Honda Civic 2.0S 2012 Review

Honda Civic 2.0S 2012 Review

Some cars really shine with the addition of some extra bling and the top-of-the-range Civic 2.0S is one of them. The increase from 16-inch wheels to 17-inch wheels, fog lamps and body-coloured bumpers and door handles lifts the profile significantly; throw cream leather seats into the mix and you’ve got a looker that’s also plush on the interior.

While you can spend more on the Civic IMA CVT Auto which we reviewed here – it is $43,500 compared to the 2.0S which is $38,500 – you’re paying for the extra economy given by the IMA’s battery technology, and not the interior fitout. I would rather have the 2.0S because,

if you only do 10,000km a year, it will take you over 5 years in extra fuel costs before you pay back the extra $5000, and I want the additional power and comfort now. That power is a reasonable 114kW at 6500rpm and 190Nm at 4300rpm as opposed to 82kW.

Back in 1972 when the Civic was first released, Honda put a 1169cc engine in it as opposed to the two-litre unit in the 2.0S. The car was also tiny, and if you park one up next to a full size new Civic then you’ll see that the new Civic dwarfs it and is about the same size as the old Accord!

Cars get bigger and bigger, predominantly because we demand things like crumple zones and legroom in the back. In the original Civic, your body was the crumple zone; in the new Civic there are six airbags (front, side and full length side curtain) plus what Honda calls Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) collision compatibility body design and G-Force Control (G-CON) collision compatibility body design. It all adds up to a five-star ANCAP safety rating.

Electronic driver aids include Hill Start Assist (HAS), Electronic Stability Control – VSA (Honda’s Vehicle Stability Assist) incorporating Traction Control (TC), Motion Adaptive EPS (Electronic Power Steering) with crosswind assist, ABS (Anti-lock Braking System), EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution) and EBA (Emergency Brake Assist). All this technology was non-intrusive in everyday driving. Even the crosswind assist, which encourages you to steer in the correct direction if you’re suddenly exposed to a strong crosswind or a slippery patch didn’t make itself conspicuous.

We last drove a Honda Civic 2.0S back in 2008 – the eighth generation. The latest iteration (ninth generation) of the Civic’s design was introduced in 2011. At the time we marveled at Honda’s courage in producing a car that looked very futuristic. Fortunately for Honda the Civic’s lines still look futuristic, though they don’t seem as harsh as when they were introduced. The outside has prominent sharp creases and that steeply raked windscreen which flows back over the sunroof and to the ducktail spoiler on the boot.

Inside you get Honda’s signature split dashboard where you look at the rev counter through the steering wheel. Other instruments are above the wheel. Visual indicators of how frugally you are driving are the blue/turquoise/green lights either side of the digital speedo. Drive like you love the planet and you’ll be rewarded with plenty of green; drive like you are late to a meeting and you’ll see mostly blue. There is an Econ button on the dash to help you achieve a better fuel economy. This makes a noticeable difference to the responsiveness of the throttle. This button makes changes to the CVT gearbox, engine control, air conditioning and cruise control. You can still override the gears using the paddle shifters behind the steering wheel, though.

The interior is light and airy, assisted hugely by the light-coloured cream leather seats which are supportive while remaining comfortable. Other appointments include Bluetooth phone compatibility and the ability to plug in your MP3 player.

Driving the Civic is easy – moderate acceleration, predictable understeer, strong brakes. However, reversing would be made much easier with reversing sensors which are noticeably absent. In my opinion a sunroof is not an essential item, or even an item which drives sales, particularly in a car where the interior ambience is already spacious. We have climate control to take care of our temperature requirements and a much better package would have been reversing sensors, dual climate control and perhaps heated seats and keyless entry/start.

Is the Civic 2.0S worth the three grand premium over the 1.8S? The main differences are the leather seats, the nice 17-inch alloys, electric glass sunroof, front fog lamps, 10kW more power and automatic windscreen wipers. That’s quite a significant extra amount of features for only $3000, and if you can live with the slight fuel economy hit (7.5l/100km vs 6.7l.100km according to Honda), then the Civic 2.0S is the one to go for.

If you’re after a second hand Honda Civic, try clicking here.

Price: $38,500

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Looks better than any other Civic in the range
  • Extras over the 1.8S seem like value for money

Cons

  • No reversing sensors
  • Boot isn’t exactly huge

Performance

Engine

i-VTEC (Intelligent Variable Valve Timing with Electronic Lift Control) performance and economy enhancing technology
VCM (Variable Cylinder Management) for optimising power and efficiency
Drive-by-Wire (DBW) electronic throttle control
Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) Combined Engine
Fuel tank capacity (litres): 50
Recommended Fuel: 91-octane regular unleaded fuel

Handling

Brakes: 262mm (14″) front ventilated brake discs and 160mm (14″) rear drum brakes
MacPherson strut front suspension
Multi-link Double Wishbone rear suspension with front and rear stabiliser bars

Transmission

CVT automatic transmission
Gear Logic Control with Grade Logic Control
Sport mode

Safety & Security

Safety

Driver and Passenger front i-SRS airbags
Side airbags in front seats with OPDS (Occupant Position Detection System) on passenger seat
Full length side-curtain airbags
3-point ELR seatbelts (front and rear). Pretensioners, load limiters and height adjustable anchor points for front seatbelts
3 child seat tether points and ALR (Automatic Locking Reel) seatbelts in the rear
Seatbelt reminders (all seats)
Active headrests for front seats
Height adjustable headrests for all 5 seating positions
Electronic Stability Control – VSA (Honda’s Vehicle Stability Assist) incorporating Traction Control
Motion Adaptive EPS (Electronic Power Steering) with crosswind assist
ABS (Anti-lock braking system ) with EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution) and EBA (Emergency Brake Assist)
Impact absorbing bumpers
G-CON (G-Force Control) Collision Compatibility body design
Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) collision compatibility body design
Child-proof rear door locks
Side intrusion beams

Security

Integrated security alarm system
Engine immobiliser
Remote central locking on all doors
Key less entry, with boot opener
Interior master door lock switch

Fuel Economy & Environment

Fuel Economy

Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) L/100kms : 4.4

Emissions

Emissions fall within Euro V standards
Emissions fall within ULEV (Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle) standards
Emissions fall within AT-PZEV (Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle)
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) CO2 (g/km): 104

ECON system

ECON Fuel Saver System
ECON Switch for Super Economy Mode
Ecological Drive Assist Programme for improved fuel economy
Auto-Stop fuel saver
Drive Efficiency Rating
Instant Fuel Economy Monitoring System with ECO Drive Bar
Instant Fuel Economy Monitoring System
Economy History – last 3 drives + current drive fuel economy

Styling and Features

Dimensions

Dimensions

Length (mm): 4549
Width (mm): 1753
Height (mm): 1434
Weight (kg): 1280
Max Weight (kg): 1740
Wheelbase (mm): 2670
Track – Front/Rear (mm): 1500/1530
Ground Clearance – non-load (mm): 150
Ground Clearance – full-load (mm): 110
Turning Radius (m): 5.42
Steering Wheel Turn Lock to Lock: 3.11

Exterior

Body

Power adjustable, manually retractable body coloured door mirror with integrated side turn indicator
Body colour bumpers and chrome door handles
Ducktail boot spoiler

Features

Variable intermittent front windscreen wipers with automatic rain sensor and automatic speed adjustment
Wheels: 15

Lights

Halogen headlamps – low/high beam
Front fog lamps

Interior

Cargo & Seating

Ergonomic seats
6-way manual driver’s seat adjustment
4-way adjustable front passenger seat
Rear window lock/unlock switch in drivers door
Power windows with drivers auto up/down and anti-trap
Boot light
Compact spare wheel
Rear seat folding centre armrest with cupholders
Magazine Rack Drivers Seat
Magazine Rack Passengers Seat
Spring loaded handgrabs, one with fold down coathook in rear
Cupholders
Centre console storage
Coin pocket
Velour interior trim

Comfort & Convenience

Air conditioning dust and pollen clean air filter
Auto Air Conditioning
Foot-rest
Leather trimmed tilt and reach adjustable 3-spoke steering wheel
Cruise control integrated into steering wheel
Drivers vanity mirror
Passenger vanity mirror
Door pockets
Front map reading lights
Door courtesy light
Ticket/card holder (driver only)
Glove Box
Accessory power outlet (12V socket)
Dual display dashboard for reduced driver fatigue and enhanced safety

Driver display

Multi information display (iMIDI) with clock, Bluetooth, iPod/mp3 integration
Outside temperature display
Tachometer
Average fuel economy (litres/100km)
Instant fuel economy
Fuel consumption display
Switchable Ecological Drive Assist Programme
Distance to empty
Average Speed Indicator
Bluetooth HandsFreeLink
Digital Odometer and Digital Trip Meters
Eco Guide/Eco Store
Elapsed Time Indicator
IMA System Power Flow Indicator

Entertainment

Audio

Audio type : In-dash stereo tuner
Speakers: 4×17 cm
Front Tweeters: Yes
CD player
MP3 compatible
WMA compatible
Folder control compatibility
USB input (memory stick and iPod compatible)
AUX 3.5mm input for music player (e.g. MP3 player / iPod)
Steering wheel audio controls
Speed sensitive volume control (SVC)

Bluetooth

Integrated steering wheel bluetooth
Bluetooth hands free telephone (HFT) system

Warranty

Vehicle 3 year, unlimited kilometre warranty
IMA Battery: 8 years or 160,000km, whichever comes first
IMA Battery Warranty upgrade available: 12 years or 160,000km, whichever comes first

Model Options

Civic 1.8S Manual

Price from $32,900 + ORC

Model Features

Engine Type: 1.8-litre, 16 valve
Maximum Power (KW @ rpm): 104kW @ 6500rpm
Maximum Torque (Nm @ rpm): 174Nm @ 4300rpm
Brakes: 282mm (15″) front ventilated brake discs and 160mm (14″) rear solid brake discs
5-speed manual transmission
2 ISOFIX child seat attachment sets
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) L/100kms : 6.8
Emissions fall within Euro IV standards
Emissions fall within LEV II (Low Emissions Vehicle) standards
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) CO2 (g/km): 161
Weight (kg): 1209
Max Weight (kg): 1670
Track – Front/Rear (mm): 1499/1522
Body colour bumpers and door handles
Variable intermittent front windscreen wipers
Wheels: 16
60/40 folding rear seats
Velour interior trim

Civic 1.8S Auto

Price from $34,900 + ORC

Model Features

Engine Type: 1.8-litre, 16 valve
Maximum Power (KW @ rpm): 104kW @ 6500rpm
Maximum Torque (Nm @ rpm): 174Nm @ 4300rpm
Brakes: 282mm (15″) front ventilated brake discs and 160mm (14″) rear solid brake discs
5-speed automatic transmission
Hill Start Assist
Gear Logic Control with Grade Logic Control
Sport mode
Racing-inspired steering wheel mounted shift paddles
2 ISOFIX child seat attachment sets
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) L/100kms : 6.7
Emissions fall within Euro IV standards
Emissions fall within LEV II (Low Emissions Vehicle) standards
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) CO2 (g/km): 159
Weight (kg): 1226
Max Weight (kg): 1690
Track – Front/Rear (mm): 1499/1522
Body colour bumpers and door handles
Variable intermittent front windscreen wipers
Wheels: 16
60/40 folding rear seats
Velour interior trim
Paddle shifters for +/- SportShift on steering wheel

Civic 2.0S Auto

Price from $38,500 + ORC

Model Features

Engine Type: 2.0-litre, 16 valve
Maximum Power (KW @ rpm): 114kW @ 6500rpm
Maximum Torque (Nm @ rpm): 190Nm @ 4300rpm
Brakes: 282mm (15″) front ventilated brake discs and 160mm (14″) rear solid brake discs
5-speed automatic transmission
Hill Start Assist
Gear Logic Control with Grade Logic Control
Sport mode
Racing-inspired steering wheel mounted shift paddles
2 ISOFIX child seat attachment sets
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) L/100kms : 7.5
Emissions fall within Euro IV standards
Emissions fall within LEV II (Low Emissions Vehicle) standards
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) CO2 (g/km): 178
Weight (kg): 1293
Max Weight (kg): 1690
Track – Front/Rear (mm): 1499/1522
Body colour bumpers and door handles
Variable intermittent front windscreen wipers with automatic rain sensor and automatic speed adjustment
Wheels: 17
Front fog lamps
60/40 folding rear seats
Leather upholstery
Paddle shifters for +/- SportShift on steering wheel
Electric glass sunroof with tilt/slide function and integrated sliding shade, with onetouch open/close function and anti-trap

Civic IMA CVT Auto

Price from $43,500 + ORC

Model Features

Engine Type: i-VTEC (Intelligent Variable Valve Timing with Electronic Lift Control) performance and economy enhancing technology
Maximum Power (KW @ rpm): 82kW @ 5500rpm
Maximum Torque (Nm @ rpm): 172Nm @ 1000-3500rpm
VCM (Variable Cylinder Management) for optimising power and efficiency
Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) Combined Engine
Switchable IMA Boost Program with 2 modes (Eco Assist): Normal and Econ for your choice of driving style
Brakes: 262mm (14″) front ventilated brake discs and 160mm (14″) rear drum brakes
CVT automatic transmission
Gear Logic Control with Grade Logic Control
Sport mode
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) L/100kms : 4.4
Emissions fall within Euro V standards
Emissions fall within ULEV (Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle) standards
Emissions fall within AT-PZEV (Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle)
Combined – Australian Design Rules (ADR) CO2 (g/km): 104
Auto-Stop fuel saver
Drive Efficiency Rating
Economy History – last 3 drives + current drive fuel economy
Weight (kg): 1280
Max Weight (kg): 1740
Track – Front/Rear (mm): 1500/1530
Body colour bumpers and chrome door handles
Ducktail boot spoiler
Variable intermittent front windscreen wipers with automatic rain sensor and automatic speed adjustment
Wheels: 15
Front fog lamps
Velour interior trim
Switchable Ecological Drive Assist Programme
Eco Guide/Eco Store
IMA System Power Flow Indicator
Front Tweeters: Yes
IMA Battery: 8 years or 160,000km, whichever comes first
IMA Battery Warranty upgrade available: 12 years or 160,000km, whichever comes first

Words and photos: Darren Cottingham

 

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