Production-Spec Honda Civic Type R Spotted on California Highway

Honda's 306-horsepower hot hatch has reached American shores at long last.

When the new Honda Civic Type R arrived in production spec at the Geneva Motor Show last month, word was it would hit U.S. shores by late spring. Now, when car companies use that sort of nebulous terminology, it can often mean we won’t see the car in showrooms until the Fourth of July is about a fortnight away. But in this case, it seems Honda might have actually meant the car will arrive before school gets out…considering a ready-for-prime-time 2017 Honda Civic Type R was caught in California apparently just this past weekend. 

The YouTube video, time-stamped to April 9th and posted to Reddit’s /r/cars on Monday morning, shows a black, apparently-production-spec Civic Type R wearing manufacturer license plates. As the video starts, the car is caught idling in a parking lot next to a two-lane road; moments later, it pulls onto the road and zips away, the driver throwing a brief bit of unspoken shade at the cameraman before disappearing with a departure that shows off the car’s 295 pound-feet of torque more than the raspy rev of the turbocharged VTEC near the top end

Based on the road sign at the end of the video—you can make out what appear to be distance figures describing the mileage to “Big Pines,” “Buckhorn,” and “Wrightwood”—this Civic Type R seems to have been caught somewhere in the vicinity of the Angeles National Forest north of L.A. Considering Honda’s North America headquarters lie about 60 miles to the south in Torrance, CA, it seems altogether possible that some Honda higher-up borrowed the car for the weekend in order to familiarize himself with it.

So if we happen to see that face at the Honda booth during the New York Auto Show this week, we’ll be sure to ask him how it drives. 

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