Why Does Honda Deny Us the Thrilling Civic Type R?
When Honda North America introduced the 2015 Honda Civic it used phrases like "sporty and youthful" as well as "fun to drive." Yawn. Contrast that with this language for the 2015 Honda Civic Type R debuting at the Paris Auto Show: "Unmatched performance compared to all previous Type R cars, including Civic, Integra, Accord and NSX." Which would you want to drive? Well, unless you're willing to move to Europe, you're out of luck. Apparently Americans want "fun to drive" while Europeans get a 276-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0 liter i-VTEC engine "[that] sets new standards on power, torque and engine response." RELATED: See More Photos of the Civic Type R
Maybe it's not coming to the US because it's a hot hatch – and this market doesn’t necessarily embrace the hatchback segment. If so, shame on us, but who wouldn't want Honda’s new ‘+R’ button? Push it and the engine response is heightened, with torque-mapping changed to a more aggressive and performance-focused setting. The steering becomes more responsive and a new four-point adaptive damper system kicks in.
Now in its fourth generation, the Civic Type R's ‘steer axis’ feature two kingpins in the front suspension that minimize torque steer. After all, 276 horsepower in a front-wheel drive sub-compact all but guarantees torque steer. But the US won't know just how well Honda is tackling torque steer because, well, who knows why not?
RELATED: Honda Civic Coupe Photos Show Bland You Can Go
We also won't be able to experience the adaptive damper system. It automatically adjusts the front and rear suspension damping force stiffness in a split second, based on driving conditions. This allows the new Civic Type R to provide a comfortable ride during cruising, yet become firm and agile when high-performance handling is required.
OK, so there is one aspect I'm glad isn't coming to the US: the color scheme. That luminous blue has to go. Give me one in black and I'd be happy. Wonder if I should become BoldRide's European editor?
RELATED: See the Honda Civic Concept from 2011
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