LESS IS MORE: 2022 HONDA CIVIC SI
With the success of the 10th generation Honda Civic Si, it came as no surprise when Honda announced it would be returning its spicy hot sports sedan for the next generation. Despite some changes made to the overall packaging, once again, we have ourselves a saucy little compact full of fun little surprises.
The thing is, with the world insisting the movement of EV’s with fewer driver branded enthusiasts on the road, we are witnessing history in the making. Honda is one of the last few brands to continue offering a manual transmission in an affordable, well equipped, and fun to drive vehicle in this rapidly evolving generation.
As we’ve experienced with both the Sedan Touring and Hatchback Sport Touring, the Honda Civic is a striking thing that has been styled much more conservatively over the previous generations rambunctious design angles. This new generation is far sleeker, sneaking under the radar as a near premium looking sedan. With the Si featuring 18-inch matte black wheels, dual exhaust, a sportier honeycomb grille and optional rear spoiler there aren’t very many differences between it and the standard non-sport models.
Starting at $28,315, there is a $2100 increase over the Si’s predecessor. The price increase may seem substantial, but after all there is slightly more standard equipment like the larger touch screen system with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto mitigation, improvement Honda Sensing safety system with the capabilities of Adaptive Cruise Control at speeds about 20-mph.
Honda did have to cut some costs in certain areas like comfort, therefore this new Si loses out on heated seats and its dual zone climate control for a single zone system. The other side of the positive coin is that the interior is much nicer than the previous generation with better looking premium materials and a more handsome design.
Like before, the Civic Si uses the same 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Making modifications to the turbo reduces its power from 205-horsepower to 200. Losing 5-horsepower would be like losing 5-cents of a stack of two hundred dollars – you’re not going to notice the difference between the two generations. The modifications made to the turbo however have a return investment with the turbo coming in at the low end spectrum of the rpms around 300-rpms. The rev-limiter has also been pushed to 6600 with the max peak horsepower coming in at 6000-rpms.
In a straight line run, the numbers will speak for themselves as it takes nearly 7-seconds to achieve 60-mph – nearly the same as the previous generation. With a small engine and a small turbo, there are going to be noticeable turbo lag moments, but overall it’s hardly noticeable during the daily grind – out on a track however, and one might notice. The transmission on the other hand remains fun and fruitful with short throw’s and limited action. Rev matching has been added, which was previously a Civic Type R only feature, is fun addition for those that haven’t quite master the art of doing it themselves. Plus it makes for a smooth transition when downshifting. The system can be turned off however if you prefer the manual means and methods.
Continuing with the previous generation favorites, a limited-slip differential comes standard along with its drive mode selector between Sport and Normal modes. Sport mode allows for quicker throttle responses and tightens up the steering while Normal keeps things, well, normal.
This new Civic Si however likes things a little rough. The suspension stiffness has been increased for better handling, along with the addition of larger brakes. Around town we noticed the suspension is harsh, but not unbearable. It’s completely livable, unlike the suspension found in the Toyota Corolla Apex. But the addition of our $200 summer tires makes for better gripping and improved control.
Keeping true to its nature, the Civic Si does exactly what it needs to do without being an outlandish toddler – it continues to be fun to drive, comfortable, and handsomely equipped for the price that makes it a nice daily to own. A Civic Type R is in the works for those that like to impress the car community and behave rambunctiously.
Vehicle: 2022 Honda Civic Si
Base Price: $27,300
As-Tested Price: $28,910
Engine: 1.5-liter Turbocharged Four-Cylinder
Horsepower | Torque: 200-Horsepower | 192 lb-ft of Torque
Transmission: 6-Speed Manual
Drivetrain: Front-Wheel Drive
MPG: 27 | 37 | 31 (City | Highway | Combined)
As-Tested MPG: 29.8-MPG Combined
Fuel Range: 350 miles
0-60 MPH: ±7.0-seconds
Great car, but wish Honda had supplied the Canadian spec car in the US.