What is it?
After three years without a single saloon in its UK line-up, Honda has bolstered the Civic range with a new four-door bodystyle.
Customers see the Civic as synonymous with the brand, Honda says, and a saloon should help broaden its appeal. It also has to tempt Accord customers, who have been without a direct replacement since that model went off sale in 2015.
The elongated, coupé-like styling is certainly more restrained than the polarising hatchback, with a more discreet rear bumper and a roofline that slopes smoothly into the C-pillars. Overall length has grown 125mm to 4644mm, with the extra dimensions increasing boot space to 519 litres, versus 478 litres in the five-door.
The launch line-up is limited to two engines: a 127bhp, 1.0-litre i-VTEC three-cylinder turbo petrol in six-speed manual or CVT automatic guises, and the 118bhp, 1.6-litre i-DTEC diesel, tested here with manual transmission but also available with a nine-speed automatic - a first for any diesel Civic. For the time being, the more potent 1.5-litre petrol is staying exclusive to the hatchback.
The diesel is expected to outsell the petrol 3:2, with an even split between manual and automatic transmissions. And even then, Honda expects the hatchback to continue to make up the majority of Civic sales.