8.7 / 10

Design | Comfort | Tech | Performance | Safety | Fuel Economy | Pricing | FAQs

The 2023 Honda Civic Type R deserves a great road – or at least something better than the highway onramp near my apartment. It needs to be pinned hard into a sweeping uphill corner or unwound quickly down a mountain pass. As an owner, you’d only be doing yourself and the car a disservice by not wringing this thing out regularly on something twisty.

That was true of the previous Type R too, but more so of this new one. With the most powerful engine in the class and a track-tuned suspension, the Type R rips harder than the next-best Volkswagen Golf R and corners quicker than the Toyota GR Corolla. It’s an absolute riot on the right road, and it’s really not that bad around town either.

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Quick Stats 2023 Honda Civic Type R
Engine Turbocharged 2.0-Liter I4
Output 315 Horsepower / 310 Pound-Feet
0-60 5.0 Seconds (est.)
Base Price $42,395 + $1,095 Destination
As-Tested Price $44,845 

Gallery: 2023 Honda Civic Type R Review


  • Exterior Color: Championship White
  • Interior Color: Red / Black
  • Wheel Size: 19 Inches

If you forced me to pick between the previous Type R and this one, I'd still choose the former model's styling. It looked more aggressive and had a more traditional hatchback design, as opposed to what I'd call a "fastback" here.

That said, using the 2023 hatchback as its base gives the Type R a sleeker profile, which better fits that signature rear wing and yields improved proportions overall. The front end still isn't exciting to look at, even with the addition of an open lower grille, but the blacked-out 19-inch wheels – an inch down from last year – fit this car better visually.

The interior is absolutely bonkers – in the best way. Searing red Alcantara covers the front seats and footwells and is joined by black leather inserts with soft-touch black plastic on the dash. The back seats are black, too, which makes for a unique two-tone interior. And of course, the Civic's signature honeycomb accent across the dash carries over, which is another nice touch. 

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  • Seating Capacity: 5
  • Seating Configuration: 2 / 3
  • Cargo Capacity: 24.5 Cubic Feet

If you tick the drive mode dial all the way down to Comfort, the Civic Type R's adaptive suspension is comfy enough to putter around town – comfier even than the fixed springs in the Civic Si. Anything above that and your butt and back will be rattling all the way to the chiropractor.

The seats help relieve some of that pressure with the coddling qualities of a baby carrier. The sporty red buckets offer excellent grip, bolstering, and back support, and in general, they feel tailor-made to my specific body type. There still isn't power adjustability nor heating, as in the Si, which are my only two gripes when sitting up front.

The back seats are basically the same low-quality cloth thrones as found on the base Civic, which is disappointing. They don't have a lot of cushioning or support, and because the Civic is a bit sleeker than a more traditional hatchback, it doesn't have excellent headroom. At least the legroom is booming, with more than enough space for even above-average-sized adults. 

  Headroom Legroom Cargo Space
Honda Civic Type R 39.3 / 37.1 Inches 42.3 / 37.4 Inches 24.5 Cubic Feet
Mini John Cooper Works 40.3 / 39.0 Inches 41.4 / 30.9 Inches 8.7 Cubic Feet
Toyota GR Corolla 38.4 / 37.6 Inches 42.0 / 29.9 Inches 17.8 Cubic Feet
Volkswagen Golf R 41.2 / 35.0 Inches 37.8 / 38.2 Inches 19.9 Cubic Feet

Technology & Connectivity

  • Center Display: 9.0-inch Touchscreen
  • Instrument Cluster Display: 10.2 Inches
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay or Android Auto: Yes / Yes

The Type R gets the same 9.0-inch touchscreen found throughout the Civic range, and it's perfectly okay. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, the home screen is easy to navigate, and all of the graphics are relatively crisp.

The Type R, though, adds a standard 10.2-inch digital instrument cluster (borrowed from the Civic Touring) with graphics and drive mode screens exclusive to Type R. Move the drive selector over to Sport, for example, and red graphics wash over the two digital clusters. Move into +R mode – the most aggressive setting – and the screen shifts to a digital tachometer with boost pressure and temperature readings that you might need when attacking a track. It looks awesome. 

Performance & Handling

  • Engine: Turbocharged 2.0-Liter I4
  • Output: 315 Horsepower / 310 Pound-Feet
  • Transmission: Six-Speed Manual

The Type R is ferociously, shockingly quick. Its off-the-line acceleration puts the Golf R and GR Corolla to immediate shame. The Civic doesn't even consider torque steer an option, even with all that power routed to the front wheels. And the optional Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires grip like velcro.

Getting to 60 takes just about 5.0 seconds, and flat out, the Civic will touch 170 mph. The slick six-speed automatic has short, mechanical throws that make it a joy to row at any speed, and the standard rev-matching system encourages you to downshift and dart through traffic quicker than you might otherwise. And if you want max DIY, you can fully disable it.

  Engine Power 0-60 Time
Honda Civic Type R Turbo 2.0L I4 315 HP / 310 LB-FT 5.0 Seconds (est.)
Mini John Cooper Works Turbo 2.0L I4 228 HP / 235 LB-FT 5.9 Seconds
Toyota GR Corolla Turbo 1.6L I3 300 HP / 273 LB-FT 5.0 Seconds
Volkswagen Golf R Turbo 2.0L I4 315 HP / 295 LB-FT 4.7 Seconds

The chassis is way stiffer than it was in the previous R and the dual-axis front suspension with active dampers – as I mentioned in the Comfort section – varies in usability from daily drivable to track-only. But even the most insignificant corner is met with precision. The Civic has what feels like millimeters worth of turn-in accuracy and some of the flattest, fastest cornering abilities in the class by a decent margin.

The steering I have a slight issue with; it’s extremely heavy in Sport and +R modes but still has pretty limited feedback. I would say the same is true of the Civic Si. But keep the steering in Comfort and everything else notched up to 11 (which you can do by activating Individual mode), and that setup is essentially perfect for aggressive driving. 


  • Driver Assistance Level: SAE Level 2 (Hands-On)
  • NHTSA Rating: Not Rated
  • IIHS Rating: Top Safety Pick Plus

For when you’re not flogging it on the track, the Type R actually has a whole host of standard safety features. Things like automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, and lane-keep assist with lane-centering all come standard. And for those days when you simply want to cruise, ticking the adaptive cruise with lane centering keeps the Civic perfectly civil on the highway. 

Fuel Economy

  • City: 22 MPG
  • Highway: 28 MPG
  • Combined: 24 MPG 
  City Highway Combined
2023 Honda Civic Type R 22 MPG 28 MPG 24 MPG
2023 Mini John Cooper Works 6MT 22 MPG 31 MPG 25 MPG
2023 Toyota GR Corolla 6MT 21 MPG 28 MPG 24 MPG
2023 Volkswagen Golf R 6MT 20 MPG 28 MPG 23 MPG


  • Base Price: $42,395 + $1,095 Destination
  • Trim Base Price: $44,390
  • As-Tested Price: $44,845

The Civic Type R starts at $44,390 with the $1,095 destination charge included. Adding the sleek Championship White paint like on the one tested here adds an extra $455 to the cost, but that’s it. Honda does have a few dealer-installed accessories available, the priciest of which is the $5,350 R Performance package, which adds a larger wing and 19-inch carbon fiber wheels. But everything from the factory, apart from paint, is standard.

That makes the Type R a decent value proposition when compared to the Golf R, which starts at $45,385. The GR Corolla is more affordable to start, but a comparable Circuit Edition makes it almost as pricey as the Civic. As the least powerful of the bunch, the Mini JCW is also the cheapest.

  Base Price Comparable Spec
Honda Civic Type R $44,390 $44,845
Mini John Cooper Works $36,395 N/A
Toyota GR Corolla $36,995 $44,420
Volkswagen Golf R $45,385 $46,485

Competitor Reviews:


Is The Honda Civic Type R Fast?

Yes, very. It has 315 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque which gives it a 0-60 time of just 4.8 seconds, making it the quickest and one of the most powerful hot hatchbacks in the class.

Is The Type R Manual Only?

Yes, the Honda Civic Type R is only available with a six-speed manual transmission for 2023.

Does The Civic Type R Have A Turbo?

Yes, the Civic Type R has a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine under the hood.

2023 Honda Civic Type R

Engine Turbocharged 2.0-liter I4
Output 315 Horsepower / 310 Pound-Feet
Transmission Six-Speed Manual
Drive Type Front-Wheel Drive
Speed 0-60 MPH 4.8 seconds (est)
Efficiency 22 City / 28 Highway / 24 Combined
Weight 3,188 Pounds
Seating Capacity 5
Cargo Volume 24.5 Cubic Feet
Base Price $42,395 + $1,095 Destination
Trim Base Price $44,390
As-Tested Price $44,845
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