I love this car!!!! Everything about it is truly amazing! The k20z3 engine is a true gem. The car feels pedestrian below 5,800 RPM; however, rev it past 5,800 all the way to it's 8,000 RPM redline and and you will be treated to aural ecstasy courtesy of Honda's infamous vtec technology. When i-vtec engages the car sounds like a high revving v8, pulling hard all the way to the redline. The i-vtec helps deliver top notch performance (for an N/A four cylinder) while maintaining great gas mileage and drive ability. The high revving k20 engine is pared with an unbelievably smooth short throw six speed manual gearbox. The combination of the engine and perfect shifter make this car a pleasure to drive. However, the car's practicality set it apart from other sporty car options. The seats are comfortable and will hold you snug, the air conditioner is ice cold, and the additional two doors really make life easier. Interior materials are of excellent quality and the faux suede seats with red Si stitching look great. The red gauge lighting and aluminum pedals are superb touches. Other great features include an auxillary and usb port. The car is also well equipped in the storage department. Now, the car does have its issues and those issues are why I didn't give it a perfect rating. For one, the tranny is complete garbage, which is a shame considering how smooth it shifts. My second and third gears grind on a weekly basis. They are fine under normal driving conditions; however, under spirited driving they tend to grind. My second gear loves to grind when I accelerate to the redline in first gear. This has caused me to bang off of the rev-limiter on multiple occasions in an attempt to shift into second. My second gripe with this car is the paint. Like wtf Honda? My car is a 2009! There is absolutely no excuse for fading paint on a six year old car! What makes it worse is that this problem isn't unique to the Si either. My brother's red 2009 Honda Fit is starting to turn pink :(. My last issue with this car is a performance issue. I used to own a 2000 Honda Prelude prior to buying my Si. The Prelude was miles ahead of the Si in terms of handling. The Prelude was more well balanced and neutral when attacking corners. The Si? Well, the Si feels like a wet sponge in the corners. The car's body roll and understeering tenancies are pretty noticeable and are downright scary at times.
The Civic Si is a fun car to drive. Every time I get in the driver's seat, I smile to myself, even though I'm aware that fun doesn't mean winning over all of the other sporty cars on the road to the next signal light ('cause it is probably not going to happen).
For those of you considering the Si, this is my recommendation: test drive at least 4 Civic Si's (so you know when one of these is dead). And, conduct your test drive in two phases: 1) gentle, "everyday" driving - this also allows the engine to warm up, too. 2) then, rev it out! The red line is 8000. Make it go there. If possible, turn off A/C & roll the windows down for this phase.
The clutch. Overall an ease to work with.
The gear shift. The gates are easily felt. The action is crisp. (Only comes in 6-speed manual)
The engine. Every time I rev past 6000, I'm graced with the tones of a beautiful exhaust note. (If you are considering a Si, please research what VTEC is before test driving.)
The dashboard. Often referred to as controversial, I've never found myself distracted by its layout. Like many things Honda, it doesn't look right at first, but it actually makes a lot of sense when you use it ('02-'06 CR-V parking brake).
The Sound System, sub-woofer included.
Fuel Economy. It gets good economy for being a sporty car (considering Premium requirement).
Ok, now that I've praised the '09 Civic Si, I'm going to go on a brief rampage against Honda's recent choices.
Honda, you had a great thing going with the K20Z3. Why did you chuck it in favor of the auditory disappointment of the K24Z7? I know that a bunch of whiners wanted more torque, but (honestly) they should have known that when they bought their Si. It's not THAT torque-less.
The only truly unique (market-separating) feature of the '06-'11 Si is it's engine. Specifically, the metallic bark of the VTEC crossover. And the 8000rpm red line. The suspension is good, but not unique. If I wanted less revs and longer stroke (torque), I would have bought a K24A2 ('06 TSX or something).
I considered gti and civic si. Picked si thinking it would be more reliable. I was wrong. Many things have gone wrong and Honda will not fix unless you have deep pockets. Door handles stop working, trunk will stop working, and now 2nd gear is making noises and Honda wants 700 dollars just to open it up and diagnose. I bought this car to avoid this problem and here I am with the warrantee over, and transmission issues with 2.5 years left of payments. I'm stuck with it now, bought it for performance and excitement but now it's a point a to b car that I have to skip 2nd gear. It was fun and good until this. Get a warrantee or buy another car, I have 95,000 miles on it, and I drive good.
Transmission quality, interior quality, overall quality of parts such as trunk, door handle mechanisms, noise harshness and vibration, wind and road noise on highway, rattles from glove box and sun visor, paint tends to chip easily, longer/more extensive warrantee, ac does not cool cabin easily secondary to big windshield, too much sun comes into cabin, disappointed with Honda service department for several issues unaddressed/abuse of car in parking lot, engine revs hang between shifts, lack of torque.
Drivetrain should not have issues with less than 100,000 miles.
This thing is a blast. Engine is powerful, don't be deceived by the numbers. It'll drive very comfortably for the everyday driver, but push the pedal the slightest bit and you're off. Handles like a foreign sports car. Engine has an awesome note to it as well. I just got this as my first car, and every single day I look forward to getting in that car, I love it. Couldn't ask for anything better. Great on gas too. We got it used with about 51k miles on it. Runs, looks and smells like new. Overall an outstanding car, and a thrill to drive. Even comes standard with premium audio system which includes subwoofer. Has enough power to rattle the rear view mirrors, with a motor that's smooth as silk
Had the car for over two years now. Feels alot faster than it is. I love the high revving 4. Traded an S2000 for this because of family expansion. Haven't regretted yet. Would prefer a little more power but am satisfied. I commute 82 miles round trip to work and get 28-33 mpg depending on how hard I drive it, usually 29 mpg in mixed driving. 33 mpg on long trips consistently. Great car.
8200 RPM redline, gearbox, exhaust note, USB drive.
Offer satellite radio as a stand alone option instead of coupling it with the nav.
A little more power.