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Detroit Show: New-look Civic sedan gets sporty

Civic reception: The Civic sedan will arrive here late this year.

Honda reveals sleek new Civic coupe and sedan in Detroit

11 Jan 2011

THE next-generation Honda Civic has been revealed at the North American International Motor Show in the form of a sexy coupe and bold new sedan.

Both were described as concepts at this week’s show, but Honda admits they are very close to the production models.

A version of the sedan, produced at Honda’s Thailand facility, will make it to Australia late this year, but the sleek two-door coupe is only for the US at this stage.

Honda Australia has confirmed it will import 1.8-litre petrol and 2.0-litre petrol sedan versions of the ninth generation small car, as well as a hybrid model that will be the first Honda to run a lithium-ion battery pack.

There are no plans for a diesel version of the Civic sedan and, although Honda sells a compressed natural gas (CNG) variant in the US, there are no plans to introduce this engine in Australia.

15 center imageLeft: Honda Civic sedan. Below: Honda Civic coupe.

Honda Australia spokesman Mark Higgins said he expected the production Civic sedans to look very much like the vehicles shown in Detroit, though there could be changes to the wing mirrors, headlights, grilles and wheels for different markets.

While the new Civic sedan and coupe were shown at Detroit, there were no three-door and five-door hatch versions, which are popular in Europe.

GoAuto understands the next generation of Civic hatchbacks will not be introduced at the same time as the sedan and US coupe, but at some stage next year.

Honda Australia is considering whether to continue selling the three-door Type R and five-door Si Civic, which are both sourced from Honda’s British production facility at Swindon.

In response to slow sales, the company has just repositioned the Civic Si at $29,990, some $9000 below its previous price.

“We will seriously look at keeping the five-door,” said Mr Higgins. “We have just repositioned it, so it depends on how it goes in the next few months.”

Mr Higgins said the three-door Type R Civic was “not a big seller” but that Honda Australia would still consider bringing the next generation to Australia.

Honda provided little information about the new Civics, which it says celebrate the 40th anniversary of its introduction, and did not disclose whether the new model is based on the same platform as the current car which runs a MacPherson front suspension and torsion beam rear set-up.

The design of both Civics on show in Detroit, especially the coupe, shows Honda is keen to shake the dowdy image of the current Civic sedan and lure younger buyers back to the model.

It describes the coupe design as ‘high energy’ and ‘more substantial’.

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