a perfect engine to transmission pairing, 3 drive modes including “comfort.” active adaptive dampening, and arguably one of the most comfortable seats in the segment, Civic Type-R is a very pleasant long haul sport hatch.

More often than not Honda Civic Type-R brings out the “sport” in this driver

Childhood regression, well sort of: Back when I was a teenager, Ford Cortina and Mercury Capri were the sub premium, imported sport sedan or coupe to have. My dad, long gone, brought home a white on red leather, V6 4 or 5 speed manual (I’m not sure) German made Capri. He was kind enough to let me drive it in my 16th year. I loved the smell of that car, the torque, and the crisp slot-shift precision of the transmission. And to this day, 2017 Honda Civic Type-R brings back those memories for me, when I look at it, sit in it, and when I sling-shot through its 6-speed manual transmission -- it makes me feel embarrassingly young again.

As a side note: Today while stopped for lunch in Fortuna, California, a small town of 8,000 souls or so, a fellow auto enthusiasts driving Chevrolet’s latest Camaro offering circled Type-R in the parking lot. Following me out to the intersection, the Camaro driver pulled up alongside Type-R at the light. We gave each other that knowing look, he gunned his V8. Me, I just smiled, dropped Type-R into Race Mode , and buried the Camaro at the light. Oh, did I mention, Type-R is quick!

We’ll continue our Type-R adventure through the Redwoods

Tonight as I write this it’s raining; and that’s a good thing. Wednesday I drove Type-R through thick forest fire generated smoke for the better part of 200 miles. Friday brings a new day and some new adventure as I drive the 2-lane Avenue of Giants. It’s 32 miles long, and a bit challenging at points. I’ll be happy to be sitting in a high bolstered seat.