The current Honda Civic Type R was the first generation to be available in the United States, and as with other long-forbidden fruit, like the Nissan GT-R, expectations were high.
Fortunately for Honda, the little pocket rocket delivered in a big way. Enthusiast publications far and wide hailed the performance of the hot hatch, and were genuinely impressed at how well the company was able to make its front-wheel drive platform handle. But Honda wasn’t content with simply positive press, so it launched the Type R Challenge, which saw it set front-wheel drive records at five legendary tracks.
The first run was at Magny Cours in France, and was followed by hot laps at Beligium’s Spa Francorchamps, Silverstone in the United Kingdom, and Portugal’s Estoril. The final leg of the journey was done at the Hungaroring in — you guessed it — Hungary back in March, and Honda has just released video of the lap. Here we see F1 ace Jensen Button set a time of 2.10.19, and pun aside, it looks like one heck of a good time.
Now, it’s important to note that the Civic Type R during on this heady endeavor was the same as the examples you can find in the showroom of your local AutoNation Honda dealer. So if you’re looking for something fun, fast, and practical, you know what to do. You just better know how to drive a stick, because in a nod to purists, the Type R can’t be had with an automatic.
Check out the video below to see just how much performance a Grand Prix champion can wring out of this high-strung hatchback…