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Honda Civic Type R is an excellent choice to add sportiness into your daily drive. However, which is the best year for the Honda Civic Type R?

The Honda Civic Type R is the most potent and fastest vehicle the company has ever produced. However, the Type R name has a reputation, and not all years have lived up to the expectations. But with so many years into the production, Honda has dug very deep and found room for improvement to give you their best type R car to date.

2021 is the best year for the Honda Civic Type R. Where many sports sedans lack character, the Honda Civic Type R has excellent performance and fuel economy. The 2021 Civic Type R is best in terms of driving a hot hatchback daily. It can be loud when you want it to be but is smooth overall.

You might have to settle with the juvenile exterior design that might hurt your eyes, but underneath all that, the 2021 Honda Civic Type R is just a beast. It provides incredible acceleration and an amazing performance overall with its turbocharged engine. But this car is more than that. A supremely comfortable and roomy interior with many safety and entertainment features makes this car a complete package. Moreover, the 2021 Type R comes as a limited edition as it is the last of the 10th and most famous generation.

As car enthusiasts and having driven several Honda Civic Type R vehicles to their full extent, we can safely say that the 2021 Type R model is the best option. With extensive knowledge about this car, we will talk about it in detail to help you make your buying decision.

Table of Contents

2021 Honda Civic Type R

What’s New?

As mentioned earlier, the 2021 Honda Civic Type R comes in a limited edition with only 1000 units. Six hundred units of those are designated for the US. The limited-edition Type R comes only in Phoenix Yellow Pearl Paint. More importantly, this model weighs 38 pounds less to increase the car’s speed.

Honda has also equipped it with Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires to enhance its performance on the road. Besides that, the hood scoop, rooftop, and side mirrors are coated with gloss black paint. According to Honda, the steering has been re-tuned and has specific characteristics to work with the specific wheel-and-tire combination.

What Does the Engine & Transmission Offers?

Without further ado, let’s talk about the engine that really makes this car go. A powerful engine is the main attraction of this car. A 3.0 L turbocharged and inter-cooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4 cylinder engine that produces 306hp and a peak torque of 295 ft-lbs provides you with a severely punchy ride.

It is mated with only a six-speed manual transmission driven with a front-wheel drive. Only a manual transmission option might come as a surprise to some people, but the refreshing torque you get from the manual makes this car one of the best in the Type R business.

This car weighs just 3,100 pounds, which is very light according to today’s sports cars’ standards. One of the primary reasons that contribute toward its acceleration is the vehicle’s engine. It bursts into 7,000 RPM, which gives it a VTEC characteristic.

Once you get into the high RPM band, the sound and the thrust you get of the VTEC is pretty engaging and give the Type R that unique experience that you are looking for.

Moreover, the engine pushes 23 pounds of boost, equating to 0-60 mph in 5.5-5.6 seconds. Interestingly, Honda doesn’t publish the time records, but we have done several runs to test the said configuration, which we will jump into detail later in the article.

Is the 2021 Honda Civic Type R Fuel Efficient?

Fortunately, the 2021 Honda Civic Type R is generously fuel-efficient. This car gives 22 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. The Civic Type R boasts above-average EPA fuel-economy ratings and does equally well in the real world.

Although it boasts a turbocharged inline-4 cylinder engine, the lightweight capability is the major factor keeping the fuel economy a plus point of this vehicle. This makes the car’s usability versatile and convenient for daily use.

Exterior - What Does the 2021 Type R Look Like?

We hate to start a section negatively, but so is the impact of the 2021 Honda Civic Type R. This edition has a highly aggressive design that immediately stands out on the road. While the design is up to your preference, most people ask for a more subtle design.

This car has many cuts, swoops, angles, three exhaust pipes, and a massive wing spoiler at the back that genuinely looks out of proportion. The design is really not up to the standards, but it is backed by many functionalities, which we will discuss further.

On the other hand, the limited edition Type R has the same design except for its single solar selection, i.e., Phoenix Yellow Pearl Paint and the gloss black paint-covered hood scoop, rooftop, and side mirrors.

We won’t lie, the limited edition is supposed to have exclusivity, but this paint combination does not do justice with what lies underneath.

On top of the hood, you can find a school pier that adds a Type R look, but it does not contribute to any functionality that it is meant for, such as air intake.

One thing Honda hardly fails in is cool-looking headlights. Although the Type R is an expensive car, more design-inclusive and dynamic headlights enhance the car’s sporty look.

A significant feature upgrade that this car comes with is a 13% wider front-end grill compared to previous versions. Owners of previous models complained that the car heated up in track sessions or during spirited driving.

Honda says that in their testing, the 13% larger grill upgrade helps with the Type R’s thermal efficiency by keeping the temperature 20-degrees lower.

Moreover, a carbon-fiber front lip uplifts the car’s look with significant ground clearance, so you won’t have any problem going up and down any speed bumps.

What About the Wheels, Tires, Breaks, and Suspension?

The Honda Civic Type R is a performance car, so it needs to top the charts with its wheels, brakes, tires, and suspension.

The suspension system provides an adaptive ride with three different driving modes: comfort, sports, R plus. We will jump into these modes in more detail later. However, this model has a refreshed mode of these dampers, and they can react up to 10x faster on uneven surfaces such as pavements.

The 2021 Honda Civic Type R limited edition is equipped with sports-centric Michelin Sports Cup 2 tires. These tires provide just the right amount of traction to give you more control over your ride while not creating too much friction to avoid slowing down the car.

The wheels have a red brake caliper that matches the red theme incorporated in the Type R. Besides that, the 2021 model has a refreshed two-piece 13.8-inch rotor in the front and a 12-inch disc in the rear equipped with a single floating piston. The 245 size tires on all four corners make them one of the hype-worthy specifications of this car.

How’s the Storage?

The ample amount of storage space goes deep in the roots of the Honda Civic. Fortunately, the Type R successfully keeps the vast storage space characteristic going. You can open the trunk using comfortable access while the keys stay in your pocket.

You will find an enormous amount of storage in the back – space that is flat and wide. You can fold down the rear seats so you have expandability to store large pieces of equipment. The ample storage space of this car offers the opportunity for a weekend getaway.

Unlike some expensive and more luxury cars, Honda offers the grab handles to close the trunk, so you don’t have to put your hands on the exterior paint.

What Is the Interior Like?

While the Honda Civic Type R is the most expensive trim in the Honda Civic lineup, it is still cheaper than most other street racers. Therefore, you can expect slightly lower quality plastic and fiber and a few more lacking interior features. However, the design is sleek and sporty overall.

2021 Honda Civic Type R’s interior is well-matched with its exterior in terms of aggression. Even though you have many features that provide a luxurious experience, it is not a luxury car, so the seats are made of fabric instead of leather. Still, the fabric and cushioning are super soft and comfortable. The seat holds you well and provides a firm experience overall despite the thrust moments. On the downside, the seats are manually adjustable instead of automatic.

As mentioned earlier, this model has a re-tuned steering wheel. It’s made from Alcantara that looks clean, and the grip feels good in hands. However, the Alcantara is prone to damage much quicker than leather, so you will need to take extra care of the steering wheel.

If it feels like you’d be giving up on too much with the 2021 Honda Civic Type R, wait till you see the gauge cluster that is very well balanced and completely digital, giving it a modern look.

However, it keeps a classy look by incorporating analog projection of the speedometer, temperature, and fuel gauge. The red LED lighting adds a dynamic look, which gets darker as you change the driving mode.

Infotainment and Connectivity

The 2021 Honda Civic Type R’s infotainment system is pretty outdated as it is carried forward from the beginning of the 10th generation. However, the seven-inch touchscreen infotainment unit is functional and easy to use. The interface looks old when compared to other street racing cars.

However, it is adequate and offers all the features to enjoy your ride, including navigation, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a rocking stereo.

It features physical buttons and a volume knob that we think is a silver lining of an outdated infotainment system because they are easier to navigate for the driver.

Lastly, the 2021 Honda Civic Type R offers a highly functional center console, the best feature of this car’s interior. It is covered by a sliding armrest, which is always more comfortable as you can adjust it according to your seating position.

Slide it back, and you will find a highly customizable console with multiple layers of cup holders, a large storage box, and a 12-volt USB outlet to plug in your phone and other electronic devices.

Back Seat Comfort

The plenty of room in the back is a surprising feature in a car with a cheaper price point. Similar to the front seats, the back seats are well-padded and hold the passenger nicely. A six-foot-tall person can easily sit in the rear seat, with the hip room being 48.8-inches long, headroom 37.4-inches, and legroom 35.9-inches.

What Is the Safety Rating for the 2021 Honda Civic Type R?

The 2021 Honda Civic Type R has not been rated for safety. However, it has scored incredibly well in the tests of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS). This has granted it an overall safety rating of five out of five stars.

Given that it has the same safety features, dimension, and frame, you can be at peace knowing that the 2021 Type R model is as safe as they come.

This car offers a host of driving assistance features to make your riding experience safe and comfortable. These features include:

  • Standard forward-collision warning
  • Automated emergency braking
  • Standard lane-departure warning
  • Lane-keeping assist
  • Standard adaptive cruise control
  • Rear-View Camera
  • Front And Rear Head Airbags
  • Post-Collision Safety System
  • Stability Control
  • Passenger Airbag Occupant Sensing Deactivation

How Much Can I Get the 2021 Honda Civic Type R for?

Depending on the condition, mileage, and location, you can get the standard 2021 Honda Civic Type R for around $38,000. You will need to dig a little deeper into your pocket for the limited edition as it costs about $43,000.

Luckily, this car has no trim variants, so this is the only price point you need to aim for.

Best Year Honda Civic Type R

About The Author

Charles Redding

Charles Redding

I've spent many years selling cars, working with auto detailers, mechanics, dealership service teams, quoting and researching car insurance, modding my own cars, and much more.

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