Is the 2022 Honda Civic Just About the Most Perfect Car?
The Civic outsells all other compact cars in North America so Honda better get this one right.
The Honda Civic is the best selling car in Canada and the United States. We love it. But with this new 2022 Honda Civic, have the changes made it better or worse?
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Engine – The 2022 Civic is available with two engines. The lower trims receive a 2.0L naturally aspirated 4-cylinder with just under 160 hp while this top Touring trim (along with the EX trim in USA) receives a turbocharged 1.5L engine. It produces 180 hp and 177 lb-ft of torque (134 kW & 240 Nm). The peak power figure is pretty high up in the rpm range at 6,000 rpms but in city driving situations, it’s the torque that matters more. The peak torque figure is reached at a very low 1,700 rpms and is sustained to 4,500 rpms. This means that the engine doesn’t need to rev all that much when taking off from a stop which in turn is good for fuel economy.
The 2022 Honda Civic is rated for 7.6 L/100km (30.9 MPG) in a city and 6.1 L/100km (38.5 MPG) on a highway with this 1.5L turbocharged engine. Best of all, this turbo engine does not require premium fuel. During my time with the 2022 Civic, I averaged 7.5 L/100km (31.3 MPG). I didn’t do much highway driving.
Transmission – Yes it is a CVT but it’s not that bad. This new Civic is not the sporty trim (the Si and Type-R will come later) so having a CVT is perfectly acceptable for a city / highway car. In normal driving situations, it doesn’t try to replicate virtual gears and instead it tries to keep the engine’s rpms as low as possible for improved fuel economy. It’s only when you put your foot all the way down does it try to emulate an automatic transmission with gears.
Braking – The brake pedal is a bit more sensitive in this Honda Civic than I was expecting. It’ll take a bit more getting used to for those that have a heavy foot but the pedal modulation is good for smooth stops.
Handling – The handling dynamics of the new Civic have been slightly tweaked. It feels more “mature” when it goes around corners. The steering response is sharp and communicative. It’s also nicely weighted so that it doesn’t feel too light or overly assisted. Sure, the tires squeal in agony if you drive it like a hoonigan around a corner but this is not meant to be the sporty Civic trim. The Si and Type-R will come later. Overall the 2022 Civic is easy to drive around town which is exactly what you want from a car like this.
Ride Comfort – The suspension is more compliant over bumps than the previous generation of the Civic. Shunts from potholes don’t get translated through the suspension and into the cabin as much.
The seats have also been revised from the previous generation Civic. They are a bit softer and provide a bit more support for your entire body thus reducing stress over longer drives. However, there is no lumbar adjustment.
Interior Space – The 2022 Honda Civic has grown in size. The wheelbase is 1.4” longer than the outgoing model and this is evident in interior passenger space. Front occupants have a lot of space for their legs and heads. The new Civic also has good visibility both over the hood and over the shoulder. The rear seats are also spacious for tall adults like myself. Legroom is good for a car of this size as is headroom. In the trunk, the 2022 Civic has 408 L (14.4 cu-ft) of cargo volume with more available by folding down the rear seats.
Noise, Vibration, & Harshness – Sound insulation has been drastically improved in this new Civic over the old one. Engine, wind, and tire noises barely intrude into the cabin when driving around city streets. Road noise is a bit more prevalent on highways and is still the Achilles heel of the Civic when it comes to interior comfort.
Odds and Ends
Pricing – The 2022 Honda Civic starts at $24,465 CAD ($21,700 USD) for the LX trim. This top Touring trim will cost you $30,565 CAD ($28,300 USD).
Gadgets – For just under $25,000 CAD, the 2022 Civic is very well equipped. In Canada, it comes standard with heated seats, Apple CarPlay & Android Auto connectivity, LED headlights, blind spot sensors, automatic climate control, remote start, forward collision alert with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and a 7-inch touchscreen.
Upgrade to this Touring trim and the Civic will come with navigation, a larger 9-inch touchscreen, wireless Apple CarPlay & Android Auto, wireless phone charging, leather upholstery, front and rear parking sensors, and the 1.5L turbo engine. Some of these features differ between the Canadian and American market. For example, the Civic has standard heated seats & blind spot sensors whereas they are only available on higher trims in the United States.
Interior Design – The redesigned interior invokes a feeling of premium quality but with a simplified approach. While some manufacturers have resorted to haptic touch controls, Honda utilizes physical buttons and knobs. Better yet, the climate control knobs feel as though they are from a car costing twice or thrice as much. The mesh grille across the dashboard covers the air vents but Honda could have taken a step further by incorporating a diffused air vent like how Hyundai did in the 2022 Tucson. My only concern is with the vent prongs that look like they can easily break with too much force. The rest of the cabin materials are pretty good quality for a sub $30,000 car. It has a feeling of good build quality.
Exterior Design – To my eyes, the exterior doesn’t look as exciting as the previous generation. I’d even go so far as to say it’s a bit bland. The previous Civic had interesting lines and shapes in the exterior design. The new Civic has smooth curves – which are not bad – but it looks like it’ll blend in with other cars in a parking lot. I understand that this new Civic is a global car so every country gets the same looking vehicle and thus it has to appeal to a much broader audience. But the design is a bit too far on the conservative scale.
Warranty – The 2022 Honda Civic is covered by a 3 year / 60,000 km new vehicle and 5 year / 100,000 km powertrain warranty.
Without beating around the bush too much, the all-new 2022 Honda Civic is a great car. Spacious, economical, easy-to-drive, comfortable, and packed with the latest tech. It’s a smart and safe choice for the compact car segment.