Honda Civic Type-r Now in Australia

By: Evander Klum

Having a remarkable reputation on its home market, the Honda Civic Type-R is now being exported to Australia.

The first shipment of Swindon- built Civic Type Rs arrived in Melbourne earlier this month. And now ready to be delivered to dealers, the Civic Type-R will be in the hands of the Australians at the price of a remarkably sharp $A39, 990 for the privilege starting Monday.

Equipped with a rigid , the Civic comes with a high-revving, naturally aspirated, 2-litre i-VTEC engine that is capable of pumping out 148kW and 193Nm. As a result, it will sprint to 100kmh in just 6.6 seconds, but despite being so wildly quick, it manages 9.3 liters per 100km.

Australians are lucky because they live in the only country outside Europe to get the acclaimed 'hot hatch', which sales is expected to reach 1200 units there per year.

Based in Swindon, Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM), is the only Honda production facility to build the Civic Type R. Twelve thousand five hundred (12,500) will be built in the area between now and April 2008.

When asked about the possibility of a Type R Civic for the New Zealand market, Honda New Zealand has always said that it has no plans of bringing the car in.

The Civic Type R rides on 18-inch alloy wheels along with 225/40 R18 tires, and stops with 300mm front and 260mm rear brake discs. It has a six-speed manual gearbox, with no automatic, and firm MacPherson strut-style front suspension and torsion beam rear suspension, but the latter of which is actually not as advanced as the fully-independent rear suspension found on New Zealand Civic sedans.

As to the interior, the Civic has a dash design similar to Civic found in New Zealand. When cornering, its body-hugging alcantara racing-style bucket seats keep the driver firmly planted.

Regarding safety features, the Civic Type R has front, side and curtain airbags, vehicle stability assist (VSA), ABS brakes with electronic brake force distribution and an advanced compatibility engineering (ACE) body structure. For additional security of the car, an anti-theft immobilizer is equipped.

Other features include automatic rain- sensing windscreen wipers, auto on/ off headlights, an MP3 and WMA- compatible CD player, multi- function trip computer, cruise control, front fog lights, dual-zone climate control, and a leather-bound tilt and telescopic-adjustable steering wheel.

Honda expects to sell 100 Civic Type Rs per month in Australia. The Swindon Type R is not being sold in Japan either. The only Type R Civic that the public would be able to source as a Japanese used import will be the sedan version.

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