The devil's in the details.

The Honda Civic Type R is one of the very few hardcore hot hatches with only two driving wheels on the market today. Many competitors like the Ford Focus RS and Volkswagen Golf R are relying on all-wheel-drive systems, but that doesn’t necessarily make them better performance vehicles. After all, a good sports car has a good engine. And the Type R is not just among the leaders when it comes to the motor, but it’s probably setting the standards in this segment.

A new entertaining video from Engineering Explained shines more light on the 2.0-litre turbocharged inline-four engine of the Civic Type R and why it is brilliant. With 306 bhp and 295 pound-feet of torque, it’s quite powerful but also fuel efficient with a combined consumption of 36 mpg (UK).

First of all, the K20C1 engine features a smart architecture using an aluminium cylinder block and cylinder head. The exhaust manifold is integrated within the head – a solution that saves weight, helps with turbo response, and improves the emissions. The engine also uses the same technology to cool the pistons as Honda’s Formula 1 engines.

The 2.0-litre unit features a traditional design with low-inertia dual overhead camshafts driven by a chain, which is designed to last for the entire life of the engine, according to Honda, so it’s not supposed to require any maintenance. Oh, and did you know the exhaust valves are actually filled with sodium to help keep them cooler.

2016 Ford Focus RS vs. 2018 Honda Civic Type R

Of course, it’s a direct injection engine and Honda says this method of fuel delivery has increased the torque across the entire rpm range. That’s combined with smaller spark plugs for lower weight and more space within the combustion chamber.

Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? Make sure to watch the whole video at the top and learn about the other secrets of Honda’s 2.0-litre turbo engine.