Let’s be honest, driving a Civic isn’t something many would desire, or expect much of – but after sampling a couple of models – there’s a simple summary – this is a very polished effort from Honda. They’ve produced a vastly improved version of the long-standing Civic nameplate. A car that never quite managed to generate a level of engagement or sense of flare.
The new model looks sharp, especially on the as tested RS model. It features a slick body kit that integrates well with the new look.
The drive is no longer vanilla and bland. The front end its very sharp, you really can have a bit of fun when the time calls. It has a flat stance and above average body control. The brakes deserve special mention, with great peddle feel that inspires confidence. It’s a fun drive without being an all out tarmac eater.
Don’t expect a rocket. The 1.5-litre turbo charged engine pumps out 127kW at 220Nm. Not spectacular figures and it shows. Combined with a CVT transmission it does a reasonable job of getting along. But don’t expect any wheel slip or blistering off the line sprints. Under heavy acceleration it also produces a less than inspiring engine note. Sure no one expects epic performance from a Civic, but why then throw in the RS tag?
Interior wise it’s a decent affair, with quality plastics and modern look. A fully digital instrument cluster brings the Civic inline with 2016 standards.
On the technology front it’s very well packed. With a raft of driver assists including lane keep assist and automatic cruise control. Apple CarPlay and DAB+ radio always tickle my fancy.
Fuel efficiency is great, I averaged 6.2L / 100km. That rivals my own TOYOTA Camry Hybrid. An Eco mode and constant variable green indicators across the instrument panel serve as a visual guide to help you sip as little fuel as possible.
Priced from $31,790 the Civic RS is a little steep. Things to take into account include the lack of built-in Satellite Navigation, you’ll need to use your own data via Apple CarPlay to enable maps.
But in conclusion the Honda Civic RS is a polished performer. It feels light yet very well-built. It’s precise steering will be appreciated by those who like to drive with a little gusto. Despite the price and lack of entertaining performance I still find it hard to award it with anything less than the EFTM Credit Rubber Stamp of Approval.
Chris is EFTM’s Motoring Editor, driving everything from your entry level hatch to the latest Luxury cars through to the Rolls Royce.
He has been in the media for 20 years, produced three Olympic games broadcasts, attending Beijing 2008 & London 2012.
Strangely he owns a Toyota Camry Hybrid, he defiantly rejects the knockers.
Chris is married to Gillian and resides in Sydney’s North West. They have Sam the English Springer Spaniel and Felix the Burmese cat to keep them company, and recently welcomed baby Henry to the family.