Honda is to export its British-built Civic Type R to Japan from next year, the automaker announced on Thursday.

The three-door 'hot hatchback', manufactured at the automaker's plant in Swindon, recently reopened after a four-month inventory-reducing break, will go on sale in Japan during 2010.

The model will be called the Type R Euro in Japan to distinguish it from the locally-made four-door Type R sedan already sold there. Honda said the UK hatch would be sold "in limited numbers".

Japan is the third country to take the UK Type R after Australia and South Africa. The UK plant is the only Honda factory building three- and five-door Civic hatchbacks; plants in Japan, Thailand, the US, Canada and elsewhere make only the sedan versions.

Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) also builds the CR-V SUV for Europe and is gearing up for output of the Jazz (Fit) for Europe from next autumn.

Honda Japan also imported the previous generation Swindon-built Civic Type-R in 2001.