Honda may have only just torn the camouflage from its new Civic Type R hot hatch, but it’s quickly becoming time for an all-new range to swing into view.
The Japanese carmaker has used this week’s New York Auto Show to surprise fans with a new concept that previews what it promises will be an “epic” new Civic range.
"The new Civic will be, flat out, the most dynamic, the most technologically advanced and the most refined and stylish Civic we've ever made," Honda America’s John Mendel told media in New York today.
"In every way, this will be an epic Civic."
Shown here in a sleek three-door form that foregoes function in favour of fast and furious looks, the new Civic concept appears to take a leaf from Renault’s three-door Megane in the hunt for a proper coupe shape.
As a concept, this mean green machine wears muscular guards and rolls on large alloy wheels, while the front and rear feature tall bumpers with gaping intakes and vents.
The concept sits on a longer wheelbase and a wider track, and Honda says it is a solid preview of the all-new range that will appear later this year.
There’s technically little about this concept that could not be put into production, although longtime enthusiasts will know that very few of the finest muscular concepts have ever made it showrooms without some significant softening.
We can expect that new CR-V-inspired face to feature on the production model, however, and the long wraparound LED tail-light design could also be a starter.
"Charismatic, connected and athletic, our goal was to create a design that is emotional and sporty yet with a sense of timelessness and simplicity," Honda America designer Guy Melville-Brown said today.
"In this we set out to create a vehicle that goes beyond the superficial and embraces the very philosophy of what a true Civic should be; it's a real game changer."
A new compact platform underpins the new range, developed with a focus on “benchmark levels” of efficiency, dynamics and safety.
Honda’s new Earth Dreams engine range will also feature in the new Civic, including a new 1.5 litre turbocharged and direct-injected VTEC petrol engine matched to a new short-shifting six-speed manual shifter.
Honda says the new Civic line-up will again feature hatch and sedan bodies, along with the coupe option that has long been kept from Australian showrooms - and it is undoubtedly that coupe model that this concept previews.
The new hatch will again be built in the UK, while sedan models will again be built across Honda’s Asian and American plants to suit local markets.
The coupe body, which is not yet confirmed for Australia, will be built in the US.
Importantly, the company has also confirmed that the Type R badge will again appear in this new range, which could be the closest in style to the concept we see here. (Stick a red ‘H’ badge on the nose and we’re done - Ed.)