Honda Civic 1.8 ZX CVT-It may be a mainstream breadwinner for Honda in the developed economies like the USA & Europe, developing nations like India still consider the Civic as a midsize sedan offering a more luxurious approach towards motoring with sporty characteristics running through its veins. For us, we only got the 8th Generation in India back in 2006.
Expensive pricing and poor fuel consumption killed what was a great four-door sedan with iconic looks.
The Engine although full of grunt and gearbox so slick, basically attracted high maintenance which killed it off in 2012. For nearly 7 Years the Civic wasn’t present in the Indian Automotive scene until 2019 when Honda decided it was the time for a comeback.
2019 saw a whole new radical-looking Civic with styling relating it to sports car design. Naturally, the Civic also comes as a Coupe but for India, it’s the Four-Door Sedan, just like before. But the new car is shorter and more compact than the previous model. It’s also built rather well and has a higher ground clearance to deal with the rough terrain. The styling, however, is the first thing that attracts you towards it. The Full LED Headlamps are segment leaders with an equally beautiful set of Tail Lamps.
The fastback design is a class apart. The uniqueness, however, stops when you open the bonnet. The same 1800cc Four-Cylinder Engine has been carried over from the previous generation but it’s been tuned to provide 2020 levels of refinement. It now provides 140 BHP & 174 NM of Torque. But since it’s mated to a CVT gearbox instead of a manual or DSG Gearbox, acceleration from 0-100 is a rather slow 11 Seconds and could nudge 200 KPH, if you’re in the right gearing.
The Civic now feels more comfortable and feels more screwed together than the previous. It also handles well but lacks the crispness the previous gen had. It feels rather less of a driver’s car than an effortless road cruiser. That is why the fuel economy has improved as it returns 12-15 KMPL but that is questionable of course. Interior space might seem cramped because of the sloping roofline but the seats provide more comfort and the dashboard is a major upgrade but doesn’t look as radical as the previous generation. Still, all the essential equipment is there like Electric Sunroof, Lane Change Cameras, Digital MID, Cruise Control, Diamond Cut Rims, etc which makes it attractive.
How does it fair to its main rival though? The Hyundai Elantra SX(O) is nearly two lakhs cheaper and provides more power and torque. It also feels like a driver’s car rather than a business jet. It also has a bigger engine at 2000cc and it could also be said, easier to maintain and run. Still why people have queued up for the new Civic? Simple, it’s a Civic. People may have forgotten about the Elantra but they never forgot the Civic. Fans eagerly waited for the new one and saw huge potential for aftermarket customizations. It proved to be so popular that Honda grabbed 1000 bookings within days and is the current sales leader.