By on January 28, 2016

2016 Honda Civic EX Exterior

2016 Honda Civic EX

2.0-liter, DOHC I-4, direct injection, CVVT (158 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm; 138 lbs-ft @ 4,200 rpm)

Continuously Variable Transmission

31 city/41 highway/35 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)

37 (Observed, MPG)

Base Price: $19,475*

As Tested: $22,875*

* Prices include $835 destination charge.

Honda received much flogging from the press for the last-generation Civic. The 2012 model was the result of Honda improperly reading the Magic 8-Ball amid the global slowdown. Honda’s decision makers assumed shoppers would be looking for something more modest, perhaps even austere, and changed direction to suit. The competition, assuming shoppers would be looking for greater creature comforts in a smaller package, went the opposite direction and doubled down on luxury features.

The conventional wisdom has been that Honda “stepped in it” with the ninth-generation sedan. Journalists complained about the plastic quality, the styling and … customers paid little attention. The Civic’s sales dipped slightly in 2011 during the changeover, but rapidly rebounded to over 315,000 units a year since. Some would say that Honda’s “emergency refreshes” were the reason for the sales success, but I propose a different answer: the continued sales success of the lesser-than Civic and an increase in sales of “premium” compacts showed there was plenty of room in the segment for both.

Whatever the reality, one thing is for certain: When it came time to design the tenth-generation Civic, Honda had “austere” removed from the company dictionary.

Exterior
Corporate styling is all the rage and the Civic is the latest victim example. The 2016 Civic and Accord borrow a page from Acura’s book and use nearly the same front end. Continuing the game of corporate look-alike, the top-end Civic Touring gains full-LED headlamps like Acura’s sedans and the Accord.

2016 Honda Civic EX Exterior-004

The Civic’s tenth-generation brings us another modern miracle: it’s three inches longer, nearly two inches wider and more powerful versus the outgoing model — yet it’s 60 pounds lighter. This means more room inside than ever before. It also means the Civic is basically the same size as a 1990s Accord.

The Civic is still a sedan and not a Prius-like liftback even if its silhouette is vaguely reminiscent of the Crosstour. Of course, Honda has announced that the European hatchback will arrive on our shores shortly if you prefer a larger rear opening. Hatch lovers rejoice!

2016 Honda Civic EX Interior-008

Interior
The biggest changes come to the Civic’s cabin. Gone is the sea of hard plastic and its odd variety of textures. Instead, a harmonious and mature design is found in the form of a variety of softer surfaces that go from dash to decklid. Honda even ditched the Civic’s funky (but distinctly Civic) two-level instrument cluster and replaced it with a conventionally located cluster dominated by a 5-inch LCD. Perhaps Honda answers prayers after all.

Honda continues to utilize a manually adjustable seat frame in most trims in the Civic. If you want leather upholstery, you’ll have to pony up for the EX-L and its eight-way power driver’s seat. Providing power to the passenger seat requires going up to the Civic Touring, which only offers four-way power adjustment. My back found the lack of adjustable lumbar support vexing since you now find it mid-level trims in many of the Civic’s competitors.

The Civic surprises with more rear seat headroom than it had last year, even with its four-door-coupé styling, putting it towards the top of the pack. Rear seat legroom is the biggest beneficiary of Honda’s taffy pull to an incredible 37.4 inches, just one inch shy of the 2016 Accord. The extra width also shows when seating adults or child seats in the rear. The Civic’s trunk is one of the largest as well with just over 15 cubic feet of widget storage.

2016 Honda Civic EX Infotainment screen

Technology
Honda Sensing is the new name for all of Honda’s latest safety gadgetry brought down from Acura. The package installs a radar sensor in the front grille and camera system to provide full-speed-range adaptive cruise control, pre-collision warning, autonomous braking, road departure mitigation, lane departure warning and lane keeping assist. Nothing in this is groundbreaking as it’s been seen in luxury cars for a while. What is groundbreaking is that we find it all bundled together in a Civic, and not just a top-end model. You can add the package to a base LX model for $1,000 on top of the price of the required automatic transmission. At $20,440, this makes the Civic the least expensive car with this level of active tech.

EX and above models receive Honda’s latest HondaLink infotainment and navigation system with a 7-inch touchscreen LCD integrated into the dashboard in a style similar to BMW’s iDrive display. For a car in this segment, the system is surprisingly well equipped with Bluetooth/USB/iPod integration, smartphone driven apps and Honda’s implementation of Apple Carplay and Android Auto.

2016 Honda Civic Engine 2.0L-002

Drivetrain
Honda fits two new engines to the sedan for 2016, both making more power than last year’s 1.8-liter four. A 2-liter direct-injected four-cylinder engine is standard in LX and EX producing 158 horsepower and 138 lbs-ft of torque.

Also new for 2016 is a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine that surprised a few Honda fans. Tuned to 174 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque, this is one of the more powerful mid-level engines in the compact segment and it can be found in EX-T, EX-L and Touring. In case you were worried, this isn’t the new Civic Si, but it does bode well for Honda’s sporty compact when it does arrive.

Although the 2- and 1.5-liter engines use different CVTs, they both benefit from Honda’s latest software that changes ratios much more rapidly than Nissan’s CVT. This makes passing maneuvers feel more “normal” as the switch from a high ratio to a low ratio is fast and crisp.

2016 Honda Civic EX Driving-001

Drive
Acceleration has improved with more power and less weight, but the real difference in the Civic is the NVH. The 2-liter engine is smoother than the outgoing 1.8 and Honda added more sound deadening material at the firewall so you hear less of the engine. The Civic has also been fitted with triple door seals, an acoustic windshield and foam galore to finally make this Honda one of the quietest compact sedans. (It’s actually quieter than the ILX.)

Thanks to its ever increasing proportions, the Civic’s ride is well composed over broken pavement. Its suspension is moderately firm but not harsh, which allows the Civic to manage body roll in the corners while soaking up the bumps that typically unsettle the rear suspensions of the Forte, Elantra and Elantra.

Electric power steering is unavoidable these days, but Honda has made the best of the numbing technology. Steering is weighted on the firm side of moderate and fitted with a quicker ratio than you find in the Mazda3. Although the Mazda3’s steering feels a hair lazier, the Mazda does transmit more road feel to the driver making it easier to tell what the front tires are doing. Ultimate grip in the Civic is hampered by Honda’s tire selection, which remains at 215 in width from the base LX all the way up to the top-end Touring.

2016 Honda Civic EX Instrument Cluster

The rare six-speed manual is just what you’d expect from Honda: ratios are well chosen and the feel of the shifter and clutch are among the best in the industry. Not bad for an econo box. Sadly, the manual can only be found in the base model.

Although Honda makes the best CVT, hands down, it’s still a CVT. Press the pedal to the floor and the CVT equipped EX will scoot to 60 in 8.3 seconds while imitating a stepped automatic. That’s faster than the last Focus, Corolla, Sentra or Elantra I tested and just a few tenths slower the 2.5-liter Mazda3. Keep in mind this is the base engine.

Thanks to the CVT design, the “shifts” are crisp and believable compared to Toyota and Nissan units. However, if you use anything less than full throttle, the CVT acts just like you’d expect with the engine “hanging out” at a particular rpm as the car accelerates. The uncomfortable truth: this is the most efficient way to accelerate. Back-to-back runs proved you can attain 60 mph in 2/10ths of a second faster if you put the transmission in “L,” which prevents the CVT from imitating shifts.

2016 Honda Civic EX Exterior-009

Thanks to the CVT, efficient engine and light curb weight, we averaged nearly 37 miles per gallon over 725 miles. As with most turbo engines, the 1.5-liter turbo can be very efficient on the highway, but will burn more fuel than the naturally aspirated 2-liter when the road gets more fun.

At $18,460 for a Civic LX with the manual transmission, the Civic has the highest starting price in the segment. That’s a whopping $2,500 more than a base Forte. Comparing automatic-equipped models shrinks the delta, but the Civic is still $1,700 more. Admittedly, the Civic does come with $550 more equipment, but the Honda is more expensive no matter how you slice it.

While I think the difference is justifiable, it does come down to more emotional comparisons such as the nicer bits Honda uses on the inside, the quieter cabin, the better steering feel, etc. The comparison is similar but to a lesser degree when you set the Civic against the Elantra, Sentra, Corolla, etc.

2016 Honda Civic EX Exterior-007

The move to a premium entry rather than an overt “value” entry is an interesting move for Honda. At $22,040, our EX tester with cloth seats stickered at about the same price as a top-end Sentra SL with leather upholstery. Instead of leather, Honda added the full suite of active safety gizmos and the 7-inch HondaLink system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. I’m always torn between gadgets and “traditional luxury,” but I have to admit I’d take the Civic EX over the Sentra SL due to the availability of auto brake hold, radar cruise control and CarPlay.

Turbo Civics start at $22,200 and, because the 1.5-liter engine slots between the base and future Civic Si and Type R models, there isn’t much out there as far as direct competition is concerned. The 1.5 is not a competitor to the Focus STl something like Mazda3 2.5 is a better comparison. Versus the Mazda, the Civic ends up being less expensive while delivering similar performance and better fuel economy. Honda also allows you buy the more powerful engine and radar cruise control without a leather interior, something not possible in the Mazda.

With the 2016 redesign, Honda has changed the character of the Civic for the better. Rather than feeling like a discount entry that sold on Honda’s reliability reputation and value, it can now be considered the premium entry in the segment. With the addition of Honda Sensing, I suspect it’ll also be the safest. Safety-obsessed Volvo has been doubling down on active safety systems lately in a mission to eliminate deaths in Volvos by 2020. While that goal is obviously unrealistic, the Civic is an entertaining comparison. The addition of Honda Sensing on just one quarter of Civics sold in the USA will have a bigger impact than Volvo’s efforts simply because Honda will put autonomous braking and other systems in the hands of more people.

It’s no secret that I love me some safety gadgets and perhaps that predisposed me to like the Civic. But the real truth: the Civic is just easy to live with. It’s full of driver convenience features, it’s well equipped, and it likes my iPhone. If I was shopping in this segment, the EX would be a leather steering wheel and adjustable lumbar support away from perfection.

Honda provided the vehicle, insurance and one tank of gas for this review

Specifications as tested

0-30: 3.3 seconds

0-60: 8.1 seconds

1/4 mile: 15.9 @ 91 mph

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112 Comments on “2016 Honda Civic EX Review – All-in on Active Safety...”


  • avatar
    VoGo

    Great review. The Civic is so good and so large now, that I think a lot of people who were looking at an average midsize car would be a lot happier in a Civic.

    I would buy one today if Honda saw fit to offer an upscale version with a turbo and a stick. Hopefully the upcoming Si won’t be too boy-racerish.

  • avatar
    Cobrajet25

    “Sixty pounds lighter”??

    It’s still a porky 3000 pound behemoth! Sheesh…just call it an Accord and get it over with.

    Every 21st century car enthusiast’s favorite high school sweetheart went and got REALLY FAT!

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      Cobrajet,
      Just to interject some data from Edmunds:
      – Corolla: 2855 lbs.
      – Civic: 2742 lbs.
      – Mazda3: 2869 lbs.
      – Cruze: 3097 lbs.

      So, the Civic is 100+ lbs. lighter than its main competitors. Maybe your concern is that this class has grown so much over the decades. Fair point, but that appears to be what consumers want. There’s always the Fit…

      • 0 avatar
        Cobrajet25

        It’s actually 2742 to 2923 pounds for the Civic.

        The stripper with the manual is a ‘svelte’ 2700+ pounds, but how many of those will Honda sell?

        • 0 avatar
          stuki

          Exactly the same number as they will sell to enthusiasts concerned about weight in the first place…….

          If your concern about weight is due to greenlyness, you do have a point. But enthusiasts and CVT shoppers (when a manual is available), aren’t what you’d call overlapping populations.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      What compact car isn’t near 3000 lbs?

      Golf = 3020
      Focus = 2935+
      Cruze = 3005+
      Mazda3 = 2865+
      Corolla = 2875
      Dart = 3081+
      Forte = 2850
      Elantra = 2800+

      • 0 avatar
        VoGo

        I may owe bball a Coke…

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          You posted it first, so it is I that owe you a Coca-Cola. I also have beer and many high quality spirits (my bottle of The Balvenie 17 year Doublewood Scotch Whiskey needs to be finished) if you would prefer that.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          We men have to watch out for ourselves & children.

          If you MUST insist on drinking soda, please, please, please DO NOT drink any COLA type beverages. Even one cola a day can significantly raise the risk of impaired kidney function & kidney stones:

          http://www.clinicalcorrelations.org/?p=4273

          Buy him a 7-Up or Jones Vanilla Soda instead.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I think we decided on Scotch.

            Also, I don’t have any pop/soda at my house. My 3 year old has never had any sort of pop and I want to slap people that have offered it to her.

          • 0 avatar
            BobbieBeeBooker

            At first i thought the website deadweight suggested was a joke or sth.For the challenger of JdN, it was so weak n full of fear and i daresay, Melodically, un-deadweight-edly. This way u show JdN some weak points for his future attacks. Imagine if you are afraid of cola how you are going to fight head of Cadillac, not to mention the Melody!

          • 0 avatar
            PeriSoft

            “If you MUST insist on drinking soda, please, please, please DO NOT drink any COLA type beverages”

            I’ll stick with Mountain Dew and racing fuel.

        • 0 avatar
          Immanuel Transmission

          Oh great, there’s another 12 ounces minimum.

      • 0 avatar
        Cobrajet25

        Is a hump-backed 3000 pound car with what looks like the same wheelbase as a ’95 BMW 750iL really in any way ‘compact’? Compact compared TO WHAT?

        It’s nearly the same size and weight as a ’95 Taurus! I am sure its a good car, I’m sure it drives like a dream, and I am sure Honda will sell scads of them. But WOW. Car buyers sure do like corpulent compacts nowadays…

        Other cars may be heavy, but this one LOOKS like a whale, especially with that gaping black-and-chrome maw that is so ‘in’ right now. And the trunkless bustle-back doesn’t help either.

        • 0 avatar
          RideHeight

          Awright, so don’t buy one.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          The 7-series never had a wheelbase under 110″. A 1995 740iL would have had a fifteen inch longer wheelbase than the current Civic.

          There are many reasons why cars have gotten larger and heavier. I’d bet that this Civic is safer than a ’95 Taurus.

          • 0 avatar
            Cobrajet25

            The 7-series reference was tongue-in-cheek. It might just be the picture, as there isn’t really anything in it for scale.

            But man, she’s huge.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            The 95 740iL is a proper sized BMW with a logical name, the likes of which they don’t make anymores.

        • 0 avatar
          Richard Chen

          Bel Air vs. Malibu offset crash

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtxd27jlZ_g

          ’16 Civic on ’95 Taurus probably wouldn’t be as bad, even though the Civic weighs 300 lbs less

        • 0 avatar
          jmo

          Why would you want a flimsy, loud, deathtrap when you have have a car that’s solid, quite and safe?

          • 0 avatar
            Cobrajet25

            ‘Solid, quiet, and safe’ is what a 20-year-old Lincoln is, too.

            Ten years from now that Lincoln and the new 2026 Civic will be the same size.

            Why does everything have to get bigger and heavier every year?

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            A lot of older cars were rigid, to the point that they transferred all of the crash energy to the occupants…or critical parts (like the roof support pillars) outright deformed or broke off, allowing for injurious intrusions into the cabin.

            Modern cars, OTOH, have gotten very good about crumpling to absorb the crash energy, while having solid sub-structures that preserve occupant survival space.

            Also, ask Jack how solid he thinks a *late* Town Car is against, say, a 2007 Sonata.

          • 0 avatar
            jmo

            “Solid, quiet, and safe’ is what a 20-year-old Lincoln is, too.”

            Like Baruth’s old Lincoln? Safe?

        • 0 avatar
          stuki

          The Civic isn’t a traditional compact anymore. The Fit has taken over that role.

    • 0 avatar
      Prado

      Yup, the Civic got really fat. If only Honda would make a small car that was fit…. If only.

  • avatar

    That grill is hideous. I thought the design looked too futuristic at first but in real life they look good. EXCEPT FOR THAT GRILL.

    …dry heaving

    • 0 avatar
      djsyndrome

      Here’s hoping the hatch and SI dump the chrome teeth.

      • 0 avatar
        JMII

        And we get the proper 3-door hatch. Or we could do like many did with the infamous Acura “beak” and paint it to match the car. The interior looks WAY better then the previous Civic, gone are too many buttons and displays, but the exterior is still a bit of a mess. Glad to hear the triple door seals are back. Our ’93 EX Civic Sedan was nearly silent on the inside because of that feature I always thought. The manual needs to be available in all trims like the Honda’s of old. Also interested in what the aftermarket can do with this turbo, because VW’s aftermarket is great in this regard.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      It’s a lot of bits and pieces. It really could do with fewer panel seams.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      It looks better than the Accord’s grille..on that car, the accessory Sport Grille helps to clean up the look, to the tune of $400!!

  • avatar
    Joss

    Adaptive cruise, lane departure etc will be available on the 2016 Sentra. But it’s a paltry 130 hp. If you want turbo 180+ Nissan’s answer would be the more cramped Juke.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I’m curious to see what Acura does with the ILX.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Given the Civic is so close in size to an Accord, as long as the ILX follow suit in interior growth, the Acura ILX might become the sweet spot depending on which features (and engine) come standard.

  • avatar
    manny_c44

    heeedjus

  • avatar
    Coopdeville

    Decent review but a little light on the subjective experience of the drive. How does this subjectively stack up against other players in the segment with regards to NVH? How does it compare to the Fit below it and the Accord above it?

    Wifey is perfectly happy with her previous gen Civic and wants to keep it indefinitely. I like that it feels like its built like a bank vault, but I HATE the ride, which is unreasonably stiff for a nonperformance car, and the road noise…dear god, the road noise. I know my TJ Wrangler was louder on the highway, but I don’t know by how much. Seriously considering pulling out the innards to dynamat the thing or add our own insulation.

    • 0 avatar
      rocketrodeo

      “…dear god, the road noise.”

      This! Even a subjective evaluation of road noise would be useful. There’s a dB meter app for almost all smartphones these days too.

      This is how we ended up with a Fusion to replace our Accord–no quieter sedan in its range, though the combination of a 6MT and a light-colored interior was also unique. The Civic wasn’t even in play then because of both the styling and the awful road noise. This one would be, at least on paper.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      When was the last time the tires on that Civic were replaced?

      I find road noise is usually basically the tires.

      (If it’s stiff, consider down-sizing the wheels when you replace the tires?

      If it has the stupid “premium” wheels that are too big that seem so popular these days, I bet you’d see a lot of improvement on both counts with smaller wheels and new rubber…)

      • 0 avatar
        Coopdeville

        In fairness the tires are getting quite old, but I remember the problem back when they were newer too. I think it’s more perception…for all I know every compact makes the same loud noises, but I’m used to quieter cars and with a long highway commute it’s nearly #1 on my list of wants in my own car.

        The wheels are just 16’s if I’m remembering right. The ride is subjective too because she likes it. See my username for the kind of ride I prefer.

    • 0 avatar
      cblais19

      I went to a local Honda dealer convinced that the new Civic was going to be my next car, specifically the Touring trim. The combination of features for the price point, positive reviews and my past experiences with Honda retained value and durability along with my liking for the new design seemed to make it a slam dunk. Indeed, once I drove it I was very impressed. Compared to the wife’s 2016 Golf, it has less wind noise but a bit more road noise (and also crappier tires). VW still has a small leg up on interior refinement, but the Civic is very impressive. There has been some issues with the new infotainment system software in the Civic – apparently an initial patch is on the way.

      However, I then went a drove a 2016 Accord EX-L. Although the Civic’s powertrain is more lively, the seats in the Accord were much more comfortable – both wider and with adjustable lumbar support. Additionally, the Accord has a more upright seating position which I prefer and rides a bit smoother in the EX/EX-L trims, along with being quieter still. I’ve finally settled on an EX Coupe with Sensing, since for 2016 the EX coupe adds the upgraded sound system and attractive 18″ wheels. Driving the Coupe and the Civic back to back reinforced my take on the seating position and comfort, although I think the Civic has reduced road noise then the Coupe on 18s.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Gorgeous interior, especially the dash. That’s as close to Honda’s traditional clean & simple look as is possible with todays obligatory toys for tots.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    I’m extremely impressed with the new Civic. The design looks great, both inside and out, the fuel-economy is excellent, and it’s chock-full of the features that buyers care about. That said, I am interested in seeing how the 2016 Cruze compares.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I suspect the new Cruze will be a bit bigger, and heavier certainly. But probably more solid feeling overall.

      Not sure which I’d choose if I was shopping that market. I question the 1.8T or whatever from GM a bit, so probably the Honda.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    1996 Civic sedan: 175″ L x 67″ W x 55″ H

    2006 Civic sedan: 177″ L x 69″ W x 57″ H

    2016 Civic sedan: 182″ L x 71″ W x 56″ H

    And for fun:

    2016 CRV: 179″ L x 72″ W x 65″ H

    1996 Accord sedan: 186-188″ L x 70″ W x 55″ H

    2016 Corolla: 183″ L x 70″ W x 57″ H

    1996 Corolla sedan: 172″ L x 66″ W x 54″ H

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Hey, that’s my job! And you forgot the wheelbase measurements.

    • 0 avatar
      Cobrajet25

      Interesting growth chart. Kinda like top-of-head notches by parents in the bedroom door frame when I was a kid.

      By 2026, the Civic should be about the size of a Town Car. And probably the same 4000 pounds, too. Well, ain’t THAT something to look forward to…

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        Extrapolation can be easily misused. On the day before his wedding, a man has no wives. On the day of the wedding he has one wife. Therefore, it seems logical that within a month after that day he will have thirty wives, yes?

        • 0 avatar
          Cobrajet25

          Non sequiturs can be misused as well. The Civic is on it’s TENTH generation already…it’s tenth ‘marriage’, to use your parlance. Each bigger than the last.

          Look at a 1971 Civic. Look at a 2016 Civic. Now dig, if you will, a picture of that 2026 Civic.

          It seems logical that it would be the size of a Town Car, no? I mean, if it’s growth can in any way be considered linear?

          Don’t get me wrong…I hope it shrinks someday!

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            1. There was no 1971 Honda Civic. I assume you meant 1972.

            2. In what way was that a non-sequiter? Each has been bigger than the last, yes, but you’re making the assumption that growth will continue unchecked, which is not the case in your original analogy to children growing.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            71 would have been called the 600 still? Those are very cute.

          • 0 avatar
            Cobrajet25

            1) Ooops. Typo.

            2) I am making the case that the Civic’s growth will continue unchecked because…for the last 40 years…IT HAS. Unlike a person, there really is no upper limit on how big it can get. All it has to do is change classifications from a compact to a midsize, and it can start growing all over again. The Camry started out as a compact in 1983, and look at it now.

        • 0 avatar
          Land Ark

          xkcd in text-only form loses some of its punch. Sometimes it would be nice if we could post pictures.
          Also, there’s a kid with books in his hand visibly straining trying to push open a door at a school for the gifted. Because he is trying so hard to push the door open, he doesn’t realize it is a pull door.

          Feel free to add the wheelbase measurements. It’s probably even more dramatic than the overall length.

          • 0 avatar
            kvndoom

            That was one of my all-time favorite Far Side comics. I remember it clearly, even from back in the 1980’s…

            Google “Midvale School for the gifted”… edited to get rid of the ridiculously long link.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            Amen!!! Gary Larson FTW!!!!!!

  • avatar
    Robbie

    A manual is only an option on the stripper model. So, I’ll pass.
    TTAC people, please: boycott this vehicle and teach Honda to do the right thing!

    • 0 avatar
      Cobrajet25

      Hear, hear!

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      I’m sure they will feel the error of their ways over all 5 lost sales.

      Why should Honda make the manual available in everything in when no one buys it in everything?

      • 0 avatar
        Cobrajet25

        I understand Honda not wanting to make thousands of Touring models with manual transmissions only to have them sit on the lot all year and be blown out at a steep discount in December.

        But people should at least be able to ORDER one that way, should they choose. Honda already has the manual transmission, and it already fits in the Civic.

        Why should I have to forgo butt-warmers to row my own gears?

        • 0 avatar
          Drzhivago138

          I can agree with that. Which is why I like pickup trucks–you can still order it with essentially all the options you want or don’t want; very few options are tied into packages.

    • 0 avatar
      Demetri

      The stick will be able on the EX-T starting with the 2017 model.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      If everyone at TTAC didn’t buy a Civic … Honda would never even notice.

      It’ll sell like hotcakes, as it should, and manuals are dead.

      (Hell, if I had to replace the Corolla in my fleet today, I’d probably get one of these.)

    • 0 avatar
      richmich7

      Several sites have already said that a manual will be available with the turbo in 2017. The engineers needed more time, and didn’t want to delay the car for a low volume issue. Of course, they will probably only offer it on the EX-T. It seems kind of a waste of time and money to me. If you want a manual, you probably want the cheapest and lightest car, or you are going to wait for the Si.

    • 0 avatar
      stuki

      Strippers are hot. Grabbing and manhandling them feels nice. Just like ditto to a manual shift knob.

      Seriously, aside from radar cruise (which is a really, really big one, but one which few pairs with a manual), what are you really missing? Aside from memory (which needs to cover EVERYTHING: seat, all mirrors wheel tilt and telescope…) I’ll take manual seats over lethargic power ones any day. For the same reason I’d take the Miata’s throw back top over any power one: They aren’t pathetically slow, and work perfectly well for non cripples.

  • avatar
    Fordson

    Looks too Japanese…but what are you going to do?

    They have the quiet part down, they (at least with the turbo) have the no-torque part defeated. Now to address the too-small/too-cheap OEM tires and the evergreen crappy Honda brakes issue, and it will be there. Pretty good job, I would admit.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      And to be fair, both of those faults are trivially corrected in the aftermarket.

      Hell, you could get a tire and brake shop to fix BOTH of them on your way home from the dealership, right?

      • 0 avatar
        Fordson

        Well, yeah, but now you have to go out of pocket minimally like $1500 for better tires, pads and rotors, and then spend time and energy trying to sell the take-offs to recoup your costs.

        I’ve got better things to do than that.

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    Correction on the K20 2.0L engine, it is NOT direct injected! One of these with a manual transmission is the last bastion of a plain jane powertrain in a Honda, for better or for worse.

  • avatar
    NormSV650

    Calling all sones. Do you think the new Civic will be quieter badge engineerer brother the acura ILX?
    http://www.motortrend.com/news/2013-acura-ilx-vs-buick-verano-turbo/

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    GOOD GOD THAT THING IS UGLY.

    They’ll still sell millions… sigh…

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    Saw one here in Phoenix, cruzing my neighborhood. I was surprised by it’s size and impressed with the look of it. I would definitely consider one, if I was looking in the midsize category. They definitely need a hatch, and maybe even a wagon version. I would then be at the dealership ASAP writing the check.

  • avatar
    badhobz

    whats with the old school Chinese music Alex? Teresa Tang?! come on!

  • avatar
    wmba

    This review is a triumph of incomprehensibility much like the car’s styling.

    I read the review, read the comments, went back to look at the pix, and then saw the inset infopanel. This was a 2.0l?

    I defy anyone to read the words alone and not believe this was a test of the 1.5 turbo, just as I did, because there is no overt mention of which engine is being tested in the text.

    “As with most turbo engines, the 1.5-liter turbo can be very efficient on the highway, but ….”

    It’s this sort of writing that fooled me. But then again, I’m not a great fan of Dyke’ tests in the first place. No real attention to ride and handling as usual.

    Just the way I see it.

    • 0 avatar
      eamiller

      Here’s the thing about “ride” and “handling”… Subjective discussion usually benefits nobody. Hand the same car to 10 different people and you’ll get 10 different opinions about how the car “rides” and “handles”.

      It’s a mass market compact car with electric power steering and a McPherson strut front suspension. It’s going to “handle” and “ride” pretty much like every other compact car out there. They are all just shades of grey. This isn’t the 80s or 90s any more, where you have huge variations among mass market options.

      Now if this was an SI, I’m sure Alex would have spent quite a bit more time discussing “ride” and “handling” since the qualitative discussion is more fitting (as he does with his “sporty car” reviews).

      Also, it’s at least implied that Alex has driven the 1.5T version of this car, even if the review vehicle was the 2.0L. Therefore the discussion about the 1.5T is completely warranted. Alternatively, he could have ignored it completely and you’d have no idea how it compares.

  • avatar
    Hezz

    I am interested enough that I will be popping by the dealership once the Si is available. I drove the current Si and loved it, but there was not quite enough rear seat room for my two boys (both over 6 foot).

    I have seen one of these on the highway now, and I think it looked a little worse in person than in pictures, but it may grow on me. Seems like the Si version of this is going to be darn close to a first gen TSX in size and performance, if not as good looking.

  • avatar
    Halftruth

    Rear lights look Nissan Murano-ish to me.. Not crazy about them.
    The rest is so-so. The interior- the dash especially- HUGE improvement.

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    Ugly. Overstyled. Bloated. Cockroach-like.

    So many words to describe the new Civic. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a manufacturer not feel the need to puff up their models with each cycle.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      That side profile is somewhere stuck between Mazda 3 and Crosstour. It has the shape of a liftback but it’s a damn sedan. Somewhere underneath that rear DLO FAIL is a trunk.

      I’m sorry but I can’t dig it at all. I hope the coupe looks better than this.

  • avatar
    Chan

    This thing is so wretchedly overwrought, it’s like Honda tried to ape the 2010 Hyundai Sonata by being daring, but as usual for Japanese cars it doesn’t come out right.

    That said, I can’t deny that it seems to be a very good car. Can’t wait to see the hatchback’s [hopefully] more functional design.

  • avatar
    CincyDavid

    We are actively looking for an EX-L with the Honda Sensing to replace an unloved 2013 Civic LX that is coming off-lease and is going back to Honda. Good luck finding one…our dealer has 2, and neither is a color we like.

    Where does the Accord go from here, if the Civic is creeping into its size class? Will it become like Nissan, where the Altima and Maxima are almost the same size, and the Altima has slightly more interior room?!? Seems silly to duplicate two offerings in the same size.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Honda, at least, has the advantage of not having a full-size (or “full-size”) sedan to be encroached upon by a growing mid-size (see also: Impala vs. Malibu, Taurus vs. Fusion, Optima vs. Cadenza, Sonata vs. Azera).

    • 0 avatar
      cblais19

      The Accord is still significantly larger, inside and out. The Civic has a more cockpit style interior and is much lower. If you sit in them back to back, the Accord is still justifying its place with greater subjective and actual space – especially in the back seat. The Accord is a full 10″ longer, and most of that is in the seating areas.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        +1

        Also, Honda is specifically emphasizing a lower hip point and the, as you mentioned, more cockpit like driving environment. Despite size differential compression, the Civic’s intended for younger people more concerned with style and dynamics, the Accord more formal and comfortable for the more mature.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    A Civic without a road noise problem. What has the world come to?

    Reviews have praised this car to the extent where it will be top tier if only 2/3 of it are true. The interior looks excellent in Alex’s photographs and both engines seem very appealing.

    With the additional sound insulation and interior polish, the Si could be a real GTI competitor. I’m very interested in how that car will turn out, but wince at the thought of this already-aesthetically challenged thing being painted bright read with a spoiler, big wheels, and Vtec badges.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      I agree. My hope is that the Si will be muted, since Honda is promising a Civic R above it, which will no doubt be garish enough to compete for mindshare with the Focus RS, and WRX STI that about 400 boy racers buy annually.

  • avatar
    scottcom36

    The lack of adjustable lumbar in the Civic is nothing new. When I bought my ’15 I figured I’d be able to adjust the seat to find reasonable comfort. But for two weeks my back ached continuously. Then…I got used to the seat and it’s been fine since.
    And I love the bi-level instruments. They aren’t the prettiest, but they sure are easy to see and use.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      I likewise really love my bi-level dash, and I’m one of the most staunch traditionalists when it comes to interior aesthetics. It’s just so darn functional!

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    What an improvement! My only dislike is the dashboard – yay, the bi-level is gone; boo that Honda didn’t put a traditional speedo and tach. The real estate is there – the new set up with the huge gas and temp gauges reminds me of my uncle’s ’62 Chevy Belair dash.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Like the once pretty high school girl, the Civic has since over the years transformed into the proverbial overweight chrome buck tooth stay home mom after having 7 children. At least the dash is an improvement. At the rate Honda is going with this thing it will be a full size sedan by the end of the decade.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Are you able to program the center dials, to have a regular speedo instead of a digital one? That’s bothered me for a WHILE on the Civic. I hated the huge digital speedo on the old ones, and I don’t like it here either, though it’s improved. I also want wood trim, but I know that’s reaching on this class in 2016.

    Love the fuel and temp gauges with all the little bar segments. That’s cool.

    Again I find myself thinking Honda could run their own photo blog of wheel design fails this past year or two. x.x

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    I’ve yet to see one in person and will hold off on my overall judgment of its appearance because pictures can really screw up up the looks. However, I think we’ve seen these tail lights before, sans random extra hanger-on up top. The main lens looks straight off the pre-emergency refresh Civic.

  • avatar
    Buckshot

    Honda Civic keeps getting bigger for every new generation. (As every other car model?)
    1972: L 3.55 W 1.50 H 1.33
    1979: L 3.76 W 1.58 H 1.35
    1983: L 3.81 W 1.63 H 1.35
    1987: L 3.96 W 1.67 H 1.33
    1991: L 4.07 W 1.70 H 1.29
    1996: L 4.18 W 1.70 H 1.38
    2000: L 4.28 W 1.72 H 1.49
    2005: L 4.25 W 1.76 H 1:46
    2015: L 4.37 W 1.77 H 1.47

    First generation Accord 1976: L:4.45 W 1.62 H 1.36

  • avatar
    Buckshot

    Is this model made for Texas? The chrome front looks like a Texas longhorn.

  • avatar
    Wayne

    Alex,

    Nice review. I notice in the video there was Teresa Teng song on playlist. I didn’t know you listen to Chinese music or was that your assistant’s ?

  • avatar
    noelleo2112

    It’s sad that they want to keep making it bigger, I love my 2003 it’s the best car that I’ve ever owned, it’s still kicking butt at 225000, it’s even an automatic, I ran the original battery for 11 years before I decided I would not push my luck with it. The wife’s 2011 looks like it’s not going to hold up so well, no major problems at 80000 though, it just seems cheap, interior plastic pieces falling off, the visor broke, junk alignment out of the factory that scrubbed off the rear tires, and the redesigned rear suspension is junk and squirmy over every bump, and I hate the jerky fly by wire throttle, not that you can get a car with a cable anymore. I don’t like the rattling aluminum engine either when it’s cold it sounds horrible, I just don’t think I’m going to see over 200000 trouble free miles like with the 03.


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