Honda calls the Civic Si the "hot rod" of the Honda lineup. While I wouldn't go that far, I will say that, with its high-revving in line four-cylinder and slick six-speed manual transmission, the Civic Si is entertaining to drive, as it's always eager to dive into corners and sprint away from a stop. Inside, the seats are firmly bolstered for when you take that corner a little too quickly, and the cockpit is well designed, both with regards to ergonomics and with the quality and fit of the materials. And to top it all off, the Si is practical, with 60/40-split folding rear seats that help provide extra cargo. Of course, you have to pay a pretty hefty premium over a base Civic, but the enjoyment factor should account for something when you're toting up the return on your investment.
Amy Skogstrom, Managing Editor