Honda Civic Type R and Ford Focus ST battle it out for ultimate front-wheel drive sports car title
Sports cars used to be measured by their power alone. With so many improvements made to various design elements, a specification for an FWD sports car must be made. Plus, with aggressive styling, manual gearboxes and spoilers, the Honda Civic Type-R and Ford Focus ST are, without a doubt, sports cars in the most basic way.
The Focus ST and Type-R are top hatchback sports cars. Each hides a powerful turbocharged engine and fast lap times, leaving no doubt that these two hatchbacks need a proper comparison. The two FWD heavyweights go head to head, and only one will win the ultimate FWD sports car title.
9 Power and torque
The Civic Type-R is one of the fastest JDM cars on the market; what is more incredible, this is one of the fastest cars available from any manufacturer! The Type-R is powered by a 2.0L four-cylinder that produces 306 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. This refined engine can push the Civic top to a top speed of 169 mph!
The Focus ST also uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder, but can only develop 252 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque. Although the ST provides a manual transmission, the top speed is slower than the Type-R at just 152 mph.
8 Gas yield
What good is a fast car if it costs a fortune to refuel? The Civic Type-R manages a city rating of 22 mpg and a high highway of 28 mpg. The top-of-the-line Civic averages 25 mpg combined, making it higher than most other sports cars!
On the flip side, the Focus achieves the same 22 mpg in the city and peaks at 30 mpg on the highway. Those numbers add up to 25 mpg, just like the Civic Type-R. Compared together, the Civic and Focus offer similar mpg counts.
seven Interior features
Honda makes sure you are on top. With push-button start, leather stitching with Type-R logo. Plus, touchscreen infotainment is standard, as are heated seats and sunroof. Plus, being a hatchback has its perks, as the Civic Type-R has plenty of cargo space, especially with the seats down.
The Ford Focus ST is a step up from the standard Focus lineup. With stitched leather steering wheel, touchscreen infotainment system and heated seats. In addition, the ST offers a sunroof, but the cargo space is smaller than that of the Type-R.
6 Exterior styling
The Type-R is clearly more aggressive. The fender is bigger, the red trim and crest really sets the Type-R apart from the rest of the Civic lineup. Additionally, the Type-R sports a functional hood scoop that Honda says allows the engine to purge heat.
While Ford has improved the styling of the Focus ST, it is not as aggressive as the RS and places itself firmly behind the Type-R. Ford supplies a lip to the ST; it’s much more tame than the RS or the Type-R.
The Type-R is the most expensive model, starting at $ 37,895 for new models. Although the new is the more expensive route, used models may costs less than $ 30,000. Not bad for a sports car with a top speed of 169 mph!
Focus ST can’t be new, but used models can get expensive less than $ 20,000 which makes it a much more affordable option. The discount from the Type-R could lower the power reduction as a priority, especially if mods are on the table!
4 Lap time
Sports cars are often talked about being refined at the Nürburgring, and of course, lower times mean faster cars. The Honda Civic Type-R holds the front-wheel drive record at 7 minutes 43.8 seconds, unbelievable considering that many RWD sports cars aren’t that fast!
The time spent on the Nürburgring can say a lot about a car’s capabilities. The Focus St has a time of 8:39, which is by no means a slow time. This hot hatch has capabilities in the corners that help it save valuable time.
3 After-sales assistance
After-sales support can distinguish between a bland, unchangeable commuter and the perfect tuning machine. Fortunately, generous after-sales support is available for every vehicle.
While various mods exist to unlock power and exterior aesthetics, the Civic Type-R is the best platform for modules. Being a Civic has its perks, as the Type-R has a plethora of options that improve everything from speed to brakes and even suspension and body kits!
Honda’s reintroduction of the Civic Type-R in 2015 reduced enthusiasm to a line that critics said had lost its sporty appeal. With a refresh in 2017 and a potential refresh in 2022, the Civic Type-R is here to stay.
Ford slain all of their sedans, only the surviving Ford Mustang as the only non-SUV or truck. The latest model year for the Ford Focus ST is 2018, and having been introduced for the 2013 model year, the service life as a hot hatch was quite short.
1 The ultimate front-wheel drive sports car
Compared to the Civic Type-R, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better front-wheel drive sports car. The Focus ST is a formidable opponent but cannot face the capabilities of the Type-R. Additionally, the Type-R is still in production, leaving the canceled Focus ST firmly in the used market.
While the Honda Civic Type-R is the quintessential ultimate FWD sports car, the Focus ST is a worthy contender.
Hot hatches are a mainstay on and off the trail. Some are hot, some are not!
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