The Honda Civic e:HEV is a family car with a Race Car attitude. I say this after driving the car for a week on several long journeys. On some, I had five people with me, others alone and able to push the car’s performance.
The original Civic has been around for nearly fifty years and sold in hundreds of thousands globally; it is that popular. Well made, reliable, and practical, it provides you with all your basic requirements from a vehicle. The latest Electric Hybrid model maintains all the assets of the generations of Civics and brings new qualities and benefits.
When I say the Civic e:HEV Coupe has a race car attitude, it comes from the heritage of the model participating in motorsport and developing from this association. It means you get a car with excellent performance and handling for its class, making it entertaining to drive fast when you can, confident of the vehicle’s capabilities. I was impressed with the power delivery, and when you put your foot down, the pull away feels quicker than the figures suggest. The car grips the road well, and you can quickly push it through the twisties or tackle roundabouts at speed when you can.
The Honda Civic e:HEV Coupe has a 2.0-litre petrol engine which, although powering the car, also acts as a generator providing energy to the lithium-ion battery. The battery drives the two electric motors on the vehicle. The powertrain allows the car to move seamlessly between EV, Hybrid and the engine.
When driving below 64 Km/H Electric is moving the Civic unless you put your foot down for some rapid acceleration, in which case the Hybrid is engaged. The petrol engine comes into play when above 64 Km/H consistently until you get towards top speed, and the Hybrid employs again for an extra boost from the electric motors.
You won’t be disappointed with the interior of the Civic e: HEV, which is simplistic in layout but provides all that you and your occupants will require. Running the width of the front of the car is a honeycomb-style trim panel with integrated air vents. The updated Infotainment centre with a 22.5cm screen is on top of this. The driver has a digital 25cm screen providing all the information they need.
Rear passengers get more legroom than previous models and larger side windows, adding to the feel of room. You get 410-litre boot space allowing plenty of luggage, shopping, sports kit or any other load you want to carry.
The Honda Civic e:HEV Coupe gives you three trim levels starting with the lovely title of ‘Elegance’, but then the names become dreary with ‘Sport’ and ‘Advance’. You get the Honda ‘SENSING’ camera safety package on all three packages providing a 100-degree front wide-view camera, Blind spot information, Lane -keep assist, enhanced recognition technology, and low-speed braking control.
The Honda ‘Personal Assistant gives you access to the Infotainment and connectivity via voice command. The next-generation voice control system can respond to multiple commands, such as “Honda, find me a gym near to me with a swimming pool and free parking”. You also get the latest version of the Honda+ smartphone app, which includes vehicle locking and unlocking, plus ‘intelligent geofencing’, which alerts you if the vehicle breaches a pre-set ‘geofence’ zone.
The economy is impressive, and the 2.0-litre 181hp Civic e:HEV ‘Elegance’ gives a combined cycle figure of 100 Km/G. 90 Km/G for the ‘Sport’ and ‘Advance’ versions with their larger 45cm wheels.
A couple of the interior features are the 25cm fully digital colour driver’s display. Choosing Advance trim lets you tailor the information you want to see as you drive. Also, in Advance the Civic offers a premium audio system featuring 12 high-fidelity Bose® speakers for an immersive listening experience. You get Smartphone integration with the Honda CONNECT infotainment system via Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay® as standard.
The list of safety features and assistance is vast, so I mention a few.
Traffic Jam Assist
The new Civic’s safety features allow the car to accelerate, brake and even steer in slow traffic while maintaining a safe distance from the vehicle in front to take the stress out of being stuck in traffic.
The new Civic Advance features Adaptive Driving Beam headlights that individually control each headlight to maintain a comprehensive and distant light spread without dazzling other traffic or pedestrians.
Competition comes from nearly all manufacturers offering a similar size Coupe
The Honda Civic e:HEV Coupe is a lovely car, great to drive, practical, looks good, and economical. It has plenty of power to put a smile on Drivers, lots of room for all occupants, and they will be comfortable. They will be entertained through the infotainment system and have space for their bags, luggage or family needs. It makes a great alternative to going down the SUV route.
A fixed-price scheme called ‘Five’. It includes five years’ worth of maintenance, an extended warranty for this period and a roadside assistance breakdown cover. The plan can be transferred to a new owner if you sell the car before the service plan has expired.
The three-year, 150000 Km warranty is better than the package from many competitors. In addition, surface corrosion is covered for three years, exhaust corrosion is covered for five years, chassis corrosion is covered for ten years, and structural corrosion is covered for twelve years.
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