The Honda Civic is a sterling example of a fine showing in the compact car class. It illustrates some of the reasons that Honda has dominated the automotive industry in years past.
With some alterations and upgrades to previous years, the 2019 model is better than ever.
- LX: $19,450
- Sport: $21,150
- EX: $23,200
- EX-L: $24,600
- EX-L w/ Navi: $26,250
- Touring: $27,300
- Sport Touring: $28,750
Trims are offered in a variety of body sizes ranging from sedans to coupes to hatchbacks.
The Honda Civic has never been a speed demon, but the available range of engines for 2019 gives you the option to turn this sporty compact car into a sprinter capable of muscling through highway traffic with exceptional handling. The Civic comes standard with a 2.0-liter four-stroke engine that manages a healthy 158-horsepower. Paired with the six-speed manual transmission, this powertrain provides adequate torque and horsepower for the Civic’s size.
An optional turbocharged engine is available in higher trims, boasting four cylinders and 1.5-liters combined with a continuously variable automatic transmission. Together, this slightly pricier powertrain scales the Civic’s roar up to 174-horsepower. Hatchback versions of the Civic have slightly more power, boasting 180-horsepower with the same engine.
If you’re really interested in performance, you might benefit from one of the Civic’s sister models: the Civic Si or Civic Type R, which are technically different models of vehicle entirely but champion much stronger engines. The Civic Si manages 205-horsepower in a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder powertrain whilst the Type R exceeds all expectations at 306-horsepower. That staggering total comes from the turbocharged 2.0-liter powertrain. Both of these more performance-based engines come paired with a manual six-speed transmission.
When it comes to handling, you’re hard-pressed to find a better compact car than the Civic. Quick and responsive steering means that you’ll be able to navigate even in cramped parking lots and busy streets, but the healthy power under the hood gives you maneuverability even on the highway. This is a fun car to drive and Honda has clearly put forth maximum effort in ensuring we remember the 2019 Civic for years to come.
One more reason to remember the 2019 Honda Civic is for its fuel efficiency, which measures among the highest in the class and ensures savings after purchase. The myriad variety of trims and engine choices makes listing them all here tedious, but the finest of the Civic’s showings ends up at 32 mpg in the city and 42 mpg on the highway. These numbers are only matched by hybrid members of the class. In keeping with the standard give-and-take, you’ll experience slightly diminished efficiency as your vehicle’s horsepower escalates.
The Civic’s exterior styling was updated for 2019, streamlining the vehicle’s curves and scooping sections from the side doors to cut weight and reduce drag. Since the Civic is a compact car, there wasn’t a ton of weight to shave off, but the year’s redesign goes a long way towards making the vehicle look even trendier than in past years.
Seating quantity won’t change too much depending on the size of Civic you select. Only the Type R breaks the mold by offering four seats instead of the standard five. Every Civic has a roomy front seat and adequate room in the back, but if you’re looking for maximum transportation, the sedan’s backseat is the best-spaced in the line.
Given the nature of the Civic as a baseline vehicle, it would’ve been easy for Honda to skimp on luxury and high-end materials in the interior. However, even base models use upscale cloths and plastics to make sure that you’re comfortable no matter what price you paid. Upon upgrading to the Civic EX-L, you’ll benefit from the addition of leather upholstery and a self-dimming rear mirror. Even with the Civic Touring, you’ll receive heated seats.
Safety and Infotainment
Honda has long been committed to ensuring driver safety. Nowhere is that clearer than in the newly standard Honda Sensing suite. This suite of safety features includes forward collision warnings and adaptive cruise control, an equally standardized angled rear-view mirror serving to cut down on blind spots and possible gaps in the driver’s vision. The choice of an optional LaneWatch camera that keeps track of your passenger-side blind spot is available for drivers particularly concerned about road safety.
The Civic received great scores from the two major advisory groups. The NHTSA awarded the Civic their maximum overall score of five stars, only noting a single docked point when it came to the Civic’s ability to withstand direct frontal collisions. The IIHS awarded the Civic their maximum score of Good in every area except for headlight illumination, which received a Poor.
These scores create the image of a vehicle that’s safe for the whole family, and for the most part, that’s true. Plus, with the addition of Honda Sensing, there’s no need for extended available safety features. That said, those who seek customization in their vehicles might find the lack of extra features demoralizing.
Infotainment is one area where the Civic doesn’t quite perform. The base model sports only a five-inch display. So, if you want a touchscreen, you’ll need to upgrade to the seven-inch touch-based screen featured in the Civic Sport. In an interesting move, a physical turn-knob was standardized in the 2019 year. Likely as results of complaints by drivers that the touchscreen volume controls were difficult to work while they were behind the wheel.
Honda has long been a titan of the industry. Taking the 2019 Honda Civic into account, it’s not hard to see why. If their work in 2019 is any indication, we can’t wait to see what they have waiting for us in 2020.