Saying “Honda Civic” is something of a misnomer. There’s actually a big family of Civic models, and that line-up is about to get bigger over the next 18 months with the addition of new versions like the first-ever U.S. version of the Civic Type-R.
The roll-up got underway in earnest this week, Honda rolling out the completely redesigned 2016 Civic Coupe. The two door model picks up on the design theme launched with the all-new Honda Civic Sedan earlier this year, adding some of its own sporty cues.
“I think our customers are going to be utterly surprised by what this new Coupe delivers in terms of refinement, safety, efficiency and fun-to-drive performance,” said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president of American Honda, during a media preview of the 2016 Honda Civic Coupe a day before its formal unveiling at the L.A. Auto Show.
(Live from LA! Click Here for complete auto show coverage.)
The new Civic Sedan has been generating rave reviews and is considered a serious contender for North American Car of the Year, that award due to be announced in January.
Honda previewed the new Civic family with the surprise debut of a coupe concept at the New York Auto Show last April. The 10th-generation Civic Coupe gets a new chassis, a quieter and more spacious interior, new engine options and a lot more technology.
There are some subtle, classic hints of prior-generation Honda Civic Coupes in the new model’s design. The two-door borrows much of the sedan’s basic details from the A-pillar forward, including a new grille and bolder fascia. But it’s pretty much all-new from the A-pillar back, with a lower and more steeply raked roofline, unique taillights and generally more compact proportions.
The goal was to create “a more charismatic car,” explained lead designer Guy Melville Brown at the L.A. preview, with “a strong and menacing stance.”
The 2016 Civic Coupe is 5.5 inches shorter overall than then sedan and an inch lower, even though it has a 2.9-inch longer wheelbase than the outgoing two-door. It’s also 1.9-inch wider and sports a wider stance.
That longer wheelbase translates into an extra 8.4 cubic feet of interior space, and backseat occupants pick up a substantial five more inches of legroom.
In keeping with industry trends, Honda has tried to give the 2016 Civic Coupe a more upscale feel, with upgraded materials, including more soft-touch parts and panels. Most models get a new full-color TFT center monitor, as well as door inserts with real stitching and LED interior lighting.
Many models also get LED daytime running lights and LED taillights, with LED headlights, remote start and infotainment upgrades available.
(Honda hints at new Ridgeline with Baja Racer. Click Here for a closer look.)
There will be two new engine options for the 2016 Honda Civic Coupe, including the two-door’s first turbo engine. That 1.5-liter Direct Injection powertrain makes 174-horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque – 31-hp and 33 lb-ft more than the old 1.8-liter naturally aspirated engine. It also manages to deliver an estimated 31 mpg City, 42 Highway and 35 Combined.
The base engine is a 2.0-liter DOHC VTEC inline-four producing 158-hp and 138 lb-ft, 15-hp and 9 lb-ft more than the old Civic 1.8-liter powertrain. Both engines use the same CVT found in the Civic sedan. In the lowest trim level, the 2.0-liter is paired with a 6-speed manual.
As with the sedan, the Honda Civic Coupe has added a number of new safety features, including the Honda Sensing Suite of active technologies, such as forward collision warning and a backup camera.
The new 2016 Honda Civic Coupe also adds such infotainment features as Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and an optional navigation system provided by Garmin.
The two-door will reach U.S. showrooms in March 2016.
Over the next 18 months, a company statement notes, we also can expect to see “high-performance Si models, a 5-door hatchback and the first-ever Civic Type-R model for the U.S. market, comprising the most diverse and innovative lineup in Civic’s 43-year history.”
(Honda boosts earnings despite cost of Takata airbag recalls. Click Here for the story.)