2018 5-Year Cost to Own Awards: Best Sporty Compact Car
Best Sporty Compact Car: 2018 Honda Civic Si
Combining the reputation and refinement of the everyday Civic with Honda's proven performance chops, the venerable Honda Civic Si has established itself as one of the icons among automotive enthusiasts. With a starting price under $25,000 and a shiny new 5-Year Cost to Own Award for its trophy case, the Si's bang-for-the-buck quotient remains unparalleled.
But it's the "bang" part of that equation that matters most to Civic Si buyers, which we covered in our first review of the recently redesigned model: "Motivation for this eighth-generation Si comes from a high-output 1.5-liter direct-injected turbo 4-cylinder with dual variable cam timing that has been tuned to be more potent as well as more street friendly. While its 205 horsepower only matches that of its naturally aspirated predecessor, this time around that output arrives at a more civilized 5,700 rpm, 1,300 revs lower than before. Even more significant, max torque has been upped from 174 to 192 lb-ft but now peaks at just 2,100 rpm instead of 4,400 revs and holds steady at that level until 5,000 rpm."
That refined power is balanced by sharp handling: "The other side of this hot Civic's performance equation is crisp, confident handling, and here too, Honda stepped up the Si's game. In addition to a wider track, stiffer springs, more rigid anti-roll bars and solid front/rear bushings...Si spec includes adaptive dampers that offer a choice of Normal and Sport settings, the latter also increases the effort of the Si's quick (2.11 turns lock to lock) dual-pinion variable-ratio electric power steering and quickens throttle response."
In addition to all the go-fast goodies, the Civic Si also offers a power moonroof, heated front seats, premium sound system, 7-inch touch screen display, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and plenty more.
Driving fun doesn't get much smarter than this.
5-Year Cost to Own:
2nd Place Finisher: 2018 Ford Focus ST
The Ford Focus ST combines a $26,000 starting price with 252 horsepower in one of the hottest high-value hatchbacks on the road.
3rd Place Finisher: 2018 MINI Hardtop S/JCW
The Mini Hardtop is a fun car to drive, and its high-performance S and John Cooper Works variants are simply a blast.
Other Category Winners
- Best Subcompact Car
- Best Compact Car
- Best Mid-Size Car
- Best Full-Size Car
- Best Sporty Compact Car
- Best Sports Car
- Best High Performance Car
- Best Entry-Level Luxury Car
- Best Luxury Car
- Best High-End Luxury Car
- Best Hybrid/Alternative Energy Car
- Best Electric Vehicle
- Best Subcompact SUV/Crossover
- Best Compact SUV/Crossover
- Best Mid-Size SUV/Crossover
- Best Full-Size SUV/Crossover
- Best Luxury Compact SUV/Crossover
- Best Luxury Mid-Size SUV/Crossover
- Best Luxury Full-Size SUV/Crossover
- Best Mid-Size Pickup Truck
- Best Full-Size Pickup Truck
- Best Minivan