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AS WITH MANY Filipinos, the Honda Civic has always held a special place in my heart. After all, it was my first car — at a time when I was just discovering my passion for motoring, during my good ol’ college days! And I think that almost everybody will agree that it was in fact, the Honda Civic of the ’90s that brought Honda to its greatness in the Philippines. And though that was over 30 years ago, the Civic was actually first introduced back in 1972. Since then, it has become Honda’s most successful nameplate of all time.
The Honda Civic has always been known for its sporty practicality, its delightful compatibility with after-market parts, and its then-bizarre design which was really ahead of its time. It was also always lauded for its VTEC power, which made it extra efficient and practical when it came to fuel consumption. We also shouldn’t forget its exceptionally comfortable cabin and driving dynamics for the segment that it was in — even capitalizing on the fact that women found it very desirable to drive.
Well, just last week, Honda Philippines proudly announced the availability of its 11th-generation model, which it claims is its most sophisticated Civic to date. The car now looks sportier and more premium than its predecessor, especially with its longer hood and characteristic taillights and headlights, which are now also equipped with LED DRLs (daytime running lights).
Perhaps what’s most impressive about the all-new, 11th-gen Honda Civic is the fact that all variants now come with a 1.5-liter VTEC turbo engine — making it even more responsive to every car enthusiast’s demands — together with an improved chassis that boasts architecture resulting in even less noise, vibrations, and harshness. Since the Civic now has an all-turbo variant range, each engine will be capable of spitting out 178ps and 240Nm of torque. This is approximately 5ps and 20Nm more than the previous, 10th-generation 1.5-liter VTEC turbo engine offered. All variants are now mated with a CVT (continuously variable transmission).
Another pleasant surprise is the introduction of Honda Sensing — a collection of driver assistance and collision avoidance technology, meant to someday fulfill the Japanese car company’s desire to achieve “Safety for Everyone” or zero car collision fatalities on our roads. Honda Sensing uses a monocular, wide-angle camera in combination with built-in software to help the vehicle better recognize pedestrians, other vehicles, and even standard road markings. Included in the Honda Sensing package are the following features: Collision Mitigation Braking System, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow, Lane Keeping Assist System, Road Departure Mitigation System with Lane Departure Warning, Auto High Beam, and Lead Car Departure Notification System. The new Civic also carries a G-force Control Collision Safety body that enhances impact absorption and improves the outcome when collisions are imminent. Of course, the Civic maintains a high standard when it comes to air bags — coming with side curtain air bags, and the usual front and passenger air bags. This earns the all-new Civic a five-star NCAP rating.
Inside the Civic is a touchscreen display audio that measures either seven or nine inches, depending on the variant. All are Apple CarPlay- and Android Auto-compatible. What I found rather impressive is the fact that the new RS variant comes equipped with a 12-speaker Bose sound system. The RS variant is made extra special with a spoiler, 18-inch alloy wheels in black, a shark fin antenna, and side mirrors equipped with a lane watch camera.
The all-new Honda Civic is now offered in three variants: S Turbo CVT (P1.29 million), V Turbo CVT (P1.498 million), and RS Turbo CVT (P1.69 million) — and all come with the proprietary Honda Sensing. There is also a brand-new color on offer — Morning Mist Blue Metallic.