This gearbox is an absolute blast! Sure, it's not quite as visceral as the one in the S2000 CR that we recently enjoyed, but this most muscular Civic is a more practical, economical choice that's still quite fun to drive. The Si is a great second fiddle to that aspirational S2000 roadster, and since the venerable Dodge Neon SRT4 is dead, I think I'd choose the Si over its sport-compact competitors from Chevy, Mazda, and Dodge.
Like the S2000, the Si also boasts almost turbolike VTEC hotness that's hard to resist. I was similarly impressed by the Si's very strong exhaust note, which I don't recall from previous Si's that I've driven. I remember those cars as having more darty steering, too, although this car's rack still feels a bit busy on the highway. The driver's seat is more comfortable than before as well. (I drove a Civic Si coupe to southeastern Ohio for our All-Stars gathering in late 2005, and I had a sore back when I finally pulled into the Holiday Inn.)
Personally, I prefer the appearance and functionality of the Civic Si sedan to this coupe, but I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of rear-seat space in this low-slung two-door.
Rusty Blackwell, Copy Editor