2016 Honda Civic: Testing the 10-Speaker Sound System
by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on July 21, 2016
Our 2016 Honda Civic is the top-level Touring trim. Among a few other exclusive features (LED headlights and a power front passenger seat, for example), it comes with a 10-speaker stereo system. The system is rated at 450 watts of power, according to Honda, and is the most premium factory system ever to be put in a Civic.
Pleasingly, it lives up to its billing.
The speaker setup consists of four mid-range speakers (one in each front door and two in the rear deck behind the rear seats), four tweeters (one at the base of each A-pillar and two again in the rear deck), a center channel speaker on top of the dashboard and then a subwoofer mounted in the rear deck.
An A-pillar tweeter
The rear deck
From inside the trunk
I'm not going to claim to be an audiophile, but I have spent plenty of time with our Civic. For a system in a so-called economy car, I'm impressed. Instruments and voices are distinctly staged and, if you're of a younger generation, you'll probably enjoy the robust bass response and way you can give the volume a good cranking. I don't think the system is quite as accurate or faithful to sound quality as some premium-branded systems I've listened to, but if you're just looking for something you can plug your phone into and immediately enjoy, it definitely delivers.
Speed-dependent automatic volume and DTS Neural Surround are adjustable features.
There's also a "DTS Neural Surround" feature that supposedly imbues regular two-channel audio with a surround-sound-like quality. I tested it out on a few different pieces of music, and the results were mixed. Some songs sounded more rich and distinct, while others were different but not noticeably "better." Either way, though, you're getting an extra add-on to play with that's not often found on standard systems.
The 2016 Civic Touring has an MSRP of $26,500 (not including destination), which is $1,800 more than the EX-L with Navigation trim level below it. The 10-speaker system doesn't justify that price by itself, but it does help make the Touring a suitably desirable model at the top of the range.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 8,282 miles