Honda Civic Debuts Tomorrow as Indy Series Safety Car

Honda Motor Co. says it reached an agreement under which its redesigned 2012 Civic Si coupe will be the official safety car for the Izod IndyCar Series starting with tomorrow’s race in Toronto.

The car maker says the new ninth-generation Civic Si coupe was worked over by its Honda Performance Development racing unit to make it track-ready and able to keep up with the demands of safety-car duties. The safety car marshals and paces the field of competitors before the green flag falls. When collisions or other emergencies happen on the track, the safety car is used to get the field back to together for restarts.

Technicians at HPD made several modifications from installing special racing seats, five-point safety harnesses, high-performance brakes and an aerodynamic body kit. It also has a number of purely cosmetic upgrades including exterior graphics. Johnny Rutherford, a three-time Indianapolis 500 winner, is slated to drive the safety car during the Izod series.

The Civic Si was unveiled in April at the New York International Auto Show, the 2012 Honda Civic features more streamlined exterior design that Honda calls "mono-form." The Si has a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 201 horsepower and is the largest engine to be factory-installed in a Civic.

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