What Critics Think Of The New Honda Civic Concept


The biggest talker of the 2015 New York Auto Show is Honda’s surprise Civic concept. It’s definitely not the kind of conservatively styled Civic the U.S. has seen lately, especially in neon green. Automotive News has a roundup of what some people in the industry are saying about the direction Honda is going with its Civic lineup, which will include a sedan, coupe and hatchback.  The U.S. will see the sedan first sometime this Fall.

“If a sporty lime-green metallic coupe shown at the New York auto show is any indication, Honda isn’t playing it safe with the Civic anymore. When the company last rolled out a new Civic four years ago, it took no risks. The car was panned for unremarkable looks and a cheap interior, with a chintzy plastic dashboard and bed-sheet thin seat fabric. The next-generation Civic … has dramatic creases, a longer hood, 20-inch wheels and a big rear spoiler clearly designed to jettison the current car’s dull appearance and handling.”

— The Associated Press

“The Civic was a big improvement and will re-establish it as a fun-to-drive car offering high-tech drivetrain choices, including the Civic’s first turbo, and advanced technology. The Civic established Honda as a viable Japanese automaker in the U.S., but recent versions haven’t lived up to its iconic status.”

— Karl Brauer, Kelley Blue Book senior analyst, in The Detroit News

“We like to think that this amped-up concept car has the bold face and big wing of which Soichiro Honda would have approved, since he was just a hot-rodder at heart.”

— Automobile

“All we have to go on at this point are assurances that this will be a return to the sporty Civics of beloved memory, establishing new high points of handling and refinement for the model. The new Civic will be a little longer and a little wider than the current model, with a shorter front overhang and A-pillars that are pulled back to give it a sexier profile. The concept coupe sports curvier front fenders and a very fast roofline that ends in a notchback trunk. Front and rear LED lighting strongly link the concept to the current Civic as well as the rest of the Honda lineup. No real risk-taking to be seen there, although it’s not clear if the racy band of LEDs across the trunk lid that connects the taillight clusters will remain for production.”

— Aaron Robinson, Car and Driver

“What is arguably the most dramatic looking pre-production Civic Coupe Concept in a decade, was just the beginning of a string of announcements that will shake up the auto industry; as well as Honda Civic owners and metric ‘tuner’ fans looking to the next ‘big thing’ in Civic development.”

— Torque News

“The new look is a decidedly edgy direction for the Civic, a car not exactly known for taking chances in a traditionally-conservative industry, but … what really sold it was the back end. I highly doubt that centered single exhaust tip will make it to production, but the across-the-trunk taillights are a great, aggressive look for a car with limited sport credentials. Honda is taking a risk here though, as it attempts to unite the global Civic brand into a single chassis architecture. As it stands, the Civic in Europe is different from the Civic in America that’s different from the Civic sold in Asia. Honda will save millions in manufacturings costs if it can streamline the building process by not having a multitude of different versions to piece together. This means all varieties of the Honda Civic will be available in America, including the long-venerated Type-R, the ultimate in Civic performance. Long kept at arms length, Honda will finally bestow the Civic Type-R on American consumers.”

— Christopher DeMorro, Gas2: Burn Rubber, Not Gas

“Honda plans to spice it up with a new 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine that will be mated to the new continuously variable transmission. Honda also will offer the 2016 Civic with a 6-speed manual transmission. In back, the new Civic features a distinctive, elongated trapezoid-shaped tailpipe that looks like a jet engine exhaust port. It will make the car instantly recognizable.”

 — Jerry Hirsch, Los Angeles Times

“In what could have been dismissed as an April Fool’s Day prank, Honda introduced a Civic Coupe Concept at the New York auto show, ahead of when most would have predicted a replacement for the popular small car line. No joke. It’s the real deal. Designed and engineered in the United States, the concept sports a more aggressive, chiseled look than the current model, something the carmaker says will carry over to the production version. That visual attitude is said to translate to performance, as well. Honda is promising class-leading performance, along with much improved refinement and a more spacious, upgraded cabin with a high level of connectivity and near-luxury levels of quiet.”

Photo Credit: Honda
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