It's the rally Civic we've always wanted.
The Honda Civic Type R is undoubtedly one of the hottest hatchbacks on sale today. A hearty 306 bhp and 295 pound-feet of torque emanate from under the bonnet, allowing for a 60 mile-per-hour sprint of 4.9 seconds, and a top speed of 169 mph. But even that isn't enough for tuners here in the U.K.
Two tuned Honda Civic Type Rs made their debut at the 2019 SMMT Test Day, held at Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire. The first is arguably one of the most exotic Civic Type Rs we've seen to date. Dubbed project OveRland (...clever), the one-off comes from Ralph Hosier Engineering. With a four-inch lift – aided by an anti-torque-steel Dual-Axis strut arrangement, a bespoke trailing arm mounting, and modified transverse links – and huge 255/55/18 BF Goodrich tyres, it's the world's first rally-ready Type R.
Unfortunately, the OveRland Civic doesn't feature any engine upgrades, and due to some complications, it isn't completely finished. Though, it's still on display at Millbrook if you want to see for yourself. But for now, we only get a small sample of the stacked Civic.
The second is a Civic Type R for the road. Developed by Droitwich-based Team Dynamics Motorsport, it produces 400 bhp and 500 lb-ft courtesy of some "off-the-shelf" upgrades, as well as custom creations by the team itself. Changes to the ECU, induction system, intercooler, sports cat, and exhaust yield a 25-percent gain in performance, giving the aftermarket Type R nearly 100 more bhp than the stock version.
To cope with all that extra oomph, the shop also fitted Goodridge stainless steel performance brake hoses, Eibach Pro performance springs, adjustable anti-roll bars, Dunlop DZ03G track day tyres wrapped around Team Dynamics 19-inch Pro-Race lightweight wheels.
"We're familiar with the race-winning FK8," team manager at Team Dynamics, James Rodgers, notes. "However, we wanted to showcase what can be extracted from the car with just a few light modifications. The standard car, which we call a race car for the road, is so competent that it really doesn't take much to take it to the next level."
Honda U.K. provided two pre-production versions of the Civic Type R to each shop for their builds, but the manufacturer has no plans to put either of them into production. Though, if you really want one, the shops themselves could create one-off versions... for enough money.
Gallery: Honda Civic Type R one-offs
Team Dynamics Motorsport and Ralph Hosier Engineering have today unveiled two very different versions of the Honda Civic Type R at the 2019 SMMT Test Day. Held at Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire, the annual event sees over 300 journalists test drive a range of manufacturer cars.
The Team Dynamics Motorsport version of the Civic Type R has been conceived by the Droitwich-based motorsport team to showcase the potential of the Civic Type R. The multi-championship winning team is the driving force behind the Halfords Yuasa Racing team, otherwise known as the Honda British Touring Car Championship works team.
Remaining road-legal, the car has a comprehensive selection of ‘off-the-shelf’ and bespoke modifications that have been carefully selected by Team Dynamics to heighten all aspects of the car. The changes to the ECU (Superchips), induction system (ITG), intercooler (PWR), sports cat (Dream) and exhaust (Scorpion) have yielded a 25% gain in performance; taking power to 400bhp and 500Nm. Helping control this increase are a number of modifications that embody both performance and safety, such as Goodridge stainless performance braided brake hoses, Eibach Pro performance springs, adjustable anti-roll bars and rear camber arms, and Dunlop DZ03G track day tyres wrapped around Team Dynamics’ 19” Pro-Race lightweight competition-derived wheels.
James Rodgers, team manager at Team Dynamics, comments: “We’re familiar with the race-winning FK8, however we wanted to showcase what can be extracted from the car with just a few light modifications. The standard car, which we call a race car for the road, is so competent that it really doesn’t take much to take it to the next level.”
The second unveil is a unique project by Ralph Hosier Engineering that has given the Civic Type R credentials like never before. Due to production complications, the car is yet to be finished but estimates are the car will be ready in a month.
Raised over four inches, and equipped with huge mud-plugging tyres, the Civic Type OveRland takes huge influence from Rally Raid, Overland and Safari models from the world of rally and adventure holidaying.
The complex anti-torque-steer Dual-Axis strut arrangement has been retained to allow the fundamental design and purpose of the Civic Type R’s suspension to work as the factory intended. At the rear, a bespoke trailing arm mounting and modified transverse links have lifted the car three inches higher than standard. Transferring this to the tarmac, or mud, are 255/55/18 BF Goodrich tyres wrapped around rally-derived, lightweight wheels. Finished in iconic Championship White the concept subtly accentuates silhouette to create a familiar but different feel to the car.
Ralph Hosier, owner of the eponymous engineering business, added: “These two wildly different interpretations of the Civic Type R showcase the standard car’s attributes, but also reflect the advanced, sporty and playful nature of the entire Civic range. We have also had a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate what can be done with a road car.”
After approaches from both firms last year, Honda UK provided pre-production versions of the Swindon-built Civic Type R for both to create their version of what a Civic Type R could be. And while there are no plans for either to be put in to production, both Team Dynamics and Ralph Hosier Engineering have said they will create one-off versions for discerning customers.
Surprisingly, both versions carry over the same powertrain and gearbox from the road going car as well as the extensive suite of safety products that are standard to the entire Honda range of passenger cars, demonstrating both the firm’s and Honda’s uncompromising commitment to safety.
Available for under £300 a month, the standard road-going Civic Type R has a top speed of 169mph and can do the 0-62mph sprint in just 5.7 seconds. The power comes from the 2.0-litre VTEC TURBO engine that has been optimised and refined to produce 320 PS with peak torque of 400 Nm.