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Friday, February 22, 2008

Honda Civic Type S details

"I am very pleased to introduce our new product (Type S), which was aggressively developed from our dreams to a much more sporty and personal direction, and not just making a 3-door version of the Civic 5-door."

These were the words of Mikio Suzuki, Large Project Leader for Civic Type S, talking at a Honda internal study meeting, February 2006.

Okay, so the Japanese/English translation may sound a bit stilted, but the passion is clear. The Type S project team was determined to deliver a 3-door variant that took the car in a far more sporty direction. Suzuki elaborated further when he visited the British International Motor Show in London for the world debut of the Type S model.

"Type S stands for Sport - but don't confuse this with a Sport grade model of the conventional Civic. Type S is superior - it doesn't just look sportier - it handles better because of the changes to the suspension set up."

So, visually and mechanically, the Type S raises the game.


The surefooted handling of the Civic 5-door's MacPherson strut/torsion beam chassis provided the ideal base for the more sporty Civic derivatives.

The Type S introduces revised spring and damper settings and a 20mm wider rear track to deliver sharper chassis dynamics, while 17-inch light alloy wheels shod with 225/45 ZR17 tyres provide enhanced grip.

Ventilated front brake discs are 282mm in diameter and the rear is equipped with 260mm solid discs.


Whether your preference is petrol or diesel, the power output remains the same - an impressive 140PS.

The 1.8-litre i-VTEC petrol that debuted in the 5-door model, and Honda's leaner, greener 2.2 i-CTDi diesel both feature 6-speed manual gearboxes to exploit their potential. The 1.8 also features an automated manual transmission dubbed

'i-SHIFT'- which offers the choice of automatic changes or manual shifts via steering wheel mounted paddles.

The 1.8 petrol achieves class leading performance (0-62mph in 8.9 seconds) on a par with a 2.0-litre engine, while delivering fuel economy (42.8mpg) that beats many 1.6 engines.

The diesel records 0-62mph in 8.6 seconds and a huge 54.3mpg on the Combined cycle.


As it's derived from the same body shell, the Type S enjoys all of Civic 5-door's packaging benefits:

  • 1,352 litres of luggage space (on a par with cars in the D segment)

  • 60:40 one motion fold flat magic rear seats

  • Dual-zone two tier display dashboard

  • 'Extra' 70 litre storage compartment beneath the boot floor

  • 14 litre glovebox (you could lose a medium sized mammal in there)

  • One litre centre pocket, double cup holder and large capacity console box capable of accommodating 22 CDs

  • Panoramic glass roof (available on Type S GT)

The Type S also gains new seats - designed to effectively surround the pelvis to improve support during cornering. This has been achieved by using an improved urethane cushion material to enhance vibration absorption and the cushions and backrests are now larger with prominent side bolsters. The front seats also have a greater range of fore/aft and reclining adjustment while the steering column has both rake and telescopic adjustment, providing more room for taller drivers, as well as improved versatility.

Both the new leather steering wheel and the black Alcantara upholstery gain sporty silver stitching to set the tone.

Because the Type S shares the interior dimensions of the 5-door model, driver legroom has been enhanced and the pedals are now 978mm from the hip point compared with 970mm before.

Did you know? The centrally-mounted 50 litre fuel tank is the key to the Civic's sector-leading packaging, creating greater space inside a more compact frame.


The latest technology from the Civic 5-door - including intelligent traffic jam busting satellite navigation and hands free Bluetooth phone - is available. For greater creature comforts, Type S GT gains a panoramic glass roof, automatic HID headlamps, auto rain wipers, and upgraded dual zone climate control - so passenger and driver can set their own personal preferences.

All models feature audio remote control switches on the left-hand spoke of the steering wheel and, when so equipped, cruise control buttons on the right spoke. Similarly, the third, lower spoke can carry navigation system controls on the left as well as multi-info display switches on the right. Illumination allows easy recognition at night.

Did you know? The Civic is the only car in the market that can inform the driver on demand about rear seatbelt usage upon request (competitor models can only do this on start up)


The doors, rear three quarter panels, lower sills and front and rear bumpers are unique to the 3-door style.

In particular, the lower edge of the rear side window tapers upwards more steeply for a more sporty profile.

The gun-metal colour side skirts blend into the front and rear wheel-arch surrounds and flow into the front and rear spoiler.

The deep front air intake, together with standard 17-inch alloy wheels and a wider rear track provide the Civic Type S with a particularly muscular and planted look.

Did you know? The Civic's doors have 'three stage' opening - 35 degrees, 52 degrees and 80 degrees. Bet you'll always think of the Three Degrees when you open a Civic door now!


Civic Type S is one of the safest cars in its class. Equipped with ABS for optimum performance, EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution) which adjusts front-to-rear brake effort to achieve maximum braking performance and VSA (Vehicle Stability Assist) designed to assist the driver in maintaining control during cornering, acceleration and sudden manoeuvres by applying brake force to the right or left hand wheels as necessary and managing the throttle and ignition systems.

Passive safety is covered with front, side and curtain SRS airbags and double

pre-tensioners on the front seatbelts and there is an innovative seat belt reminder system for rear passengers displayed on the instrument panel.

Active front seat headrests on Type S play a key role in protecting against whiplash injury in the event of an accident, and Honda is anticipating an excellent rating in the neck impact alleviation study conducted by the independent research institute, Thatcham.

Expected NCAP safety ratings:

Front and side impact

5 stars

Pedestrian safety

3 stars

Child protection

4 stars

The Mothership:

Production will commence in the Swindon factory from October onwards and sales begin in the UK in January, 2007.

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Source: Honda Motor Corporation

Related entries:

Honda Civic Type S


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