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Review of the 2018 Honda Civic Touring

In 2016, Honda unveiled the 10th-generation edition of its popular Civic, the model that had opened the gates to the North American market for the Japanese automaker. The generations that had preceded this one had changed little, especially in the three most recent iterations. Tweaks were limited to the model’s contours, a few mechanical improvements were made here and these; for the most part the company relied on the brand’s reputation for quality and reliability to carry the model along and retain its customers.

In ’16, however, the company gave it a major overhaul, or a “reset” to borrow an IT term. The shape, the powertrain, the transmission - all were overhauled. Its personality has previously given off a kind of gentrified vibe, with priority given to comfort and driving pleasure. Now, the company was attempting to put together a complete automotive package.

To judge by the reaction it received from consumers and from automotive hacks, the transformation was a resounding success. Since then, buyers have the choice of three configurations: the conventional sedan, the five-door sedan (with hatchback) and the coupe. What’s more, performance addicts can opt for the Type R model and its 306 hp-fueled driving experience.

We spent a few days puttering around in the Touring sedan version, and even after three years on the market, this generation is, to our eyes, not showing any wrinkles or signs of aging. It should be noted that for 2018, Honda has left its Civic almost completely unchanged.

Aggressive, even controversial, silhouette
The two generations that preceded the current one were severely criticized for their lack of visual panache. Honda’s designers were content to make a few adjustments year to year; you’d have to line a new model-year Civic up with its predecessor to discern any difference at all. The 2016 makeover, though, was not meek, far from it. Basically, the old shape was thrown in the waste basket, in favour of aggressive contours and a front section dominated by a front grille stretching out to the headlights, under which were placed imposing modules designed to house anti-fog lights. Immediately this gave the car a more modern and dynamic appearance. The same touch was applied in back, with the brake lights and rear lights placed in sideways V formation on the wings and on the top of the trunk. This new visual signature is instantly recognizable and distinctive out on the road. At night, the Civic might now be the most easily recognized car on the road at a distance.

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