The 2023 Honda Civic Type R made its first public US appearance at the Honda Indy 200, running as the lead vehicle at the start of the race.

Along with leading the pack, the new Type R ran a series of hot laps around the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. While these demonstrations were done in front of a large crowd, the Type R was still wrapped in the red, white and black camouflage.

The vehicle was driven by Chad Gilsinger, vehicle dynamics engineer from Honda’s North American Auto Development Center in Ohio. According to Honda, the 2023 Type R will be the “best performing Civic Type R ever when it goes on sale later this year;” and we believe it, as the hot hatch just set a new track record front front-wheel drive cars at Suzuka Circuit, completing the 3.6-mile figure-8 in 2 minutes and 23.120 seconds. That beat out the previous record set by the 2021 Honda Civic Type R Limited Edition by nearly one second.

Unfortunately, we have yet to receive an uncamo-ed look at the new Type R and the exact powertrain details are yet to be disclosed. The previous Type R used a 2.0-liter inline-four engine, turbocharged to the tune of 306-horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. It was outfitted with additional cooling and only available with a six-speed manual transmission. And looks? It may have been as “hot hatch” as you could get.

We are eagerly awaiting the return of the Type R and you can catch all the latest details here on MotorWeek!