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10 Things You Need To Know About The 2012 Honda Civic

Benjamin Hunting
by Benjamin Hunting
May 14, 2012
5 min. Reading Time

The 2012 Honda Civic was one of the most highly-anticipated redesigns to come down the pipe this past year, and many previous Civic owners have been delighted with the updates made to the compact sedan and coupe. The Honda Civic is a standard in the entry-level car segment, as the vehicle blends value, fuel economy and performance into one extended family of automobiles. The new Civic's revised styling and improved efficiency help it to maintain its reputation as a 'must drive' amongst compact shoppers.

Let's take a look at 10 things you need to know about the 2012 Honda Civic.

01. The 2012 Honda Civic Has Been Completely Redesigned

The 2012 Honda Civic is an all-new iteration of the popular compact car, but unlike previous redesigns a more incremental approach has been taken with regards to making improvements. Familiar at first glance, underneath its skin the Civic offers significant changes that are more noticeable from behind the wheel. Styling has been subtly tweaked through the introduction of a longer hood, new tail lights, a revised grille and headlights and smoother bumpers, while the Honda Civic's chassis has been updated in order to further isolate driver and passengers from the road. This effectively gives the automobile a quieter interior as well as a more solid feel that some might associate with a much larger vehicle - impressive given the fact that each edition of the Civic is lighter than it was the year before.


02. The 2012 Honda Civic Comes In Two Body Styles

The 2012 Honda Civic can be had as both a sedan and a coupe. Although the Honda Civic sedan rides on a slightly shorter wheelbase than it did the year before, the vehicle offers 1.6 inches more rear leg room and just under three inches more shoulder room for those riding up front. The Civic coupe also offers a wheelbase that has been shrunk, and the two door's rear seat is a bit tighter than in years past. The vehicle's interior has been spruced up with a five-inch LCD information display (standard on all but the entry-level edition of the car), while the overall cockpit design stays true for the most part to the previous Civic's dual-tiered dash display.[apge]03. The 2012 Honda Civic Comes With A Standard Four-Cylinder Engine

The 2012 Honda Civic is powered by a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine that has been tuned to provide 140 horsepower and 128 lb-ft of torque. These numbers are identical to the 2011 Honda Civic, but torque now comes on slightly lower in the torque band in order to improve around-town drivability. The Civic's four-cylinder unit can be paired with either a five-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic, with the latter coming as standard equipment on two of the compact's trim levels. The five-speed manual edition of the car provides the most lively acceleration, while the auto gearbox is designed to offer greater efficiency.


04. The 2012 Honda Civic Can Be Had In The Si Sport Model

The 2012 Honda Civic is still available in Si trim, a version of the car that is designed to give sport compact enthusiasts an inexpensive, fun-to-drive option. The Honda Civic Si gains a larger four-cylinder engine for 2012, moving up from 2.0-liters to 2.4-liters of displacement. Horsepower remains the same at 200, but torque has risen to 170 lb-ft. This helps the Civic Si leap to 60-mph from a standing start in just 6.9 seconds. A six-speed manual is the only transmission available with the Si (regardless of whether it is ordered in sedan or coupe form), and the automobile also comes with sport seats, a limited-slip front differential, a stiff suspension system and a number of external styling tweaks that are designed to give the automobile a more aggressive appearance.


05. The 2012 Honda Civic Turns In Sparkling Fuel Mileage

The standard edition of the 2012 Honda Civic offers better fuel economy than the previous year's model. When equipped with a manual transmission, the Honda Civic is rated at 28-mpg in city driving and 36-mpg on the highway. If the special HF trim level is order, which comes with a standard auto gearbox, low-rolling resistance tires and improved aerodynamics, the Civic's fuel economy rises considerably, showing as 29-mpg in stop and go driving and 41-mpg during highway cruising. The HF's fuel mileage comes in at four-mpg city and five-mpg highway better than the most efficient gasoline-powered 2011 Civic.


06. The 2012 Honda Civic Can Be Had In A Hybrid Edition

The HF trim is not the most frugal version of the 2012 Honda Civic when it comes to fuel consumption. That honor is bestowed upon the Honda Civic Hybrid, a vehicle which is motivated by a gasoline / electric drivetrain that combines a 1.5-liter, four-cylinder engine with a battery-powered motor in order to produce 110 horsepower and 127 lb-ft of torque. Despite offering a larger gasoline mill that it did in 2011, the Civic Hybrid's fuel economy is actually better around town (44-mpg) and only one mile per gallon lower on the highway (44-mpg). Available exclusively in sedan form, the gasoline / electric model features a continuously-variable automatic transmission.


07. The 2012 Honda Civic Comes In Seven Trim Levels

The 2012 Honda Civic is offered in a range of different trim levels designed to appeal to the widest number of compact car shoppers. In addition to the previously-mentioned HF, Si and Hybrid versions of the car, the Civic DX offers entry-level shoppers power windows, intermittent wipers and a rear defroster. The next step up is the Civic LX, which adds air conditioning, keyless entry, power door locks and a CD player, followed by the Civic EX, which slaps on 16-inch alloy wheels, installs a sunroof, provides Bluetooth integration and adds rear disc brakes for improved stopping power. Opting for the top-level Civic EX-L means the addition of heated leather seats and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.


08. The 2012 Honda Civic Can Be Had With Eco Assist

The 2012 Honda Civic Eco Assist feature is designed to train drivers to alter their habits behind the wheel in order to squeeze out as many miles per gallon as possible and reduce unnecessary tailpipe emissions. The Eco Assist system displays "coaching bars" on either side of the digital speedometer, and the more green bars that are displayed the more environmentally-friendly the pilot's driving style. An ECON button also reconfigures the Civic's engine and energy management systems in order to reduce fuel consumption, backing off throttle response but delivering better economy. These features are not restricted to the Civic Hybrid but are available with gasoline-powered editions of the automobile as well.


09. The 2012 Honda Civic Is A Safe Compact Car

The 2012 Honda Civic comes with as much safety gear as can be crammed into its compact platform. The Honda Civic offers two front airbags, two side airbags for forward occupants and a standard side curtain airbag system that deploys along the length of the Civic's entire passenger compartment. Anti-lock brakes and Vehicle Stability Assist help to keep the Civic under control when road conditions turn nasty, and traction control works to keep wheel spin to a minimum when power is applied. The automobile also comes with a tire pressure monitoring system that not only works to improve efficiency by reminding drivers to add air to under-inflated rubber, but also helps to prevent blowouts by spotting leaky tires before it becomes a major concern.


10. The 2012 Honda Civic Is Affordably Priced

The 2012 Honda Civic sedan starts at an MSRP of $15,805 for the base DX model. The Civic LX provides a more complete list of equipment for not much more cash (MSRP $17, 855), and the Civic HF adds extra miles per gallon for an MSRP of $19,455. The Civic EX (MSRP $20,505) and Civic EX-L ($21,955) round out the sedan's standard range.

Pricing for the Honda Civic coupe is quite similar to the sedan, with the two-door edition coming in slightly cheaper (by roughly $200) for each trim level with the exception of the EX-L coupe (which matches the MSRP of the EX-L sedan). The Honda Civic Hybrid is the most expensive version of the compact car, but the battery-assisted four-door still comes in at a very affordable MSRP of $24,050.



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