This year's Civic SI is no different. For $22,000 you get a well-equipped 4-door sedan, with loads of creature comforts and a 200hp engine that still returns over 30mpg. It's roomy inside, it will still run long after your turtle dies, and the materials-on the touch points at least- feel more expensive than they are.
There's only one problem; In 2010 giving your "performance model" 200hp is like sending your kid to buy a new video game with pelts. It's outdated. Right now a base Accord has more power than that. Normal family sedans are creeping toward 300hp as a standard offering, and still return good MPG. Now, for $22,000 a Civic SI is ok. It's the cheapest sport sedan on the market, sitting a few thousand underneath a base WRX or GTI.
But that's very, very close. And the Civic Si I drove had the HFP Package, which stands for Honda Factory Performance. And that package costs an extra $4,900(with dealer install), raising the price to $27,000. Add the Sat/NAV the car had (which is horrible) and I was sitting in a $29,000 Honda CIVIC.
Sure, the HFP pack gave me better suspension, brakes, exhaust and a nice bodykit, but at it's core it still had the same 200hp engine the Civic SI comes with. I'm sorry but spending $29,000 for 200hp, bad NAV, and FWD is a bad decision. For that money you can get a fully loaded Subaru WRX, which has 265hp, tons of torque, and AWD. It's cheaper, faster, safer, more versatile and still gives you 28mpg. The MSP3 or GTI are also better, faster and cheaper choices.
A regular Honda Civic SI is a decent performance sedan. It's handling is crisp, and the acceleration is acceptable. But Honda is been using the same formula for too long, while the rest of the field took the idea and ran with it, passing Honda years ago. If you want a daily driver that can also reward you in the canyons or on a track, your better off shopping down the street.
For a detailed review or this car, with more pictures, click here.
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