FL5 Civic Type R (S Grade) sets new FWD lap record on the Nürburgring that's 1s slower than before.
Date: April 20, 2023 01:03
Honda Press Release
Today, Honda issued the following press release, containing a critical footnote. Many folks may just see the actual laptime numbers and be left wondering what they are reading in the press release as it indicates the FL5 is 1s slower around the Nurburgring than the FK8. What?! Something isn't adding up.
Well, as the footnote explains, since these past records were set, the "official" Nurburgring lap actually grew by 0.232km. And this new certified lap record is using the new certified lap distance. 0.232 km may sound like a small number, but 0.232km is 232 meters, which is 761 feet. So, the "official" lap at the Nurburgring either starts a bit earlier, or ends a bit later or it could be a bit of both - we haven't done enough research to see which it is, but if you look at the video below, on both ends the speeds are well below 100mph (160kph) for some time after the start and before the finish. So even if we assume that the average speed in those areas is around 100mph (160kph), that would indicate that the FL5 covered the same distance as the FK8 with more than a 5 second advantage, which puts the FL5 into the sub-7:40 range using the old "bridge to gantry" standard. If you want to look at it another way and work out the average speed that the FK8 achieved on its best reported Nurburgring lap and compare it to the FL5's average speed on its slightly longer distance certified lap, the numbers indicate that the FL5 is 5.4s quicker.
The full press release follows
Update Since we received the below press release, it came to our attention that the European Honda press office included the following disclaimer - the vehicle that set the lap is a special "light weight" version of the Type R that will only be offered in Euro markets. It retains the infotainment system but deletes the AC and sat nav hardware among a few other small features. It is unclear why Honda chose to omit this information from their USA and global press release. How much time would the weight reduction save? It would be almost impossible to know without running the two versions very closely on the same day.
*Editors note - The lap time was set using a Type R that is a lighter version of the latest model. This model will be available to order in European LHD markets only, and will be referred to as a Type R S grade.
The lap time was set using Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 Connect tyres that will be available to order through Michelin directly.
Civic Type R Sets New Front-Wheel Drive Lap Time Record at Nürburgring
April 20, 2023 TOKYO, Japan, April 20, 2023 – Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today announced that the all-new Honda Civic Type R has set a new lap time record for a front-wheel drive car*1 at the Nürburgring Nordschleife in Germany during testing conducted for the model’s performance evaluation. The new lap time record, 7 minutes 44.881 seconds*2, demonstrates that the Civic Type R, which underwent a full model change, further improved its dynamic performance compared to its predecessor model.
The all-new Civic Type R was developed with the goal to achieve the “ultimate pure sports performance” by attaining the ultimate in both speed, which is the essential value of a sports model, and driving pleasure, which appeals to the emotion of the driver.
Key technologies behind the fastest lap time
Based on the 2.0-liter VTEC Turbo engine inherited from the previous-generation Civic Type R, the engine performance was further improved to deliver maximum output of 243 kW and maximum torque of 420 N・m through the adoption of all-new turbocharger and other advancements.
Cooling performance along with heat release and aerodynamic performance were improved through various measures, such as the enlargement of the front grille opening area and the effective opening area of the radiator.
By adopting detail-oriented body parts designs both in the front and rear of the vehicle, the downforce was enhanced effectively, which realized stability while driving at the vehicle’s full potential.
For the two-piece disc brake system, inherited from the previous-generation Civic Type R, the master power characteristics were modified to further improve controllability of the brake for the entire speed range, from low speed to high speed. In addition, by increasing the efficiency of air intake toward the brake system, an increase in brake temperature during continuous driving on a closed course was reduced, which realized solid braking effect and fade resistance.
The Michelin Pilot Sport CUP 2 Connect tire was jointly developed with Michelin using know-how amassed through the development of the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S, which is the standard tire for the Civic Type R. The Michelin Pilot Sport CUP 2 Connect further enhances the circuit performance of the vehicle, improves dry grip performance and realizes well-balanced handling.
Message from Hideki Kakinuma, Civic Type R Development Leader:
“To our Civic Type R fans all over the world:
Under the concept of ‘Ultimate SPORT 2.0,’ we developed the all-new Civic Type R with the spirit of ‘going beyond our past achievements’ and strived for the ultimate FWD sports car by refining the ‘essential value’ and ‘emotional appeal’ unique only to our Type R models.
Since the start of sales in Japan in September 2022, we have received numerous customer feedback from all around the world filled with amazement and joy, far exceeding our expectations. However, we still had one more mission to fulfill, which was to claim the title as the world’s fastest FWD car with a record Nürburgring lap time.
Six years after the lap record was set by the previous-generation Civic Type R (FK8), we reached this new dimension as a result of all of the passions we poured in and all the advancements we made for this Type R model. Finally, our wish to share this title with all Type R fans all around the world came true.
We sincerely hope that all current and prospective owners of the Type R will enjoy and love their vehicle with the pride we share with you.”
*1Honda internal research (as of April 2023).
*2An official Nürburgring Nordschleife lap measurement. The lap time was measured based on the official rules instituted in 2019, with a full lap of the Nordschleife, which is 20.832 km long. Before 2019, lap times were measured with the lap length of 20.600 km and were not officially certified by the Nürburgring.