When Honda unveiled the 10th Generation Civic on Wednesday night it was abundantly clear that this is not your fathers Honda Civic. Borrowing from Europes finest, Honda is seeking to conquest luxury compacts.
The spec sheet certainly reads like something European, multilink rear suspension, hydraulic bushings, standard automatic climate control, leather seats that are heated front and rear, adaptive cruise control, torque vectoring and more.
Honda gambled that post recession peoples appetites would demand cheapness above all else. How wrong they were, “They have to launch well just to counteract the impression they left with a lot of people the last time around,” Karl Brauer, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book, told Automotive News. “Even in a recession people don’t want to feel like they’re buying a cheapie car. They needed to go the opposite way with this new model, so that’s exactly what they’re doing.”
When development on the 10th Civic began back in 2012, Honda had one overarching target, compact luxury buyers. Engineers complied, using Audi's A3 as the benchmark.
“We are bringing more new technology and innovative thinking to Civic than ever before to establish a new benchmark for fun-to-drive performance, fuel efficiency, safety performance and refinement in the compact class,” said American Hondas Executive VP John Mendel.
Refining the segment they are, Honda will be offering the Civic with Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow for the first time in any Honda, while Collision Mitigation and Lane Departure should change how consumers define value in segment.
The luxury fixation didn't stop with the technology however, Mendel added that the new Civic has features and an interior designed to offer the most comfortable, sophisticated and premium-feeling cabin in the compact class. Additional sound deadening, soft touch materials and acoustic glass all add to the premium feel.
Pricing will be announced on October 19th and Mendel confirmed the 10th Gen Civic Sedan will be on dealer lots before Thanksgiving.