2012 Honda Civic

DX FWD 2-Dr Coupe I4 man trans

DX FWD 2-Dr Coupe I4 man trans

2012 honda civic Reviews and News

Five Car Comparo Parked Front View
The majority of the compact-sedan class has been heavily revised or totally redesigned in the past two years, and Dodge has just rolled out its Alfa Romeo-based Dart, the latest entry in a hotly contested segment. Will the Dart be able to topple the best of the bunch from the top spot?
The 2013 Dart is more than just a new model -- it is Dodge's first competitive small-car offering since the Neon was killed off in 2005. Most notably, it is the first Dodge byproduct of the Chrysler-Fiat merger. Modified versions of the same platform and powertrain found in Alfa Romeo's Giulietta hatchback hide beneath the Dart's slick sheetmetal.
Last year, we rounded up the top six compact sedans and we came away impressed by the high style, advanced technology, and fun-yet-frugal engines offered in the segment. To see how the Dart compares, we've pitted it against the top four contenders from last year's test: the Ford Focus, the Honda Civic, the Hyundai Elantra, and the Mazda 3. Last time, the Toyota Corolla and the Chevrolet Cruze finished in last place and second-to-last (respectively), so we opted to leave them out of this comparison.
We wanted to look at what most consumers will be buying, so we avoided top-trim models in favor of automatic-equipped, mid-grade sedans. There were two exceptions: Ford did not have a sedan available for our testing so we used a hatchback instead (however, almost half of Focuses sold this year were hatchbacks, so we let it slide). We wanted to test the Dart's new MultiAir 1.4-liter turbo-four, but Chrysler had just begun production of its new dual-clutch automatic, so a six-speed manual had to suffice for our test. In this very competitive group, does the 2013 Dodge Dart Rallye have what it takes to beat the 2012 Ford Focus SEL, the 2012 Honda Civic EX, the 2013 Hyundai Elantra GLS, and the 2012 Mazda 3i Touring?

Dollars and Sense

For many buyers in this segment, it's all a numbers game. Our most expensive car - the Ford Focus - rang in at $25,420 with destination. However, that includes $3325 worth of options. Forego the finicky MyFord Touch and navigation systems, the flashy 17-inch polished aluminum wheels, and the premium red candy metallic paint, and the Focus would cost an easier-to-swallow $22,565 and still include goodies such as heated seats and Ford's Sync voice-activation system with Bluetooth. Sadly, even those deletions still place the Focus higher than all but the Dart.
All of our cars came equipped with Bluetooth, but only the Focus and the Dart came with navigation. Dodge's crisp 8.4-inch touch screen also includes a backup camera -- the only one offered in the segment. The high level of equipment gave the Dart the second-most-expensive price here: $23,360 with destination. One of the big reasons was the MultiAir engine, a $1300 option. Our Rallye-trim car also came standard with projector-beam headlights (only available elsewhere from Mazda). The Mazda and the Honda Civic were mid-pack price-wise, running a reasonable $21,695 and $21,455 including destination charges, respectively.
At an as-tested price of just $19,350 (including destination), the Hyundai Elantra is a whopping $6070 below the most-expensive Focus. While it may not be the most tech-laden of the bunch, our Elantra GLS with the Preferred Package included things such as heated seats, Bluetooth, and fog lights. Hyundai also offers the best warranty of the cars here, at 10 years or 100,000 miles, which helps to keep costs down over the lifetime of the car. Buyers willing to splurge on a fully loaded Elantra Limited will shell out just $24,070.
Advantage: Hyundai Elantra GLS

The Inside Story

"The level of amenities and comfort here were unimaginable in the compact-sedan segment only a few years ago," stated deputy editor Joe DeMatio. Even in the blandly styled Civic, it's clear that plenty of man-hours were spent determining the placement and action of every button, knob, and switch in the cabin. While the Civic may have some of the best ergonomics, its drab beige palette, oddly grained plastics, and too-dark displays left us wanting more.
Hyundai was one of the first to spice up the segment with the Elantra and its swoopy, violin shaped center stack and fashionable-yet-simple concentric climate controls. While the Koreans have done an admirable job of graining plastics, some of the surfaces still look and feel cheap. The Elantra does benefit from the largest trunk in the group, at 14.8 cubic feet. Next would be the Focus sedan (not the hatch we tested) at 13.2 cubic feet, followed closely by the Dart's 13.1 cubic feet with an opening that is deep and wide. The other two cars fell below the Dart's size: the Civic at 12.5, and the 3 at 11.8. However, the Mazda's low lift-over height and deep, square shape belied its smallest-in-test measurement. (I found it easiest to enter, exit, and fit my slim 5'9" frame in the Mazda's trunk, as the pictures show.)
Decked out here with the optional MyFord Touch system complete with an eight-inch touch screen, the Focus' cabin oozed European sophistication. "It feels like a very high quality car," said DeMatio. It was also the only car in our comparison to come with automatic climate control, which is part of the $2530 201A equipment group. However, "every button is too small, even the digital ones on the touch screen," complained road test editor Chris Nelson. Foregoing the MyFord Touch system won't solve the problem either - without the touch screen, the Focus' center stack is sprayed with almost two dozen cell-phone-sized buttons that are no easier to operate than the slow and counter-intuitive MyFord Touch. "The dashboard is so overwhelming in every Focus I've driven," noted graphic designer Tom Hang. "There are just so many buttons and controls."
Stepping into the Mazda 3 from any of the other four cars was a breath of fresh air. The cabin is thoughtfully laid out with straightforward controls, and the look is attractive with a sweeping dashboard and modern, blue LED accent lighting. Everything is clear, legible, and within reach. Contributor Ron Sessions loved "the large gauge that indicates what gear you're in. It looks like it is right out of a Porsche." But the all-black interior was dour and dated to some eyes, and Mazda's too-small audio and trip computer screens won no fans.
While the Dodge's interior may not have been well liked among our editors, we found ourselves talking non-stop about the cabin's size. Our Dart was decked out in diesel gray cloth with "citrus" accents - a very bold combination of a drab gray hue and an eye-searing neon yellow. The Dodge was also, however, the largest car in our test and felt a class bigger when you were sitting in any of the seats, despite head- and legroom that actually fall mid-pack. The more time we spent in the car, the clearer it became that Chrysler's engineers made sure that every touch point was soft and that the controls were all quick to learn and easy to operate. As is the case in other Chrysler products, the oversized touch screen is sharp and lightning-fast in response. There were some complaints that the citrus accents could soil easily and that the gray gave the interior a rental-car-grade feel. Dodge also offers black/red and black/gray interior combinations that look much more upscale than our citrus-trimmed tester.
Advantage: Dodge Dart Rallye

Skin Deep Beauty

Until recently, function led form with inexpensive cars; thankfully, that is no longer the case for most of the segment. Not for all, however: the Honda Civic was variously described by our editors as "bland," "conservative," and "downright boring." Sessions claimed that the Honda was "straight from Planet Strange with its odd proportions and disappointing details," while associate web editor Ben Timmins faulted Honda "for not pushing the envelope in terms of the design."
Surprisingly, bland was a word also tossed around regarding the Dart. While the front and rear fascias were stylish and aggressive - the Rallye-spec blacked-out grille looked menacing in rearview mirrors and the LED taillights were a premium touch on a sub-$25,000 car - the rest of the exterior was an anonymous jelly-bean shape. Despite having reflectors that mimic the larger Dodge Charger's alluring "racetrack" full-width LED taillights, only the top-spec Dart R/T receives a similar treatment; all other models have C-shaped LED units only - a real styling let down.
Mazda also offers LED taillights, but only on its loaded Mazda 3 Grand Touring. Our mid-level Touring model was still sharp, dressed in cheery sky blue metallic paint. The 2012 update softened the 3's Cheshire cat grin, but the front visage still has a gaping smile of a grille that may not appeal to everyone. The rest of the car is athletic looking with swollen front fenders and a sharp crease bisecting the door handles and rising from the front doors to the taillights. It's a sporty design free of overwrought detailing.
The eye catcher of the group was the Elantra. Hyundai's Fluidic Sculpture design language translates well to the 178.3-inch-long sedan, its flowing lines deemed "sexy and sensuous" by Nelson and "far from boring with all its surface excitement" according to Sessions. The front end has one of the best executions of the brand's hexagonal grille and the rear is simple but interesting thanks to the wraparound taillights. That said, all of our editors agreed that the Elantra's design may be sexy and innovative now, but could look as dated as a flip phone in five years -- that consensus kept the Hyundai from winning in the exterior design department.
Both timeless and daring at the same time is Ford's Focus. "The Focus is one sharp little character that manages to look beautiful and aggressive at the same time," opined Sessions. "I'm not sure the Darth Vader chin will stand the test of time, but it's contemporary as hell." Like the interior, the exterior is very Euro-chic with large wraparound taillights, creased bodylines, and a steeply raked windshield. We feel that the Focus' design is mature and will age well as the years go by; it looks like a package designed by a single, very experienced team.
Advantage: Ford Focus SEL

Getting From A to B

No matter how much it costs, how stylish the interior or how good it looks, the main use of a car is to drive. But we weren't looking for the ultimate driver's car here, instead we sought the best all-around consumer compact.
When our testing started, we expected the Elantra to rank highly here -- at first, the ride was comfortable and the Elantra felt like an ideal commuter car. The more time we spent with the Hyundai, though, the more its wallowy ride on the highway, its poorly controlled body motions in the twisties, and harsh impacts on broken roads worked against it. Sessions also noted that "the steering lacks feel and is rather numb." Everyone came away unimpressed with the Elantra's dynamics.
The best driver's car here is the Ford Focus, hands down. The 2.0-liter I-4 is powerful - its 160 hp is tied with the Dart as the most powerful - and the chassis is rock-solid, which inspires confidence behind the wheel. "The supple ride quality, precise steering, and responsive brake pedal feel are all very good for a car of this class," said DeMatio. Thanks to the spot-on steering, the Focus was a breeze to wheel around town and easy to place in the middle of a highway lane, no matter how narrow or badly patched. The Ford's biggest demerit came from the company's new PowerShift dual-clutch automatic. Around town, the PowerShift is clunky and hesitant between shifts, and often hunts for the right gear at low speeds. Once on the highway (and in sixth gear), it's fine but overdrive gives little passing power. Thankfully, downshifts at speed are smooth and unobtrusive.
The Dart was a close second in the race for best driver's car. Selecting the turbocharged engine paid off - the forced-induction unit was the most fun to wind up and felt the most powerful thanks to its 184 lb-ft of torque avaliable at a low 2500 rpm. But find yourself below that 2500-rpm threshold and the Dodge bogs down, its heaviest-in-test weight of 3191 lbs very apparent. The six-speed manual has long throws but great clutch feel; however, we couldn't help but wonder if the upcoming dual-clutch automatic would keep the turbo spooled better than we did. Will the Chrysler-engineered transmission be as slick as Volkswagen's much-lauded DSG or as much-maligned as Ford's PowerShift? More than anything, the Dart felt like the quirky car of the bunch, its inner Alfa Romeo coming out - we agreed that it almost was like an older Saab 9-3 or Audi A4 1.8T thanks to its slow-spooling turbo and larger size.
Also occasionally short of breath was the 155-hp Mazda. Its power rating placed it mid-pack, but any kind of passing left us wanting more oomph. Otherwise, the direct-injected 2.0-liter Skyactiv four-cylinder felt peppy around town and had enough power for getting up to speed on the highway. "Acceleration off the line is good without being abrupt," said DeMatio. "Transmission shift mapping is also nicely done, and the tap-shift is quick to respond," pointed out Sessions. The 3's steering was also second-best to the Ford's, nicely weighted and direct -- however, the suspension caused some head bounce over the pothole-strewn roads of downtown Detroit.
The Honda Civic was the Goldilocks of our group -- neither too stiffly sprung to turn off commuters, nor too soft to spurn enthusiasts. "I actually changed lanes on our way into Detroit to get on worse roads to test the Civic. Not only did it pass with flying colors, but the Honda has brilliant ride and handling paired to a responsive and creamy powertrain," raved Timmins. "Somewhere a Hyundai engineer is scratching his head trying to figure out how to make a car ride this well." The Civic also had very good steering. It communicated just the right amount of feel from the front tires and the wheel itself was the best size and shape with its small diameter and thick rim. The transmission was down a cog compared to the rest (five instead of six), but was still smooth and unobtrusive, which is "exactly what most Americans expect from an automatic," DeMatio pointed out. The Civic wasn't perfect, however: Honda's quest for cost savings sacrificed sound deadening, and the steering, while communicative, felt too boosted to be as good as the Ford's or Mazda's.
Advantage: Honda Civic EX

Your Mileage May Not Vary

Our contenders' EPA fuel economy ratings all fell within spitting distance of one another:
1. Hyundai Elantra GLS: 29/40 mpg city/highway
2. Mazda 3i Touring: 28/40 mpg
3. Honda Civic EX: 28/39 mpg
4. Dodge Dart Rallye: 27/39 mpg
5. Ford Focus SEL: 27/37 mpg
As we found during our First Drive - the Mazda 3 will achieve 40 mpg on the highway in the real world. Like the Elantra, the Mazda achieves 40 mpg without any special packages. However, the 2.0-liter Skyactiv I-4 is the only Mazda 3 engine that achieves the rating - the base 2.0-liter is good for just 33 mpg highway, while the larger 2.5 manages only 29 mpg. Hyundai offers just one engine for all Elantra sedans.
Both Honda and Ford offer high-mileage variants (the Civic HF and Focus SFE, respectively), but ask for extra coinage to gain efficiency. For the Honda, the HF costs $20,395 compared to the $19,595 Civic LX on which it's based (an $800 difference) and is rated at 41 mpg highway versus 39 mpg. For just $95, Ford will add the SFE package to a Focus SE sedan, gaining an additional three highway mpg (37 versus 40). Both Honda and Ford utilize aerodynamic tricks like different wheels, low rolling resistance tires, and active grille shutters to achieve the higher highway ratings.
Speaking of efficiency, the Dodge is not only the second-least car here, but it is also the only car in our test to recommend premium fuel. While it can be filled with regular, the automaker doesn't guarantee the full 160 hp and 184 lb-ft of power if regular is used, although Chrysler says fuel economy would be unaffected.
Advantage: Hyundai Elantra GLS

The Winner

You can't go wrong with any of the five cars here. The Hyundai Elantra won two categories, the only car to do so, and is a perfectly competent small car. Said Timmins, "If you're looking at a Toyota Corolla because you think you have to, look at the Hyundai instead." But the fact that the Elantra is a better variant of a long-in-the-tooth car does not endear us to it over the others here, despite the Elantra’s bargain price and (by a hair) best-in-test EPA numbers. The Hyundai Elantra lands in fifth place.
Ford went out on a limb, trying a clean-sheet design and was willing to push the envelope. In some ways it worked, in others it didn't. The Focus was the most fun to drive of the five, but at the cost of fuel economy, cabin space, and a high price. Technology issues also prevented the Focus from a better finish - MyFord Touch's clunky and slow interface turned off even the technophiles in our group and the poorly calibrated transmission had us drawing straws for who would be stuck in traffic with the Ford. Thus the Focus landed in fourth place. In quite the opposite direction from the Ford, Honda opted to stick to its tried-and-true formula. Thanks to its slick transmission, smooth ride, and thoughtful ergonomics, the Honda Civic finds itself dead center with a third-place finish. However, a low-rent interior, boring design, and obvious cost-cutting keeps this veteran of the compact sedan segment from placing higher. In quite the opposite direction from the Ford, Honda opted to stick to its tried-and-true formula. Thanks to its slick transmission, smooth ride, and thoughtful ergonomics, the Honda Civic finds itself dead center with a third place finish. However, a low-rent interior, boring design, and obvious cost-cutting keeps this veteran of the compact sedan segment from placing higher.
None of the six editors agreed on how the second- through fifth-place cars would rank, but the victor was unanimous. Despite being the newest entry in the field, the Dodge Dart did not win. However, its second-place finish shows that the merger of Chrysler and Fiat has a lot of promise. Dodge has crafted a car that drives well, looks good, and has space to spare, but "you can't put a few funky touches on a car and expect everyone to like it," remarked Nelson. The turbocharged engine is peaky and a price that's on the high side kept the Dart from the top spot. The Dodge put up a good fight, but came up a little short.
"It's funny," noted Sessions, "the oldest car in the test feels like comfortable sneakers." In fact, all of our editors related the Mazda 3 to perfectly-worn-in shoes. One commented, "Getting into the Mazda, even for the first time, feels like you're at home. Everything is exactly as it should be." Our logbooks filled with comments like "I can't think of many negatives about the 3" (DeMatio) and "a great all-rounder that has everything you need and nothing you don't" (Timmins). What kept us from naming the Mazda as last year's winner was an unrefined five-speed automatic and poor fuel economy. Both issues are remedied by opting for the new Skyactiv powertrain.
Nelson hit the nail on the head: "I've got nothing to add to the pile of praise for this car. The 3 is so good. No matter what, the Mazda is always an enjoyable experience." It might not have won any individual categories, but with its combination of a reasonable price, a user-friendly and attractive interior, a stylish exterior design, fun-to-drive road manners, and excellent fuel economy, the Mazda 3 can’t be beat.
2012 Honda Civic Si Race Car HPD Front Left View
The only one way to fully appreciate the Honda Civic Si Coupe that Honda Performance Development has created for grassroots racers is to first drive the fresh-from-the-showroom 2012 Civic Si Coupe on its available high-performance tires.
2012 Honda Civic Si Race Car HPD Front Left View 2
We recently did so, completing two laps at the 2.5-mile Willow Springs International Raceway. The factory-built Civic Si is rather impressive for a car with a sticker price of $23,175. A hint of a snarl came from the tailpipe when the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine started up. We got ourselves comfortably situated and took off from pit lane, soon bending hard left into Castrol Corner. The Si was easy to drive, very predictable, and impressively fast, topping 100 mph as we came all the way around through Turn Nine and flashed across the start-finish line on the half-mile-long main straightaway.
But this is a sport suspension for the street, not a racing suspension for the track. The Si wiggled upon entering the turns and squirmed as physical forces built up while completing them. The body rolled a fair bit as well.
The racing car donated for comparison was from the stable of Compass360 Racing, whose driver Lawson Aschenbach won the 2011 title in the SCCA World Challenge's TC division. (The Civic will also run in the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge.)
We strapped in behind its wheel and completed two more laps. This SCCA-spec Civic Si is faster, but to the driver the difference is hardly discernible because of the greater poise in the corners. This poise starts with slightly wider racing slicks that are mounted on 17-inch forged aluminum wheels. About $10,000-worth of improvements to the suspension made body roll simply disappear. A much larger rear stabilizer bar helps to tie down the racer. As a result, the car was utterly neutral and composed, and it inspired tremendous confidence.
There was also more power and torque from the blueprinted engine: 230 hp and 185 lb-ft, according to Honda. (Compass360's boss Karl Thompson gave higher figures from his team's tests.) The brakes were stock except for the pads, but they unfalteringly arrested the car's momentum
Factoring in the racer's lighter overall weight at 2450 lb, which represents a loss of 427 lb, and the improved traction with HPD's limited slip differential, it all added up to an entertaining time.
HPD has put together the whole package necessary to get on the track in these two superb series. A Civic body-in-white is now available for $3,500 through HPD to save the racer the expense and trouble of buying a new car and stripping it for competition. Seven units have already been sold even before the body-in-white receives its introduction at the upcoming SEMA show in Las Vegas.
So the idea is to let HPD do all the development legwork on the critical parts and save yourself a lot of track testing once you've bolted the car together. "All of our parts are race-tested before being sold to the public," said a Honda spokesman. For his part, Karl Thompson reckoned Compass360's car represented an investment of about $85,000, although the cost comes down with HPD's body-in-white as the starting point.
Engine
2.4L four, 230 hp @ 7000 rpm (201 hp @ 7000 rpm stock), 185 lb-ft (170 lb-ft stock), redline 7500 rpm (7000 rpm stock)
Transmission
6-speed manual with HPD limited-slip differential
Suspension (f/r)
Strut/trailing arm
Stabilizer bar 18.0/25.4 mm (18.0/15.0 stock)
Brakes (f/r)
Vented disc/disc
Tires
Pirelli 225/45R17 racing slicks (215/45R17 stock)
Weight
2450 lb (2877 lb stock)
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic Front View
Any time there's a new Honda Civic, it's a big deal in the small-car market. The Civic, together with the Toyota Corolla, is one of longest-running nameplates in the field, and it regularly vies with the Corolla for the top spot in sales. This year, however, the new Civic is hardly the only big news in small cars. The past few months have also seen the introduction of an all-new Hyundai Elantra and an all-new Ford Focus, both vastly improved over their predecessors and both coming from companies that have been on a roll lately. It seemed natural to get the new Civic together with these upstarts to see how the freshest entries in the field compare.
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic Front Parked
The Many and the Few
The Civic is available in more different iterations than any other compact car. For the 2012 version, Honda has upped the count by one, adding a new HF high-fuel-economy model. The Civic already offers two body styles, coupe and sedan. There are a total of eight trim levels: DX, LX (the biggest seller), EX, EX-L, the sporty Si, as well as HF, Hybrid, and Natural Gas (due out this fall). For this comparison we had an EX-L sedan.
Ford's new Focus also comes in two body styles. The two-door coupe available previously is gone, but there's a new four-door hatchback to accompany the four-door sedan. There are four trim levels: S, SE, SEL, and Titanium. A Focus electric is joining the lineup in late 2011. We had an SE hatchback here.
The Hyundai Elantra has the simplest lineup. The new Elantra is offered only as a four-door sedan, in GLS or Limited trim. (The Elantra Touring, a high-roof four-door hatchback, shares the Elantra name but is really a distinct model.) For this comparison, we had an Elantra Limited.
Who's Got the Looks
We'll wade only briefly into the subjective area of design. The new Civic reverently continues the design theme of its popular predecessor. The large cabin is visually elongated with a steeply raked windshield and backlight, while the hood and the trunk are abbreviated. The result is on single-arc profile, which has been freshened somewhat with more sculpted surfaces. Designers of the Elantra and the Focus appear to have given no thought whatsoever to maintaining a visual link to the previous models -- and rightly so, since both were dowdy and downmarket-looking. The Elantra's flowing lines may not be to everybody's taste, but they're certainly dramatic and stylish for a car in this class. The Focus bears a familial resemblance to other Ford of Europe products, with an oversize grille, raised creases along the body sides, a rising beltline, and a small greenhouse. Overall, we think the design works better on the hatchback than it does on the overly busy sedan, although in both cases it's very similar to the subcompact Fiesta.
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic Parked
The Civic's Familiar Surroundings
Consistency is again the name of the game for the new Civic's interior, which clearly follows the format laid down by the previous model. Under the large windshield is a very deep dashboard that, as in the last Civic, is bisected into two tiers. The upper binnacle houses a digital speedometer, flanked by readouts for fuel level and another one for fuel economy. Bracketing the speedometer are lights that glow green when the driver lets off the gas or blue when he gets on it. Set below the upper binnacle is the large, analog tachometer, which the driver sees through the small-diameter, three-spoke steering wheel. An additional, 6.5-inch LCD screen just offset to the right within the upper binnacle is new for 2012. It can display a variety of information, which the driver can scroll through using the relatively simple buttons on the steering wheel. Readouts include audio system info, Bluetooth phone info, turn instructions from the navigation system, trip computer info, or a wallpaper photo that you upload. Our EX-L was equipped with the optional navigation system. Its large touch-screen was fairly easy to use and we had no qualms with the system's logic. But the audio and nav-system buttons that surround it are tiny, and the whole units looks like its ten years old. The Civic's other switchgear is typical Honda: simple and of high quality. Aside from our top-spec EX-L model's leather seats, the cabin is otherwise fairly basic and unadorned. Interior space, though, is quite good -- slightly better than before despite unchanged exterior dimensions -- excepting rear-seat headroom under the sloping roof. And the comparatively generous window area makes the cabin feel large and airy.
The Cockpit-like Cabin in the Focus
The design philosophy of the Focus cabin is definitely in contrast to that of the Elantra and the Civic. The driver's environment is more enveloping and less open. Although the dash slopes away from the occupants so as not to feel oppressive, the center console area is much higher and it flows right up into the center dash. A smattering of brushed-metal trim provides some relief in the mostly black interior, whose firm but supportive seats are upholstered in a grippy cloth (although leather is available). The Focus hatchback's rear seat is easier to get into and out of than the two sedans', but there's less legroom once you're in there. It's still adult-habitable, though. Of course, the Focus hatchback offers unmatched cargo-carrying utility, even before you fold the rear seats. Unlike the other two cars here, our Focus SE was not equipped with navigation (it can be had on the SEL and Titanium only), but it did have the optional MyFord and Sync package. This is not the same as the MyFordTouch touch-screen system, which is standard on the Titanium. This somewhat simpler system has two small screens, one in between the speedometer and tachometer and one in the center stack; they're accessed via a multi-function controller on the steering wheel (similar to the Civic's) and cell-phone-like buttons in the center of the dash -- the latter require a bit of a learning curve.
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic In Motion
Three Fours
All three compacts feature four-cylinder engines; the Ford and Hyundai engines are new, while the Honda four is largely carryover. The Focus engine is the largest, at 2.0 liters, and it alone uses direct injection. Its power and torque ratings are the highest of the three at 160 hp and 146 pound-feet. The Elantra's 1.8-liter is next, at 148 hp and 131 pound-feet of torque. Both engines are more powerful than their predecessors. The Civic's four-cylinder, also 1.8 liters, is a modified version of the previous Civic engine, but its horesepower and torque figures are unchanged from before, at 140 hp and 128 pound-feet. The drivability characteristics of all three were remarkably similar, perhaps because they all make their peak torque within the relatively narrow range of 4300 and 4700 rpm. Their relative differences in horsepower were blunted by the cars' differences in curb weight, where we find the Civic to be the lightest, the Focus the heaviest and the Elantra in between. The uptake is that none of these cars is a sparkling performer off the line, but all three have sufficient gusto for passing and highway merging.
Mileage Matters
The Hyundai was the only car here with a six-speed transmission -- in fact, whether ordered with a manual or an automatic, all Elantras have six forward gears. That probably helped the put the Hyundai out in front in the fuel-economy race, with EPA ratings of 29 mpg city and that suddenly all-important 40-mpg highway number. With the Civic, you get only five forward gears whether you choose a manual or an automatic like we had here (only the Si gets a six-speed manual). Still, the Civic is only a tick behind the Elantra in both city and highway measures, at 28/39 mpg. Our Focus had a five-speed stick, but the Ford's automatic is a six-speed. Not surprisingly, the manual-transmission Focus is the less economical variant, rated at 26/36 mpg. Both Ford and Honda can advertise higher numbers: 40 mpg highway in the case of the Focus, and 41 mpg on the part of the Civic. But in both cases, those figures are only for special, high-mileage variants: the Focus SE with the SFE package, and Honda's Civic HF model, whereas all Elantras achieve the same EPA rating.
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic Front Left In Motion
On the road
Ford has been making strides in the dynamic behavior of its small cars -- witness the Fiesta -- and that's clearly evident with the new Focus. The Focus felt particularly buttoned-down, and it had easily the best steering. The Honda proved to be a bit more eager to turn in than the Hyundai, exhibiting less understeer. It also rode notably better. We were less pleased, however, with the Civic's steering, which was rather vague on center. As impressive as the Hyundai was otherwise, it was somewhat disappointing dynamically. Its brakes were grabby and the suspension didn't do much to mask bad pavement. The Elantra's handling, though, was pretty good and its steering, while light, was not totally dead.
Conclusions
The Elantra is an impressive effort and boasts a long list of superlatives. It gets the best gas mileage, has the largest interior and trunk, and the best electronics interface. Less surprising but no less important is the fact that it has the most equipment at the lowest price. The Elantra is a good $2000 cheaper than the Civic, and would offer similar savings over a comparably equipped Focus. For many people, that wraps it up right there. To choose the Civic over the Elantra, one would have to place a greater weight on more subjective qualities. The Honda cabin feels more airy and comfortable and is easier to see out of. We found that the Civic also rides better. Its power deficit isn't really an issue because it's the lightest car here, and its fuel economy is close enough to the Hyundai's that it would hardly make a difference in real life. The Civic has the composure of a bigger car, but the ease of use of a small one. The Focus was a bit of an outlier in this test because of the way it was equipped. We had lined up a more directly compatible version (a sedan with an automatic transmission) but it was damaged at the last minute and this sporty SE hatchback stepped in. Despite its lower spec, the Focus was our favorite car to drive, with its nicely weighted steering, natural clutch action, and responsive handling. True, the Focus was the least economical, but we enjoyed rowing its manual gearbox. The hatchback body style is a versatile configuration that neither competitor offers. The Focus cabin wasn't as stylish as the Elantra's but neither was it quite as pedestrian as the Honda's, although it is more intimate than both. In any event, the Focus was the best driver's car, and while they may not be the most important factor for most small-car shoppers, it's where our prejudice lies, so the Focus is our pick.
2012 Ford Focus 2011 Hyundai Elantra 2012 Honda Civic Front Left In Motion
2012 Ford Focus SE hatchback
Base price:
$18,785
Price as tested: $21,945
2012 Ford Focus Front In Motion
Standard equipment: 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, 5-speed manual transmission, air-conditioning, power windows, 16-inch steel wheels with wheel covers, tilt/telescoping steering column, automatic headlamps, fog lights
Options on this vehicle: Rapid Spec 203A (convenience package, cruise control, perimeter alarm, MyFord & Sync package, MyFord Tech/6-speaker stereo/Sirius satellite radio, Snyc voice-activated system); SE Sport Package (16" painted aluminum wheels, piano black grille, rear disc brakes, rear spoiler, cloth sport seats, metallic interior trim, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob); Winter Package (heated seats, power/heated mirrors, turn signal mirrors)
Key options not on vehicle: automatic transmission, power moonroof, SFE super fuel economy package, leather seats
Fuel economy:
26/36/30 mpg (city/highway/combined)
Engine:
2.0L I-4
Horsepower: 160 hp @ 6500 rpm
Torque: 146 lb-ft @ 4450 rpm
Drive:
Front-wheel
Transmission:
5-speed manual
Curb weight: 2920 lb
Wheels/tires:
215/50R17 Continental ContiProContact
2012 Honda Civic EX-L with Navi and XM radio
Base price:
$24,205
Price as tested: $24,205
2012 Honda Civic Ex L Front Left View
Standard equipment: 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, 5-speed automatic transmission, air-conditioning, 16-inch alloy wheels, power windows, power door locks, cruise control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, tilt/telescoping steering column, power moonroof, leather-trimmed interior, heated seats, Bluetooth, Navigation, satellite radio
Options on this vehicle: None
Key options not on vehicle: None
Fuel economy:
28/39/32 mpg (city/highway/combined)
Engine:
1.8L I-4
Horsepower: 140 hp @ 6500 rpm
Torque: 128 lb-ft @ 4300 rpm
Drive:
Front-wheel
Transmission:
6-speed automatic
Curb weight: 2773 lb
Wheels/tires:
205/55R16 Continental ContiProContact
2011 Hyundai Elantra Limited
Base price:
$19,980
Price as tested: $22,110
2011 Hyundai Elantra Front End
Standard equipment: 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, 6-speed automatic transmission, four-wheel disc brakes, air-conditioning, power windows, power locks, power mirrors, power sunroof, 17-inch alloy wheels, fog lights, satellite radio, tilt/telescoping steering column, Bluetooth, leather seating surfaces, heated front and rear seats
Options on this vehicle: Premium Package (navigation, rearview camera, premium audio system, automatic headlights, proximity key entry with pushbutton start); carpeted floor mats; iPod cable
Key options not on vehicle: None
Fuel economy:
29/40/33 mpg (city/highway/combined)
1.8L I-4
Horsepower: 148 hp @ 6300 rpm
Torque: 131 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm
Drive:
Front-wheel
Transmission:
6-speed automatic
Curb weight: 2877 lb
Wheels/tires:
215/45R17 Continental ContiProContact
2012 Honda Civic Si Coupe Front Three Quarters View
The 2012 model is the ninth iteration of the Honda Civic, which made its fortuitous debut just ahead of the 1973 gas crisis. Of the Civic's many redesigns since then, some have been major rethinks while others have been stay-the-course refinements. This latest redo definitely falls into the latter camp.
2012 Honda Civic Si Coupe Front Three Quarters View
What, me worry?
You can perhaps understand why Honda isn't anxious to make big changes here, because what they have is very successful formula. Although Toyota claimed the bestselling small-car mantle last year, with combined sales of its Corolla and Matrix edging out the Civic by 6000 units, Honda asserts that in retail sales, the Civic is number one. It's also number one -- of all cars -- among coveted, Gen-Y buyers.
So while it may not be surprising that Civic hasn't undergone a wholesale rethink, the list of what has not changed is long. In a small-car environment that has become a lot more competitive, Honda has not seen fit to add direct injection or turbocharging to its powerplants. It has stayed with five-speed transmissions, except for the Si. The exterior design retains its single-arc, mono-pod profile. And the interior again uses a two-tiered instrument panel.
That's not to say that nothing has changed, of course. The Si has a new engine, as does the hybrid. There is a new HF model. There is (a bit) more standard equipment. But the overall impression is that, with this new Civic, Honda sought to polish what it already has.
Many Variants
One secret to the Civic's success is a model lineup that's the most extensive of any in its class. For 2012, that lineup returns intact, with one additional variant thrown in. In order from greenest to meanest, they are:
• Civic Natural Gas. Formerly known as the Civic GX, the natural-gas-powered version will now be sold in all fifty states. The Civic Natural Gas is the latest arriving of the new 2012 models, as it doesn't go on sale until this fall.
• Civic Hybrid. The Civic Hybrid switches from a nickel-metal-hydride to a more compact and more powerful lithium-ion battery pack (a first in a Honda hybrid). It also upgrades from a 1.3-liter to a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine, although engine output remains the same. Nonetheless, fuel economy increases from 40/43 mpg to 44/44 mpg. The hybrid again is available only as a four-door that's about equivalent to the EX trim level, and it's the most expensive Civic model. With the Civic Hybrid now easily exceeding the fuel economy of the Insight, cost is really the only reason one would choose the much less satisfying junior Honda hybrid.
• Civic HF. Honda has revived the HF designation (seen long ago on the CRX) for a higher-fuel-economy version of the regular, gasoline-engine Civic sedan. The HF has the same powertrain as the DX, LX, and EX models: a 140-hp 1.8-liter with a five-speed automatic. There is no manual available on the HF. Available as a sedan only, the HF achieves its extra margin of fuel economy via lower-rolling-resistance tires and aerodynamic enhancements. EPA fuel economy estimates are 29/41 mpg.
2012 Honda Civic HF Side
• Civic DX, LX, EX, EX-L Sedan. These mainstay sedans comprise the heart of the Civic lineup. The model variants remain the same as last year. All versions are equipped with the 1.8-liter iVTEC four, whose output of 140 hp and 128 pound-feet of torque is unchanged for 2012. A five-speed manual is standard on the DX and LX, while a five-speed automatic is standard on the EX versions and optional on the others. Fuel economy is up significantly. EPA ratings are 28/36 mpg for the manual (up by 2 mpg both city and highway) and 28/39 mpg for the automatic (versus 25/36 mpg previously). The sedan's wheelbase shrinks by 1.2 inches although overall length, width, and height are the same as before. Despite an exterior envelope that is no bigger, Honda engineers managed to carve out an additional 3.7 cubic feet of interior space.
• Civic DX, LX, EX, EX-L Coupe. The Civic coupe returns, available in the same trim variants as the sedan (outside of the green versions). Mechanically, coupes and sedans are identical, except for the fact that one can get a manual transmission on the EX trim level in the coupe. Like its four-door counterpart, the coupe's wheelbase has shrunk a bit, and it's 1.9 inches shorter than the sedan's. Overall length is unchanged; it remains 1.8 inches shorter than the four-door. Width is virtually the same as before (up by 0.1 inch) and height is exactly the same. Civic engineers were not able to find any more interior space here; in fact, the coupe's passenger volume shrank by roughly half a cubic foot.
• Civic Si. The hottest Civic is once again available as both a two-door and a four-door. The previous 2.0-liter four has been tossed out in favor of a 2.4-liter from the Acura TSX. Here rated at 201 hp and 170 pound-feet of torque, the new, larger engine is only slightly more powerful (4 hp) but makes an additional 31 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual gearbox is again the only transmission available. Despite the new engine's larger displacement, even here fuel economy has improved, to 22/31 mpg, up from 21/29 mpg for the 2011 model.
Familiar look and feel
Anyone coming out of the previous Civic should be very comfortable with the new one. The silhouette maintains what chief exterior designer Toshiyuki Okumoto calls the "one-motion form." That is, the hood and trunk are extremely short, while the passenger cabin is extremely large, and the windshield and backlight are steeply raked. What Okumoto introduced with the new model are more undulations in the surfaces. Even so, this is clearly recognizable as a Civic.
2012 Honda Civic EX L Sedan Rear Three Quarter
Inside, it's a similar story. The steeply raked windshield again makes for a large dash area. The quarter windows at the front have grown larger and the A-pillars have bucked the prevailing trend by getting slimmer. Outward visibility overall is better than most sedans. The two-tier dashboard returns, with the upper binnacle housing the digital speed readout, now bracketed by lights that glow green when you let off the gas or blue when you're on it. Flanking that display are the gas gauge and a bar-graph meter that's supposed to represent fuel economy. The lower binnacle is home to the analog tachometer. On all but the base DX, there's a new additional screen in the upper binnacle that can display audio information, a trip computer, a photo that you upload, Bluetooth info, or hybrid system monitoring (for the Hybrid).
The Civic again features a small-diameter, three-spoke steering wheel. The secondary controls are simple to use. Stowage space in the center console is generous. Overall, the interior is supremely functional but not particularly stylish.
Why so stingy?
One Honda tradition that unfortunately lingers here is a stinginess with available equipment. Bluetooth, for example, is not available on the DX, LX, or HF. Satellite radio can only be had with navigation, meaning it too is the exclusive province of the EX, the Si, and the Hybrid. And then there's the DX. Honda didn't have one at the launch event, but it might be more appropriate to introduce that model at the Bada Bing. The DX is an old-school stripper, as it comes without air-conditioning, power mirrors, power door locks, or a radio. At least it does have stability control, which is finally standard on all models.
Watching its waistline
By resisting the temptation to increase the Civic's exterior dimensions, Honda was able to keep a lid on the car's weight. In fact, nearly all the various Civic models have actually shed a few pounds compared to their 2011 counterparts. Keeping the new car's weight under control helped Honda engineers eek out better gas mileage from a powertrain that's little changed.
The Civic is once again a friendly but not terribly exciting driving companion. Simple to adapt to and easy to see out of, it proved very good at threading its way through the chaos of downtown Washington, D.C. Out in the suburbs, we noted off-the-line response that's somewhat wanting but highway merging that's sufficiently energetic. The automatic transmission makes the most of its five gears, and its logic and manners are above reproach. The electric power steering has been revised for greater linearity, but it still seems overly light on center. Once again, this is an easy-driving choice with no obvious flaws.
2012 Honda Civic Si Sedan Front View
A spin in the Si
More so than its siblings, the Si has undergone a tangible evolution for 2012 version, due to its new engine. The output of the new, larger VTEC four is much more accessible than the previous engine's. Not only is there more torque (170 pound-feet versus 139), but it arrives much lower in the rev range. Whereas you needed to rev the old 2.0-liter to 6100 rpm to access the peak torque, with the new engine it's available at 4300 rpm. That's still far from diesel-engine territory, but it means that you don't need to send the VTEC screaming to the upper reaches of the tach whenever you want a quick burst of speed. In fact, the Si is now able to accelerate smartly even with cruising in sixth gear on the highway. VTEC aficianados who want a vocal, high-revving engine, however, should still be happy, although the 2.4-liter's 7000-rpm redline isn't quite as lofty as the 2.0-liter's 8000-rpm redline. As you near the limit, a sequence of orange lights illuminate in the instrument panel, and then a red one when you reach the redline.
As before, the Si six-speed gearbox is a good one, with short, positive throws and near-perfect clutch action. A mechanical limited slip differential helps put the power down and torque steer is fairly well managed. The firmer suspension and 0.4-inch lower ride height give the Si more energetic turn-in but don't ruin the ride quality. Honda dresses up the Si interior with more aggressively bolstered seats upholstered in a sporty black cloth, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with red stitching, and metal-trimmed pedals. Exterior embellishments are fairly restrained, with special 17-inch wheels, fog lights, and a low-profile rear spoiler with LED brake light. Owners, of course, are free to add their own wild front air dams, giant wings, and drop the suspension to the ground, limited only by their own good taste -- and sometimes not even that.
A juggernaut rolls on?
The new Civic retains its many characteristic strengths, but it doesn't really add any new ones. The new car may be vulnerable on issues of price and equipment against fresh rivals that are more competent than ever. We'll see if the ninth Civic can hold onto its position as a small-car-buyer favorite.
2012 Honda Civic SI Coupe Front Three Quarters
2012 Honda Civic
Base price range:
$16,555 -- $27,500
Fuel economy:
28/39/32 mpg (city/highway/combined)
Engine:
1.8L SOHC I-4
Horsepower: 140 hp @ 6500 rpm
Torque: 128 lb-ft @ 4300 rpm
Drive:
Front-wheel
Transmission:
5-speed automatic
Curb weight: 2773 (EX-L)
Wheels/tires: 205/55R16 Continental ContiProContact
Competitors: Chevrolet Cruze, Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra, Nissan Sentra, Toyota Corolla
What's new? Redesigned, ninth-generation model
2012 Honda Civic
2012 Honda Civic
The Honda Civic is the car that proved that small cars can be good to drive, appeal to the masses, and not be entirely soulless. Honda's ninth-generation Civic debuts for the 2012 model year, but unless you look closely, you might not notice. Both inside and out, the Civic retains signature cues from the previous car, with a single-arc profile and a two-tier dashboard. For the sedan, there are few changes to report under the hood, either, as the 1.8-liter four-cylinder and five-speed automatic carry over. The sporty Si does get a new engine -- a 201-hp, 2.4-liter four-cylinder -- and eco-warriors now have the choice of the HF sedan (41 mpg highway) or the Hybrid (44 mpg combined). The Civic uses a multilink rear suspension that is more planted and comfortable than the torsion-beam arrangements used by its competitors from Chevrolet, Hyundai, and Toyota, making it one of the better-driving small cars. Inside, however, the Civic has lost some ground to its competitors, with plastics that are not very appealing and a navigation system with fiddly buttons. Still, the cabin feels spacious; the engineers from Honda managed to carve an additional 3.7 cubic feet of interior volume from an exterior that's unchanged in size. A 60/40-split rear seat means that even coupe models can carry large items. The Civic used to stand apart from its competitors, but that's no longer the case. However, we can't discount the Civic's competent road manners, reliability, and stellar resale value.
2012 Honda Civic Natural Gas Sedan Front Three Quarters Right
The Honda Civic has won the November sales battle in the compact car segment by posting 30,075 units. In second place was the Toyota Corolla, which was about 8000 units behind the Honda. Despite criticism that the ninth-generation Civic was bland and not new enough, it has continued to post strong sales numbers, including a record-shattering November (Honda says it’s the Civic’s best November since 1990). It will be interesting to see how consumers respond to the revamped 2013 Honda Civic and, with only one month left for 2012 sales, the Civic will likely take the year-to-date sales crown with November boosting the total to 284,791, more than 18,000 above the Corolla’s total. The Chevrolet Cruze missed out on the podium last month, posting 16,807 sales for a fourth-place finish. General Motors pegged the drop on the relief efforts occurring in the areas affected by Hurricane Sandy, stating that its competitors usually have better sales in those regions. That said, the Ford Focus jumps into the number three spot with 18,312 sold for the month of November. In fifth and sixth are the Hyundai Elantra and Volkswagen Jetta with 15,923 and 14,259 units, respectively. The Jetta continues to be the brand’s volume leader and VW expects the upcoming hybrid model to improve those numbers. The Mazda3 experienced its best November ever with 9841 and the Sentra lands in the eighth spot with 7176 units.
Car November 2012 November 2011 Year-to-Date
Honda Civic 30,075 17,133 284,791
Toyota Corolla 22,616 16,115 266,268
Ford Focus 18,312 11,735 223,318
Chevrolet Cruze 16,807 13,238 216,528
Hyundai Elantra 15,923 12,414 183,010
Volkswagen Jetta 14,259 12,891 154,763
Mazda3 9841 6873 113,064
Nissan Sentra 7176 7871 98,640
Subaru Impreza 5905 1412 74,294
Dodge Dart 4489 N/A 19,198
Kia Forte 4266 4135 71,405
  Source: Honda, Toyota, Ford, Chevrolet, Hyundai, Volkswagen, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, Dodge, Kia
ParagraphImage
2012 Honda Civic Natural Gas Front Left Side View
Though the 2012 Honda Civic is a decent car overall, I don't think the natural gas version is a worthwhile purchase because it forces too many compromises. For one, the gas tank uses up nearly all the trunk space -- just six cubic feet of space remain, compared to 12.5 cubic feet in a regular Civic sedan. In addition, the Civic Natural Gas is very slow because it weighs between 53 and 247 pounds more than other Civic sedans, yet the 1.8-liter engine produces only 110 hp, compared to 140 hp in gasoline-fed models.

2012 Honda Civic Natural Gas

2013 Honda Accord Sedan Left Front Angle
Many automakers are probably indulging in a bit of private schadenfreude following Hyundai/Kia's public mea culpa for inflated fuel economy figures that the company blames on a procedural error during testing. But one brand in particular may stand to gain the most from Hyundai's misfortune. According to a report from Bloomberg, Honda is best-positioned to gain from Hyundai's loss, with a recently-refreshed model lineup with multiple models that match or surpass the fuel economy from Hyundai's equivalent models following the revision.
2013 Honda Civic Diesel Engine Cover
Honda is not the first name Americans usually think of when they think of diesel engines. The company, best-known for its high-revving gasoline engines, was even reluctant to develop its own diesel for the European market, where the engine type dominates. But Honda's 2.2-liter i-DTEC engine was acclaimed at the time for its refinement, cleanliness and fuel economy. For its next-generation diesel, Honda downsized, but the new 1.6-liter engine is packed with cutting-edge technology aimed at increased efficiency and lighter weight.
2013 Honda Civic Sedan Spy Shot Front View
It’s no secret Honda was rushing an update to its maligned Civic to market, but the result was kept under tight wraps – until now. Our spy photographer recently caught a 2013 Civic sedan out in the wild with precious little camouflage.

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$15,755

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2012 Honda Civic Specifications

Quick Glance:
Engine
1.8L I4Engine
Fuel economy City:
28 MPG
Fuel economy Highway:
36 MPG
Horsepower:
140 hp @ 6500rpm
Torque:
128 ft lb of torque @ 4300rpm
  • Air Conditioning (optional)
  • Power Windows
  • Power Locks (optional)
  • Power Seats (optional)
  • Steering Wheel Tilt
  • Cruise Control (optional)
  • Sunroof (optional)
  • ABS
  • Stabilizer Front
  • Stabilizer RearABS
  • Electronic Traction Control
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Locking Differential (optional)
  • Limited Slip Differential (optional)
  • Airbag Driver
  • Airbag Passenger
  • Airbag Side Front
  • Airbag Side Rear (optional)
  • CD Player (optional)
  • CD Changer (optional)
  • DVD (optional)
  • Navigation (optional)
Vehicle
36,000 miles / 36 months
Powertrain
60,000 miles / 60 months
Corrosion
Unlimited miles / 60 months
Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:10
Component
FUEL SYSTEM, OTHER:DELIVERY:HOSES, LINES/PIPING, AND FITTINGS
Summary
HONDA IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2012 CIVIC 2-DOOR AND 4-DOOR VEHICLES MANUFACTURED FROM APRIL 21, 2011, THROUGH MAY 2, 2011. THERE IS A POSSIBILITY THAT AN O-RING, WHICH SEALS A CONNECTION IN THE FUEL FEED LINE, IS MISALIGNED. IF THE O-RING IS MISALIGNED, A SMALL FUEL LEAK MAY OCCUR.
Consequences
FUEL LEAKAGE, IN THE PRESENCE OF AN IGNITION SOURCE, COULD RESULT IN A FIRE.
Remedy
DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE FUEL FEED LINE ASSEMBLY FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON MAY 27, 2011. OWNERS MAY CONTACT HONDA AT 1-800-999-1009.
Potential Units Affected
1,156
Notes
HONDA (AMERICAN HONDA MOTOR CO.)


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:21
Component
STEERING:COLUMN
Summary
Honda is recalling certain model year 2012 Civic passenger vehicles, manufactured from October 26, 2012, through October 30, 2012. These vehicles were assembled with the incorrect steering column assembly.
Consequences
The steering column may not have proper energy absorbing characteristics, which could increase the risk of injury during a vehicle crash.
Remedy
Honda will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and replace the steering column, as necessary, free of charge. The safety recall began on December 10, 2012. Owners may contact Honda at 1-800-999-1009.
Potential Units Affected
157
Notes
Honda (American Honda Motor Co.)


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:20
Component
POWER TRAIN:DRIVELINE:DRIVESHAFT
Summary
HONDA IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2012 HONDA CIVIC VEHICLES. DURING ASSEMBLY, THE PROCESS REQUIRED TO SEAT THE DRIVER¿S SIDE DRIVESHAFT AND SET THE RETAINING CLIP WAS NOT COMPLETED. AS A RESULT, THE DRIVESHAFT MAY SEPARATE.
Consequences
IF THIS OCCURS, THE VEHICLE WILL HAVE A LOSS OF DRIVE POWER AND MAY ROLL AWAY IF THE PARKING BRAKE HAS NOT BEEN SET WHEN THE GEAR SELECTOR HAS BEEN PLACED IN THE ¿PARK¿ POSITION, INCREASING THE RISK OF CRASH OR PEDESTRIAN INJURY.
Remedy
Honda will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the driver's side driveshaft and install a new driveshaft as needed, free of charge. The safety recall began on June 21. 2012. Owners may contact Honda customer service at 1-800-999-1009.
Potential Units Affected
50,190
Notes
HONDA (AMERICAN HONDA MOTOR CO.)


NHTSA Rating Overall
4
NHTSA Rating Front Driver
5
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
4
NHTSA Rating Front Side
3
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
4
NHTSA Rating Rollover
4
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
N/R
IIHS Overall Side Crash
N/R
IIHS Best Pick
N/R
IIHS Rear Crash
N/R
IIHS Roof Strength
N/R

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