Car review: Honda Civic SE

Mike Stone

Further acquaintance with Honda’s latest Civic has done nothing to take the shine off this impressive little car. Actually this 10th-generation Civic isn’t that little – it’s a fair chunk bigger than the last version and is much better to drive.

Honda has squeezed 130hp from a three-cylinder turbocharged one-litre petrol engine, and even though there is a 184hp 1.5-litre four-cylinder variant, the less powerful car is the better to drive, being lighter, more nimble and more enjoyable.

After a couple of thousand miles my only criticism is there is a fair bit of tyre roar at motorway speeds and one day the dashboard warning lights flashed up like a Christmas tree and the adaptive cruise control stopped working. The next morning normal service was resumed and it has never happened again.

On the plus side, the six-speed manual gearbox is a treat, steering is excellent and even with mainly town driving, overall fuel consumption has never dropped below 42mpg, rising to around 50mpg on longer journeys.

The dramatic styling divides opinion. I think it’s good but some people think it a bit too aggressive. You pays your money, etc...

With a huge boot, grippy handling, comfortable seating and a fine ride, this Civic makes a lot of sense in a hotly contested field.

Honda Civic SE

Top speed: 126mph

Combined mpg: 55.4 (claimed)

Emissions: 106g/km

Price: from £18,335