Jeremy Clarkson On The 2017 Civic Type R: "A Wonderful Car To Drive Hard"
If you can stomach looking a bit silly
Even though the 2017 Civic Type R came out quite a while ago, we haven't heard what Clarkson thought about it as it hadn't been reviewed on The Grand Tour or his Sunday Times column. Today, however, he published a review of the Civic, and spoiler alert: it's really good.
Clarkson tested the 2016 Type R last December and found it to be rather dull, even with all the silly aero bits making it look like a Fast and Furious racer transported out of the movie. It wasn't as fast as a Golf GTI, and wasn't as much fun as a Focus RS despite its clever suspension and massively powerful engine. He summed the review up by saying it "misses the mark but I'm glad it's out there."
The 2017, however, seems to be a different story. It gets five stars for handling instead of the 2016's four, with improved marks for practicality, cost, and comfort as well. He describes the handling as unbelievably good:
"This is a wonderful car to drive hard. Yes, it’s a bit of a fatty but you’re never really aware of the weight because it changes direction like an electrocuted swallow. Couple that to the 315 rampaging horsepowers, the 295 torques and the bark from a weird triple exhaust system and there’s no doubt Honda is back with a car that’s extremely good fun."
Not all is positive, though. The interior's not extremely nice, and the ride is good but not conventionally comfortable; the biggest problem, however, is the looks.
"I also hate the Type R because just look at it. Have you ever seen anything so wilfully yobbish? We’re told all its winglets and spoilers are there for a reason and I think I know what the reason is: to tell your neighbours you are very fond of football violence and shoplifting. And you have a knife."
If you can get past the looks, though, the Type R does seem to be much improved over last year's in Clarkson's opinion. It may not be as much fun as a Fiesta ST, as he notes in the review, but if you want something practical, fast, fun and reliable, this may be your best bet.