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Scalextric Honda Civic Type-R FK8 Preview
#1

       

Scalextric BTCC fans were delighted to see another new model added to the range in this year's catalogue - the Honda Civic FK8 will appear in two 2021 BTCC liveries. Although not expected until the autumn, the Scalextric team kindly loaned me an early decorated sample to have a look at and share my impressions here at SlotRacer Online. It's important to point out that the car shown here is not the finished version. Revisions to the mould and decoration usually take place at this point in the manufacturing process - and the Civic is unlikely to be any different. This is a work in progress, but it definitely looks promising...

       

The Civic Type-R FK8 road car is the performance version of the tenth generation Civic, first released in 2017. A Honda-powered BTCC-spec racer was ready for the 2018 season, being run by Team Dynamic Motorsports (aka Halfords Yuasa Racing) for veteran Matt Neal and rookie Dan Cammish. The new car has proved competitive - Cammish in the hunt for the championship in 2019 and 2020 and Josh Cook's BTC Racing Civic being a contender in 2021...

       

Three-time champion Gordon Shedden returned to the BTCC in 2021 after a three-year break. Despite a below-par start to the season, the Scot was soon back on form with nine podiums during the year. He had to wait until Donington in October before his first win - converting pole position to a race one victory...



Shedden followed that up with his 50th BTCC win in race two - thanks to a penalty awarded to Tom Ingram for a 'bump-and-run' when he passed Shedden for the lead. The livery carried by Shedden and team mate Dan Rowbottom at Donington is slightly different from the Scalextric model, which is the early season car...

       

Scalextric seem to have captured the shape very nicely - and there's plenty of detail in the tooling, whilst also looking robust enough for some on-track BTCC action. It's possible the colour on my images isn't perfect, but the Cataclean logos on the doors could be more vivid - and the grey stripes on front quarter panels and onto the bonnet look a little light to me. It's that sort of detail that usually gets cleared up before the model is signed-off for production.

Underneath, the in-line layout is identical to previous BTCC models...

         

There's a nice Honda 'H' cut-out over the motor and a welcome return to the standard 16mm wheels. At the front, the tyres just touch the surface of my set-up plate. Loosening the body screws gets some body float - sandpapering the chassis sides and removing various tabs should create a very satisfying rattle.

And here are some vital statistics of the new car vs the previous (FK2) Civic model...

  • Wheelbase: 83mm - vs 82mm
  • Rear track: 59mm - vs 58mm
  • Length: 143mm - vs 131mm
  • Height: 42mm - vs 42mm
The main difference is the length - also a longer than the BMW 125i (136mm), but not as long as the BMW 330i (148mm), VW (150mm) or MG6 (146mm).

I'll compare track performance with the 'old' Civic in the next post...
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#2

Let's get the new Civic on my Jadlam SL6 test track - 35-feet long, lots of Radius 2 corners, plus a four-and-a-half foot straight... a typical 8x4 home track...

       

With the magnet still in place, the car was fun to drive. The grip wasn't all magnetic - so none of that all-or-nothing feel and being launched into the scenery. When the rear stepped out, it did so in a predictable way and was always quite easy to catch before de-slotting. Just what I want from a magnet car. In terms of performance, 25 laps in two minutes and a best of 4:46 seconds from a totally stock, out-of-the-box car is absolutely on the money. Last year's BMW 330i managed 26 laps and 4.36 seconds on the same track about 12 months ago.

I removed the magnet - which came out without any fuss - and added a pair of NSR Supergrips to the rear wheels and 1.5g of weight in front of the motor. This is the easiest way to get a comparison with other similar non-mag cars - especially as I was handing the car back and couldn't mess with the stock tyres. The car remained fun to drive on the tight and twisty layout. When I pushed the car hard, the back stepped out rather than any tipping going on. I could push the car surprisingly hard - the handling was stable and predictable...

       

With the ARC app timing 2-minutes, I immediately banged in two 22-lap runs with fastest laps of 5:32 and 5:25 seconds - definitely in amongst the better non-mag Scalextric cars on that layout. How did it match up against my WHO/digital Civic Type-R (FK2)?

       

The answer surprised me - the new car was a better drive. Yes, my race car is set up for longer layouts, has no ballast and is fitted with Slot.it P6 tyres on the rear and zero grips on the front. It wasn't exactly a like-for-like comparison. A first run saw 20 laps and a best of 5:63 seconds. More practice and a second timed run improved things to 22 laps and a best of 5:30 seconds. That's close to the new car, but it took some effort - and the new car was simply easier to drive.

Of course, we'll have to see if that handling and performance scales up to long, flowing club layouts... but the home-track test is certainly encouraging. I'll stick with the 'old' Civic for this season, but - if the new car is available in time - I fancy preparing an FK8 for some testing at the final race in December. Do I switch to the Halfords livery or stay with the grey and pink of BTC Racing? These are the two cars scheduled for release in the autumn...

   
C4317 Honda Civic Type R - BTCC 2021 - Jade Edwards

   
C4297 Honda Civic Type R - BTCC 2021 - Gordon Shedden

Hmm... I've got a few months to make up my mind.

A big thanks to the Scalextric team for loaning me the sample car.
[+] 7 members Like woodcote's post
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#3

Certainly looks good  Thumbup

Life is like a box of Slot cars... Cool Drinkingcheers
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#4

look fabulous  Cool
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#5

I'm currently trying to work some magic on my Jake Hill Civic, I'm hoping to get similar results to my Andy Priaulx BMW, currently unbeaten in our production class

Bernie, racing since 1969 Wavegreen
[+] 1 member Likes Qman's post
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