Honda Type R models to continue despite shift toward EVs – report

Alexi Falson

In a piece of good news for performance enthusiasts, Honda’s lead engineer has said that the company is going to stick with the ethos of its Type R  heritage, even as its cars move toward electrification and EVs in the future.

Dismissing rumours that Honda might be looking to ditch the Type R sub-brand, Honda’s lead engineer, Hideki Kakinuma, told reporters that “without Type R, there is no Honda”, which signals the company’s commitment to affordable performance motoring.

Speaking with Autocar, Kakinuma said: “Honda strongly believes that driving pleasure is the core essence of private mobility, personal mobility.”

The comments come at a time where Honda’s major performance rivals have eliminated their performance divisions, with Peugeot throwing out the GTi, and both Ford and Renault axing their compact hot hatches in the near future.

Honda’s lead engineer addressed the reasons for these respective exits, stating that it’s increasingly difficult for manufacturers to meet “carbon neutrality and emissions regulations that are very stringent”. He said:

“It’s very difficult to think about such a sports model in these boundaries… but for Honda, there are only new hurdles, new challenges to provide our customers the joy of driving… Yes, we will definitely be keen to bring further Type Rs.”

As emissions regulations tighten and even exit dates for the internal combustion engine approach, Honda’s lead engineer suggested that the potential of the next Type R retaining an internal combustion engine isn’t completely out of the question, but it is unlikely.

Instead, he suggested that the Type R itself does not depend on the powertrain, and rather a certain philosophy and a principle of the joy of driving. Kakinuma said:

“If this excitement can be provided with a certain powertrain that is carbon neutral or somewhat electrified – or a completely different technology – this will also be justifiably a Type R.”

The all-new Civic Type R is scheduled to arrive in Australia early in 2023. Prices start from $72,600.

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