I've been enjoying reading the reviews of the 1.6, cheers guys
thought I'd chip in my 2 cents since I've owned a 2014 SE plus for 3 months now. Suppose it'll add to the collective wisdom here
I'm 34. Surfer, mountain biker & musician (hobbies which need big boots!)
Cars owned from 2002 -
M reg rover 214 (dad gave me it
and I put a 1kW stereo in it. Silly).
M reg BMW 320 saloon. Good handling, started to fall apart though.
05 BMW 230d estate. Very impressed with this car.
V reg BMW 528 sport auto. 24mpg at best
Smart roadster (chipped to 100bhp). Loads of fun.
No cars from 2011 - 2014 (quit to become an Eco warrior cyclist haha, got tired of the ball-ache of running cars. Tax, repairs, insurance, etc) 40 min commute to work.
DTEC 1.6 SE plus from apr 2014.
I've always bought used cars to save money but end up with maintenance costs and silly insurance (approx £1000/yr because I choose silly cars in high insurance groups). My wife suggested I try a new car for the easier motoring experience since I took a promotion and it's loads of extra work. Aiming for fuel economy and low tax & insurance I looked at the Focus, Yeti, Civic, Volvo V40, Auris, Golf, Panda. I deliberately avoided BMW because I knew I'd be tempted if I drove one and wanted to avoid the high insurance. The Focus was boring to be in. The Yeti was a bit too big and the rear seats were a faff (unlike the Civic). The V40 had some mediocre reviews and seemed to offer less space, soundproofing, economy & tax. Although I'm not fussed about looks the Auris is fugly IMO. Everyone has a Golf and the Eco model blue motion has no power. The Panda is cheap but a bit too basic, I spend a fair amount of time driving to surf spots and band practises so need comfort! I also listen to music a lot while driving so there needed to be some refinement and a semi-decent stereo. When I started looking at the Civic, I was more and more impressed with all the features it kinda turned into a no brainer. 70-78mpg, 6 spk + sub, rear cam, low insurance, no tax, magic seats, 70L extra boot space, ipod/iMID, hands free phone. Economic engine which actually has a bit of poke, fairly level when turning sharply but with a smooth ride.
I bought mine on PCP with £3000 deposit and £324/mo. 4.8% APR if I remember rightly. I took the gap insurance for £5/mo because if you write it off there may be a deficit between your insurance coverage and the remaining finance balance. I declined all the other options like spraying the seats with Scotchguard (something like £500? Mental) and 'exterior diamond protection' or whatever (another £500 ish?). But I was getting on with the sales guy who likes heavy metal so he 'got the guys to spray it anyway'. I'm not sure whether they did.
Handling hasn't got any feel really. Having driven BMWs for ages I have enjoyed good handling and being to 'feel' the road through the steering. Steering feels a bit disconnected.
The alarm volume is laughable. Kinda sounds like I left my phone inside.
The paintwork seems easily damaged, the odd chip appearing from road debris. The bodywork is very flexible (thin metal?) feels like plastic! Keeps the weight down though I suppose.
Although, I believe in theory (correct me if I'm wrong here), you can end a PCP contract at any time or part-ex (even with another dealer) there is a clause in the contract which states you must pay back 50% of the car before you can give it back. So obviously you're locked in. I do kinda feel a bit trapped by that as I used to swap cars regularly when I fancied. Now I guess I'm going to have to wait until I'm in 'positive equity' with the car? I'm not even sure if that's possible but there is speculation of the car being worth more than the guaranteed future value of £7,400 in 41 months (sept 2017). Perhaps there may be periods when I will be in 'positive equity' depending on interest rates and inflation and all that kack. I will go away and do some maths and post about this when I have facts. Anyway, I don't think I'll be able to resist getting a quote when the Type R is released next year! Hahaha. Along with everyone else
Key fob buttons open and close windows, deadlock the doors on second press and mirrors fold if you keep the button held. The third fob button is quick boot access - one press opens the boot only, and locks again when closed. You don't get a plain key you can take out surfing in your wetsuit, but you can get one cut in the high street for £25. It only opens the doors and sets off the weedy alarm.
The interior is an interesting place to be compared to similar cars. There are armrests on both sides and the ipod USB connection is hidden inside the left armrest so you can leave your ipod in there safely. It doesn't drain the battery as charging only happens when the ignition is on. There are 4 cup holders, two of which are in the centre console and can be converted to a storage space instead. Pedals are aluminium. Steering wheel feels good and is a decent girth for me, haha. Also not too large in diameter. Interesting white stitching and a seat with side supports.
iMid works seamlessly with iPod and iPhone and displays album art. (Although I hear compatibility with non-Apple devices isn't great, and there isn't an official list). The premium sound system is actually pretty good. There's a sub in the boot that gives a good bass extension. I'm used to putting silly stereos in cars, it's nowhere near an aftermarket system but it's significantly better than other OEM systems I've heard. Even my bro's Bose system in his Mazda 3. The phone integration is seamless and the voice activated quick dialling seems to work every time. Even when using apple iphone sat nav, music is paused and the voice commands are fed into the stereo!
The iMiD screen is easy to use and informative of driving data. You can even upload your own artwork as a wallpaper. The reversing camera switches on when reverse gear is engaged and I don't know how I ever lived without one! Not sure how it compares to the competition though. You can also operate it while driving forward, as discussed in the forum.
Fuel economy is excellent. Like most of you guys I've left trip B running since pickup and it's at 69mpg. I occasionally reset trip A to get high scores
I've had 75mpg on a run from Teesside to Manchester and back (65mpg on the way there, I think it was into the wind. Over 80mpg on the way back). I fill the tank approx every 25 days and it costs approx £55. The low friction engineering is absolutely incredible. Select neutral and it just glides like it's on ice. A combination of aerodynamics and low friction engine parts I believe.
Free road tax! For now...
Low insurance. I pay £225/yr.
Warranties: 3yr or 90,000 miles, plus: 5yr exhaust, 3yr surface corrosion, 12yr structural corrosion, 10yr chassis corrosion. I haven't read the fine print yet but will post any funky details I find.
Magic seats - these are great. They fold down totally flat for loading, or fold up so you can use the rear passenger space for tall objects.
Extra 70L boot space - the boot floor drops down to reveal a cavity which is actually really handy. I can get a full guitar rig in the boot alone, without folding the seats down. Not possible in similar sized cars in my experience. I can even fit a 7ft surfboard in there with the seats down and the passenger seat moved forward.
Air compressor with pressure gauge - included as part of the puncture repair kit which saves you £1 at the petrol station air pump.
Air con is powerful and dual zone.
Gear change has a solid well engineered feel. Clutch pedal isn't to stiff or high.
I've fiddled with the econ button which dulls the throttle and air con but you can achieve the same fuel economy without it. Refer to the Law of Conservation of Energy (I'm a physics teacher, sorry). If you want to do a certain journey in a certain time with a specific cabin temperature you will use a fixed amount of fuel. The button does not do anything magical. Perhaps helps those with a lead foot to ease off?
I used to drive enthusiastically sometimes on quiet roads but I drive like a granny these days. I'm conscious of cyclists and pedestrians. Any other vehicles really. I think the roads are becoming more dangerous places year after year, some people can forget they are driving over 1000kg of metal moving at lethal speeds. Anyway, sorry, that rant is for another time
It seems that the 1.6 Earth Dreams engine lets you have your cake and eat it. There are 120PS available for overtaking and it feels nippy because you get it in one big whack. But then it will cruise at 70mpg without trying. Clever stuff IMO.
So many more positives than negatives with the Civic compared to other cars I have experienced. Main negatives are the lack of driving feel, and being stuck in the PCP contract (which isn't the car's fault of course). I keep meaning to read about wheel upgrades in the styling forums and see if there are any reports of improved handling.
If I think of anything else I'll update the thread.