For a few days I was handed over the keys to a Honda Civic 1.6 iDTEC SR and it’s safe to say it made me the most popular person amongst my friends and family for the time I had it. It was able to carry my friends in comfort thanks to this being the well equipped SR specification. Boot space was more than sufficient when going shopping, keeping the girlfriend happy, and if the sizeable boot wasn’t enough then Honda’s clever “magic” folding back seats offered an additional large space for more items. Space then, is not a problem. Family members were impressed with the refinement offered by the Civic as it disguised the feeling of high speeds well on motorways with minimal noise and maintaining good levels of tranquility.
Being not all that old I was aware that I am not the target audience for the Honda, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t enjoyable to drive. 118BHP and 221b ft of torque made the car rather brisk through winding roads. Despite the 0-62 time being 10.5 seconds hitting keeping within the torque band as you go through the gears never got boring, and made the car more than sufficient at overtaking, pulling out of junctions and roundabouts in a timely manner. Steering was nice and light when navigating through tight spaces in town and car parks whilst being well weighted when travelling at faster speeds. The car feel more planted when tackling corners fast corner which creates a sense of confidence for the driver. Also a claimed 78.5 mpg in the diesel version I had makes relatively cheap to run and gave me a good excuse for covering over 500 miles in it in four days. Fuel economy figures that were very much “father pleasing.”
The interior of the car was a lovely space to be in with the leather heated seats and easy to read instrument. Nearly everyone that sat in the Civic commented on how pleasant it was to be a passenger in it. It must be said, however, that the satellite navigation system seemed a tad old fashioned and the buttons surrounding it were a bit cluttered. The operating system was slightly confusing – even for a 21st century chap such as myself. I am told that this system is being changed with the 2015 model which will be a improvement. All the other controls on the steering wheel were very intuitive and made for a more relaxing experience.
More discreet features such as the option boot floor cover that can be removed and easily cleaned, cruise control and a speed limiter are also very helpful. It is clear to see then why everyone suddenly wanted to be my best friend or their favourite member of the family when I had the key to the Civic. It impressed family members with its comfort, space, clever folding seats and fuel economy. And then it equally impressed friends the same age as myself with it’s looks, electronic instruments and extras that came with the car. And now I am no longer confused why everyone was ‘busy’ after I gave it back.
(Anthony is Inside Lane’s newest member of the team and also the youngest. This was his first experience testing a car.) You can read our full road test of the 2014 Honda Civic 1.6 i-DTEC SR HERE.