In January this year, during the Tokyo Auto Salon in Japan, Honda unveiled the Civic Type R-GT prototype as a preview of its new contender for the Super GT series. Now, the company moves to the next phase of the vehicle’s development with its first shakedown tests scheduled for 25 and 26 July at the Okayama International Circuit in Japan.

The Super GT series is a grand touring car championship that was established back in 1993 and renamed to its current name in 2005. It is the top level of car racing in Japan and currently has two classes – GT300 and GT500. The Honda Civic Type R-GT is supposed to replace the NSX-GT Type S, which won the championship for the last time back in 2020. Last year, Nissan won the titles in both categories with the Z GT500 (in GT500 class) and GT-R Nismo GT3 (in GT300 class).

Gallery: Honda Civic Type R-GT Concept

Honda now says the new race car has been developed on the bones of the road-legal Civic Type-R and features a dedicated 2.0-litre direct injection turbocharged engine under the bonnet. The mill has been developed by the Honda Racing Corporation’s team and is said to continue the legacy of the Type R delivering the “ultimate pure sports performance.”

“We are very pleased to be able to start the first track testing of the Civic Type R-GT, which is a race machine incorporating the aerodynamics, engine, and other technologies, and the expertise that HRC has amassed by taking on challenges in a number of races inside and outside of Japan,” Koji Watanabe, President of HRC, comments.

The race debut of the Civic Type R-GT is scheduled for the 2024 season of the Super GT series, which probably means we will see its official track launch in April next year. The current 2023 season kicked off on 15-16 April at the Okayama International Circuit, followed by races at the Fuji Speedway and the Suzuka Circuit. The next round is scheduled for 5-6 August at the Fuji Speedway and another run around the Suzuka Circuit is planned for 26-27 August. The final race of the season will be at the Mobility Resort Motegi on 4-5 November.