After what feels like an eternity of teases and secret hot laps, Honda has finally pulled the camouflage off of their 2023 Honda Civic Type R.

Before its official unveil, it was touted as the most powerful and best performing Civic Type R yet and, while we had no reason to doubt Honda’s claim, we’ve eagerly awaited finding out exactly what makes the new Type R live up to such a bold statement.

Under the hood is a more powerful and responsive version of their 2.0-liter inline-four, mated to a clutch kickin’ six-speed manual transmission. It, too, has been revised and updated with a rev matching feature. Exact performance figures are yet to be disclosed, but the most recent version displaced 306 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, so we expect it to breach that ceiling-- and hopefully then some. In fact, Honda is doubling-down on their claims, stating this new Type R to be the “fastest, most powerful Honda-branded vehicle ever offered in the US.”

It is, of course, built upon the 11th generation Civic’s platform, and where previous iterations of this streetwise, yet track-capable hatchback fully embodied the “boy racer” attitude, the newest model tones it down with a more sophisticated approach. It’s wider and lower than its commuter sibling, rocking a redesigned front bumper with a honeycomb sport grille, slightly enlarged fender grilles, an updated rear bumper and diffuser, and resculpted side sills. The most notable change may be the large wing taking off above the rear hatch, whereas something less apparent may be the rear doors, now exclusively wider for the Type R.

From what we can tell, the interior is still very much a liveable cabin with many of the modern amenities we’ve come to expect. The Type R’s red seats are back with suede-like seat material said to reduce body-slippage during high-G driving; the red is carried over into the carpets and various trimmings. A digital instrument panel with Type R-exclusive graphics crafts the driver-centric experience, and the 9-inch infotainment is par for the course for a high grade Civic. Afterall, this is in many ways a top-trim Civic elevated to a much greater performance threshold.

Well, our eagerness to see the Type R is now replaced with an enlightened anticipation to drive the thing. We’re also interested to know how much it’ll retail for, as pricing details are to be withheld until we get closer to its launch this fall. We’ll get our hands on the 2023 Honda Civic Type R soon and bring you along for the ride right here on MotorWeek!

And if you’re still not sure what all the fuss is about or you just need to whet your appetite, check out our Road Test of the 2020 Civic Type R!