Honda Thailand has just “stolen” the limelight from Honda Singapore, as the Kingdom officially unveils the 11th generation Honda Civic, the first in the ASEAN region.
The highly successful sedan continues to be offered in three variants with the range-topping variant decked with the RS treatment. Powertrain however sees a major change, where all variants are fitted with the improved turbocharged 1.5-litre VTEC-Turbo engine. Gone is the 1.8-litre naturally aspirated engine that served the lower and middle variants.
Exterior-wise, the RS variant receives all the sporty items such as black door handles, side mirrors, rear spoiler, shark fin antenna, larger 17-inch wheels as well as the window surround. The twin exhaust tips are also decorated with large cylindrical finishers on the RS variant.
Compared to the outgoing model, the all-new Civic is 48 mm longer with a wheelbase that stretches 35 mm more.
Full LED headlamps are reserved only for the RS variant, while the lower two variants are fitted with projector halogen units. LED DRLs, as well as automatic function, is standard across the range.
Inside the RS variant gets an all-black interior with red stitching on the steering wheel, shift lever boot, door panels and combination leather-suede seats. This range-topping variant also gets the new key features such as the 10.2-inch high-definition instrument cluster and is paired with the 9-inch free-standing central infotainment display and wireless smartphone charger.
The Honda Civic RS also gets a lot more items with its higher retail price, such as a new Honda Smart Key card, dual-zone automatic air-conditioning, both driver and passenger power-adjusting seats and illuminated footwell and front door panels.
Both the non-RS variants, called EL and EL+, have the option for either all black or beige seat upholstery. Standard features in the all-new Honda Civic include a 7-inch infotainment display with Apple CarPlay and Siri connectivity, remote engine start, automatic air-conditioning and rear seat belt reminders.
As mentioned earlier, all models now are fitted with the updated turbocharged 1.5-litre VTEC-Turbo engine. Engine outputs have been raised from 173 hp and 220 Nm, to 178 hp and 240 Nm of torque. No mention of acceleration times but with the all-new Honda Civic approximately 30 kg heavier, there shouldn’t be much difference against the current time of 8.2 seconds.
Power is channelled to a revised CVT that is said to offer better response to driver input as well as revised Step-Shift programming that simulates physical gear changes under hard acceleration for a more familiar and enjoyable driving experience.
Shift paddles are featured exclusively on the RS variant, together with the new Sport mode.
Safety features are the same across all three variants. This means the Honda Sensing suite with:
- Lead Car Departure Notification System (LCDN)
- Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-speed follow (ACC LSF)
- Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS)
- Road Departure Mitigation with LDW
- Automatic High-Beam
- Collision Mitigation Braking System (AEB)
This updated Honda Sensing suite, now operated using a wide-angle camera, also comes fitted with the Lead Car Departure Notification System, where, as the name suggests, alerts the driver in the new Civic once the vehicle ahead starts moving off during waits at the traffic lights.
Unlike the American and Japanese models, the Thai Honda Civic continues to offer Honda LaneWatch instead of the new Blind spot monitoring system. It is also only available in the range-topping Honda Civic RS variant.
As for prices, the all-new 11th generation Honda Civic starts its pricing from THB964,900 (approx RM122k) for the EL variant, THB1,009,900 (approx RM128k) for the EL+ variant and THB1,199,900 (over RM150k) for the range-topping RS variant. The prices of the EL+ and RS see a slight reduction compared to the predecessor model.
Back in Malaysia, there are slim hopes that the all-new Honda Civic will be launched this year, as Honda Malaysia expressed that the prolonged business closure due to MCO3.0 has tremendously affected operations including the testing and development of new models.