The Civic VTi-S starts $24,490 and comes with a few more bells-and-whistles than the base model. The car comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, an eight-speaker stereo, climate control, reversing camera, left-side camera, front and rear parking sensors, cruise control, front fog lamps, keyless entry and start, leather steering wheel, variable ratio power steering and cloth trim.
Working climate control is easy enough but the absence of tuning and volume knobs for the audio system is a pain. But after mastering the touch-sensitive volume pad on the steering wheel all irritation is soon forgotten.
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The interior is thoughtfully designed and well put together. Clever material choices lend a quality feel to the interior and there’s plenty of space in both front and rear seats despite the coupe-like roofline. Adding to the practical appeal of the Civic VTi-S is 519-litres of usable boot space. Very handy for prams and large grocery hauls. The only design defect is the lack of climate vents in back which could make for some cranky rear seat passengers come summertime.
And now for how the Civic VTi-S drives. The base 1.8-litre engine doesn’t have a lot of oomph but it does prove to be frugal, refined, and pretty quick when you really put the pedal down. There’s a soft feel to the steering and it's quiet and reasonably smooth, no matter what you're doing.
Additionally if you flick the shifter into S mode and the Civic VTi-S drives like a different beast. Harkening back to Honda’s Formula One history, the car turns into a vroom-vroom machine that will give most rev-heads joy.
The car comes with a five star ANCAP safety rating and Honda's LaneWatch as an extra safety feature. LaneWatch is a small camera that hangs off the passenger-side mirror and shows you what's happening down that side of the car. If you have reoccurring nightmares about hitting a cyclist this feature will take a load off your mind.
So if you’re looking for a stylish sedan with a strong engine, sporty upmarket flavour and impeccable build quality, then consider taking the Honda Civic VTi-S for a test drive.
5 specs you need to know
- Engine: 1.8-litre four-cylinder
- Transmission: CVT auto
- Drive type: Front-wheel drive
- ANCAP: Five stars (scored 36.03 out of 37 )
- Official fuel economy: 6.4L/100km
- Handles smoothly.
- Spacious interior and plenty of room for junk in the trunk.
- Great fuel economy.
- Innovative design.
- LaneWatch camera.
- Touch-screen infotainment system with decent audio quality.
- Build quality and materials.
- Slow from a standing start.
- Styling might not be to all tastes.
- Space saver spare tyre.
- Lack of volume and tuning knobs.
- No manual option.