Honda has started the track testing of its Civic WTCC race car on July 31, 2012 and August 1, 2012, at the Vallelunga circuit, near Rome, Italy. The track testing followed the race car’s ‘shakedown' on July 27 at Vairano circuit near the J.A.S. Motorsport factory in Milan. Honda will continue the track testing of the Civic WTCC throughout the year, which would be led by 2009 WTCC champion Gabriele Tarquini.
Beginning this October, Honda will field a car driven by Tiago Monteiro to three races at the 2012 FIA World Touring Car Championship. Honda plans to fully use all the 2012 testing and race results to further mature the Civic WTCC for full entry in 2013.
Honda has recently unveiled the final exterior of 2012 Civic WTCC race car. Designed by using extensive wind-tunnel testing, the 2012 Civic WTCC race car sports an extended front and rear skirt as well as other aerodynamic elements. All these elements improve the Civic's smooth air flow, creating a coefficient of drag (CD) value that is best in class for a C-sector five-door hatchback.
The Civic WTCC also comes in stylish regalia, which emphasize its lines. Alessandro Mariani, Team Principal of Honda Racing Team JAS, commenting on the start of the Civic WTCC's track test programme, said that seeing the completed race car on the track was “an extremely emotional moment” for the team.
He praised those behind the development of the Civic WTCC for accomplishing “so much” in such a short period of time. He added that the new car and engine have met their expectations, with the initial track testing providing them with feedback and data.