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2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough

We're the first to admit that hot hatchbacks aren't cut from the same cloth. But with the Ford Focus RS and Honda Civic Type R, you expect the same raw, vicious nature. Yet in the first review to pit them against each other, the Japanese contender is found wanting.
2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough 5 photos
2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough2018 Honda Civic Type R vs. Focus RS Review: One of Them Isn't Fun Enough
We really didn't expect that. Honda knew what it didn't get right with the last Civic Type R and fixed a great deal. It made the suspension much more livable, which is great, added, even more, practicality and tweaked the looks. But it seems that in the pursuit of the ultimate lap times, it once again forgot about the X-factor.

We're reading from the same page as Carfection editor Drew Stearne. At their core, hot hatchbacks aren't supposed to be about boastful YouTube vlogs about "Bought an A45 AMG at 18! But how?" They are daily drivers that occasionally make you smile.

And because of congestion and stricter laws, those times are few and far between. As an everyday car, the 2018 Civic Type R has a much better suspension than its predecessor. It also boasts keen yet admittedly polarizing styling. We'd argue that Drew is wrong about the RS looking too ordinary, but his point about the seating position is a valid one.

Brushing aside the fastest car of its type in the world as "not fun enough" is a difficult thing to do. In this review, it comes down to that terror when the car starts tugging on the wheel under hard acceleration. The Type R doesn't do that. But we think the Focus has something else not talked about here: drift mode.

Lots of other hot hatchbacks have AWD, but this is the only one that can dump power at the back. It's like buying a Porsche Cayman and a Toyota Camry wrapped into one car. It's just a shame they put such an amazing powertrain into one of the oldest hatchbacks on the market.

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