In a relatively tough car market, sales of the Honda Civic have held up better than most and it’s not hard to understand why. The Civic is one of the biggest-selling cars of all time and this latest model maintains the wide-appeal the compact Honda has always had, but it then goes even further with an expanded Type R performance offering for 2021.
The Civic is available in a number of different guises to suit a wide variety of buyers and budgets. The Civic can be a sensible and affordable family car, a riotously fun-packed performance car, and everything in between, so here’s a look some of the highlights to look out for with the 2021 Honda Civic Sedan and Hatch.
There can’t be too many cars out there that are known just as much for how sensible they can be as there are for how completely mental they can be too, but that’s how it is with the 2021 Honda Civic. On one hand, it can be a completely practical, sensible and reliable family car that doesn’t look to cause any fuss, but on the other hand, it can be a fire breathing beast of a car that’s happy on the road but even happier on the race track.
The bad news for the Civic in 2021 is that the coupe body style is no longer available and the sporty Si models are on hiatus for a year until a new Civic eventually arrives in the future. The good news is the sedan is still one of the best in the business and as stylish as ever, and the Type R has gone from being a single trim level to there now being two versions for buyers to choose between.
The standard range now consists of the LX, Sport, EX and the Touring trim levels, while the Type R is now available in type R and Limited Edition variants.
You now have three engines, two transmissions and five different power outputs to choose between in the 2021 Civic lineup. The standard engine in LX and Sport models is a perfectly respectable 2.0-liter inline-four that develops 158 horsepower and 138 lb.-ft. of torque. It can feel a little sporty of you go for the six-speed manual transmission, but most buyers will probably stick with the excellent CVT instead.
The second engine available is a 1.5-litre turbo-four, which then gives the Civic 174 horsepower and 162 lb.-ft. of torque to play with. This unit is standard in hatchback versions of the 2021 Civic and available for the rest of the sedan lineup. Once again, it’s available with a six-speed stick-shift in some models but most buyers will probably stay with the CVT. As well as being more powerful than the 2.0-liter unit, this 1.5 turbo is also more efficient.
If you want the Mr. Hyde rather than a Dr. Jekyll version of the Civic, the Type R and Type R Limited Edition are happy to oblige with a 2.0-liter turbo-four under the hood that puts out a sensational 306 horsepower and 295 lb.-ft. of torque. This is an unashamedly sporty powerplant that has no pretensions of being tame, so there’s only a six-speed manual transmission that takes proper advantage of the Type R’s two-mode adaptive dampers, summer tires, and fancy extras like a performance data recorder.
An entry-level 2021 Honda Civic LX might have a very modest starting MSRP of just over the $20k threshold, but you still get a lot of car for the very modest starting price. The LX comes standard with a full set of power features, Bluetooth connectivity, cloth upholstery, 16-inch wheels, a USB port, automatic emergency braking and the full Honda Sensing suite of active safety features.
Most buyers will probably start at the Sport trim level as that upgrades the infotainment system’s 5.0-inch screen to a 7.0-inch touchscreen and also adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. The Sport also gets you 18-inch alloys wheels with gloss black inserts, automatic climate control, sport pedals, push-button start and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.
Everyone has heard of the Honda Civic, but that could mean some people take it for granted and think they already know all about it. If you haven’t checked the Civic out for a while though, you might be amazed at what a refined, stylish, capable and desirable car it is today or what a ton of riotous fun it can be at the Type R level.
Don’t just take our word for it though, check out the 2021 Honda Civic with a test-drive from Nelson Honda today here at 2500 Greensboro Road, Martinsville, VA.