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A Few Minutes With the 2018 Honda Civic Type R’s Lead Exterior Designer

Automobile logo Automobile 9/30/2016 Mike Floyd

Like a hyperactive kid just before Christmas, we've been not-so-patiently waiting, and waiting, for the latest and greatest Honda Civic Type R to finally get to America. Rolling on an all-new platform and reportedly powered by a 2.0-liter turbo with as much as 340 horsepower mated to a six-speed manual, when it arrives here next spring the 2018 Honda Civic Type R promises to be one of the hottest hatches we've ever experienced.

At the 2016 Paris auto show, Honda showcased a super shiny, aluminum-look wrapped Type Rprototype. Honda isn't quite ready to give up the goods on the Type R's powertrain and other details, but it did give us a few minutes on its Paris show stand with Daisuke Tsutamori, the lead exterior designer for the car, where he shared some of his thoughts about his latest creation. And by the way, he loves America!

2018 Honda Civic Type R front three quarter 01© Provided by Automobile 2018 Honda Civic Type R front three quarter 01

Here's what he told us:

"Every feature of the exterior design of the car has a meaning, and all of the car's features are functional." We're picking up what you're laying down, Daisuke. All those vents and ground effects and strakes work and stuff.

"One of the things I'm really proud of is the front view, compared to the hatchback, this is much wider, and has special features for the Type R for the sake of driving performance." With its shallow hood scoop, upright grille dominated by a large red H, trapezoidal lower air intakes, and a tasty front splitter, we'd be pretty proud, too.

"When you look at the three quarter view of the rear, that's what I really like. It should look really exciting when you are overtaking." It's going to be plenty exciting alright when we blow past other drivers on the track and the open road.

"The wing represents functional beauty and in this case the design follows the function. We put it through the wind tunnel test and based on the measurements we designed it this way. The result is the ultimate form of the wing." From our non-functional, non-designer perspective, it also looks pretty bad ass—that is if you're into the wing thing.

"You might say [the production model] will look like this." We can get behind that. Nice work, Daisuke and company. And oh yeah, we love Japan!


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