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Thirty-one miles separate home from work, and depending on the hour, that drive can last between 40 minutes and 2 horrific hours in either direction. That’s a lot of me time, and a lot seat time. Besides being great for back roads, the 2018 Honda Civic Type R’s front seats are spectacularly comfortable for boring drives, too—no sore bums here.

For entertainment, I bounce around among various SiriusXM stations. It required about 10 concerted minutes to store those presets because the touchscreen tune button doesn’t have direct input. Either tap, tap, tap that tune button 90 times to go from 28 to 118, or go to the program guide and scroll, scroll, scroll, select, then go to the preset screen to save and repeat. This is the second most frustrating part of the head unit, right behind not having a volume knob (one of the last remaining Hondas to do so). I happily discovered that the Type R’s “Display Audio” system buffers/stores live playback on satellite radio. Neat-o! When I switch stations, I can skip songs or commercials, but I can’t for the life of me determine the circumstances that enable this. Sometimes, there are a few minutes to play with; other times a half-hour. The owner’s manual is a byzantine tome with some parts printed in a font the same size as the date on a dime. Honestly, see the photo.

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Fuel Sipper?

After the Type R’s first track test, the self-reported fuel economy was a lowly 7.4 mpg. But because the Type-R’s engine reaches its peak torque plateau (295 lb-ft) at a mere 2,500 rpm, short-shifting in traffic doesn’t bog the engine and it sips considerably less fuel. I regularly earn 25 to 26 mpg in bumper-to-bumper and free-flowing traffic and over 30 mpg while using the cruise control on the highway. That’s nearly spot on with the EPA’s 28-mpg highway and 25-mpg combined figures. We’ll update you when we get our Real MPG numbers back from the lab.

Occasional outbursts of fun have kept our running average at 22 mpg. One of those times was driving home from our SUV of the Year competition. Rather than sitting in L.A. traffic, I chose Angeles Forest and Angeles Crest Highways. What an absolute joy I’ll share next time.

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In terms of packaging and UX, our Civic Type R is nearly perfect, with the exception of the head unit UI.

More on our long-term Civic Type R here:

2018 Honda Civic Type R
BASE PRICE $35,595
VEHICLE LAYOUT Front-engine, FWD, 4-pass, 4-door hatchback
ENGINE 2.0L/306-hp/295-lb-ft turbo DOHC 16-valve I-4
TRANSMISSION 6-speed manual
CURB WEIGHT (F/R DIST) 3,104 lb (62/38%)
WHEELBASE 106.3 in
LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT 179.4 x 73.9 56.5 in
0-60 MPH 5.2 sec
QUARTER MILE 13.6 sec @ 104.7 mph
BRAKING, 60-0 MPH 100 ft
MT FIGURE EIGHT 24.5 sec @ 0.78 g (avg)
REAL MPG, CITY/HWY/COMB Not yet tested
ENERGY CONS, CITY/HWY 153/120 kW-hrs/100 miles
CO2 EMISSIONS, COMB 0.80 lb/mile

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