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A good place to start with the 2022 Honda Civic is its exterior styling. Lyn, tell ‘em what’s what.
Like the prototype we first saw, this is a very toned-down Civic from the previous generation, giving it a more upscale and refined demeanor. The A-pillars still remain pushed back two inches, giving it a longer snout. I think it’s going for a European dash-to-axle ratio look and I like it.
The beltline remains low, just like on the prototype so visibility should be good. For the profile, I really like this swoopy character line that moves upward toward the rear of the car. It’s even got a little aero here on the deck lid, and the rear wheels get a slightly wider track for better stability. Nice touches
The lighting of course in the front and rear feature that more restrained sense of design of the prototype as well. I think I described the Civic as all grown up when I saw it then, and I stick by that statement.
When Honda showed us the Civic Prototype, it literally did not have an interior. So, this is a nice change of pace.
First impression, the Civic retains the simple usability that I appreciate from Honda. I also like this horizontal mesh motif. Swanky.
Like the exterior, the interior feels more mature. As if the Civic moved to a new school and, in the process, recast its persona as a sophisticate.
Looks aside, the interior includes welcome elements like a standard 7-inch or optional 9-inch Infotainment screen with a volume knob and a nice array of physical buttons. There’s also fully digital gauge cluster found on the Touring trim, though lower trims include a partial screen gauge cluster with a physical speedometer.
That Touring trim also adds a Bose premium audio system and wireless phone charging. From the driver’s seat, you’ll enjoy improved forward visibility thanks to slightly repositioned A-pillars. Thankfully, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration are standard across the board. Oh, and this is nice.
Look, there’s a finger rest for more accurately using the infotainment screen in motion.
Honda also extended the wheelbase, consequently they were able to recline the rear seatbacks a bit. Let’s see how I fit. As an average 5’ 10” dude, I fit fine. But what about KBB videographer Michael Danger? He’s 6’ 4”.
If Mike Danger can deal with the Civic’s back seat, you’ll probably fare just fine.
There are two engine options that will be available and unfortunately only one transmission that will be tuned differently for each of those engines.
LX and Sport trims will get a 2.0-L naturally aspirated 4-cylinder variety (graphic 158 hp/138 lb.-ft. torque) mated to a CVT. Don’t cringe just yet. They are definitely improving. We will reserve judgment until we get to drive.
Move up to the EX or Touring trims and you’ll get a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4 that makes 180 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque. That engine also mates to a CVT, eh, hem, what I said before about reserving judgment until we drive.
Fuel economy numbers on all those trims see improvements over last year’s models.
The new Civic also gets an upgraded chassis, a stronger body, and updated suspension and steering tuning as well.
And never fear, we are assured there will be a hatchback, Si, and Type R version, but we don’t have specifics on exactly when
On a quick safety note, in addition to 10 standard airbags, including rear side seat airbags, the standard Honda Sensing suite of active safety assists has been updated. It now uses a single camera versus the previous radar-and-camera system.
Honda claims the update allows quicker identification of road lines and pedestrians, along with more natural automatic braking and steering action.
I can’t wait to drive like a moron and put that updated Honda Sensing system to the test.
The 2022 Honda Civic goes on sale in the spring of 2021. We’re not sure about the price just yet but the current car starts a little above $21k.
The 2022 should be pricier but not by much.
Overall, the new Civic appears to be a greatly-improved car. The question is whether its more refined, less-playful styling will resonate with younger buyers.