Used Honda Civic (06-11) guide

* Used Honda Civics from less than 3500 * Space-age looks, impressive reliability * Affordable alternative to used Golf and Focus...

Used Honda Civic (06-11) guide

When Honda launched the eighth generation of the Civic in 2006, it's safe to say the styling was a little controversial not just for the traditional Honda Civic buyer, but for the small family hatchback segment full stop. Buying a used Honda Civic looks a bargain now there's a new generation of Civic in town.

Without the brand image of a Volkswagen Golf or the sharp handling of a Ford Focus, the Civic often found itself in the class-leaders' shadows as a new car. What it does have up its sleeve, though, is Honda's legendary reliability record, which counts for a lot on the used market.

In terms of engines, you have the choice of a sluggish 98bhp 1.4-litre petrol, spritely 138bhp 1.8 petrol or torque-laden 2.2 diesel. For the best blend of power, economy and purchase price, we'd recommend you stick to the 1.8 petrol. However, if you have lots of long journeys in the diary, the diesel's extra flexibility is worth a small premium. A range-topping 2.0-litre Type-R version came in 2007.

The list of trims on offer is long, but we think going for SE gives you everything you need. It comes with air-con, alloy wheels, side airbags, remote locking and a CD player. Avoid the rare entry-level S model which does without air-con, but for a little extra style inside and bigger alloys, choose Sport trim.

The Civic's interior is almost as controversial as the exterior, and can take some time to get used to. There's enough legroom for four adults, but headroom is limited in the rear. The boot is a good size, and folding down the split rear seats will add considerably to the load space.

Mechanically, the Civic has held up extremely well - as expected. However, there have been reports of interior squeaks and rattles and excessive condensation collecting around the windows. Some owners have also said their dieselengined cars are using a lot of oil. Check the dipstick before and after your test drive.

Expect to pay around 6400 for our favourite version, an '07/57 1.8 I-VTEC SE 5dr that's done around 40,000 miles.

We found these on the forecourt

Honda Civic 1.8 i-VTEC SE 5dr
'07/57, 37,800 miles, 6470
One Stop Car Shop