Skip advert
Advertisement

Track Battle: Honda Civic Type R vs BMW M3 and Audi RS3

The Honda Civic Type R has beaten the hot hatch elite, now it takes on some more serious rivals...

We’ve been blown away by the performance of the new Honda Civic Type R. It’s already beaten a SEAT Leon Cupra and Renault Sport Megane Trophy round our test track at Llandow in South Wales. And that got us thinking. Let’s just say you want a practical performance car with four doors and a reasonable boot, but one with even more power than the 306bhp Honda Civic Type R. Just how much extra would you have to pay and how much more performance would your extra dosh get you?

Advertisement - Article continues below

Well for £10,000 more than the £30,000 Honda, the Audi RS3 Sportback has a 2.5-litre five-cylinder turbo with 361bhp – which is a 55bhp improvement over what you get from the 2.0-litre four-cylincer turbo in the Type R. However, if you were to pay a further £6,000 you could have a BMW M3. Then you get a 3.0-litre twin turbo engine developing 425bhp, which is 64bhp over the Audi and 119bhp more than the Honda Civic Type R.  

Unless you're playing top trumps, however, performance stats don’t matter all that much. How the cars perform out in the real world is what really matters. So we took a BMW M3 and an Audi RS3 Sportback to the exact same track where we had previously timed the Civic Type R to see just how their power advantages translate into improved lap times.

This test would allow us to compare three different ways of putting power down to the ground: front wheel-drive, all wheel-drive and rear wheel-drive. Fortunately, on the day of our test the conditions were exactly the same as when we timed the Honda and so this meant we would have a fair comparison. However, what actually happened came as quite a shock to us all. We won’t give the game away here: you’ll have to watch the video for the full result. But suffice to say, the outcome won’t be quite what you are expecting…

Read a full review of the Honda Civic Type R here...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Best cheap hot hatchbacks
Best cheap hot hatches - four way header image
Best cars & vans

Best cheap hot hatchbacks

Need an affordable car which delivers on both power and practicality? These cheap hot hatches fit the bill
2 Apr 2024
Best track day cars to buy 2024
Best track day cars - header image
Best cars & vans

Best track day cars to buy 2024

Whether you're looking to shave tenths off your lap time or simply want to have fun on track, these are some of the UK's best track cars
4 Mar 2024
Best new car deals 2024
Best new car deals - header image
Best cars & vans

Best new car deals 2024

Thinking of buying a new car? These are some of the best new car deals on the market right now…
26 Jan 2024
Top 10 best hot hatchbacks to buy 2024
Best hot hatchbacks - header image
Best cars & vans

Top 10 best hot hatchbacks to buy 2024

The best hot hatches offer giant-killing performance and a gripping drive, all wrapped in a user-friendly package
25 Jan 2024

Most Popular

New BMW 3 Series drops diesel as part of 2024 facelift
BMW 3 Series Facelift front 3/4
News

New BMW 3 Series drops diesel as part of 2024 facelift

The facelifted BMW 3 Series saloon and Touring estate look towards an electrified future, with the plug-in hybrid now getting a 63-mile EV range
29 May 2024
New Porsche 911 revealed and it's got hybrid power
Porsche 911 GTS - front
News

New Porsche 911 revealed and it's got hybrid power

Porsche’s mid-generation 992.2 update introduces a hybrid powertrain for the first time
28 May 2024
New Audi RS 4 Avant Edition 25 offers retro colour scheme and hardcore suspension
New Audi RS 4 Avant Edition 25 - front
News

New Audi RS 4 Avant Edition 25 offers retro colour scheme and hardcore suspension

Audi is saying goodbye to the RS 4 as we know it by honouring the original from 2001 with the RS 4 Edition 25 special
28 May 2024