In these turbocharged times, squeezing extra power from engines is easier than ever. Connect a laptop to your engine's computer, load a preprogrammed tune, and close your hood on more horsepower than before. With the size of the Honda enthusiast community, it was only a matter of time before even the company's pedestrian economy engines received retunes from performance tuning companies like Hondata. The company has retuned base model Civics to eclipse the Civic Si's power output, and even applied its magic to the Accord, bringing its power levels to near that of the Civic Type R.
Now, Hondata has cast its spell upon the Civic Type R itself, powering up its K20C1 turbocharged 2.0-liter four-pot. For $695 of your dollars, and a tank of 91 octane fuel, the company will unlock an additional 33 horsepower, and 39 pound-feet of torque, according to Automobile. This brings the Nurburgring's front-wheel-drive champion up from 306 to 339 horsepower, and torque follows, soaring from 295 pound-feet to 334.
Should you know of a gas station that carries 93 octane, however, the Hondata tune will provide further power still, adding 13 horsepower and 33 pound-feet of torque, in addition to the gains brought by the tune for 91 octane performance. This brings maximum power to 352 horsepower and 367 pound-feet of torque, enough to worry owners of the Ford Focus RS, which will cease production this Friday leaving the Type R almost uncontested in the hot hatch market in the United States.
The Hyundai Veloster N, arriving later this year with 275 horsepower, comes up short of the Honda's power output, but with a little extra boost squeezed into its cylinders and a possible dual-clutch transmission, it may yet make a worthy rival to the Civic Type R. We'll know later this year, when the two share the battlegrounds that are the showroom and the racetrack.