High-level compact that’s fun to drive
Roseville, Calif.- Closing in on its 50th anniversary, the Honda Civic has a glorious history as one of the standard-bearers for vehicles worldwide.
It was introduced in 1973 with sales of 32,575 – still it’s worst sales year ever. The venerable Civic has recorded U.S. sales of 200,000-plus the past 32 years (1990-2021), including a high 377,286 in 2017.
A redesign isn’t likely to end this formidable streak. We sampled the 2022 Honda Civic hatchback and came away highly impressed. The 11th generation Civic has revised styling inside and out, no doubt a move that will increase its value.
Offered in either a sedan or hatchback body style (there is no longer a coup), the Civic has been near or at the top of annual sales because it has continually delivered roominess, a fun-to-drive nature, and high fuel efficiency.
Traditionally known more as a compact sedan, the Civic is a terrific hatchback as well. Honda says it expects this five-door model to account for around 25 percent of its 2022 sales.
The 2022 Honda Civic has altered its exterior look. The hatchback was previously a bit chunky, possessed some edgy styling (for a Honda) that included fake air intakes and outlets. The hatchback now features tastefully fluid lines and a classy sweeping roofline.
Honda feels the hatchback will be attractive to active, young buyers, thanks to its sleek fastback design and sporty driving acumen.
The base engine for the Civic remains the same – a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder that produces 158 horsepower and 138 pound-feet of torque. It travels 0-60 mph in a respectable 7.9 seconds.
We much prefer the turbo engine, a 1.5-liter, four-cylinder that has even more power for 2022 – increasing to 180 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque. The turbo model has good acceleration – 0-60 mph in 7.3 seconds – and still gets terrific gas milage (33-42 mpg).
If one enjoys the fun of shifting gears, the hatch is available as a six-speed manual, which is no longer an option with the Civic sedan.
AT A GLANCE – 2022 HONDA CIVIC HATCHBACK
- Performance: 2.0-liter, four-cylinder, 158 horsepower; turbocharged 1.5-liter, four-cylinder, 180 horsepower
- Mileage estimate: 31-40 mpg; 33-42 mpg
- Price estimate: $24,100 to $30,500
- Warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles; drivetrain: 5 years/60,000 miles; roadside assistance: 3 years/36,000; corrosion: 5 years/unlimited
We would tag the Civic hatchback’s ride quality as sporty. A front-wheel drive vehicle, it features athletic handling and delivers a smooth ride on most road surfaces. It’s a fun car to hustle around town and do errands.
Safety features and Interior
Every version of the 2022 Civic comes equipped with forward collision mitigation, lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, driver attention monitor, traffic sign reader, and automatic high beams.
The Civic hatchback interior is well thought out, possessing solid technology, lots of storage areas, and roominess for five passengers. Note that the sloped roofline hinders rear headroom a bit. The Cargo area is spacious, providing 25.7 cubic feet and increasing substantially (46.2 cubes) when the rear seats are folded down.
Changes for 2022 include a carbon mesh-bar that runs the length of the dashboard. Also new are black accents and surfaces that don’t leave fingerprints.
The Civic’s standard 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system is located high on the dash, helping to keep the driver’s eyes where they belong – on the road. The on-screen menus are intuitive and the climate control layout is improved. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration are standard.
The 2022 Honda Civic hatchback is attractive, roomy and highly regarded in many areas. Irrespective if the purchase is a hatchback or sedan, the Civic remains a high-level compact car that continues to reside at or near the top of its class.
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