Expert Reviews

UK Drive: Honda Civic Type R Black Edition

Thursday 20 April 2017

UK Drive: Honda Civic Type R Black Edition

The Honda Civic Type R, in its current form, has only been on sale for a couple of years. However, its replacement is already on the horizon – and is set to arrive later on this year. To celebrate the outgoing car, Honda has created 100 Black Edition vehicles as a celebration for the last few cars to roll off the production line.

Mechanically, it’s identical to the standard Type R. It uses the same 2.0-litre engine found on the standard car and gets a level of kit equivalent to high-spec GT vehicles. It does, however, receive a black interior with red accents, as well as red end plates to that iconic rear spoiler.

Looks & Image

If you’re looking for an unassuming, subtle car, then the Civic Type R has never been a good choice. The Black Edition is no different, with its large rear wing and hugely flared arches turning heads wherever it goes.

It’s relatively spacious inside – this is down to the car’s basis on a standard family car. The bucket seats offer a good amount of support, and have plenty of adjustment to ensure that you can easily get comfortable behind the wheel.

However, in terms of ride comfort the Honda misses the mark slightly. Though a sporty car, the suspension is simply too hard – even in normal drive modes. This could be incredibly tiresome for those drivers who want to use their Type R each and every day. 

Space & Practicality

As previously mentioned, the Civic Type R is able to offer a good degree of practicality thanks to being based on a standard hatchback. As such, you get an impressive 498 litres of boot space to play with. Fold the rear seats down, and this rises to an impressive 1,427 litres. The Golf R, in comparison, has 340 litres of boot space with the rear seats in place – 37 litres less than a standard Golf thanks to its four-wheel drive system. 

Elsewhere, the Type R is surprisingly usable. There’s plenty of space in the back, and even taller passengers should be able to get comfortable. The sloping roofline does impede headroom slightly, but most should find it a spacious place to be.

Behind the Wheel

As with the standard Type R, the Black Edition is a bit of a riot to drive. Packing 306bhp, it’s capable of hitting 60mph in just 5.5 seconds and will carry on to a top speed of 167mph. However, it’s in the bends where the Type R triumphs, with high levels of grip inspiring a lot of confidence – it’s a car that really wants to be driven faster and faster each time.

The six-speed manual gearbox has a great action to it too – a refreshing change to the automatic ‘boxes so often fitted to the current crop of hot hatches. Though the car’s hard ride is annoying around town, it does mean that it remains superbly flat when travelling at speed, and it’s particularly noticeable when blasting down country B-roads.

Value for Money

There’s a wealth of kit fitted to the Black Edition as standard, including satellite navigation, dual-zone climate control and a rear parking camera. Those supportive bucket seats are fitted as standard too, meaning that there are few additional costs to contend with. As it’s so limited in number, the Black Edition will also be a wise investment. Though many thousands of Type Rs have been made, special edition models are likely to hold their value well – with the additional standard equipment making it an even better value purchase.

Who would buy one ?

The Civic Type R has always been a good car for enthusiasts; those who love driving for the sheer pleasure of it – but would like a little bit of practicality too. The Black Edition is a real celebration of that, adding to the overall package with a few styling tweaks. Its limited numbers will make it desirable, that’s for sure, and will mean that its residual values should remain strong, too. 


Facts at a Glance

Model: Honda Civic Type R Black Edition
Engine tested: 2.0-litre petrol
Price as tested: £32,300
Power: 306bhp
Torque: 400Nm
Max speed: 168mph
0-60mph: 5.5 s
MPG: 38.7 (combined cycle)
Emissions: 170g/km


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