Honda announced that its 2017 Civic Type R has claimed the fastest front-wheel-drive lap around the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit.
On 3rd April, Honda’s forthcoming hot hatch demolished the current record with a run of 7 minutes, 43.8 seconds – a full 5.41 seconds faster than the previous record holder, the VW GTI Clubsport.
Prior to the VW Clubsport’s blast around the ‘Ring, Honda held the record with its previous generation Civic Type R. But it needed more to best the 305-horsepower GTI. In European trim, the Civic Type R puts out about 315 horsepower from its 2.0-liter, turbocharged engine.
The engine alone doesn’t make the record. The 2017 Civic Type R is lighter than its forebear, and a new multi-link rear suspension works with fatter tires and a longer wheelbase to handle corners better.
The Type R that ran the record wasn’t 100% stock. Honda installed a full roll cage for safety reasons, and it canceled out that weight gain by removing the infotainment system and rear seats and also used “road legal, track-focused” tires.
Either way, the 2017 Honda Civic Type R is the new champion. Production of Honda’s latest performance car begins this summer.