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Your Honda Dealer Won't Give You an NSX, But a Civic Type R Will do Nicely

Jun 12, 2008
It's funny what you remember about your childhood. Ask me what I had for my eighth birthday or where I went on holiday when I was eleven and I honestly cannot remember. Despite forgetting the large, important milestones in my life however, I can still remember the night I closed my eyes and thought I'd opened them two seconds later only to have slept for ten hours, or when I scored a dipping volley off the crossbar playing football up the park.

Another useless memory is accompanying my dad around every conceivable car showroom on his quest to find the latest family car. I remember getting very excited about a Volvo with pop up headlights, a Chrysler Neon because it accelerated far quicker than it had any right to and a Honda NSX which the dealer informed me I could have if I worked hard at school. Well Mr Honda dealer I did and it appears you've forgotten my NSX because my driveway is looking sparse.

The Honda dealer must've impressed my dad though, because once we'd clambered out of the NSX my dad bought the next best thing to a Ferrari rivalling super car - a Honda Civic. I must admit that despite this drastic step down the car ladder I was over the moon. The Civic in question had leather seats, electric everything, alloy wheels, air conditioning, CD player and Pearle sent paint that glowed green, purple, blue and everything in-between.

As we left the Honda dealer I'm sure you can picture the scene, my dad sitting tall and proud behind the wheel with me looking up at the great man, swinging my legs as I teetered on the edge of the leather upholstery, straining to peer over the dashboard. And then it happened. The drive to see my grandparents yielded approximately fifteen Hondas, mostly Civics, that were all driven by post retirement folk.

"Dad, why is everyone in a Honda grey?" came my cry to which my dad could only twiddle some electric buttons to cheer me up but it was too late. Honda was soiled, Honda was un cool and Honda was not a boyhood dream anymore.

It takes a lot to win back my faith and trust but a few years ago I was watching television and saw every single part that makes up a Honda Accord clunk and clatter into one another in a domino/crazy inventor's laboratory way and was blown away. Another advert had a diesel engine being smashed to smithereens by cartoon rabbits and then there was Jacques Villeneuve, my favourite formula one driver. His car was a Honda and he was really cool, the adverts were cool and at the age of eighteen my love of the Honda brand was restored.

The power of the brand is one thing, having the cars to match is quite another. Happily your local Honda dealer can oblige with the simply stunning Honda Civic Type R. Originally a Japanese edition, the Civic Type R (that'll be Type Racing) finally made it to our shores in 2001 and became one of the biggest selling and best performance hatchbacks not only in the noughties, but in the history of motoring. A bold statement yes, but a truthful one. A 2.0 litre VTEC engine gave 197bhp and 0-60 in 6.6 seconds, all for 16,000 and things have just gone space age with the latest offering.

The only criticism with the older model was that if you looked past the 17 inch alloy wheels it essentially looked like the standard car. The new Civic Type R however cannot be missed. It's still all triangles like the base model, but features deep front and rear bumpers, huge 18 inch alloys, and a growling bonnet bulge. Racing seats hold you in place and there's plenty of 'Type R' badges dotted around in case you forget you're in a special car. A high roof spoiler does just that to your rear view but looks fantastic and the car also features twin triangular exhaust that gracefully emerge from the rear bumper.

My favourite feature has to be the speedometer which changes colour the higher the revs go, and boy does it rev, all the way onto 8,000rpm. The exceptional VTEC engine remains the same 197bhp as before, which means that the only grey haired people you'll see driving one were turned that colour with the whiplash inducing acceleration.
About the Author
Jake Delur has long been a fan of Honda and is now delighted to be promoting Bath Honda, a Bath based Honda dealer.
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