Honda surprised everyone with the Civic Concept that debuted at the 2015 New York International Auto Show. Though dressed up in typical concept car garb, what's behind the bright green paint, oversized wheels, and go-fast bodywork is the redesigned 2016 Honda Civic coupe.
Created by Honda's California-based designers and Ohio-based engineers, the new Civic sits on a longer wheelbase and is lower and wider than the current model. Honda has reduced the amount of overhang forward of the front wheels, has stretched the hood, and has shortened the car's rear deck to give the Civic what the automaker characterizes as a more athletic, refined, and stylish appearance.
"Charismatic, connected and athletic, our goal was to create a design that is emotional and sporty yet with a sense of timelessness and simplicity," said Guy Melville-Brown, Honda's exterior design leader for the Civic Concept. "We set out to create a vehicle that goes beyond the superficial and embraces the very philosophy of what a true Civic should be."
Honda provided more than a glimpse of where it is going with the next-generation Civic's styling, divulging some detail about what will be under the hood and behind the new "Flying H" grille design. Honda says that the new Civic will be offered with a turbocharged, direct-injection, 1.5-liter 4-cylinder engine. Transmission choices will include a 6-speed manual gearbox and a new continuously variable transmission (CVT).
That's not all. The automaker also confirmed that the performance-tuned Civic Type-R enjoyed by driving enthusiasts in other parts of the world is also coming to America.
All 2016 Civic models will be fun to drive, though, if you believe what Honda is saying about the goals of the redesign. The automaker also seeks to deliver a more refined and quiet small car, one that provides owners with "benchmark levels" of safety and efficiency, according to Honda.
To that end, and in addition to the Civic's new "Earth Dreams" family of powertrains, it will be offered with an extensive list of safety technologies. The roster includes current features such as Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body construction, multi-angle reversing camera, HondaLink with automatic collision notification, and a LaneWatch camera to monitor what's happening alongside the Civic's right flank. Honda will also expand availability of lane-departure warning and forward-collision warning systems, which are currently available only for the Civic Hybrid model.
When the new Civic arrives in the fall, it will first go on sale as a 4-door sedan. Later, a 2-door coupe and a 5-door hatchback arrive, as well as sporty Si and racy Type-R versions. In New York, Honda did not mention whether the HF (High Fuel), Hybrid, and Natural Gas variants would continue.