The Honda Civic Type R Sport Line Ditches the Ginormous Wing
It's the dressier version of the insaniac hot hatch.
If the Honda Civic Type R's towering rear wing is a little too much for your tastes, we have good news for you, because Honda will sell a more low-key variant of the model that sports a small decklid spoiler. Alas, the brand has no plans to bring the new trim, which wears the Sport Line moniker, to the United States—we have to imagine the massive demand the regular Type R is still fostering here has something to do with that. With sales still soaring and the car transacting at or above MSRP, we'd say there's no need to add a second trim, although it's certainly possible for the future.
That's a shame, too, because we're fans of the Sport Line's more reserved looks, which also include a set of 19-inch wheels and tires in place of the standard Type R's 20s. Thanks to its Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires' softer sidewalls, the Sport Line ought to offer noticeable improvements to the Type R's ride quality with minimal sacrifices made to the model's performance capabilities.
While the Civic Type R Sport Line remains forbidden fruit to us Yanks, the hot hatch's new Limited Edition trim will at least satiate U.S. consumers in search of a Type R with even greater performance. Credit lighter 20-inch wheels that cut 18 pounds in unsprung weight, as well as an additional 28-pound diet that comes courtesy of the Limited Edition's lack of a rear wiper, cargo cover, and rear HVAC ducts, and a reduction in sound-deadening materials. Retuned dampers and recalibrated steering promise additional performance gains for the special model.
As its name implies, the Type R Limited Edition's production is, well, limited to a total of 1,000 units, 600 of which are U.S.-bound. Despite its diet and handling improvements, the Limited Edition carries over the 306-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four and six-speed manual gearbox of the standard Type R. Although the forthcoming Civic Type R Limited Edition certainly brings joy to our performance-loving hearts, the model's attention-grabbing yellow hue and big wing leave us wanting for the subtler Sport Line trim. Come on Honda, let us have our cake and eat it, too.