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2017 Honda Civic Si

1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder (205 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm; 192 lb-ft @ 2,100 rpm)

Six-speed handbook, front-wheel drive

28 metropolis / 38 freeway / 32 mixed (EPA Score, MPG)

eight.four metropolis, 6.2 freeway, 7.four mixed. (NRCan Score, L/100km)

Base Value: $24,775 (U.S) / $30,185 (Canada)

As Examined: $24,775 (U.S.) / $30,185 (Canada)

Costs embrace $875 vacation spot cost in the US and $1,695 for freight, PDI, and A/C tax in Canada and, due to cross-border gear variations, can’t be straight in contrast.

Let’s get this out of the way in which proper up entrance: The 2017 Honda Civic Si is just not a child Civic Sort R. Sure, it shares the identify and platform, however not solely does it differ mechanically and stylistically in key methods, it additionally supplies a distinct driving expertise.

Totally different, however nonetheless wonderful. Only a completely different sort of wonderful. I’ll get to that proper after I discover my thesaurus.

Like its predominant rivals – the Ford Focus ST, Subaru WRX, and Volkswagen Golf GTI, the Civic Si is meant to be the mid-level efficiency trim of a compact automobile (in Subaru’s case, the WRX relies on the Impreza however drops the moniker). As such, it’s not the outright burner the Sort R is, and that’s simply high-quality.

What the Si goals to be is the most effective mid-level sporty compact at the most effective value. It’s debatable whether or not it achieves the previous however not the latter – it’s a cut price in comparison with its brethren.

Out there in coupe or sedan – however not hatchback – kind, the Si doesn’t have the controversial styling of the Sort R. It has the cleaner look of the “lesser” Civics, and in sedan kind it’s much less goofy-looking that even the usual hatch. Its greatest concession to sport is a spoiler perched on the rear decklid.

There are different Si-specific exterior cues – a badge on the trim-specific grille, completely different entrance fascia, bigger decrease air consumption, hexagonal heart exhaust outlet, and completely different rear fascia. The automobile can be a bit longer and decrease than the usual Civic and rides on 18-inch wheels.


Inside, the Si theme consists of crimson accent stitching, Si badging within the seats, an aluminum and leather-based shift knob, alloy pedals, carbon-look accents, and red-themed devices. There’s additionally a leather-wrapped steering wheel and the motive force’s data heart supplies readouts on things like g-force and turbocharger enhance.

Talking of the turbocharger, it’s a part of a 1.5-liter four-cylinder that makes 205 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque. If you would like an Si, you finest know the right way to row your individual – like with the Sort R, a six-speed handbook is the one transmission provided.

Lack of transmission alternative apart, the Si is a complete completely different beast than the Sort R. Honda claims peak torque begins at 2,100 RPM and goes as much as 5,000, and I consider it, however with 103 fewer lb-ft to work with, it’s simply not as brisk. Nonetheless, it has loads of punch and also you don’t need to wind the hell out of it to make use of it.

One other distinction is within the clutch. The Si has a distinct clutch than the Sort R, and it’s not fairly as user-friendly, due to a excessive takeup level that results in abrupt engagement. The excellent news is you get used to it after a time.


The shifter, however, is among the finest on the market – it has exact and fast throws and is sort of a pleasure to make use of.

As one would possibly count on from a automobile that’s not track-focused, the Si doesn’t deal with fairly as adeptly as its sibling, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a blast. Understeer is current in case you push too arduous, however the automobile by no means feels unstable or uncontrollable. Gentle, fast steering helps, although I felt the Sport mode didn’t tighten it up fairly sufficient.

Discover a enjoyable highway, and the Si is a good companion. Experience and dealing with sensible, it’s on par with the GTI, though possibly not fairly as enjoyable because the comparatively bonkers WRX or aggressive Focus ST. One other evaluation I learn made point out of torque steer, however I didn’t expertise a lot.

The Si’s reflexes are fast sufficient that one wayward squirrel prevented assembly its finish. Rocky the rodent escaped an unlucky encounter with the entrance wheels, although she or he now has a shortened tail.

Calm down for a freeway jaunt, and the Si exhibits that it could make for a high-quality commuter, although its experience is on the stiff facet even when not in Sport mode. It’s not precisely quiet at cruise, however the noise degree is about commonplace for the category and value level.


Sportiness is simply a part of the package deal. Honda bestows some, however not all, of the most well-liked comfort options on the Si. For instance, it has USB, Bluetooth, a rear-view digital camera, satellite tv for pc radio, touch-screen infotainment, Pandora, push-button cease/begin, keyless entry, Honda’s LaneWatch digital camera system, and HondaLink. It additionally has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which assist make up for one key function that’s lacking – manufacturing unit navigation. Different facilities embrace heated entrance seats, sunroof, and fog lamps.

You additionally received’t get leather-based seats or power-adjustable seats. However that’s okay – the entrance seats are bolstered properly and cozy even on longer drives. I by no means had a difficulty getting the seating place proper.

The rear seats are a split-fold unit, and head- and legroom are high-quality all through the automobile – adults can experience comfortably within the rear. There’s not a ton of inside storage – simply the small heart console, a properly under that, a cubby in entrance of the shifter and one other one under, and the glovebox.

As with most present Hondas, the shortage of quantity or tuning knobs for the stereo is infuriating, particularly because the A/C knobs are about the place you’d just like the audio knobs to be. Additionally, the parking brake is electrical, which simply doesn’t really feel proper in a sporty automobile.


You possibly can have your sport with out paying a pump penalty – I routinely noticed MPGs within the mid-30s on the journey laptop, and the Civic Si is rated at 28 mpg metropolis/38 mpg freeway.

If all 4 vehicles have been priced equally, the GTI and Si would in all probability be the highest two decisions – and the GTI is a tad extra refined and affords a bit extra of a premium really feel (though, personally, I’m drawn to the aggressiveness of the WRX).

Pricing isn’t equal, although. The Civic Si has a lower cost than the bottom value of both GTI or WRX, and people vehicles can stand up to $10Ok extra when loaded with choices. In the meantime, the ST has a decrease base value however prices a couple of thousand extra when well-equipped. Whereas upper-trim GTIs and WRXs will provide you with extra in the way in which of consolation and comfort options (the cheaper Civic affords the identical goodies in some instances), and all-wheel drive within the case of the WRX, the Civic makes a powerful argument. It’s outfitted properly sufficient, it’s a blast to drive, it’s a high-quality commuter automobile, and it passes fuel pumps as a rule.


Even stacked in opposition to the bottom GTI and WRX, the Si stands out for worth.

Go forward, spend extra for the others in case you should. We received’t decide – all of them have their very own robust enchantment, and shopping for a sport-compact automobile is a choice that’s typically influenced by emotion and a buyer’s relationship with a model as an alternative of being purely rational.

Simply know that Honda has sport on particular – a particular that received’t expire anytime quickly.

[Image: © Tim Healey/The Truth About Cars]

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