How The New Honda Civic Type R Avoids Torque Steer

One could look at the 2018 Honda Civic Type R and immediately criticize it for having front-wheel drive, particularly since many of its rivals are all-wheel drive.

However, simply dismissing the Type R based on its front-wheel drive layout would be short-sighted. It still provides incredible driving thrills, performance and with the right driver behind the wheel, could keep up with rear-wheel drive supercars along a mountain road.

Perhaps one of the most remarkable things about the Type R’s front-wheel drive system is its complete lack of torque steer. That’s right, despite the front wheels handling 316 hp, 295 lb-ft of torque, steering and braking, the steering wheel won’t try to break your wrists under heavy acceleration, a trait notorious with many other powerful front-wheel drive vehicles.

In order to avoid torque steer, Honda engineers employed a number of novel solutions, as Engineering Explained reveals.

One of these factors involves a complete redesign of the Type R’s steering and suspension systems compared to a base Civic. By pushing the steering axis closer to the wheel’s centreline, Honda has been able to almost completely eliminate torque steer without scarifying ride comfort.

VIDEO

  • nastinupe

    Watching the wheels skip when the car is taking off is the main reason why this car does not interest me one bit.

    • Matt

      A Porsche 911 (at least pre 991 models) does the same thing. ‘Axle hop’ is not a trait restricted to FWD cars.

      • nastinupe

        I have owned a 997 for 9 years and it has never done that before… ever. The car in my avatar is mine and the only thing that breaks loose is the rear.

      • SteersUright

        Axle hop is common to Mustangs, Camaro’s, Corvettes, CTSV, etc., not sophisticated multilink setups like on a 911, etc. From experience, on a hard launch a 911 (or Cayman/Boxster) will spin their rear tires nice and smoothly.

  • Matt

    Renault had this hub design back in 2004 to help minimize torque-steer on the Megane 225. Ford then used a similar set-up on the Mkll Focus RS.

    Honda is late to the game but sounds like they have perfected it.

    • Eagle By Singer

      Nah, it’s because JDM. That’s why it has all this attention

    • eb110americana

      GM also used a similar setup in the Buicks and Opels called “HiPer Strut.” Ford’s was called “RevoKnuckle” and they all work by decoupling the steering from the suspension articulation.

      • Matt

        That’s interesting because Renault calls their system Hi-Per Strut as well. I’ll have to look into GM’s version.

        • eb110americana

          I couldn’t find any reference to a “Renault Hi-Per Strut,” but I did find “PerfoHub” for Renault. Perhaps that’s what you are thinking of.

  • SteersUright

    Most impressive to me is they offer all this tech and power at $34k. Great job developing this tech, on creating an excellent (though juvenile design) sports hatch, and on a great price.

  • MagicTH

    Great job on the video! It’s a pleasure to listen to somebody who knows what they are talking about (and isn’t trying to be funny when they’re not).

  • MagicTH

    Great job on the video! It’s a pleasure to listen to somebody who knows what they’re talking about (and isn’t trying to be funny when they’re not).

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