This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Honda Civic Type-R (15-17) review.

Parkers overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 4.5

Honda has carried over the 2.0-litre engine from the previous Civic Type R with a few tweaks to make it a little smoother and more responsive – as a result it now has 200bhp (compared to 198bhp in the old car). The power delivery is smoother but while the engine has been improved it still needs to be worked hard to get the most out of it, as it does without the turbocharged boost that most rivals benefit from.

It also lacks pulling power so you’ll often find yourself changing to a lower gear in order to keep up with traffic, which can be tiring on motorways. But thanks to a low kerbweight it’s quick from 0-62mph, completing the sprint in just 6.6 seconds which is faster than the Volkswagen Golf GTi and more powerful Ford Focus ST. If you’re on a back road blast the Civic Type-R is also immense fun and the short-shifting and precise six-speed manual gearbox makes it easy to keep the engine at higher revs allowing you to access its power.

The Type R’s suspension is based on that of the standard Civic, but it is lower and has a wider stance at the rear. The car feels well balanced when pressing on but the ride is firm and it struggles over bumpy and rough road surfaces. However the steering is superbly responsive and the Type-R changes direction with deft agility while the strong brakes add to the surefooted feel.

There’s almost endless levels of grip too and with virtually no body roll and a stiff bodyshell it feels every inch the hardcore hot hatch. It’s not only enjoyable to drive but incredibly involving, the problem is that the Civic is also pretty uncompromising so while it’s a great at being a performance car, it struggles in terms of comfort. It’s rarely a relaxing car to drive.