Since its inception 'till the 2000s, Honda's Civic was always offered as a hatchback. But with changing tastes, Honda of North America shied away from the practical body style, with the exception of the unusual three-door SiR hatchback briefly sold between 2002 and 2004. But starting 2017, a new Civic Hatchback will be available.
The Civic Hatchback joins a crowded field that also now includes the Chevrolet Cruze, Toyota Corolla, as well as highly competitive models from Volkswagen, Ford, Mazda, and Kia. The latest Civic Hatchback was built as a global model; it'll be sold around the world like its hatchback rivals. Unlike the Coupe and Sedan, the Civic Hatchback is built in England.
Also unlike the Sedan, the Civic Hatchback has an all-turbocharged engine lineup. The 1.5-litre turbocharged and direct-injected engine is standard and can be mated to either a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT.
The Civic Hatchback range consists of the LX, Sport, and Sport Touring. From a design standpoint, the Sedan and Hatchback have near-identical front-end styling other that the fitment of a different front bumper with larger intakes.
In LX trim, the output for the engine is rated at 174 hp and 167 lb-ft of torque (CVT models develop 162 lb-ft), and is rated to run on regular unleaded. In the case of the Sport and Touring trim levels, horsepower climbs to 180 hp, while torque jumps to 177 lb-ft. Sport and Touring trims with the CVT receive 162 lb-ft of torque. The higher-output motor runs on premium fuel, and also receives a dual centre-mounted exhaust system.
Standard equipment on the Civic LX includes a 7.0-inch instrument cluster display, display audio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, multi-angle reverse camera, wi-fi tethering, automatic climate control, heated seats, automatic headlights, rear spoiler, and 16-inch aluminum wheels. The Honda Sensing system, which includes radar cruise control with low-speed follow, emergency autonomous braking, lane-departure warning, and lane-keeping assist, is optional for CVT-equipped models.
The Sport receives 18-inch dark-finish wheels, dual exhaust, fog lights, power moonroof, aero body kit, speed-sensitive wipers, dual-zone climate control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and proximity key with push-button start. Honda Sensing can be fitted to the Sport with CVT.
The Sport Touring adds wireless device charging, power front seats, heated rear seats, leather upholstery, premium sound system, navigation, LED headlamps, mirror-mounted LED turn signals, and rain-sensing wipers. Honda Sensing is standard on Sport Tourings with the manual or CVT; on manual cars, Sensing does not include the low-speed follow functionality.
Comparing the Hatchback to the Sedan, there's slightly less rear-seat legroom in the five-door (-35 mm), but there's more rear headroom and significantly more cargo space (727 L with the rear seats up, and 1,308 L with the rear seats folded). All models receive a retractable cargo cover - a feature that's usually an extra-cost option on rivals.
Pricing for the Civic Hatchback LX starts at $21,390 for the LX Manual, and rises tops out at $30,690 for the Sport Touring CVT.