Honda’s much-needed new-generation product rollout is about to kick off, with the 11th-generation Civic – now available only as a hatchback – on sale before the end of 2021.
The company this week said an initial demo batch of Civics was already in Australia, with more shipments due over the coming weeks “ahead of officially going on sale at Honda Centres around the country before the end of the year”.
As reported here, Honda has ditched its Thailand sourcing policy and reverted to bringing this iteration Civic from a plant in Japan’s Saitama Prefecture. Per Honda’s new agency business model it’ll be sold at set drive-away prices.
The new Civic hatch measures 4560mm long, 1415mm tall and 1802mm wide on a 2735mm wheelbase. That makes it 45mm longer than the current car, 6mm lower and 3mm wider on a 35mm longer wheelbase.
At launch it’ll come with an updated version of the familiar 1.5-litre VTEC turbo petrol engine with slight power and torque bumps expected, mated to a continuously-variable transmission (CVT).
A Civic e:HEV hybrid will arrive in the first half of next year to battle the hugely popular Toyota Corolla, and should appeal to people given current fuel prices.
The Civic e:HEV is expected to use the same powertrain as the new HR-V: a 1.5-litre petrol four-cylinder and two electric motors, for total outputs of 96kW and 253Nm.
Beyond this, the all new hardcore Type-R is a lock.
Depending on the market, the 11th-generation Civic offers a choice of 7.0- and 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment systems, the latter with wireless instead of wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, plus an optional 10.2-inch digital instrument cluster.
The sedan available in overseas markets won’t be making the trip here, despite Honda Australia offering a Civic sedan since the third generation model was launched in 1984.
That’ll leave Honda without a direct rival to the four-door Hyundai i30, Kia Cerato, Mazda 3 and Toyota Corolla sedans, though hatchbacks are traditionally the higher-volume body style in the Australian small car segment.
Honda Australia has said it’s focusing on high-specification grades rather than volume-driving entry variants, which makes sourcing from Japan more feasible. The redesigned HR-V will also come from Japan.
Said new HR-V small SUV will arrive in the first half of 2022, and likewise will probably be staggered with petrol first and hybrid second. This means next year Honda’s range will look a lot more contemporary.
MORE: Everything Honda Civic