10th Generation Honda Civic
The 10th Generation Honda Civic is now available in South Africa, and it has taken the country by storm, securing a place in the much coveted Car of the Year finalists.
As there are only ten of these amongst all manufacturers, it is a prestigious place to be.
Honda is a brand that evokes brand loyalty, and many families buy the following generation of model or upgrade to the next segment. Over the course of the past nine generations, the Civic has continuously evolved to meet changing customer needs around the world.
Thus, it comes as no surprise that Honda’s longest-running automotive nameplate is also its biggest-selling model globally, with more than 23-million Civics sold to date.
The new Honda Civic cuts an impressive figure, as it is a sleek sporty looking coupe. The car looks wider and lower to the ground, and it also has a longer bonnet & short front overhang, which give it an athletic looking stance. Advanced full LED headlights and LED daytime running lights are fitted to the 1,5-litre TURBO models for the first time, with the remaining models in the range equipped with projector-type halogen units. LED daytime running lights are standard on all models. At the rear, the new Civic’s characteristic bracketed tail light design has been re-interpreted with eye-catching LED light bars on either side. A selection of futuristic-looking 16 and 17-inch wheel designs completes the sophisticated and athletic design.
The all-new Civic’s interior has an easy to use array of buttons that control a lot of what makes the Civic easier to drive. Starting with the paddles, as this is the Sport variant, and running into the various settings you need for every day use.
The materials are soft touch premium feel, so you don’t get the plastic feel that a lot of cars have. It includes the new high-deck centre console that encompasses key features such as the all-new Electric Parking Brake and Brake Hold function. To reduce cabin noise and further enhance ride quality, the interior package is fitted with lightweight soundproofing materials. This includes underbody coverings and a noise isolation door system.
Leather seats (heated in front) are standard on all but the entry-level model, and the steering wheel offers tilt and telescopic adjustment. Boot capacity has also improved by 20 percent.
The new Honda Civic offers an array of new tech that aims to give the driver ease of driving as well as making a car on the cutting edge. The high-resolution, seven-inch- WVGA LCD display that forms the centrepiece for the digital audio system is ideal and can be viewed from both driver and passenger seats, and the air-conditioning can also be operated on the display panel. The system is also compatible with various media formats, and can be operated by controls conveniently located on the multifunction steering wheel. Several other Civic firsts are also included, such as Walk Away Auto Lock operated by the smart key system, standard on the Sport and Executive models.
The system automatically locks the car doors once the key is approximately 2,5 metres away from the vehicle, thus ensuring additional security and day-to- day convenience. Smart keyless entry is standard on 1,5-litre TURBO models. The range-topping Civic Executive derivative reinforces its premium status with a raft of additional advanced safety features, including:
– Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low Speed Following (LSF)
– Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS)
– Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
– Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS)
– Road Departure Mitigation (RDM)
– Forward Collision Warning (FCW)
– Lane watch with side-sensing cameras
Two engines are available in the new model line-up- Honda’s first-ever 1.5 VTEC TURBO engine produces an exceptional 127 kW of maximum power at 5 500 r/min, along with 220 Nm of maximum torque – the latter available in a broad range between 1 700 and 5 500 r/min to enhance all-round drivability.
This engine boasts good performance and exceptional fuel economy of a claimed 5.9 L/100km. Driving this on test on the open road, it was pretty close.
The new Civic is also available with a refined and updated version of the 1,8-litre SOHC i-VTEC naturally aspirated engine. It produces 104 kW and 6 500 r/min, allied to a torque peak of 174 Nm at 4 300 r/min.
In line with Honda’s ‘Earth Dreams Technology’, both engines are paired with an exhilarating and sporty new series of CVT gearboxes as standard. Not everyone’s favourite this one, but the Sport variant we drove changed gears very well, and did not gear down or hunt for gears on hills.
Honda’s new Agile Handling Assist (AHA) feature is integrated with the Civic’s EPS and vehicle control systems to facilitate driving enjoyment, as well as overall control and stability.
AHA anticipates a loss of control during cornering and helps to prevent it by continuously modulating brake and throttle inputs in small, imperceptible increments to assist overall driver control.
An additional safety net is provided by means of the Vehicle Stability Control, which is standard on all models, incorporating Hill Start Assist, along with ABS anti-lock brakes and electronic brake force distribution (EBD). All models are equipped with dual front, side and curtain airbags, complemented with a reverse camera and rear parking sensors on all but the base model.
Model range and pricing
The new Honda Civic range comprises four models, spanning a choice of two engines and four specification grades.
1.8 Comfort CVT – R330 000
1.8 Elegance CVT – R370 000
1.5T Sport CVT – R430 000
1.5T Executive CVT – R460 000
The recommended retail pricing includes a five-year/200 000km warranty, a five- year/90 000km service plan, as well as three years of AA Roadside Assistance.
To sum up, I enjoyed the drive in the Honda Civic, it is a comfortable , spacious and refined car. The Honda Accord has been dropped from the range and the Civic will cover both segments. I believe it has a good chance in the COTY 2017, but to win it will need to overcome some stiff opposition.