Alex Kersten profile picture Alex Kersten 16 days ago 52
Blog

I'm Sick Of 'Explaining' The Honda Civic Type R's Aero

I've been driving our FK8 Type R longtermer for just over a month, and there's one thing about it that annoys the hell out of me!

Remind me later
Honda - I'm Sick Of 'Explaining' The Honda Civic Type R's Aero - Blog

The Honda Civic Type R is mega. It’s packing 316bhp, possesses pin-point driving dynamics thanks to a mechanical limited-slip diff, dual axis strut front and fat tyres, and is the only car in its class whose aero package provides negative lift - pretty cool, huh?

And while the FK8 is blessed with negative lift, it’s exactly this which is also its curse. And that’s because anyone I’ve ever shown the car to has said the same thing: “It looks like you drove it through Halfords, mate!” Sigh.

Negative lift was increased over the FK8's predecessor, the FK2, but rivals like the Megane RS Trophy do without big wings
Negative lift was increased over the FK8's predecessor, the FK2, but rivals like the Megane RS Trophy do without big wings

Yes, the FK8’s big wing, swollen arches and vortex generators might look like an afterthought to the plebeian eye (and Honda seem to have recognised the ‘issue’ judging by this smaller-winged prototype), but as is now my default answer “it’s all there for a reason.”

Straight after saying this, there’s always an awkward pause like the one you’d get when you tell a friend that you accidentally slept with their sister, so to avoid confrontation I like to follow up with “fun fact: the Type R is the only car in its class that produces negative lift!”

Unfortunately for me, though, the eyes of the person I’m talking to have glazed over by the time I’ve delivered the killer ‘negative lift’ line, meaning that no matter how hard I try, the Type R will always look stupid to them.

Honda - I'm Sick Of 'Explaining' The Honda Civic Type R's Aero - Blog

Which is a shame, because I really love the way it looks, I enjoy the attention it gets, and I appreciate being able to load the back up with two bikes and a dog without it breaking a sweat. The 20-inch wheels are, for my liking, too big, resulting in a ride that’s always been on the harsh side of firm.

That said, though, it’s a decent daily, a wicked track car and always a talking point. I like it so much, in fact, I even spent hours cleaning it a few weeks back, which is the first time I’ve ever cleaned a press car by hand.

So go on, then: does the negative lift excuse get a thumbs up or thumbs down from you?