My beloved 6-speed manual transmission TSX was over nine years old and enough little things were going wrong with it that it was time for a new car. With a house to remodel and kids in extracurricular activities I couldn't afford a luxury (or even sorta-luxury) performance sedan. So I was looking for a practical, reliable commuter car with an automatic transmission I could hand off to my daughter in 5 years when it's paid off and she's 16. Being a Honda/Toyota guy this made me think about a Civic. I got the EX-L since I could at least get a nicer Civic in my price range. I was expecting a major step down from my TSX, but this Civic (which I viewed as a necessity/compromise and wasn't really excited to purchase) has slowly been impressing me. In Eco mode it's the gutless wonder you expect a Civic to be but if you really stomp on the gas or take it out of Eco mode or even put it in sport mode that combination of 1.5L turbo and CVT transmission make it go right now. The 6-speed stick shift was one of my favorite things about my TSX but this Civic always seems to be in the right gear and I don't notice any clunky downshifting or lag when I press the gas. Handling is good (Honda always does that better than Toyota IMO) but then of course that makes for a rougher ride. I drove on an old patch of the 57 and got shaken and stirred. That's when you know you're in a Civic the most. The interior is pretty nice. I'm 6'2" and I fit OK but to get the most out of the legroom I have to crank the back of the seat all the way down because it goes down and back at the same time. So I pretty much have to fall down into the seat. In the end I think I'll miss my TSX's driver's seat the most, especially it's lumbar support. Sitting so low is made up for by the excellent rear-view camera and right-mirror camera. I'm using Android Auto with the Civic and the Navi is GREAT, so don't shell out extra for Honda's navi. Google Play Music found my music and playlists on my phone with no work from me but it doesn't play my podcasts. It seems like it's possible, but I haven't figured it out yet (I used Rocket Player and Doggcatcher before but Android Auto won't "channel" them through the car). Speaking of music, I'm iffy on the stereo system. The Civic has lots of speakers and very clear sound but not much oomph on the low end. I've turned down the treble, turned up the bass and shifted the balance rearward but it's still not as good as default settings were on my TSX. Interior storage cubbies are weird but plentiful. There's room for your cups, phone, sunglasses, gum, etc. but it may be down a cave and around a corner and a little dangerous to try to get at while you are driving. Overall I like this car. It doesn't come with a lot of bragging rights (I'm a 42-year old family man, though... In my twenties I probably would have been a LOT more proud of it) but my wife really likes having a fun-to-drive car back in the family for her (she doesn't drive stick and our other car is a minivan) and the best compliment I can give this Civic is that given its relative comfort (as long as my youngest can still fit behind me) and WAY better gas mileage than the minivan, it has become the weekend family commuter car, so long as we're not going to Costco or Home Depot. I wasn't expecting that to happen. I thought the Civic would be too small and too dull to want to drive any more than necessary but it has turned out to be a great not-so-little family car and it's getting lots of use. Two end notes: 1. Sorry this review has no paragraph breaks, the online form is not allowing me to hit enter. 2. Gas mileage includes driving over hills to work every day.
First, it's a very nice looking car. The 1.5 turbo should be the standard engine, it's great. Seats are very comfortable compared to the Prius I came from. Handling is predictable but not extremely tight. Wish there were more choices for interior color, I'm not a huge fan of black interiors. My biggest disappointment is in Honda not providing more Honda Sensing versions of the EX-T. My dealer says he has no control over inventory. A search shows very few with Honda Sensing EX-T models. That being said, that is the model I wanted but ended up without it. Mileage is good ~38mpg. I'm disappointed in the stereo sound, cheap speakers in a $25k car is well.... cheap. The electronics are a bit confusing and layout seems odd, but I'll likely get used to it in time. Though the stereo/car settings have some pretty cool features. Wind noise is superb compared to my 3rd gen Prius. Warranty is miserable, warranty length defines confidence in their product. Transmission has a slight delay and then a thud when shifting into reverse. USB ports are a bit awkward to get to and I wish there were some for the rear seats. The clear film you can get for the nose and mirrors wasn't offered but it should be. We had an Accord that was a mess after four years. Simple things - I love auto up/down for both front windows, I like that I don't have to turn cruise control "on" each time I get in the car, I like manual seats, I also like heated seats. Overall, its the car I wanted in the price range it sits at. Others are close but this is the clear leader of the pack. Honda has some details they need to work out though to put away first place in my eyes.
We, my wife and I have always drove Hondas. This is our fourth iteration of the Civic. Test drove the EX-T 1.5L Turbo and the one we settled on was the 2.0 EX Sedan. To tell you the truth, not a huge difference in acceleration and performance between the 1.5T and 2.0. Just a 1mpg difference between the two engines. The 2.0 accelerates well from a stop as well as on the freeway and passing maneuvers. Never worried about merging with traffic, CVT performs well and always in the correct ratio when needed. Even in ECO mode, performance is diminished some, but transmission/engine will engage when needed for passing etc. The 7.0" Center Dash Digital Display takes a while to understand. A little slow on input response, but works fine. Cloth interior on center console, and armrests etc. gets soiled very easily and material feels a bit flimsy. Not sure how well it will hold up, time will tell. From our first CVCC, to our 1988, then 2002, to our current 2017. Lesson learned, always stick with an reliable, well engineered car! Wife loves it...oh btw, we purchased the white orchid pearl color, nice...
I have the CVT 1.5 L turbo sedan. This car is outstanding in every way except for two things, one big and and one small. The display screen is just as bad as everyone is saying. It's not at all intuitive, is way too complicated, and simply has too much technology which is accessible only by staring at the screen and figuring out how to find what you want. That dangerous when you're driving and don't have anyone to do it for you sitting in the front seat. Changing a radio station, for example, thus becomes more complicated than in a car with simple dials to turn and buttons to push. This is a major drawback. A second drawback is the tilt and telescopic controls can't be felt, and thus can't be located when you're driving. They're hidden away so badly that the only way to know where they are is to pull over, stop the car, get out and stick your head underneath the stearing column and look for them. Despite these weaknesses, though, the car has really good power and acceleration and amazing gas mileage, and lots of room and storage space.