Over nine generations, the Honda Civic more or less defined the modern compact car. So when it came time to create an all-new, tenth-generation Civic, Honda’s designers and engineers had an unenviable task. The 2016 Honda Civic already looks like a hit, though, thanks to a stylish new body, major efficiency improvements, and a comprehensive list of tech options.
The 2016 Civic redesign includes a refresh of the available powertrains, with improvements in both power and fuel economy. Starting with base models, there’s a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 158 horsepower and 138 pound-feet of torque. Honda says this is the most powerful engine ever offered in a base Civic, and it can be paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT automatic.
Optional on the 2016 Civic is a new turbocharged engine. This is the first time a turbo has been offered on the Civic outside the sporty Si model, and this particular engine is part of Honda’s new VTEC Turbo family. It produces 174 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque, and is available with the CVT automatic transmission only.
Both engines return impressive fuel economy. With the six-speed manual transmission, the naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter gets an EPA-rated 31 mpg combined (27 mpg city, 40 mpg highway),* which improves to 35 mpg combined (31 mpg city, 41 mpg highway) with the CVT.* The 1.5-liter turbocharged engine returns 35 mpg combined (31 mpg city, 42 mpg highway).*
The 2016 Honda Civic is available only as a four-door, five-seat sedan at the moment, although two-door coupe and five-door hatchback models will be added to the lineup at a later date. There are five available trim levels, with prices starting at $18,640.**
Standard equipment on the base Civic LX includes automatic climate control, 5.0-inch LCD screen, Bluetooth®, tilt and telescopic steering column, and a center console with sliding armrest and storage compartment.
In addition to the applicable features from the LX model, the Civic EX adds heated exterior mirrors, a power moonroof, pushbutton start, rear-seat center armrest, 60/40 split-folding rear bench, a Display Audio system with 7.0-inch touchscreen, and Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ compatibility (for applicable smartphones).
Moving further up the ladder, the Civic EX-T encompasses all of the applicable standard features from the LX and EX, and adds fog lights, a rear spoiler, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, and SiriusXM® satellite radio and HD Radio™ capability. The EX-L adds an auto-dimming rearview mirror leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and other features.
The top 2016 Civic sedan model is the Touring, and so it gets the most standard equipment. The list includes automatic LED headlights, 10-speaker premium audio system, navigation, and a full suite of electronic driver aids.
The thoroughness of Honda’s redesign efforts is immediately apparent when looking at the 2016 Civic. It abandons the outgoing model’s cab-forward look for a new shape that pushes the cabin further rearward and elongates the hood. The front and rear fasciae are also more elaborately styled, with a bold chrome grille and heavily-sculpted headlights and taillights.
Honda says the new look is not only stylish, but also functional. Thanks to features like a full underbody cover, the 2016 Civic is 12 percent more aerodynamically efficient than its predecessor, the carmaker says. And while the new sedan is slightly larger than the outgoing model (about 2.0 inches wider, with a 1.2-inch longer wheelbase), it’s also lighter. Increased use of high-strength steel cut 68 pounds from the body, Honda says.
The 2016 Civic’s interior features a sophisticated design that nicely integrates newly available tech features. Added soft-touch materials give the cabin a more premium feel, while design tricks like sleeker front seats and the use of a more compact climate-control system make the Civic roomier than one would expect of a car this size. There’s 97.8 cubic feet of total passenger volume, plus 15.1 cubic feet of trunk space.
Connectivity features include standard Bluetooth® and an optional Display Audio system with 7.0-inch central touchscreen. The Civic also adds Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ compatibility, allowing smartphone users to project key functions onto the car’s infotainment system.
Standard safety equipment on the 2016 Honda Civic includes anti-lock brakes, stability and traction controls, rearview camera, and front, front-side, and side-curtain airbags. Lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control, Honda LaneWatch™, lane-departure warning, forward-collision warning, collision-mitigation braking system, road-departure mitigation, and a rearview camera with dynamic grid lines are extra-cost options.
With impressive style, efficiency, and tech, the 2016 Honda Civic looks ready to carry on Honda’s tradition of excellence.
*Based on 2016 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions and other factors.
**MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, $835.00 destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.