Honda's very

civilised Civic

Honda Civic, 2017, front, action
Honda Civic, 2017, rear, static
Honda Civic, 2017, rear, action
Honda Civic, 2017, interior
Honda Civic, 2017, boot, underfloor
Honda Civic, 2017, side

SOME things just are.

Go on, step on the grass, your lawn is still a lawn, it may have grown a bit overnight or become slightly patchy in parts but you can be sure it has not become quicksand or been electrified.

Both ideas do, however, appeal in certain circumstances.

The perfect Midsummer Murder: "Well one minute she was tending the herbaceous boarders and the next there was a flash of blue light and she vanished into the ground."

And all because of the village fete sponge cake competition.

So it is with the Honda Civic.

Obviously not the murder bit.

Honda pitches the new Civic as a five door hatchback reinvented through turbo power.

Nothing to scare the horses, nothing you have not seen before, just Honda steadiness and reliability.

Boring, isn't it?

Well, no that's the last thing Honda is unless you think the NSX is a pair of blue serge knickers and the Type R lacking in any pulse-quickening qualities whatsoever.

What the maker does successfully is, within quite a tight range, appeal to both your mum and that chap up the street with his head on back to front.

So the 1.0-litre 127bhp VTEC Turbo EX may be captain sensible with its leisurely 11.2 seconds trot to any meaningful speed but just look at it, a thing of sculpted beauty or what?

Oh and obviously 60mpg from a petrol engine lists anyone buying one of these for a seat in life's departure lounge.

To which I say castanets.

What load of clacking.

The EX tops the range at £23,200 and for that you not only get legendary reliability but equipment to fulfil every need.

If you want break-neck performance let the moths have some fresh air and open your wallet for the R.

Not that it will leave anyone wanting inside the cabin.

There is a lot of room in here and a truly high quality finish from the heated leather seats to the instrument layout.

Nothing gaudy, nothing to make you ask "why ?"

Even at entry level SE there is climate control, parking sensors and auto lights.

Up in the gods there is Garmin navigation via a seven-inch touch screen, internet browsing and the other things which come with app integration along with heated front seats, smart entry and a sunroof.

At EX level this is not the cheapest of cars but comfort and refinement matches the best in its class.

Out on the road someone has built in a throaty exhaust note and although this is hardly a racing car Honda aimed at a more engaging driving position and a lighter, stiffer chassis to at least allow some fun within that limited acceleration.

Around cruising speed the engine settles down to a steady hum

The six-speed manual gearbox, a CVT is available, is slick and aerodynamics, influenced by sharp styling that has people staring, keep the job pinned down.

There is also something called Agile Handling Assist.

Like a domestic cleaning appliance I am not sure how it works but it does.

Honda is a badge which appeals to those who have navigated life's pitfalls and plan on hanging around to laugh at the grand children's' fashion choices.

A package which keeps all aboard, and some outside, safe is therefore a major attraction.

Camera and radar technology is used to enable automatic braking if a collision is threatened.

There is lane departure warning and mitigation, traffic sign recognition along with adaptive intelligent cruise control.

You can add cross traffic monitoring to that at EX level for those dream world drivers who can't imagine that another vehicle would ever reverse out of a car park slot and a rear camera so you can see what the plant pot looked like.

There is a lot here for your money and an extra few hundred adds a tech pack with wireless phone charging, LED lights and look at this, heated rear seats.

Well, you know, you start to feel the cold.

Like the style of dancing popular at weddings it is a dad car.

Just not in the slightest bit as embarrassing.


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