Honda plans new Civic Type R

* Hot Civic being mulled * New hot hatch will need at least 250bhp * Engine may be turbocharged...

Honda plans new Civic Type R

Honda says it's looking at building a 'sporty variant' of the new Civic. The Japanese manufacturer refused to confirm that the hot version - which will probably go on sale in around 18 months - will carry the Type R badge, although it would be a major surprise if it didn't.

Civic development leader Mitsuru Kariya told What Car? the new 'Type R' will need at least 250bhp to compete with rivals such as the Renault Megane 250 Cup and the new Ford Focus ST.

That means Honda will need to develop a new engine for the hot Civic, and it confirmed that it's looking at the possibility of a turbocharging - a first for a performance Honda. Kariya was quick to point out that no decision has yet been made on this, and that a naturally aspirated engine may yet feature.

As for the design, Civic design supervisor Daisuke Sawai said he'd like to make something aggressively styled like the old Type R, to 'express the car's sporty aspects'.