Don’t let the hype or front-drive hate throw you off, this is indeed an amazing hot hatch.

  • Car(s): 2020 Honda Civic Type R
  • Location: Angeles National Forest, CA
  • Photog: Peter Nelson (IG + Twitter: @16vPete)
  • Camera: Canon 6D, EF 50mm 1.8 AF

Early last fall I got to spend a whole week with the Honda Civic Type R, and like many, I was genuinely impressed by it. If you’re like me, where you’re automatically a bit suspicious of things that are immensely hyped-up, my knee-jerk thought was “eh, how good could it actually be?” This mildly-pretentious gut feeling has proved itself correct in the past with things like movies, music, and TV series.

But all it took was an hour or so behind the wheel of the CTR for me to realize that indeed, the hype was thoroughly justified. And also a mild sense of pride in modern automotive technology that so many people of all different kinds of performance driving backgrounds were thoroughly stoked on this front-wheel drive, 300-horsepower hot hatch.

Then, after many miles up in the fun canyon roads north of Los Angeles later that week, I got into the mindset of really wanting one for myself. The jury’s still out if that will ever happen; I’ve been very turned off by all the reports of dealer-added markup.

But now there’s a new one coming out soon. Apparently, it will be very much like the current one, so that’s cool. Though I hear the styling will be a bit more reserved, and far, far less boy racer than the last. I personally didn’t mind the wild wings of this car – in fact, I’ll miss its ridiculousness when the next CTR comes out I think.

Though, hopefully a new model deflates markups on the current car somewhat.