By Cars.com EditorsJanuary 5, 2012
About the video
Cars.com's Dave Thomas takes a look at the 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid.
<v Announcer>Cars.com Auto Review. (light music begins) Hi, I'm Dave Thomas with Cars.com and this is a 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid.
This past year, the Civic was completely redesigned, and so was this hybrid, it gets much better mileage than the regular model, but it's also more expensive. Every automaker wants their hybrid to stand out and Honda does it with the color blue. They have a blue accent trim on the grill here, also blue in the headlights and taillights, but they are features like these aerodynamic wheels, along with the low rolling resistance tires, which actually helped the car get to 44 MPG city and highway. Inside the Civic Hybrid is identical to other Civic sedans. Now while I find the interior pretty nice for an economy car, other cars.com editors don't think it's quite as nice as the outgoing generation. What isn't the same is the price. The Civic Hybrid starts at $24,000 which is pretty expensive. The one with leather we have here starts at $25,000. You want navigation, that's even more. So ours, as tested, is almost $27,000. That's a lot of money especially when you consider a regular Civic sedan starts around $17,000, 10,000 less than that, and that gets 39 miles per gallon on the highway, which isn't too bad. Most modern hybrid systems are so well integrated that you won't notice them too much in daily driving. However, the Civic Hybrid is not one of those. Its main fault is a start-stop function, which means whenever you come to a complete stop in traffic, the engine shuts off completely, to save fuel. However, when you do come to that complete stop, the car kind of thunks and shutters a little bit, and when you let off the brake, to start moving again, it also shutters. It's really noticeable, and the engine is quite loud, actually, when you start accelerating again. Besides that, and the fact that the engine is a little louder than you'd expect in a hybrid, the Civic drives pretty well, has better handling and ride definitely than the Prius. But, we're talking hybrid. So what about the mileage? The Civic Hybrid is rated at 44 miles per gallon city and 44 miles per gallon highway. Now the Prius is better at 50 miles combined, but we're seeing some real-world mileage here, right in those 44 mile an hour ranges, however they dip in the 30s a number of times. (light music continues) A hybrid battery is placed between the backseat and the trunk. While you don't sacrifice much in terms of backseat comfort, you are gonna lose trunk space. A regular Civic sedan has 12.5 cubic feet of trunk space. The Civic Hybrid just 10.7. (light music continues) So while the Civic Hybrid is a pretty good car with excellent mileage, I just can't get past the price. Especially since Honda has a Civic called the HF, which gets 41 miles per gallon highway and starts under $20,000. So if you're considering the hybrid, I'd say check that one out first. (light music continues) <v Announcer>For more car related news, go to Cars.com or our blog KickingTires.net.