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In-depth reviews

Honda Civic - Practicality, comfort and boot space

More practical than some of its hybrid rivals, the Honda Civic is an appealing family choice

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

Practicality, comfort and boot space Rating

4.2 out of 5

Price
£34,980 to £50,235
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​Honda has focused on making the 11th-generation Civic a more practical car – possibly to combat the stream of SUVs that have flooded the UK family car market. It has increased cabin space compared to the previous model, a bigger glasshouse that helps improve visibility.

You sit fairly low in the Civic compared with a Toyota Corolla, but a pair of six-footers will find enough space up front. It's nice that electric lumbar adjustment is standard to improve comfort for the driver (you’ll need an Advance model to get electric passenger lumbar adjustment), but the Civic has an annoying lever you need to pull to adjust the backrest, which isn’t as easy to fine-tune as the dial used by most of its rivals, including the Ford Focus and VW Golf.

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Storage is decent up front, though. There’s a large central bin, a pair of deep cup holders and a large smartphone shelf. The door pockets are larger than the Corolla’s, but not as wide as in the Vauxhall Astra.

Size

At 4,551mm long and 1,802mm wide, the Civic occupies a sizable footprint for a five-door hatchback. It has an increased wheelbase over the previous model to help create more interior space, while its overall height has been reduced to give a sleeker look. 

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For comparison purposes, a Volkswagen Golf measures 4,284mm long and 1,789mm wide, while the Kia Sportage family SUV is 4,515mm long and 1,865mm wide.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

Passengers in the rear seats aren’t as well catered for as those in the front. Headroom is average, and buyers used to an SUV's raised seating position and higher roof line might feel this too impractical. In our experience during a group test between the 11th-generation Civic, the Kia Ceed and Toyota Corolla, the Civic’s headroom was a little tight compared to the Ceed and Corolla

That said, the Honda offered the most legroom of the three. However, if maximum legroom is what you’re after, consider the roomier Skoda Octavia.

Boot

The Civic has a 410-litre boot, which is 35 litres bigger than a Focus and 30 litres more than a Golf. Consider the Octavia for outright capacity, because, in its hatchback form, it has a monster 600-litre boot. If you don’t mind the ubiquitous style of a family SUV, then you might want to consider the Kia Sportage or Hyundai Tucson; the closely related mid-size SUVs offer 591 litres and 620 litres, respectively.

Towing

Buyers looking to use their car to tow trailers or caravans will probably need to look elsewhere because the Civic only has a maximum braked trailer weight of 750kg. In that instance, you’ll have to look at the plug-in hybrid Astra with its 1,450kg braked towing limit, or a traditionally powered 2.0-litre diesel Golf, because that’ll pull up to 1,600kg.

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Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0 VTEC Turbo S 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £17,940

Most Economical

  • Name
    2.0 eHEV Elegance 5dr CVT
  • Gearbox type
    Auto
  • Price
    £33,925

Fastest

  • Name
    2.0 VTEC Turbo Type R 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £48,060
News reporter

As our news reporter, Ellis is responsible for covering everything new and exciting in the motoring world, from quirky quadricycles to luxury MPVs. He was previously the content editor for DrivingElectric and won the Newspress Automotive Journalist Rising Star award in 2022.

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