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Honda unveils all new Civic Type R Pace Car

Today, in preparation for the NTT IndyCar Series season opener this weekend at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Honda unveiled the all new 2023 Honda Civic Type R Pace Car.

Honda Pace Cars have been used for IndyCar competition since 2006, and this new car is the most powerful in the Type R’s 30 history. Benefitting from the additional improvements made to the production version of the 2023 Civic Type R, this car features an all new immersive cockpit experience and a sleek, muscular new design.

Hideki Kakinuma, Global Civic Type R Development Leader, had this to say, “Type R is very important for Honda as the pinnacle of our factory performance and an irreplaceable brand that enables enthusiasts to experience Honda’s racing spirit, and seek the ultimate in speed and driving pleasure. The all-new Civic Type R will continue that legacy, leveraging Honda’s racetrack-proven engineering to deliver extreme performance and passion-both on the road and on the racetrack.”

A class leader in ride, handling, and steering performance already, the Honda engineers undertook rigorous testing at racetracks in Japan, North America and Europe to further improve the Type R’s chassis. The result of those tests means that the all new Type R is more comfortable, more responsive and more thrilling to drive than before.

Under the Type R’s new vented aluminum hood is an even more powerful version of the K20C1, Honda’s award winning engine. Horsepower, torque and response have been improved with a redesigned turbocharger, increased air intake flow rate and a more efficient exhaust system that features a straight through design and an active exhaust valve. The size, shape and number of the turbocharger’s turbine wheel blades have been optimized along with the flow path of the intake charge, which has enabled the turbocharger to generate pressure in a wider range and more efficiently. The turbocharged 2.0 liter, 4 cylinder now produces 315 horsepower at 6,500 rpm (SAE net) and 310 lb-ft of torque at 2,600-4,000 rpm (SAE net). These are improvements of 9 hp and 15 lb-ft, making the Civic Type R one of the most powerful cars in its class per liter, with a specific output of 157.8 hp/liter, which is up from the previous generation’s 153.3. This also makes the 2023 Type R the most powerful Honda production vehicle ever sold in the US.

The Type R’s smooth and precise six speed manual transmission has been further improved with a lighter flywheel and a revised rev-match system, helping to maintain stability on corner entry. The high strength gearbox has gained a high rigidity lever and optimized shift gate pattern for a reassured, hyper precise gear change and a standard helical-type limited slip differential puts the engine’s power to the ground effectively.

Now based on the new 11th generation Civic Hatchback, the Type R’s scalpel sharp responses and famously addictive driving feel have been further increased by a more rigid body structure that supports improved dynamics and refinement. The wheelbase has been extended for a smoother ride and greater stability, the front and rear tracks are significantly wider and coupled with a retuned dual-axis strut front and multilink rear suspension, the straight line stability and steering feel are much improved.

The final modifications to the Civic Type R for Pace Car duties include a Honda Performance Development (HPD) brake package, which itself includes competition rotors, racing pads and stainless steel brake lines, and four-point racing harnesses.

An exclusive pace car lighting system and Honda graphics, complete the conversion from showroom Civic Type R to NTT IndyCar Series Pace Car.


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