New models - Honda - Civic - sedan range
Honda cuts entry price to Civic line-up
Entry-level Vi model strips $1000 out of Honda Civic membership fee
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14 Jul 2014
By BARRY PARK
HONDA has added a new variant to its Civic sedan range as part of a shake-up of the line-up that cuts $1000 from entry-level pricing to the range.
The six-variant range now kicks off with the base Vi model, priced from $18,490 plus on-road costs and equipped with a five-speed manual gearbox paired with the 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine.
However, the price of the previous entry-level model, the VTi, rises by $200 to $21,990 as the manual version is dropped in favour of the five-speed automatic model.
The other three models in the previous line-up, the $23,290 VTi-S, $26,290 VTi-L and $30,290 Sport, stay the same price.
Customers do get more value as part of a mid-life shake-up of the upper end of the range.
Apart from a new-look grille, the newly introduced Vi keeps the features of the former entry-level car, including the 15-inch steel wheels, five-speed manual transmission, cruise control, Bluetooth audio and cloth seat trim.
From the VTi up, Honda has added equipment including a multimedia system that includes smartphone-like functions, a reversing camera and a five-speed automatic transmission as standard kit.
The VTi also abandons its steel wheels for a new set of 15-inch alloys.
The 1.8-litre VTi-S, meanwhile, sticks with its 16-inch alloys, but receives chrome door handles and keyless entry for what Honda says is the same price as the previous VTi-L model.
Meanwhile, the 1.8-litre VTi-L adds new-look 16-inch alloy wheels, replaces some of the cloth trim on the seats with leather, and gains rear parking sensors and retracting wing mirrors.
The 2.0-litre Sport adds an eight-way power adjustable driver’s seat and a new colour scheme for its 17-inch alloy wheels.
The $33,990 1.5-litre petrol-electric Civic Hybrid, meanwhile, misses out on the running changes introduced to the conventionally engined line-up.
Fuel use for the revised Civic line-up remains at 6.7L/100km for five-speed automatic models – well up on the Civic Hybrid’s official combined 4.4L/100km – while topping out at 6.8L/100km for the five-speed manual Vi and 7.5L/100km for the bigger-engined Sport.
Honda Civic sales are down steeply so far this year, falling more than 45 percent to the end of June as it fights against established rivals such as Toyota’s Corolla fleet special, mum and dad favourite the Mazda3, and Hyundai’s i30.
The model has only managed 4666 sales in the first six months of this year, compared with the the Mazda3’s segment-leading 22,524, Corolla’s 22,166, and the i30’s 15,692 sales.
VFACTS data does not show the split between sedan and hatchback sales for the Civic, or the number of individual Civic Hybrid sales.
Honda shed $2000 from the price of the Civic Hybrid in July last year, and culled the somewhat unloved Insight hatchback from its line-up earlier this year as part of a makeover of its mild hybrid range to match hybrid and diesel-engined competitors.
The car-maker also cut the CR-Z hybrid sports car range to just a single model in response to customer demand.
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