Recently, I got to spend plenty of time with the new Civics from Honda. I wasn’t supposed to be hounded by sales people, but this lady was bothering us, so I asked her if they had an Si. She asked what that was. But, she did go on to tell me that the emblem on the front of the car was an H and she was pretty sure that was a Honda. I was like, is this a joke? I’m at the Memphis International Auto Show and this lady thinks an H emblem on the front of the car is a Honda. Go bother someone else. This was her 2nd week of selling cars. Bless her heart, she’s going to starve to death.

This didn’t thwart me from getting to know the redesigned civic. It has a really neat and functional two-tier gauge system. The speedometer is right below your line of sight on the dash. You don’t even have to look down to see how fast you are going. The seats are comfortable and everything is within arms reach. Ergonomics have been improved and the style matches. You’d never know you were in a nice functional car, but everything just fits nice.

They did have a two-door coupe at the show, but not the Si version. I’d like to drive the Si with its 197 HP engine, limited slip differential, 6 speed manual transmission and 350-watt stereo system. The coupe and sedan I sat in and examined are a solid benchmark for the Honda family. I use to have a civic, although underpowered, it was a remarkable car.

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The new innovations with the civic include a Hybrid Drive. Unfortunately, they use the wimpy 110 HP gas engine along with the electric motor to balance the power. When wil lwe see an Si coupe with its lofty 197 HP engine along with say, a 140 HP electric hybrid motor helping push the car/

All in all, the redesigned civic boasts again of a fine car for the masses where reliability remains a benchmark. Drawbacks? You’ll never get to know the guys at the Honda Service Department.

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