2023 Honda Civic Type R vs. 2023 Subaru BRZ: Hot Hatch or Cool Coupe?

Civic Type R vs. Subaru BRZ comparison highlights:

  • The 2023 Civic Type R will likely cost $11,000-$12,000 more than a new Subaru BRZ.
  • The Subaru BRZ will be slower and less powerful than the all-new Civic Type R.
  • The 2023 Civic Type R is all-new and redesigned—the BRZ was completely redesigned for the 2022 model year (MY).

The Civic Type R is all-new for 2023; the Subaru BRZ saw a full redesign last year. That brings big changes for both. The BRZ coupe is one of the best first sports cars you can buy, but the Civic Type R is one of the best sporty hatchbacks you can buy. 

How do you choose between these two fantastic options? There are some important factors to consider.

2023 Civic Type R2023 Subaru BRZ
Price RangeEstimated $39,000-$40,000+$28,595-$32,795
Engine Options2.0L turbo four-cylinder2.4L four-cylinder engine
Horsepower 306+ hp (unconfirmed)228 hp
Torque295+ lb-ft (unconfirmed)184 lb-ft
TransmissionManual transmission6-sp manual / 6-sp automatic
MPG RatingTBD 21 city / 30 hwy
Body styleHatchbackCoupe
Curb weightN/A2,815-2,881 lbs
IIHS Safety RatingTBD TBD
NHTSA Safety RatingTBD TBD

2023 Honda Civic Type R vs. 2023 Subaru BRZ: differences and similarities

There are more differences than similarities between the 2023 Type R and the 2023 Subaru BRZ, even though both attract a similar audience. 

The Civic Type R is a hatchback/liftback body style with five doors and front-wheel drive. The Subaru BRZ is a two-door coupe that comes in rear-wheel drive. The Civic comes loaded with a powerful turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which will likely offer more than its usual 306 horsepower for 2023. The BRZ arrives with a non-turbocharged four-cylinder BOXER engine. It makes only 228 horsepower, but it is a smaller, lighter car.

The 2023 Civic Type R is different in almost every way from the twins, the Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86. But there’s something they all share: a sports-car soul.

RELATED: 2023 Honda Civic Type R vs. 2021 Subaru WRX STI: New Hatch or Classic Sedan?

The all-new 2023 Type R will cost more than the BRZ

Car and Driver estimates that the 2023 Civic Type R will cost about $39,000-$40,000 to start. Depending on how many changes come to the all-new hatchback, and how many features come standard, that starting price may be even higher. The 2023 Subaru BRZ Premium costs just $27,995, and comes loaded with a ton of features.

Even the fully loaded BRZ Limited coupe costs around $33,000 when equipped with all of the good stuff. That’s $6,000-$8,000 less than the base 2023 Type R is likely to cost, even without any additional packages or features. 

We’re waiting on official pricing and specs for the 2023 Civic Type R.

Honda Civic Type R vs. Subaru BRZ 0-60 time

  • 2023 Civic Type R: estimated 0-60 in  
  • 2023 Subaru BRZ: 0-60 in 5.4 seconds 

Car and Driver lists the 2022 BRZ’s time as a zippy 5.4 seconds, which should be equal to the 2023’s time with no powertrain changes. That’s nearly half a second slower than the expected 5.0 seconds from the fastest Honda Civic. This year’s 2023 Civic Type R is expected to be even quicker than its predecessor, so that 0-60 time may be even faster. In a competition of pure speed, the Type R hatchback wins easily.

RELATED: 2023 Honda Civic Type R vs. 2022 Civic Si: Which Classic Honda Wins?

Civic Type R vs. Subaru BRZ: The BRZ for beginners, the Civic for sport

It’s time to choose the best of these two well-matched competitors. Both of these compact sports cars are great options for powerful performance under $50,000. After 50 years of Civic development, it seems like Honda has really nailed the recipe. But, the Subaru BRZ coupe is no slouch. It offers power and performance in an affordable, tiny package.

The Subaru BRZ is the better choice for those looking for an entry-level sports car that’s fun to drive and won’t break the bank. The Honda Civic Type R is the better choice for those who want to up the power.

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