Honda Civic Type R review

Category: Hot hatch

Section: Costs & verdict

Star rating
Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD infotainment
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  • Civic Type-R 2020 awards pic
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD rear tracking
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD dashboard
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD front seats
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD infotainment
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD front seats
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 left side panning shot
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD boot open
  • Civic Type-R 2020 awards pic
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD rear tracking
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD dashboard
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD front seats
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD infotainment
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD front seats
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 left side panning shot
  • Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD boot open

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Don’t dive into Type R ownership expecting run-of-the-mill hatchback running costs. Clearly, a 2.0-litre engine pumping out 300bhp-plus isn’t going to be as parsimonious on fuel as a diesel. Once you’ve recalibrated your expectations, however, you can pacify yourself with the knowledge that our real-world True MPG test proves a respectable 35.1mpg is realistic if you take it easy.

As for price, the Civic Type R sits between less powerful rivals, such as the Ford Focus STRenault Mégane RS and Hyundai i30 N, and premium-badged alternatives that include the BMW M135i and Mercedes A35 AMG. Meanwhile, PCP finance deals are usually competitive enough.

If you like to budget well ahead, a competitively priced five-year service plan is available. Then there's Honda’s famed reliability, which stood up to reasonable scrutiny in the 2019 What Car? Reliability Survey, in which the Japanese brand finished 10th out of 31 manufacturers. The Civic itself (all versions, not specifically the Type R) was also one of the most dependable family hatchbacks. There’s the reassurance of a three-year/90,000-mile manufacturer warranty, too.

The standard Type R comes with 20in alloy wheels, single-zone climate control, LED headlights and keyless entry. You also get lots of safety kit, including automatic emergency braking (AEB), traffic sign recognition, lane departure warning and automatic high beam assistance.

However, we'd recommend upgrading to GT trim if you can; you'll get blindspot monitoring and cross-traffic alert, parking sensors at the front and rear, dual-zone climate control and power-folding door mirrors.

When it was crash tested by Euro NCAP, the Civic scored five stars overall, and when it came to the adult protection category it totted up very nearly as many stars as one of the safest cars in the class, the Mercedes A-Class. However, Euro NCAP also highlighted that the Type R isn’t as good at looking after kids in the rear seats as some rivals.

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Honda Civic Type R 2019 RHD infotainment
Civic Type-R 2020 awards pic
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Overview

The Honda Civic Type R offers awesome performance and precise handling, yet it’s also a practical and comfortable everyday car. That’s why it’s the best hot hatch in the world.

  • Thrilling, capable handling
  • Awesome performance
  • More comfortable and practical than most rivals
  • Terrible infotainment system
  • Lots of road noise
  • There are cheaper options

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