The First Drive review of the 2017 Honda Civic Si from the experts at Edmunds. Sit up front with Edmunds editor Carlos Lago as he takes the 2017 Honda Civic Si sport compact for a spin. This is the first turbocharged Si, making 205 horsepower like the previous model but with plenty more torque and a stronger midrange. Watch to find out what else he likes about it and also what disappoints him.
[MUSIC PLAYING] CARLOS LAGO: This is the new Honda Civic Si. This is the first turbocharged Honda Civic Si. This engine uses a 1 and 1/2 turbocharged four cylinder that you get also in the CRV and other Civic models. But here, it makes 205 horsepower. That is the exact same amount of horsepower as the previous Si. So if you're kind of disappointed, don't worry because this car makes plenty more torque. The result is a mid-range that feels a lot brawnier and stronger than any Civic Si in the history of man has felt. Although, I got to say the top end performance might suffer. Si, at least to me, is a Civic that revved higher, that screamed, that was definitely naturally aspirated. But as performance requirements continue to increase with performance cars, they had to turn to turbocharging. Automakers have to employ turbochargers. The result in this case it is 6,500 RPM redline, a power peak at about 5,700 RPM, which is a lot lower than you'd get out of a Si of yore. Although, the power is a lot greater here, so it's kind of neither here nor there. Overall though, this car is light. It manages to stay under 3,000 pounds regardless if you get a coup or a sedan. And that's a commendable thing in this price point because the competition-- your WRX, your Focus ST, and so on are going to weigh a lot more than this thing does. Even if this thing's power doesn't quite match theirs, the power to weight, which is more important, might be closer. Being from the drive is the important part of a sport compact. And I got to say the Civic does that pretty well. The steering is lacking a lot in feel, and that's what you get out of modern electronically assisted power steering systems. But the resistance in the wheel feels very good, which is a nice thing. This car has a limited slip differential, which you like out of a front drive or actually any kind of drive car. But my biggest disappointment is the stability control, which you can't turn off at all. You can lessen it by hitting the button that says VSA, but there is no way to fully defeat the stability control. Now, it's more of a philosophical complaint than a natural one because when the stability control is coming on and interacting, it does something very in a way that's hard to feel. You'll notice if we're doing something way wrong, like when you have the steering wheel cranked all the way over to the left and you mat the gas. You won't get any response out of it because if you did get response, it would just burn up in useless understeer. If I'm going to make a mistake, let me make a mistake. I got to say the system does work well. It does only intervene in situations where it really should. I don't buy that you would be fastest with it on all the time. But as of right now, there's no way to turn it off, and that's frustrating, even if it does work OK. That said, the Civic Si altogether starts at just underneath $24,000 and is a pleasant sport compact. The way the previous Si was even if the character of the powertrain has changed quite a bit with this new turbocharged engine, or this new turbocharging application in the Si. I'm just so happy you can get it with a six-speed manual. Thank you guys for watching. If you want to see more, stay tuned and visit edmunds.com. [MUSIC PLAYING]