Honda Civic review

Category: Family car

Section: Costs & verdict

Available fuel types:petrol, diesel
Available colours:
Honda Civic Hatchback 2019 dashboard RHD
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RRP £19,725What Car? Target Price from£18,406

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2

Broadly speaking, the Honda Civic is priced in line with the Volkswagen Golf. That means it's cheaper to buy than an Audi A3 but is quite a bit pricier than a Skoda Octavia or Vauxhall Astra. It won't hold onto its value quite as well as its German rivals, but depreciation isn't a big concern, either. Honda is also competitive when it comes to PCP finance deals.

Out of the petrols, the turbocharged 1.0-litre unit is the most fuel-efficient choice and emits the least CO2, so it's definitely the one to go for if you're a company car driver. It certainly beats the equivalent Octavia, officially returning 49.6mpg versus the Skoda’s 43.6mpg, and nudges it for CO2 emissions at 107g/km versus 108g/km. 

We'd recommend the 1.0-litre petrol to most private buyers, too. The 1.5 is tempting if you're looking for something a bit nippier, but it’ll cost more to buy and run in almost every way.

The 1.6-litre diesel is one of the cleanest and most fuel-efficient oil-burners on the market, returning an impressive 62.8mpg, and there's no doubt that its competitive CO2 emissions – from just 90g/km – will keep company car tax bills down. This engine doesn’t, however, offer a compelling enough package to tempt us to change our pick of the Civic range. 

Equipment, options and extras

Entry-level SE trim gets you DAB radio, Bluetooth connectivity, air-con and front and rear parking sensors. SR trim is our pick, though, which adds the 7in infotainment system with sat-nav, plus a leather-trimmed steering wheel and gearknob, driver seat lumbar adjustment, and a reversing camera for not a lot more money.

EX trim adds extra safety kit including blindspot monitoring and cross-traffic alert, along with keyless entry and start, a leather interior, passenger seat lumbar adjustment and a sunroof. You also get the adaptive damper system on this trim, with Normal and Sport levels of firmness. If you add the Tech Pack to EX, you also get wireless smartphone charging, LED headlights and heated rear seats.

EX Sportline is Honda’s way of giving buyers the edgy Type R styling in a more insurance-friendly package, with a sporty-looking body kit and upholstery design but no dynamic changes to the way the car drives.

Honda Civic Hatchback 2019 dashboard RHD

Reliability

Honda performed well in the 2019 What Car? Reliability Survey, finishing 10th out of 31 manufacturers. The Civic itself fared well in our family car category, too.

The Civic comes with a three-year/90,000-mile warranty as standard – that's about par for the course time wise, but its mileage limit is higher than the 60,000-mile limit imposed by Volkswagen and Skoda.

Safety and security

Honda has included an extremely competitive list of safety equipment as standard across the Civic range. Beyond its six airbags, every car gets automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assistance, adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition and intelligent speed assist. 

In its Euro NCAP safety tests the Civic scored five stars overall, and when it came to the adult protection category it totted up very nearly as many stars as one of the safest cars in the class, the Mercedes A-Class. However, Euro NCAP also highlighted that the Civic isn’t as good as that car at looking after kids in the rear seats, or any unfortunate pedestrians should the worst happen.

On the security side, an immobiliser is standard on all Civics, while an alarm is standard from SR trim upwards, although security experts Thatcham Research has yet to publish its scores for how well the Civic guards against thieves.

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Honda Civic Hatchback 2019 front tracking RHD
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Overview

The Honda Civic is good to drive, has a big boot and comes with lots of standard kit. It still can’t match the Volkswagen Golf in terms of performance, handling or refinement, but the Civic offers a generously sized boot, good selection of technology and competitive servicing packages. It’s a shame the infotainment system is so poor, though.

  • Decent to drive
  • Lots of standard safety kit
  • Big boot
  • Woeful infotainment system
  • Rear head room could be better
  • A bit too noisy

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