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2012 Honda Civic

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2012 Honda Civic Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.6

The 2012 Honda Civic is the all-new, ninth-generation version of the country's best-selling compact car and third-best-selling car overall. Offering a unique combination of affordability, reliability and refinement, the Honda Civic has long been a gold standard not just for the category, but for personal transportation in general. Its dominance is in decline, though, as evidenced by our most recent compact sedan comparison test in which the 2012 Honda Civic tied for first place with the ultra-stylish new Hyundai Elantra. The Honda Civic does remain the clear leader in variety, with a wide-ranging lineup that includes sedan and coupe body styles, a 201-horsepower sporty Civic Si version, a 45-mpg Civic hybrid variant, and a limited-availability natural-gas-powered version.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you appreciate mechanical refinement similar to what you might find in a commercial airliner, the 2012 Honda Civic is the clear choice in the category. And even if you don't easily discern such qualities, just-right steering and pedal feel are the kinds of qualities that quietly contribute to long-term driving satisfaction.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 2012 Honda Civic is neither as sporty nor as stylish as the Mazda3 or Ford Focus, the interior design isn't as interesting as the Hyundai Elantra's, and it isn't the smoothest or quietest car in the class.

What's Significant About This Car?

The all-new-for-2012 Honda Civic is instantly familiar inside and out, with key changes comprising increased fuel economy, more refined driving dynamics and enhanced infotainment abilities. The Civic hybrid is now more fuel efficient, the Civic Si is more powerful and there's the new mileage-maxing 2012 Civic HF that delivers 41 highway mpg.

Driving the Civic

Driving Impressions The 2012 Honda Civic is not the smoothest or quietest car in the category. Nor is it the most fun to drive. Curious, then, that we'd rate it tops in...

driving dynamics in our shootout of the four newest cars in the category. How does it do it? With the help of steering and pedal response that other automakers could only dream of delivering. It's easy to overlook excellence in these areas, but just as driving feel is a big part of the magic in a Porsche, the way the Civic gracefully listens and responds to a driver's input is a key reason we consider the 2012 Honda Civic the connoisseur's compact sedan.

Bluetooth Audio
We like being able to listen to the music on our iPhone without having to plug it in, and the Civic's Bluetooth Audio system is notable for how quickly it connects and begins playing.

i-MID Display
Standard in all but the base Civic DX trim is a new five-inch LCD monitor that provides music and mileage info, plus Bluetooth and navigation info when equipped.

2012 Honda Civic Details
2012 Honda Civic photo Interior

If the 2012 Honda Civic has an Achilles' heel, it's the interior styling. Everything works wonderfully, but the design, textures and materials put its visual appeal in the bottom half of the segment, behind new and newly relevant nameplates like Hyundai Elantra, Ford Focus and Chevy Cruze.

Exterior
2012 Honda Civic photo

Just when observers thought Honda might unleash the most expressive Civic yet - as an answer to the bold new Hyundai Elantra attracting so much attention – the even-keeled automaker instead delivered the most evolutionary Civic redesign ever. It's hard to argue against sticking to a styling strategy that's helped keep the Civic at or near the top of the sales charts for many years running.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2012 Honda Civic starts at a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price of $16,555 (including destination) for a Civic DX, but that's with no radio, no air conditioning and no power mirrors or door locks. Stepping up to the Civic LX remedies those shortcomings and nets a few other goodies for an extra $2,000, but an automatic transmission will set you back another $800. The Honda Civic's myriad active and passive safety technologies are included as standard equipment across the line. The EX and EX-L models sit at the top of the 2012 Civic's non-hybrid, non-natural-gas pyramid, with the Si coupe and sedan covering performance side of the street.

Optional Equipment

A 2012 Honda Civic EX-L with Navigation has an MSRP at $24,225 and includes leather seats (heated front), a moonroof, Bluetooth phone/audio connectivity, a full-function i-MID display and a six-speaker AM/FM/SAT/MP3/ Bluetooth audio system with USB and auxiliary ports (which offers plenty of functionality but just-okay sound).

Under the Hood

With no direct injection or turbocharging, 140 horsepower, and five speeds not six in the manual and automatic transmissions, the 2012 Honda Civic has the simplest powertrain of the newest compact sedans. Nevertheless, it delivers exceptional fuel economy and plenty of power. The mileage-maxing HF trim features the same powertrain, but adds two highway miles per gallon with a lower ride height, aerodynamic adds and tires with lower rolling resistance. The Civic Si, in sedan and coupe form, comes with 201 horsepower and a six-speed manual transmission.

Civic DX, LX, EX, EX-L and HF
1.8-liter in-line four cylinder
140 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
128 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 28/36 (manual), 28/39 (automatic), 29/41 (Civic HF automatic)

Civic Si
2.4-liter in-line four cylinder
201 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm
170 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/31 (manual)

Civic Hybrid
1.5-liter in-line four cylinder + electric motor
110 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm
127 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1,000-3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 44/44 (Continuously Variable Transmission)

Civic Natural Gas
1.8-liter in-line four cylinder
110 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
106 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: N/A

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2012 Honda Civic Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 252 Ratings for the 2012 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

love my little commuter

By on Sunday, June 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 65,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive, great on gas"

Cons: "two doors, small trunk"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car to commute about 80 miles daily. I drive my car everywhere and i love it. It is reliable and sturdy. The gas milage is great and I feel I can go places without worrying about gas prices, I can go a week in between fill ups. Overall great car especially for the younger crowd or new drivers."

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

quiet, 47 MPG, low, in out hard, insts not easy

By on Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "44 mpg, quiet, good visibility out, nice to drive"

Cons: "Instrument layout poor, trunk small."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"A wonderful little car. The instrumentation is not good. wheel blocks speed indicator. We are getting old. Its hard to get in and out. I need to get a car which will reduce my chance of accidents. We are only looking at cars with crash avoidance tech. Because hybred trunk is small. I am selling only because I need crash avoidance tech."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

You'll be happy with this purchase

By on Monday, June 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Insanely good gas mileage, No mechanical Issues,"

Cons: "No rear view camera"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I've owned this car a little over three months. I've put 3,000 miles on it so far. I wanted to wait until i knew it a little better before I wrote a review on my 2012 Civic LX. I traded in a CUV that was getting 25/28 mpg for this Civic. Boy am I ever so glad that I did. The gas mileage on this Civic is ridiculously amazing. I am actually made at myself for not having to drive far to get to work. I don't even commute far enough to truly enjoy all the mpg's that this car has to offer. I average almost 34 mpg in 80% of stop, and go city driving. When I take the interstate for distances of greater than 30 miles each way, I can easily average 40 mpgs, That is an amazing feat if you're in a large sprawled out city like Tampa. If you drive at night when there's less traffic on the roads you'll see an even better return on the mpgs. The seats are comfortable, and all of the controls are very east to use. For people who complain about the acceleration...Turn off the Eco Mode!! There's a very willing 4cyl in there, and it's ready to ride. I only use the Eco mode on the Interstate. Your car accelerates better, and cools off quicker when you're using the A/C. I do recommend tinting the windows this car gets hot in the summer time. The car rides, and accelerated very smoothly, but You can hear a little bit of road noise. The steering is very responsive too. The sound system could use an upgrade, Nothing wrong with it, but It just doesn't seem that loud. I also wish the 2012 LX had the bluetooth, and the rear view camera standard. That problem can and will be easily remedied with a touch screen radio, and a rear view camera from Amazon..."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

I love my Civic!

By on Friday, June 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,100

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Lots of value/comfort for the money."

Cons: "Competent on the road but not high performance."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Well-engineered -- it just works! The new high-tech gizmos are well designed and easy to use, compared to some competitive cars I've driven. The dual dashboard is a bit quirky but makes a lot of sense after you get used to it. I recently totaled this car (not my fault!), and walked away without a scratch. Thank you Honda engineers!"

6 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Great car

By on Friday, June 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 36,687

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive, great mileage, safe"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is a great car! It is very fun to drive, ride is comfortable, and fuel economy is great. Despite it's small size, it is comfortable for tall adults in the front seat, and fairly comfortable in the back seat. If the front seat is pushed back all the way, it can get a little bit tight in the back. No problem for young children and smaller adults. The trunk is quite large. Great safety features. I would highly recommend this car to anyone."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Cant beat the price

By on Thursday, June 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 656

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "This car is awesome ...I like the resell value"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I love the touch screen on my SE model ..the sound system is awesome and my IPhone 6 fits into all the electronics ..."

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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