British-built Honda Civic hatchbacks finally go on sale in Australia next month, about 18 months after the current-generation was first launched there as a Japanese-built, sedan-only line.

According to local on-line industry publication GoAuto News, the Australian motoring press at the time “almost indignantly decried the edgy hatchback version’s non-appearance as part of the new range.”

Added the report: “Honda [Australia]’s response generally was that, ‘yes, we would like to see it here too, but unfortunately Australia is not at the top of the world market pecking order and we’ll just have to wait’.”

GoAuto said Honda Australia, having secured the three-door Type-R, is also making no secret of its desire to sell Honda’s five-door hatchback models ‘down under’. Senior director Lindsay Smalley reportedly said the additional models were now expected there “within 18 months” confirming what just-auto has previously learned from Honda insiders in Europe.

The Swindon-built model will be the first Type-R Civic sold in Australia (a sedan version is built in Japan) and will cost from $A39,990 (GBP17,000) compared with GBP17,627 on the road here in the UK.

Honda Australia expects to sell about 100 a month, GoAuto News said.