2019 Honda Civic Touring sedan evaluate: All grown up
“The Civic is among the finest compact sedans round, and a extra full automotive than ever earlier than.”
Optionally available 7-inch display with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto
5 star security ranking
Bigger engine solely out there with CVT
Everybody has to develop up finally.
Remarkably for a nameplate that’s been round for the reason that 1970s, the Honda Civic is synonymous with youth. Low cost and easy, the Civic is a typical alternative for somebody’s first automotive. The rambunctious character of older Civics additionally made them an amazing introduction to the enjoyable aspect of driving. Civic-driving youngsters have historically moved as much as an Accord or CR-V as soon as they earned a bit extra money and began households. However now the Civic is attempting to develop up with its homeowners.
The 2019 Honda Civic Touring sedan is extra than simply low-cost transportation for brand spanking new drivers. It faces robust competitors – such because the lately redesigned Mazda three, Toyota Corolla, and Volkswagen Jetta – for an ever-shrinking variety of gross sales as patrons proceed flocking to high-riding crossovers. For Honda’s evergreen compact automotive, the carefree days of youth are over.
As typical for a contemporary compact automotive, the Civic has gained dimension and toys. The Touring mannequin’s $28,330 base worth – a $7,850 premium over the entry-level Civic LX – contains options like leather-based seats, 18-inch wheels, and a navigation system. So optioned, the 2019 Civic Touring is properly geared up to catch the eyes of patrons trying to improve from a well-worn older mannequin to one thing fancier. However extra stuff doesn’t routinely make a automotive higher. Does the Civic nonetheless have what made it nice within the first place, or was it in an excessive amount of of a rush to develop up?
Fashionable and (principally) sensible
Like a current faculty graduate at a job interview, the Civic tries to make a robust first impression. Earlier generations had pretty plain styling, making them nice canvases for personalization. Honda took a distinct route when it launched the current-generation Civic for the 2016 mannequin 12 months.
The Civic sedan (Honda additionally presents coupe and hatchback physique kinds) has a low, glossy roof line, an imposing grille that appears prefer it was designed for post-apocalyptic fight, and taillights that wrap themselves across the rear edges of the bodywork. Given the necessity to stand out from a big crowd of compact automobiles, and lure patrons away from crossovers, the extra extroverted look of the current-generation Civic is smart. The Mazda three and Toyota Corolla additionally rely closely on exterior styling as a differentiator. Honda made some small styling modifications for 2019, together with a reworked entrance fascia and extra chrome trim, however the Civic sedan doesn’t look dramatically totally different.
A classy exterior usually comes on the worth of inside house, however the 2019 Civic sedan doesn’t undergo a lot. Measurements are according to different compact sedans, though the Civic’s low roofline appears to have had an impression on headroom, which is beneath common for the phase. Uber drivers take word: whereas the Civic’s 37.four inches of rear legroom is nearly as good because it will get for a compact sedan (our Touring tester additionally had heated rear seats), the Volkswagen Jetta matches it, with extra headroom for taller passengers. The Civic does have extra trunk house than the Jetta, however not as a lot because the Kia Forte or Nissan Sentra. Notably absent from this comparability is the Corolla, as Toyota didn’t have a full set of measurements out there at press time.
A classy exterior usually comes on the worth of inside house, however the 2019 Civic sedan doesn’t undergo a lot.
The inside is rather more conservative than the outside, which isn’t a foul factor. All the pieces is the place it must be, and materials high quality is pretty good for a automotive on this worth vary. For 2019, Honda even redesigned the cupholders to incorporate totally different dimension choices. Our one criticism was with the steering wheel, which appeared unnecessarily massive, and made it arduous to discover a snug driving place.
Little issues make an enormous distinction
The general inside structure didn’t change a lot for 2019, however the tech did. A brand new 7.Zero-inch touchscreen (appropriate with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) is backed by analog shortcut buttons, in addition to an honest-to-goodness quantity knob. A element as small as a single knob could not appear to be an enormous deal, however automakers have but to invent a greater method to regulate audio quantity whereas driving. Kudos to Honda for realizing that.
The display itself was simple to make use of. We appreciated having arduous buttons for key menus, which is a less-distracting method than forcing the driving force to faucet icons on the display itself. Graphics have been plain however efficient, and we did discover that the display in our check automotive was a bit sluggish besides up when beginning the automotive. One other draw back is that the 7.Zero-inch display isn’t out there on the bottom LX trim degree, which doesn’t get Apple CarPlay or Android Auto both.
A extra mature driving expertise
Driving dynamics have historically set the Civic aside from different compact automobiles. Honda hasn’t all the time gotten the formulation proper however, as a rule, the Japanese automaker’s rev-happy engines and suspension-tuning experience have elevated the Civic above a mere driving equipment. So how does the 2019 Civic sedan measure up?
Our check automotive had the elective 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which is out there solely with a repeatedly variable transmission (CVT). With 174 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque, it’s a major improve over the 158 hp and 138 lb-ft of the naturally-aspirated 2.Zero-liter four-cylinder engine in lower-level Civic fashions. That engine is out there with a CVT or a six-speed handbook. Honda additionally presents a sportier Si model of the Civic sedan with an upgraded model of the 1.5-liter turbo 4 making 205 hp and 192 lb-ft, in addition to a handbook transmission.
The steering is exact, and the chassis effortlessly takes a set in corners.
With the Si entrenched because the sportiest Civic sedan, our Touring tester adopts a extra relaxed tempo. Civics of previous impressed with full of life steering, or engines that appeared keen to rev till they exploded, however what impressed most concerning the 2019 Civic sedan was its refinement. It’s only a good place to be, with a fairly cabin and a snug experience – even on roads as cratered because the floor of the Moon. Amongst compact sedans, solely the Volkswagen Jetta comes shut.
That doesn’t imply the Civic has misplaced its previous strikes, although. Make no mistake, this nonetheless an amazing automotive to drive. The steering is exact, and the chassis effortlessly takes a set in corners. The turbocharged engine gives greater than sufficient thrust, though it comes on in a much less frenetic approach than Honda’s previous naturally-aspirated four-cylinder engines. The Mazda three additionally feels a bit sharper, and faster to reply when cornering. However we expect Honda struck an excellent steadiness with the Civic. The driving dynamics are an ideal match for the Civic’s refined manners. This automotive is enjoyable if you need it to be, and civilized if you want it to be. If you need somewhat extra aggression, purchase the Civic Si. Or, higher but, the Civic Sort R hatchback.
The sensible stuff
Civic Touring sedans like our check automotive are rated at 33 mpg mixed (30 mpg metropolis, 38 mpg freeway) by the EPA. That’s a bit decrease than the 36 mpg mixed (32 mpg metropolis, 42 mpg freeway) of the EX and EX-L fashions, which use the identical engine and transmission. The EX and EX-L are essentially the most gas environment friendly Civic sedans. They narrowly beat the gasoline Toyota Corolla in gasoline mileage, and even come near the 37 mpg mixed of the Chevy Cruze diesel. Toyota presents a Corolla Hybrid, however Honda has the Civic-based Perception hybrid.
Honda has one of the vital complete packages of driver aids within the compact-car phase. Normal on the 2019 Civic, Honda Sensing contains adaptive cruise management, autonomous emergency braking, ahead collision warning, lane preserve help, automated excessive beams, and lane departure warning with street departure mitigation. Solely the Toyota Corolla presents an analogous array of options as normal tools. Adaptive cruise management is an elective further on most different compact sedans.
Civic EX and better trim ranges additionally get the Honda-exclusive LaneWatch system, which makes use of a digital camera mounted on the passenger’s aspect exterior mirror to just about get rid of the driving force’s right-side blind spot. It’s a useful function, though Honda plans to discontinue it in favor of easier (and cheaper) blind-spot monitoring programs.
Talking of security, the 2019 Honda Civic sedan acquired a five-star general ranking from the Nationwide Freeway Visitors Security Administration (NHTSA). The sedan additionally acquired the highest “good” rating in all Insurance coverage Institute for Freeway Security (IIHS) crash checks, in addition to the utmost “superior” ranking for front-crash prevention tech. However the headlights acquired a “poor” rating, even after Honda modified the LED models on Touring fashions for 2019 to create a wider and longer beam.
Honda presents a three-year, 36,000-mile, fundamental guarantee and a five-year, 60,000-mile, powertrain guarantee. That’s about common for this phase, however Hyundai and Kia provide longer phrases. Honda has an amazing general status for reliability, and the current-generation Civic sedan acquired an above-average reliability rating from Client Experiences.
How DT would configure this automotive
As geared up, our Touring check automotive provided rather a lot for the cash. However a few of its options, such because the 18-inch wheels, leather-based upholstery, heated rear seats, and embedded navigation, aren’t actually necessities. So we’d step all the way down to the Civic EX. For about $three,000 lower than the Touring, the EX nonetheless will get the 1.5-liter turbocharged engine, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, the 7.Zero-inch touchscreen, heated entrance seats, LaneWatch, and Honda Sensing. That’s the stuff that basically counts. We’d additionally advise any patrons to noticeably contemplate the Civic Si sedan, which may be had for across the similar worth because the EX, however options extra energy, sportier suspension tuning, and a handbook transmission.
The 2019 Honda Civic sedan has a distinct feeling to Civic of previous, however Honda nonetheless stored the essence of what made these automobiles nice. The 2019 Civic feels extra mature, protecting its fun-to-drive character, however including consolation and refinement to the combination. The Civic has lengthy been many patrons’ default alternative, and this 10th-generation mannequin reminds us why that’s the case.
Must you get one?
Sure. The Civic stays among the best compact sedans round, and it’s a extra full automotive than ever earlier than. Rising up isn’t so dangerous.