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Honda finally has a contender in the small car segment with the new Civic hatch

10 Aug 2012

HONDA is finally on a level playing field with its small-car hatchback rivals thanks to much keener pricing for the latest Civic hatch, which has a completely redesigned body and interior.

Built in Britain and pitched directly against the popular Mazda 3, Volkswagen Golf, and Ford Focus, the five-door Civic has a tough job ahead if it is to meet Honda’s lofty sales targets, but like the related sedan launched earlier this year, there are obvious and welcome improvements to the breed.

However, a few anomalies remain in what is a fun but flawed small-car package.
Model release date: 1 July 2012 to 1 April 2016

Previous model

FK Civic Si

Released: April 2008
Ended: June 2012
Family Tree: Civic

HONDA always wanted to sell the radical European Civic hatch in Australia, but by the time the factory homologated it for local consumption a currency dip saw prices hover around the $40,000 mark for the admittedly well-equipped Si five-door hatch that surfaced in early 2009.

Powered by a 103kW/174Nm 1.8-litre SOHC four-cylinder petrol engine, it offered either a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic gearbox.

Buyers stayed away in droves, forcing Honda to bring out a cheaper and revised model in 2010, but even then the $30,000 Si still cost far more than a similarly equipped Mazda3, ensuring that the Mk8 series hatch from England remained a curio in this country.

Get the full story: Honda's Britsh-built Civic Si is a premium package - including the price

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