The 10th-generation Civic represents a first: the first turbocharged powertrain on the North American Honda lineup. Honda also brings another first to the 2017 model in particular: the first time drivers could choose a Honda with a turbocharged engine and a manual transmission. Let’s see what these firsts do for the Civic’s performance specs.
Power: A 2.0L 4-cylinder powers both the Civic LX and EX, delivering 158 hp. The Civic EX-T, EX-L, and Touring all have the turbocharged engine, rated at 174 hp.
Torque: The 2.0L engine of the Civic brings 138 lb-ft of torque, but drivers looking for a sportier and faster feel might prefer the 1.5L turbo, with its available 167 lb-ft of torque on manual transmission models (CVT models feature 162 lb-ft of torque).
Transmission: While the continuously variable transmission has been designed to optimize gear ratios for each given scenario, some drivers still prefer the control of the stick shift. Both engines can be had with either transmission, though, so you won’t have to compromise on the Civic.
Drivers who love the sound of their engine should be sure to take a test drive of the Civic and see the difference that Honda’s advanced sound isolation technologies make. You’ll still notice the purr or growl of the engine, but it’s more felt than heard, giving the cabin a more serene feeling, even at high speeds.
It’s best to weigh all of your options when shopping for a new car, and there are some advantages of going with the 2.0L 4-cylinder and some for going with the 1.5L turbo. Here’s what we think:
2.0L 4-Cylinder: As the standard engine, the 2.0L 4-cylinder might be the best option for drivers on a budget; it’s more efficient than many competing models and keeps the Civic’s price in the easily affordable range. Even though it trails behind the turbo on power and efficiency, it is still one of the best small car engines on the market.
1.5L Turbo: If you have a little more wiggle room in the budget, the 1.5L turbocharged engine is an easy choice, as it brings more power and superior efficiency. It’s also a nice bonus if you’re looking at the features of the EX-T, EX-L, or Touring trims.
While you should have an idea of which one you might be interested in now, you won’t have to make a decision until after you’ve had a chance to take a Civic or two for a test drive.