2008 Honda Civic Si Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Honda Civic Si

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Honda Civic Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 197 hp @ 7800 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 21/29 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation Yes
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2008 Honda Civic

  • Comfortable, smartly designed and available in a wide array of configurations, the 2008 Honda Civic sets the bar for the small car segment.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Engine lineup that offers both fuel-efficiency and performance, roomy and refined interior, high crash test scores, available as a sedan or coupe.

  • Cons

    Controversial gauge cluster design, slow acceleration times of Hybrid and GX models.

  • What's New for 2008

    A new Mugen Si trim level debuts for the 2008 Honda Civic sedan. It's similar to the regular Si sedan but comes with more aggressive suspension tuning, special wheels and exterior body enhancements. The only other change for the Civic line this year is the new availability of leather seating for the new EX-L trim level.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (66 total reviews)


Wish i still had it.

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

2nd worst automotive decision I've made was to sell my 2008 Si (worst was buying a 2000 Mercedes E-class for the wife). In 3 years and 75,000 miles of ownership, it was gas, oil, go. That's it. Never once did it darken the dealer service bay for anything. Window sticker says 29mpg highway and that is WAY underrated. I easily got 34-35 with the cruise set on 70, and that was with 10% ethanol fuel. Real gas gave me as high as 37mpg once. With the HFP suspension and Michelin Pilot Sports, this was the best handling car I've ever owned. Other cars may be faster (GTI, WRX, Mazdaspeed 3), but the Si is absolutely THE BEST blend of comfort, performance, reliability and economy.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Great little sporty car

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

Great little all around car. So far I've driven 8000 km. What I love most is the engine and super smooth clutch and transmission. The I-vtec is peppy paired with limited slip diff and summer tires. It loves high rpm reminds me of a sport bike. Car handles very well with little body roll. Makes an excellent commuter car if your looking for something more fun to drive than your typical Civic dx/lx/ex etc. It needs 91oct and I've been averaging 28-29 mpg mostly highway driving somewhat aggressive. The car looks great cosmetically in coupe form compared to other cars in its class. But lacks acceleration to keep up with its competition.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Best compromise car

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

The Civic Si Sedan is probably the best combination of sport and practicality available. It combines a race-worthy 2.0L with the best shifter/clutch I've ever used. This car feels more upscale than my 2003 RSX-S was and performs at least as well. I get 27-33 mpg depending on city/hwy mix and am almost always speeding. Nice interior layout and materials.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Love it ^_^

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

This is an amazing car. I bought it used, but in great shape. It's got lots of power, especially after 6,000 rpm. =] The interior is great, the seats feel amazing, and the six-speed is wonderful. It has great fuel mileage, considering the type of car it is. This car is surprisingly big on the inside, which is nice. The Si Sedan is the best car out there for the money, and it's a Honda, so it'll run forever!



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

An overall satisfied customer

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

First off, I got this car for a STEAL because it was the last '08 the dealer had on the lot. Due to this, I may think that this car is a better value than others that paid sticker. Overall, I like the car. It's fast, handles well, and looks pretty good when tinted. It's also a decent size, reliable, and pretty economical. I drive "spiritedly" often and I still get great gas mileage. The worst was 26mpg (100 mile trip on back roads in Maine = wild ride) and the best has been about 33mpg...I usually average about 29 with 50/50 highway/city. One warning if you get an Si, every punk kid in a Honda/import will want to race you. Just something you have to live with.




08 si sedan

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Vehicle: 2008 Honda Civic Si 4dr Sedan w/Navigation, Summer Tires (2.0L 4cyl 6M)

I've owned my 2008 Si Sedan for about 3 months now, bought it used with 25,000 miles on it. It drove exactly the same as the brand new one I drove with 5 miles on it, so I save myself about $7,000. What can I say? It's a great car, I love driving it, the engine sounds awesome when over 6k RPM, and it will take spirited driving with no issues. Did an autocross event last weekend, and that was ridiculously fun. The car gets 28-30mpg, and feels faster than it is. Certainly fast enough for me. I have had no issues with the shifter, the stock stereo is decent, and the car handles great. Looks awesome too : )



Full 2008 Honda Civic Review

What's New for 2008

A new Mugen Si trim level debuts for the 2008 Honda Civic sedan. It's similar to the regular Si sedan but comes with more aggressive suspension tuning, special wheels and exterior body enhancements. The only other change for the Civic line this year is the new availability of leather seating for the new EX-L trim level.

Introduction

In 1973, Honda introduced the Civic to American shores. Small, fuel-efficient and reliable, the Civic was an ideal small car solution to rising gas prices and increased environmental awareness. Now, 35 years later, Americans are faced with similar issues, and again the Civic stands at the ready.

Of course, history hasn't quite repeated itself. The 2008 Honda Civic is considerably heavier and more luxurious than its pint-sized forbear. It's not even the company's smallest car anymore -- that role is handled by the Fit. But for the average small car shopper, the Civic remains the quintessential choice. We're quite fond of the current-generation Civic -- it was last redesigned in 2006 -- and it's one of America's best-selling cars.

There are plenty of reasons to choose the Civic. First among them is the car's wide array of configurations. The Civic is one of the few small car offerings to be sold as a sedan and a sportier-looking coupe. A fixed, minimal-options trim level architecture, ranging from the budget-oriented DX to the top-level EX, makes picking a Civic a relatively straightforward affair.

There are also the specialized Civic Si, Hybrid and GX models. In Si trim, the Civic is one of the most sporting small cars available for the money, while the Hybrid, thanks to its gasoline/electric powertrain, can deliver 40-plus mpg in real-world driving. The Civic GX is truly an oddity -- it runs on natural gas and can be fueled at home via a special "Phill" hook-up. The GX is the most expensive Civic, but in return it's America's cleanest mass-production car in terms of tailpipe emissions.

A new addition this year is the Honda Civic Mugen Si sedan. Built on the foundation of the Civic Si sedan and tuned by the prestigious racing and aftermarket performance company Mugen, this model comes with a track-tuned suspension, 18-inch forged alloy lightweight wheels with special tires, a full aerodynamic body kit with an adjustable rear wing spoiler, a rear diffuser and a sport-tuned exhaust system. Only 1,000 of these models will be sold, and they're priced in the very un-Civic-like territory of $30,000.

No matter what the trim, the Civic's traditional strengths in comfort, interior design and safety are all still firmly intact. The Civic also holds its value better than many other small cars and has a reputation for above-average reliability. Though we suggest doing a bit of comparison shopping -- the sporty Mazda 3, affordable Hyundai Elantra and Volkswagen Rabbit/Jetta are also very good choices -- the 2008 Honda Civic remains an ideal pick for a small sedan or coupe.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Honda Civic is a small car available as a sedan or coupe. For both, there are five main trim levels: DX, LX, EX, EX-L and Si. On the Civic sedan, Honda also offers the Hybrid, the GX and the Mugen Si. The DX is meant for those on a tight budget and offers little more than power windows, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel and a height-adjustable driver seat. The more popular midgrade LX comes with 16-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, full power accessories, keyless entry, cruise control and a four-speaker CD/MP3 audio system with an auxiliary audio jack.

Going with a Civic EX gets you 16-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof, six-speaker audio with steering-wheel-mounted audio controls and a 60/40-split rear seatback with a rear armrest. This year's new Civic EX-L comes with leather upholstery and heated front seats. The Civic Si has most of the EX's features plus a high-output engine, sport-tuned suspension, 17-inch alloy wheels, a premium audio system and special interior trim. High-performance summer tires are an option for the Si, and a navigation system is offered for the Si and EX/EX-L models. Hybrid models are equipped similarly to the EX and have automatic climate control and optional navigation. The GX has a feature list similar to the LX's.

The limited-production Civic Mugen Si sedan has a track-tuned suspension, 18-inch wheels with more aggressive tires, performance exhaust and a specialized exterior body kit.

Powertrains and Performance

Civic DX, LX and EX models are powered by a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 140 horsepower and 128 pound-feet of torque. That power is sent through the front wheels via a five-speed manual transmission or an optional five-speed automatic. The GX also has a 1.8-liter engine, but it's fueled by clean-burning compressed natural gas and makes 113 hp. It only has a cruising range of 200 miles, but with Honda's Phill device, you can refuel from the comfort of your own garage. For the Civic Si, Honda installs a 197-hp 2.0-liter engine and an exclusive six-speed manual transmission with a performance-enhancing limited-slip front differential.

The gasoline-fueled 1.8-liter engine delivers above-average fuel economy for the small car class; 2008 EPA estimates are 24 mpg city and 36 mpg highway for an automatic-equipped Civic. The GX posts 24/36 numbers. The Hybrid, meanwhile, uses a gasoline/electric hybrid powertrain to maximize fuel economy. Its 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine is paired to the latest version of Honda's IMA technology and a continuously variable transmission to deliver 110 hp and 40/45 mpg ratings.

Safety

All Civics come with front seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and active front head restraints. Antilock brakes are also standard; EX and Si models have four-wheel discs, while the rest have rear drums. Stability control is an exclusive standard feature on the Si trim only. In government crash testing, the 2008 Honda Civic earned a perfect five stars for its protection of occupants in frontal impacts. Side-impact tests resulted in a four-star rating for front passengers and five stars for rear passengers. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the Civic its top rating of "Good" for the car's performance in frontal-offset and side-impact tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Civic's dash features an unusual layout. An analog tachometer is in the traditional location but the digital speedometer and gas gauge are at the base of the windshield. Though some drivers find the two-tier display distracting, others say it makes quick visual checks of speed easier. Otherwise, the Honda Civic continues to be one of the best small cars in terms of room, interior storage and refinement. Its controls are easy to operate and materials are of high quality. Regular Civic sedans have 12 cubic feet of trunk space; this drops to about 10 for the Hybrid and 6 for the GX due to the space taken up by the hardware of their respective powertrains.

Driving Impressions

The 2008 Honda Civic's suspension, steering and brakes all work together seamlessly, and even the mainstream models can be described as being somewhat sporty to drive. The Civic Hybrid and natural-gas GX are unfortunately a bit slow, but neither model is meant for supreme acceleration anyway. That task is taken up by the Civic Si. Possessing nimble handling and a delightfully fizzy engine, the Si is one of the few cars available in any price range that makes you want to drive it just for the sake of driving.

Talk About The 2008 Civic

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 21
  • cty
/
  • 29
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs