As Honda announces its latest Civic Type R, we take a look and compare it with one of its closest rivals – the Ford Focus RS.
Power coming from a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine for the Honda, which produces 316bhp and a 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine for the Ford, producing 345bhp.
The Civic Type R looks fantastic. With its huge rear wing and aggressive stance, it looks like it is 'ready to race' before its bright red starter button has been pushed.
It also claims a record lap of the Nurburgring Nordschleife for a hot hatch, setting a blistering time of seven minutes and 43 seconds.
The Focus RS has been around for a few years now, but doesn't fail to impress, especially if finished in the lurid Nitrous Blue.
The Ford is more powerful than the Honda thanks to a slightly larger 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine. And thanks to an all-wheel-drive system, it also boasts 470Nm of torque – that's 70 more than the Honda – meaning it has better acceleration.
Both cars aren't just super quick hot hatches either - both have five very usable seats and a large boot, so are in fact everyday usable and family friendly.
So which one is the better buy then? Well it depends on your preference and also what sort of styling you prefer. Both are hot hatches that have oodles of performance, but are completely different in their approach.
The Honda offers aggressive, modern styling mixed with an interior that looks very contemporary and driver focussed, whilst the Ford looks almost understated unless in a garish colour.
The latter's interior feels bland and doesn't have the wow factor or quality feel that similar cars such as the BMW M140i offer. If you didn't know you were in an RS you could be in any other Focus on the road.
The Honda also has a few niggles, chiefly having a touch of the boy racer image about it.
Those four enormous exhausts and that chunky bodykit make it stand out a mile, meaning this isn't a car for those who don't like to draw attention.
Choosing between them is very difficult as they both are great cars that stack up incredibly well compared to their German rivals such as the VW Golf R or Audi S3.
Whatever you're looking for in a hot hatch, neither of these cars will disappoint and your personal preference will make the decision for you.
By Aidan Rennie-Jones