Watch the latest Civic Type R hit the track in Japan
Tsuchiya seems to fight understeer from the moment he hits the first corner of the very tight Nikko Circuit, and it doesn't appear to let up over his couple of laps. Unfortunately, this clip doesn't have English subtitles, so we can only draw conclusions from Tsuchiya's driving – unless you understand Japanese.
There could be a few explanations for the Civic Type R's performance in this video. There's still snow on the ground, so the performance tires could have trouble with grip in the cold. The track's layout also doesn't provide much opportunity to open the throttle. The tight corners really tax a vehicle's handling, and the hot hatch's front-wheel drive lap record at the Nürburgring suggests the Type R might prefer a quicker track. We also remarked on understeer during our First Drive, but it wasn't this bad.
If you're unfamiliar with Best Motoring and Tsuchiya, you're missing out. The show puts racing drivers into mostly Japanese performance cars and lets them offer their driving impressions. Tsuchiya is the star and quite an accomplished racer, one of the drivers who took a class win in a Honda NSX in the 1995 24 Hours of Le Mans. If you've missed out on these clips, prepare to waste a weekend watching the series on its YouTube channel.
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