One of the most popular cars in the Honda lineup is the Civic, which has time and again proved itself as one of the best compact cars in the market. A feat that is not easy to pull off with competitors like Corolla and Cruze, to name a few. The 2018 Honda Civic is all set to stay at the top with its roomy cabin and fuel-efficient engine.
The compact car market is highly competitive, with all makers trying to fit the most in a limited space. The Civic does exceptionally well in providing the most, while still being sporty and not too expensive.
The starting price of the Honda Civic Sedan is set at $ 18,800, and the base price of the top Touring trim is $ 26,700. There are two engine choices: a 2 liter four cylinder, and a 1.5 liter turbocharged 4 cylinder. Base engine is available in manual as well as CVT. Turbo-4 engine only comes mated to a CVT. FWD is standard.
2018 Honda Civic Features
The 2018 Honda Civic comes in 5 main trim levels: LX, EX, EX-T, EX-L, and Touring. A 2 liter I-4 engine powers the LX and EX trim. The rest get a 1.5 liter turbocharged I-4. The base engine comes with a 6-speed manual transmission or a CVT. The turbocharged engine is available only with a CVT. Front Wheel Drive is standard across the board.
Automatic Climate Control
Multi-Angle Rearview camera
Available Honda sensing
All features of LX, plus:
Remote engine start and Smart entry
One-touch power moonroof
Apple Carplay and Android Auto
All features of EX, plus:
Dual-zone automatic climate control
Heated front seats
All features of EX-T, plus:
8-way power driver’s seat
Available navigation system
Automatic-dimming rearview mirror
All features of EX-L, plus:
LED Headlights with auto on-off Honda sensing
450-watt premium audio system
Heated front and rear outboard seats
Even the base trim is packed with a lot of equipment for the money. Unlike most sedans, buyers with the base trim would be happy with their buy. The Honda Sensing package is available for all trims, which enhances Civic’s safety tenfold.
The turbocharged 1.5-liter engine has a better fuel economy than the base engine, so moving up to a trim which houses this engine is highly recommended. The EX-T trim is the cheapest trim that ticks this box. It also adds touchscreen infotainment system with smartphone connectivity, an upgraded sound system, dual-zone climate control, proximity entry with push-button start and Honda's LaneWatch camera.
However, the bottom three trims only offer cloth upholstery. So If you prefer a leather interior, the EX-L is the trim for you.
2018 Honda Civic Engine
"Equipped with the turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine, it's one of the best cars in its class for delivering both impressive acceleration and high fuel economy" -Edmunds
Engine and Transmission
Honda redesigned their four-cylinder engine last year, making it generate 15 hp more than the base engines of previous Civics. This makes Civic’s engine more powerful than most rivals.
The LX and EX trim come standard with a 2-liter four-cylinder engine mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. CVT is also available for these trims. The EX-T, EX-L, and Touring trims come with a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine (177 hp and 167 lb.-ft. torque) paired to a CVT. FWD is standard.
1.8-Liter 4-Cylinder DOHC
2.0L DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder
1.4L ECOTEC DOHC turbocharged 4-cylinder
158 hp @ 6500 rpm
132 hp @ 6000 rpm
155 hp @ 6000 rpm
153 hp @ 5600 rpm
138 lb-ft. @ 4200 rpm
128 lb.-ft. @ 4400 rpm
150 ft-lbs @ 4000 rpm
177 lbs-ft. @ 2000 rpm
In the torque department, however, Mazda3 and Chevy Cruze perform way better than 2018 Honda Civic. The Corolla is the most expensive option among the rivals, but its base engine delivers the least power and torque.
The base trims of 2018 Honda Civic are powered by a 2L I-4 and the top three trims come with a turbocharged 1.5L I-4. Both engines have enough power to execute clean passes in the city and merging on the highway. The turbocharged engine picks up like no other vehicle in this class. There is seemingly no turbo lag and there is noticeable low-end power.
Another advantage the Civic has is its CVT. It is the best at simulating gear shifts and provides smooth and continuous acceleration.
16.5 @ 86.1 mph
17.4 sec @ 83 mph
16.0 sec @ 89mph
16.2 @ 86 mph
2.0L 4-Cylinder Gas
1.8-Liter 4-Cylinder DOHC Gas
2.0L DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder Gas engine
1.4L ECOTEC DOHC turbocharged 4-cylinder Gas engine
The base engine that Civic uses is powerful and quick, but not as quick as Mazda3 or Chevy Cruze. The Corolla uses a 1.8L engine, and its added weight puts it behind the Civic in 0-60 and quarter-mile test.
Handling and Steering
The Civic has been one of Honda’s bestsellers, and not without a good reason. Honda does the impressive task of assimilating comfort and fun. The Honda Civic can be reasonably sporty. One factor that contributes to the fun handling is a quick steering ratio along with a small steering diameter.
The 2018 Honda Civic is a relatively large vehicle, just a few inches shorter than the Accord. Yet, it feels smaller and more agile behind the steering wheel. It is no Mazda3 in cornering dynamics, but it does well in providing an engaging and sporty ride.
The brake pedal in the 2018 Honda Civic is firm. The brakes are easy to modulate, letting you drive your Civic with confidence and assuring you with able stopping power, whether it’s a casual suburban stop or an emergency braking situation.
Brake pads-front (in)
Brake pads Rear (in)
Curb weight (lbs.)
60-0 MPH (ft.)
The 2018 Honda Civic puts up better than average stopping distance in the emergency braking test. Civic is quicker to come to a stop than Mazda3 or Toyota Corolla, thanks to its lesser weight and better brakes. The Chevy Cruze, though heavier than other rivals in our comparison, does better at panic stops, stopping 6 feet quicker than the Civic.
2018 Honda Civic Fuel Economy
"The most fuel-efficient models are those with the 1.5-liter turbo-four engines mated to an automatic transmission. They return 32 miles per gallon in the city, 42 mpg on the highway and 36 mpg combined." -Autoblog.com
Civic offers a great fuel economy. When the 2-liter engine is mated to a manual transmission, it gives an mpg of 28/40 in city/hwy. Honda Civic’s 1.5L turbocharged engine is more fuel efficient. When paired with a CVT, it gives 32/42 mpg in city/hwy.
Although the competitors come close to Civic’s mileage numbers, none surpass it in any driving conditions. The Cruze matches Civic’s city numbers but lags just a tad behind on the highway. Although Corolla’s mileage numbers are not bad, they just look dull compared to the excellent numbers put up by rivals.
2018 Honda Civic Interior
"The Civic delivers a large, versatile cabin for both people and their things, with good rear legroom and clever storage solutions "- Edmunds
Seating and Comfort
The Civic can accommodate 5 people. Cloth upholstery is standard, while heated front and rear seats and power-adjustable front seats are also available. Both rows of seats are comfortable and roomy, although taller passengers might prefer a little more headroom in the back row.
Passenger Volume (ft.3)
Front (Head/Hip/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)
Second (Head/Hip/Shoulder/ Leg) (In.)
The driver’s seat is well proportioned for the average driver, but the taller drivers would not appreciate the low telescopic range of the steering wheel. Taller drivers might face the problem of lackluster under-thigh support, which might render longer trips uncomfortable for them.
The 2018 Honda Civic’s standard infotainment unit consists of a 5-inch display screen which offers connectivity via Bluetooth and USB port. The unit can be upgraded to support Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, satellite radio, HD Radio, an upgraded audio system, a 7-inch touchscreen, and an additional USB port.
The optional infotainment system has touchy controls which are inconvenient to operate while driving. The saving grace is the abundance of steering wheel mounted controls.
Civic’s cargo volume is generous and easily surpasses its competitors. The lift-over height is low to facilitate loading and unloading.
Trunk volume (ft.3)
The Chevy Cruze comes the closest to Civic’s cargo standard, with only 0.3 cubic feet less space. The Mazda 3 provides the least space, it is average for the class but looks too low compared to Civic’s.
2018 Honda Civic Exterior
"While its styling for years tended toward the unremarkable, Honda gave the Civic a fastback-inspired makeover for the 10th and current generation, starting with the 2016 model year, with a more aggressive, chrome-wing face, long wheelbase, boomerang-shaped taillights and plenty of sheet metal creases." -Autoblog.com
Dimensions and Weight
2018 Civic comes with an unchanged design. It still flaunts an exuberant design highlighted with precise detailing. While some find it daring and aggressive, most find it eye-pleasing. From the front, the grille is chrome on top and black matte along the lower end. The chrome part runs all the way along the top of the headlights.
curb weight (lbs.)
Ground clearance (in.)
Track width (in.) F/R
While the front end of the 2018 Honda Civic is quite aggressive, the side profile reveals a more elegant look. Civic has a long, low, yet wide stance. The roofline slopes smoothly into the back. Unlike most sedans, Civic is not as stretched at the back. In fact, it almost looks like a hatchback. The tail light design is also eye-catching, resembling uneven brackets. The dual exhausts are hidden behind the bumper.
2018 Honda Civic Safety
The 2018 Honda Civic scores well in safety tests conducted by NHSTA. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gives Civic 5 out of 5 stars in all their tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave it a ‘good’ (their maximum) rating in all the tests.
Standard safety features in 2018 Honda Civic include:
Forward collision warning
Lane departure warning
Collision mitigation braking
Road departure mitigation
Lane keep assist
Adaptive cruise control
Available features include:
Passenger-side blind spot camera system
2018 Honda Civic Competition
Honda Civic vs. Toyota Corolla
Just like the Civic, Toyota Corolla is one of the most popular compact cars in the market. Corolla offers great reliability, along with an excellent fuel economy. But that is just about as far as Corolla’s advantages go.
Although fuel-efficient, Corolla’s engine is lethargic and unresponsive at times. Handling a Corolla is not much fun either, as it feels dull and stale. The Civic provides a better performance overall, with its engaging handling, comfortable ride, and a base price that is almost the same as Corolla.
Honda Civic vs Mazda3
When it comes to sporty handling and an enjoyable ride, a few can do it as well as Mazda3. Not only is it fun to drive but it also starts at a lower price than Civic. Although Mazda3’s cabin is not as spacious as Civic’s, nor is its trunk space as practical as Civic’s, it still boasts an equally luxurious interior with top-notch materials.
Both these cars are available in sedan and hatchback body styles, and provide almost the same driving and comfort experience. So a choice between these comes down to your priorities. If a sporty drive at a low base price excites you, go for Mazda3. But if cabin and trunk space, along with a high fuel economy is what you’re looking for, Civic is a clear choice.
Honda Civic vs. Chevy Cruze
Although Honda Civic and Chevy Cruze are almost similar in dimensions, Cruze has a more slanting roof than Civic. This design element hinders headroom at the rear seat. Civic also has more legroom in the back row. The front passengers won’t have any such problems. in fact, they might find Cruze’s front seats more comfortable than Civic’s.
Cruze’s engine produces lesser horsepower than the Civic, but provides more torque to the wheels. Civic also takes the advantage is safety. With Honda Sensing, Civic is far safer than Cruze.
2018 Honda Civic Final Verdict
There is no way you can skim over Honda Civic if you’re looking for a compact sedan. The word ‘compact’ almost feels unsuitable when you take into account how roomy and spacious Civic’s seats and trunk space are. Apart from a comfortable cabin, Civic also provides great fuel economy and a much safer ride thanks to Honda Sensing.
But Civic falls short of delivering a good infotainment system. Apart from that, there is not much to criticize about. While competitors like Mazda3 excel in a sporty drive, Corolla in fuel economy, and Cruze in torque generation, they fail to provide a better overall experience, which Civic provides so well.