New Civic Type R revs up Honda faithful
Sparks fly for the all-new 2023 Honda Civic Type R upon its launch in the local market on Saturday, April 22 at the AC Hotel Kingston.(Photo: Rory Daley)

Sparks flew as the all-new 2023 Honda Civic Type R was launched on Saturday, April 22, at the Sky Deck, AC Hotel, Kingston.

"We're elated to have this car. We've been waiting for it. After seeing all the reviews we're so excited that it's finally here now on Jamaican soil so that we can offer it to customers," Vasil Lee, assistant general manager — ATL Honda, told the Jamaica Observer's weekly Auto magazine.

While the car was announced last year, worldwide deliveries have only recently begun with Jamaica only the second Caribbean nation to officially receive the vehicle.

"From this launch tonight, we're expecting most of them to be taken up by repeat buyers, because many of our guests are from the Type R Club. They're very supportive of the brand and we're expecting them to upgrade to the new one," said Lee.

Patrick Wilson (left), group managing director — ATL Automotive and Vasil Lee, assistant general manager — ATL Honda, at the launch of the 2023 Honda Civic Type R on Saturday, April 22 at the AC Hotel Kingston.(Photo: Rory Daley)

The all-new Civic Type R is the sixth-generation of the iconic brand name that was created in 1997. As usual, the Type R is a high-performance version of the car it's based on, in this case the 11-generation Honda Civic.

"I. myself, like the new improvements, headlights, body, tyres, everything," he added.

The new Civic Type R is less visually aggressive than the outgoing model, losing many of decorative vents, plastic add-ons and the sizeable rear wing, but gaining actual physically widened body work. Rim diameter has gone down from 20-inch to 19-inch; however, the contact patch is now 20mm wider and stickier Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres are standard. Inside, the Type R inherits the wonderful interior of the regular Civic, adding the signature red semi-bucket seats, and red trimmings around the cabin.

What has remained is turbocharged power. The very first Civic Type R held the world record for the highest output per litre for a naturally aspirated engine making 182bhp from only 1.6-litres. The high-strung twin cam engine with its proven VTEC system made it fan favourite. Displacement was increased over its life to keep the Type R competitive with class rivals, eventually leading to the use of forced induction beginning in 2015 with the fourth-generation of the car. The current Type R motor has been refined even further. Honda engineers felt the best course of action was refinement not radical change, revising the turbocharger to optimise power output, rather than going for peak horsepower numbers.

André Royes, business development manager, FESCO, takes a quick look at the interior of the all-new Honda Civic Type R. (Photo: Rory Daley)

For lovers of Honda performance, like Davion Bramwell the launch event couldn't have come any quicker as his newly purchased pride and joy was one of the display cars.

"I've always been a Honda enthusiast. I've owned Type Rs from way back," said Bramwell.

His love for all things Type R runs deep, with Bramwell explaining that he has been collecting them currently owning the first-generation Integra Type R as well as the previous model Civic Type R. His route to the new Honda Civic Type was destined as he ordering his car once the Type R Club, which he is a part of, was informed on availability.

"I never looked up a thing about the car. I just bought it. Once I knew it was available, I went the next day and bought it," said Bramwell.

The sixth-generation Honda Civic Type R is based on the recently updated eleventh-generation Honda Civic. (Photo: Rory Daley)

Bramwell said his love for the Type R brand comes through the speed, handling, and quality that each model he's ever owned possesses, not to mention the comradery with other owners.

For ATL Honda, the Civic Type R starts off several pivotal releases, as the brand spent 2022 hampered by supply chain issues as automotive manufacturers were recovering from the worldwide pandemic.

"Later in the year we're expecting to get the new CR-V, which we're excited for as well, since it's one of our best-selling SUVs. Can't wait for that. It will be an exciting time for our customers," said Lee.

Davion Bramwell was one of the lucky owners able to call the 2023 Honda Civic Type R his. (Photo: Rory Daley)
The turbocharged 2-litre of the Honda Civic Type R has been refined for a better powerband, rather than peak power. (Photo: Rory Daley)
The view most will see as the Honda Civic Type R now holds the record as the fastest production street legal front-drive car around the Nurburgring Nordschleife with a 7:44.881 lap time. (Photo: Rory Daley)
BY RORY DALEY Auto writer

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