Honda Civic over half a century: Here are all 11 generations
On Wednesday, Honda debuted the Civic, which will see the 50th anniversary nameplate. With that in mind, we've decided to take a look at the popular bread-and-butter offering that has made Honda a household name around the world.
First generation: 1973-79
The first-generation Civic above not only kicked off a five-decade run of Honda's compact nameplate, it spawned the Accord, which began as a variant of the small, long-wheelbase hatchback. It was also the testing ground for Honda's renowned CVCC engine, which undoubtedly made a significant contribution to Honda's reputation for building fuel failures.
Second generation: 1980-83
Aside from its role in a thoroughly mediocre romantic comedy from 2006 starring people you've probably forgotten (not you, Dax!), The second-generation Civic has also made the CVCC engine standard and gotten a bit bigger (this topic continues throughout). .
Third generation: 1984-87
Isn't it refreshing (sorry) to see how much automakers used to cram into such short iterations of even mainstream automobiles? The third generation Civic was offered in a wide variety of variants, although not all were available in every world market. We have to thank this car for the name "Wagovan" and for the introduction of the CRX and Si.
Fourth generation: 1988-91
With the fourth generation Civic, Honda turned its eyes to refinement and sophistication. This brought us the double wishbone front suspension along with an independent rear setup. The former stubbornly survived for several generations, only to be replaced by striving; The latter is still with us, as is another first of the fourth generation: VTEC. This generation also gave birth to the SiR, and we all know how to do that.
Fifth generation: 1992-95
Ah yes. Aero styling of the 1990s. Take your favorite 1980s design, carve it out of the soap, and let the water run over it for a few hours. Boom, finished in 1990! The introduction of the fifth generation Civic marked the end of the Shuttle Wagon variant sold overseas. While this generation may not have made much outwardly obvious advances, it remains an avid favorite, despite the fact that the vaunted Si model has only been offered here for a few years. The 1995 HX (the nameplate reserved for the economical variants of the Civic) was also the first to be fitted with a CVT.
Sixth generation: 1996-2000
The sixth generation Civic was another example of a largely evolutionary replacement. Stylistic updates were limited and relatively subtle, but there were a few notable points. The Si graciously returned, and this was also the first Civic to come with a natural gas engine option.
Seventh generation: 2001-05
That was a little weird. The seventh generation car, which added a little more sophistication and hardened some of the Civic's softer edges, looked like a big step forward on paper. On the enthusiastic side of things, especially here in the United States, things were a little grim. This was the era of the EP3 Civic Si hatchback, which was probably best known for being an inferior version of the (then non-US legal) Type R with no real benefit. It was also staged by the Acura RSX. This was the first generation of the Civic, which was also offered in a hybrid variant.
Eighth generation: 2006-11
And that was the correction. The eighth generation Civic threw back the understated elegance of the previous car and replaced it with a spaceship on wheels. Fortunately, this spaceship was faster than the Si got back into shape with a nice power bump (figuratively more than literally depending on who you ask; some Si fans are hatch purists). It was also around this time that overseas and US models became different platforms, further delaying hope for the popular Type R in the US. The legacy of this split had ramifications that can still be seen today, as the hatchback model of the outgoing Civic was still made in England.
Ninth generation: 2012-15
The ninth generation Civic was another swing of the pendulum. The styling became more subdued (although the shape remained practically the same) and the Si got a bigger engine, albeit without a correspondingly significant increase in power. The speed range has also been reduced by a good deal, which disappointed many fans who preferred the high speed of older Si models.
10th generation: 2016-2021
It is possible that we are overusing the word "correction" in this story. Let's just say the Civic 2016 was a real clean sheet. The Civic won some turbo engines (even in the Si) and ejected the hybrid (though the Insight is a Civic hybrid in all but name), and the hatchback made it to the United States (and was also offered in Type-R form, to boot). This generation also saw the beginning of a pivot into the time of the Civic and Accord that was stylistically more harmonious, which is also a good thing for many.
11th generation: 2022 - the end of days (maybe)
For 2022, the Civic will be a bit longer and wider, but the basic formula and the drive for a more conservative, Accord-like design remains. but not the Coupé (RIP). We don't yet know what to expect from the 11th generation Civic Si or Type-R, but we don't have to wait long to find out as both are expected to be revealed over the course of the next year.
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