Honda Civic 8th Generation 2006 - 2011 (FG1/FG2/FA) Review

Everything You Need To Know Before Buying A Used Civic 8th Gen

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8th Gen Honda Civic What Owners Say

  • The range of engines is fairly frugal as mpg figures across the board are better than some of its competitors. The hybrid models may not meet the claims of the manufacturer but they still translate into long-term savings in fuel costs.
  • Updated models have a variety of trims to choose from that range from affordable and simple to more premium, with an array of standard comfort and safety features.
  • Despite being a compact car that competes in a less premium segment, the 8th-generation Civic range provides users with a comfortable ride and responsive dynamics. The interior packaging is also impressively spacious in the sedan.
  • Pre-facelifted models suffer from engine blocks that may crack, which comes with a sizeable repair cost.
  • Quality control is subpar as interior components can wear out faster than they should. Rear brake pads may also not last long due to an incorrectly fitted upper rear control arm. The clear coat of the paint also tends to fade quickly.
  • Manual transmission models are not as satisfactory to drive as the gear feel can be notchy and can lead to inaccurate gear shifts.

Eighth Gen Honda Civic Legacy Facelift

The 8th-gen Civic FA sedan range was given a facelift for the 2009 model year to add a more modern appearance to the exterior. This features alterations to the exterior for all trims. The Japanese manufacturer also updated appearances by including some new wheel designs and provided the cabin with a few tailored revisions to add a more premium feel. Alterations were also applied to the FG1 Coupe and FG2 Si Coupe.

2009-2011 Honda Civic 8th Gen Facelift Front Changes

The most distinctive alteration to the front is a new bumper design that features three lower air intakes divided by dynamic fins that run diagonally 1. The grille has also been reshaped as it covers a larger surface area and boasts a more prominent chrome trimming 2.

2009-2011 Honda Civic 8th Gen Facelift Rear Changes

You'll need a keen eye to spot any differences at the rear as the only significant design change made here is a chrome strip that connects the taillights 1 that now has clear turn signal lenses with amber bulbs as opposed to the amber lens used on the pre-facelifted model 2.

2009-2011 Honda Civic 8th Gen Facelift Side Changes

The fewest number of changes were made to the profile of the Civic where new wheel designs were fitted to the EX and EX-L trims 1.

2009-2011 Honda Civic 8th Gen Facelift Interior Changes

While the exterior revisions may almost pass unnoticed, the cabin of the Civic range was treated to a considerable revamp. The biggest change here is the decision to replace the characterful two-spoke steering wheel with a more modern three-spoke design 1. Button placement changes see these sit higher than before. On the updated Hybrid model you'll find an optional leather package for the steering wheel and front seats and new cloth material for the standard trim 2. The dash trimming, controls, and air vents remain unchanged.

Engine, Transmission and Drivetrain

All 8th-generation Honda Civic models are powered by the R18A1 1.8-liter inline-four powertrain with a power output of 140 hp and 128 lb-ft of torque. This is an engine that has been applied to a wide variety of products from the auto manufacturer throughout the years. All pre-facelifted models employ a five-speed manual transmission driving the front wheels as standard, but a five-speed automatic transmission is optionally available. On the final year model, the EX and EX-L trims get the automatic transmission if the navigation package is selected.

The Honda Civic Hybrid remains unchanged throughout the life cycle of this generation as it sources power from the LDA-MF5+IMA (integrated motor assist) powertrain which consists of a 1.3-liter inline-four engine with a permanent-magnet electric motor to produce a combined 110 hp and 123 lb-ft for the front wheels using a CVT.

1.8-liter inline-four R18A1
140 hp | 128 lb-ft
Horsepower
140 hp
Torque
128 lb-ft
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic

The Honda R18A1 is a tried and tested unit consisting of an aluminum-alloy block and cylinder head with a single overhead cam 16 valve configuration employing the brand's i-VTEC technology. The unit's reliable reputation is partly thanks to the integration of a robust cam chain and conventional multi-point fuel injection system. Peak power is available at 6,300 RPM but the engine can spin to an impressive 6,800 RPM redline in true Honda fashion.

This is a fairly refined powertrain for its segment as engine noise and vibrations are respectably low. It's not an engaging or exciting mill but it is known to deliver impressive fuel consumption. Interestingly, the five-speed manual gearbox is not as invigorating to use in comparison to the self-shifting torque-converter auto. While the auto is simple and smooth, the manual translates a notchy and rubbery feel, making precise gearshifts more of a chore.

Although rare, the R18A unit can experience irregular vibrations due to a left engine mount that tends to wear out faster. It is a known issue for the Honda Civic, but no recall for the engine mount was ever initiated. You'll also find that the tensioner pulley will become noisy as it approaches its 60,000-mile life. The valve clearances will need to be adjusted if you start hearing a tapping noise from the engine. This should be done every 30,000 miles.

1.3-liter inline-four LDA-MF5 + IMA
93 hp | 89 lb-ft
Horsepower
93 hp
Torque
89 lb-ft
Transmission
CVT automatic

Electric motor: Permanent-magnet synchronous electric motor

Horsepower: 23 hp

Torque: 76 lb-ft

Engine + electric motor hybrid system output: 110 hp and 123 lb-ft

The 8th-gen Civic Hybrid, available in sedan guise only, is the only car to use the LDA-MF5 configuration. It consists of the naturally aspirated 1.3-liter inline-four L-series engine which is rated at 93 hp and 76 lb-ft. This is supported by a 23 hp and 76 lb-ft permanent-magnet motor located next to the CVT. This sources energy from a 158-volt nickel-metal hydride battery pack with a 5.5-Ah capacity.

As is the case with hybrid cars of this era, there is very little to be excited about when it comes to dynamic driving. A small group of owners also filed a class-action lawsuit against Honda for its claim that the Hybrid would deliver a 50 mpg consumption which turned out to be wildly untrue in the real world. It is frugal nonetheless, provided you maintain a feather-light pressure on the accelerator pedal.

The L-Series engine is not known to be problematic and, like the R-series, has been tried and tested with a variety of applications since it was introduced in 2001. It uses a single-overhead-cam configuration with eight valves so it is fairly basic but it does use two spark plugs per cylinder bank. Ensure that routine maintenance is carried out by Honda's recommendation, and you shouldn't suffer any serious issues with this unit.

2006 - 2011 Honda Civic 8th Gen Real MPG

If frugality is what you're after, the 8th-gen Civic sedan and coupe will be sure to satisfy as both the R18 and LEA hybrid offer impressive consumption figures based on the EPA's estimates. When equipped with the five-speed manual, the EPA estimates that it'll consume 26/34/29 mpg city/highway/combined. With the automatic transmission, this improves to 26/36/30 mpg. Both cars have a 13.2-gallon gas tank size, providing the former with a range of 383 miles and the latter, 396 miles.

As is expected, the Hybrid offers the most impressive consumption figures with an EPA-estimated 40/45/42 mpg. Also having a 13.2-gallon tank, you can expect a full range of around 554 miles.

The EPA sources real-world figures from existing owners of the Civic range in an attempt to offer a more realistic result. Based on this, it's claimed that the R18 Civic with the manual transmission may average anywhere from 29.3 to 34.3 mpg while the automatic will average 30.9 to 32.2 mpg. The Hybrid is said to consume an average of 41.5 to 47.6 mpg. Considering that these readings are sourced from drivers who are not monitored by the EPA and therefore should be taken with a grain of salt.

EPA MPGREAL WORLD MPG *
1.8-liter inline-four 5-speed manual FWD26/34/2929.3-34.3
1.8-liter inline-four 5-speed automatic FWD26/36/3030.9-32.2
1.3-liter inline-four Hybrid CVT FWD40/45/4246.7-47.4

* Real-world mpg and MPGe figures are provided by the EPA. Once a car has been on sale for a significant period of time, the EPA gets real-world figures directly from the customer base. These figures are then provided on the EPA website. Real-world figures are not available for certain models due to a lack of sales, or not enough people partaking in this after-sales survey.

Safety

The Honda Civic FA Sedan, Coupe, and Hybrid cover all of the basic safety points with airbags for the driver, front passenger, and side curtains. The sedan in DX and LX trim uses a set of front 10.3-inch ventilated brake discs and rear 7.9-inch brake drums that benefit from ABS with electronic brake distribution. In the EX trim, the rear axle sports a pair of 10.2-inch solid discs while the Hybrid adopts 8.7-inch rear drums with the addition of brake assist. LX, EX, and Hybrid models benefit from cruise control, too. All cars feature a front 0.95-inch front and a 0.4-inch solid rear stabilizer bar as well as multi-reflector halogen headlights with LED daytime running lights. The coupe is in line with the safety specifications of the sedan.

None of the normal Civics came with stability control at launch, not even as an option, and it was standard only on the sporty Si models which we review separately. From 2008 onwards, all cars are fitted with a tire-pressure monitoring system while the coupe models see an increase in thickness on the stability bars to 1.0 inch on the front and 0.43 inches on the rear. 2009 EX-L and Hybrid models get stability control with traction control and brake assist.

This lineup is also the first generation of the Civic to inherit Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering Body Structure with crumple zones.

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

Pre-2011 Honda Civic models have positive crash test results from the NHTSA, but the 2011 model doesn't fare as well as it was subjected to the stricter testing procedure, thus it's only worth looking at the 2011 model year's test to get a clear idea of how safe it is. With an overall safety rating of three stars, it's not the most robust sedan to consider. The overall front and rollover results fare decently with a four-star score, but the overall side crash rating is not too impressive at a meager two stars with the driver suffering from the worst results. The NHTSA did not provide a specific rating for the coupe body style but considering that the two have near-identical construction and safety features, its result should not vary too much from the 8th-gen Honda Civic sedan.

8th Generation Honda Civic Sedan Trims

2006 Honda Civic sedan and coupe trims are identical except for the Hybrid which is only available as a four-door model. The trim lines remain mostly unchanged throughout the generation's life cycle. The DX kicks the range off as a bare-bones base-spec model kitted out with manually operated door mirrors, black door handles, and 15-inch steel wheels with plastic covers. This is bested by the LX, which acts as a slightly more premium offering by adding a remote entry locking system, air conditioning, cruise control, and floor mats. The EX is the flagship of the range as it includes variable intermittent windshield wipers, a six-speaker audio system with an aux input, and the option to specify the navigation package. The Hybrid of this year appears slightly more premium than the EX as it adds turn signals into the door mirrors, a rear decklid spoiler, automatic climate control, and more. It's also the only car to benefit from an electrically assisted power steering system.

2008 models benefit from a new leather package for the EX trim, aptly labeled as the EX-L. As it suggests, the seats, armrests, and steering wheel get leather upholstery, and the mirrors sport heating functions. Creating a more holistic comfort experience, buyers also get heating for the front seats.

The Civic range gets more comprehensive with the 2009 model year as it adds new DX-VP and LX-S trims. The DX-VP (Value Package) gets air-conditioning and an audio system with four speakers while the LX-S attains alloy wheels, a rear decklid spoiler, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

DX
2006-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

The DX is the most basic trim available for the 8th-generation Civic and it makes sure to remind you about that. Visually, it sports a set of 15-inch steel wheels with plastic covers, manually operated side mirrors with black covers, black door handles, tinted glass, and two-speed intermitted windshield wipers. The cabin is fairly sparse as well, with the only notable features being four electrically operated windows, a single-piece folding rear seat, manual tilt and telescopic adjustment for the steering wheel, beverage holders at the front, and heater ducts for the rear bench. A tire pressure monitoring system is added to the 2008 model year while the 2009 model benefits from a chrome rear license plate holder.

The DX is powered by the naturally aspirated 1.8-liter inline-four gasoline engine with a power output of 140 hp and 128 lb-ft. This is sent to the front wheels via a five-speed manual transmission but a five-speed automatic is optional.

DX-VP
2009-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

The Value Package of the DX was introduced with the facelift in 2009 and acts as a more appealing rendition of the base model. It does this by adding air-conditioning and the four-speaker 160-watt audio system which supports MP3 and CD with an aux port.

Like the DX, this sources power from the 1.8-liter inline-four engine with an unchanged 140 hp and 128 lb-ft. This is sent to the front wheels via the five-speed manual or optional automatic transmission.

LX
2006-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

The mid-range offering of the 8th-generation Honda Civic comes with 16-inch steel wheels with plastic covers, remote entry, floor mats, electrically adjustable body-colored side mirrors, an auto-up-and-down driver's window, power locks with auto-locking, cruise control with steering-mounted controls, a center console with a sliding armrest and storage compartment, a pocket for the passenger seatback (only for pre-facelifted models), satin finishes for the door handles, as well as map lights, floor mats, and a four-speaker audio system with MP3 compatibility. An aux input and tire pressure monitoring are added to the 2008 model.

The LX trim employs the naturally aspirated 1.8-liter inline-four gasoline engine which produces 140 hp and 128 lb-ft. This can be had with a five-speed manual transmission as standard or an optional five-speed automatic transmission.

LX-S
2009-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

Those wanting a conservative-spec Civic with a touch of premium details may consider the LX-S trim that was introduced when the range was facelifted. This adds 16-inch alloy wheels, a rear decklid spoiler, and a perforated leather-wrapped steering wheel to the package. For 2011 models, you'll find a chrome exhaust finisher has been added. The LX-S is only available with the 140-hp 1.8-liter inline-four with a five-speed manual gearbox fitted as standard or an optional five-speed automatic transmission.

EX
2006-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

For the 2006 range, the EX is the most comprehensive offering of the Civic range by adding to the LX-S's spec sheet a one-touch button sunroof, variable intermittent windshield wipers, remote entry system with a trunk release, an armrest for the 60/40-split and folding rear bench, rear cup holders, an additional 12-volt power outlet in the center console, a six-speaker audio system with an aux input, an exterior temperature indicator, and 16-inch alloy wheels. The rear axle also benefits from 10.2-inch solid rear brake discs. The EX is the only Civic model that is available with the optional navigation package. If fitted, it adds voice recognition, XM radio, and an SD-card reader for the audio system. As per the rest of the range, tire-pressure monitoring is added to the trim in 2008 while 2009 models now benefit from Bluetooth connectivity if navigation is selected - but USB ports are standard.

The EX is driven by the naturally aspirated 1.8-liter inline-four unit with a power output of 140 hp and 128 lb-ft. All models are fitted standard with the five-speed manual transmission, but a five-speed automatic transmission is optionally available. In 2011 models, the automatic transmission cannot be had without the optional navigation system.

EX-L
2008-2011
Engine
1.8-liter inline-four
Transmission
Five-speed manual or five-speed automatic
Drivetrain
FWD

The EX-L was introduced to the Civic range in 2008 as a leather package to give the sedan and coupe a more luxurious cabin ambiance. In this model, you'll find heated body-colored power side mirrors, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and armrests, and leather upholstery for the seats with heating for the driver and passenger. From 2009, it also offers improved driving dynamics by including stability control with traction control, together with brake assist. The EX-L's powertrain options are the same as the EX's but it can only be had as an automatic for the 2011 model year.

Hybrid
2006-2011
Engine
1.3-liter inline-four
Transmission
CVT
Drivetrain
FWD

The Honda Civic Hybrid can only be had in sedan guise and is kitted out with a commendable number of standard features, including a roof-mounted rear antenna, door mirrors with integrated turn signals, a rear decklid spoiler, automatic climate control, cruise control, seatback pockets on the driver and passenger seat, an electronic IMA display, and unique readings for the fuel-mileage and average fuel consumption. The navigation package includes a digital audio card reader and voice recognition. Selecting navigation on 2007 models includes Sirius XM satellite radio. This is connected to a standard six-speaker audio system with MP3 and aux inputs. Bluetooth is included in the 2009 model via the navigation package. This year model also adds a leather package that adds a more premium touch to the seats, armrest, and steering wheel. This will also add heating to the front seats and side mirrors. Fitted as standard to this model year is the tire pressure monitoring system and a USB input for the audio system.

The Hybrid model employs Honda's L-series 1.3-liter inline-four engine that is supported by a permanent-magnet motor to produce 110 hp and 123 lb-ft. This is only available as a front-wheel-drive model with a CVT.

Eighth Generation Honda Civic Features (last model year)

DXDX-VPLXLX-SEXEX-LHybrid
Back-Up CameraN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Bluetooth ConnectionN/AN/AN/AN/AOOO
Leather SeatsaN/AN/AN/AN/AN/ASO
Apple CarPlayN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Keyless EntryN/ASSSSSS
Keyless StartN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
HD RadioN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Alloy WheelsN/AN/AN/ASSSS
SunroofN/AN/AN/AN/ASSN/A

Interior, Trim And Practicality

Honda

The eighth-generation Honda Civic was one of the first cars to adopt the Japanese brand's experimental design direction as it introduces a two-tier instrument cluster. The layout has been criticized for being a bit disorganized, making daily use frustrating. Interior quality is what you would expect from a car in this segment during this period. There is an abundant use of hard plastics throughout the cabin. This isn't improved by much with the 2009 facelift, but with the introduction of the leather package, some examples certainly have a more premium feel.

Packaging in the Civic sedan is not generous but reasonable as it provides 39.4 inches of headroom and 44.2 inches of legroom in the front row. Passengers seated at the rear are subjected to 37.4 inches and 34.6 inches of headroom and legroom respectively. Those measuring six feet tall may feel fairly comfortable at the front but the rear will no doubt be a bit cramped. The trunk cargo volume of all models measures 12 cubic feet, which is enough to accommodate four medium suitcases with some room to spare. The folding rear bench opens the trunk up to some more space but this feature is not available for the Hybrid. Both cars benefit from a generous amount of storage compartments including a bin and pair of cup holders in the center console, pockets in the front door cards, and a glove compartment on the passenger side.

The coupe's wheelbase is two inches shorter than the sedan's while the roof is 1.6 inches lower. This reduction is seen in the cabin as space for the front seats measures 38.0 inches for headroom and 42.6 inches for legroom. The rear compartment is particularly compact as it only offers 35.1 inches of headroom and 30.3 inches of legroom. Trunk space of 11.5 cubic feet isn't too much of a compromise over the sedan and is more generous than the hybrid.

2006-2011 Honda Civic Maintenance and Cost

The R18-series engine is a basic powertrain that is fuss-free and easy on the wallet to maintain. As per Honda's recommendation, you will be required to conduct a filter and lubrication service every 7,500 miles. This should be between $300 to $400. Manual transmissions will require an oil change at 30,000 miles while the torque-converter automatics will need new oil every 60,000 miles. The timing chain applied to this engine is revered for its reliability but it will need to be replaced every 100,000 miles. The cam is driven by a robust chain that should last a lifetime if you change the oil on a routine basis.

The LDA mill found in the Hybrid is simpler than the 1.8-liter engine as it employs only two valves per cylinder. The Hybrid uses an onboard maintenance reminder to alert the owner when routine services need to take place, but it is advised that you conduct an oil and filter service every 7,500 miles. The CVT's oil should also be changed at 30,000 miles. The R18A1 uses a 5W-20 viscosity oil while the LDA needs 0W-20.

Eighth Gen Honda Civic Basic Service

Engine Oil Change Including Filter

Oil capacity: 3.7L (3.9 quarts) for R18A1 1.8-liter inline-four, 3.0L (3.2 quarts) for LDA-MF5 1.3-liter inline-four.

Recommended viscosity: 5W-20 synthetic oil for R18A1; 0W-20 synthetic oil for LDA-MF5;

Replacement: 7,500 miles

Average price: $49 oil and filter for both engines.

Sparkplugs

R18A1 1.8-liter inline-four gas engine:

Part code: 9807B-561BW

Replacement: Every 100,000 miles

Average price: $112 for four

LDA-MF5 1.3-liter inline-four:

Part code: 12290-RW0-003

Replacement: Every 100,000 miles

Average price: $175,00 for four

Battery

R18A1:

Part number: 31500-SR1-100M

Replacement: Every 3 to 5 years

Average price: $145

Hybrid engine:

Part number: 31500-SNC-00100M

Replacement: Every 3 to 5 years

Average price: $140

Hybrid High-Voltage Pack:

Part number: 1D070-RMX-A51RM

Replacement: Every 10 years

Average price: $2,545

8th Gen Honda Civic Tires

2006-2011 DX, and Hybrid tire size:
Tire size:
195/65 R15
All-season:
Between $330 to $630 per set
2006-2011 LX, and EX tire size:
Tire size:
205/55 R16
All-season:
Between $408 to $847 per set

Check Before You Buy

Technical Service Bulletins according to the NHTSA. Check service book:

The 8th generation Honda Civic is generally a dependable car but there are some noteworthy issues to look out for, particularly on the 2006 R18A1-powered models. The most alarming issue is the aluminum alloy engine block that is susceptible to cracking without warning or error signals. No recall was issued for the Honda Civic's cracked engine block, but it's an issue that was so severe that it pushed the brand to extend the powertrain warranty to 10 years with unlimited mileage. It is understood that most Civics of this generation have had this issue resolved, but some existing owners note that the issue still stands. Honda has not declared what caused this concerning issue but it could be due to a manufacturing defect that causes the block to overheat. To prevent this, keep a close eye on the coolant and oil levels. Some mechanical engine-block, head-gasket, overheating, and coolant problems are prevalent on 2006 and 2007 Honda Civic models but not so much on the 2008, 2009, and 2010 models.

Owners of this generation have also become frustrated with flailing Honda Civic sun visor problems to the point where a class-action lawsuit was issued for affected units. There is no recall for the Honda Civic's visor, but you may need to look at replacing this during your ownership experience with a replacement part that will cost about $50 excluding installation.

An additional class-action lawsuit was issued for 2006 and 2007 Civic models that relate to premature brake pad wearing that suggests the manufacturer installed a rear upper control arm that is too short and subjects the rear tire to misalignment. This also results in rear tire wear problems for the 2006 and 2008 Honda Civic models. No recall for the Honda Civic's rear control arm, brakes, or wheel bearing was issued, but to resolve this, you'll need to replace the rear control arms with a correct unit that costs $176.

The eighth-generation 2006 - 2011 Honda Civic recalls are abundant, mainly because it was the unfortunate victim of the Takata airbag recall. The 2006 model is subject to 15 recalls six of which are due to the faulty airbag. It was also recalled for an untrustworthy steering column due to a manufacturing fault that saw an overuse of silicone grease. This would drip onto the brake light bulb switch resulting in an operational failure.

260,000 units produced in 2006 and 2007 were potentially affected by a rear-wheel speed sensor which can cause the wheel to fall off while driving. A total of 774 Honda Civic FG2 coupe units are affected by a recall that relates to a poor installation of the rear window and rear quarter-glass panel which can cause the part to separate from the car while driving. A small number of Civic units were also recalled for the installation of incorrect amber front and side reflectors that could decrease visibility to other drivers.

25,298 units of the 2006 model specifically were recalled for an incorrectly installed accelerator pedal that could disconnect from the floor mounting or could even cause the throttle to get stuck. A handful of 2008 and 2009 Honda Civic models were recalled for a fuel hose connector bracket that could loosen and result in a fuel leak. This is because assembly, a nut holding the component was not installed. The 2011 model was called back due to a fuel leakage issue as well due to improper ultrasonic welding of the plastic case that covers the fuel pump module.

31,123 Honda Civic Hybrids were recalled for the IMA battery terminal that may come into contact with the metal cover. This can lead to a catastrophic electrical shortage that can blow the fuse of the IMA which can bring the powertrain to a stall and increase the risk of crashing. A plastic cover is attached to the bracket to ensure that this contact isn't made.

2006 to 2011 Honda Civics, including the coupe and LX, were not subjected to belt-tensioner, overheating from a damaged head gasket, ignition switch, power-steering pump, starter, air-conditioning - or AC - compressor, transmission, wiper-motor, oil-leak, or water-pump recalls, despite the rare problem with some of these systems.

These are some fault codes that you may pick up on your 8th-generation Honda Civic:

  • P000a refers to a slow timing response on bank one for the camshaft. The camshaft can be affected by a variety of issues, so if the engine control module detects this, it could be related to your Civic's oil pressure, camshaft sensor or accentuate, the valve adjustment, a faulty timing phaser or unit, damaged connection terminals, or a bad ECU.
  • Code P0070 refers to a fault detected in the Honda Civic's ambient air temperature sensor circuit. If spotted, it means that the ambient and intake air temperatures are incorrect which is likely to trigger the Check Engine light. This could be caused by a failed air sensor, worn wires, corroded circuitry or connectors, an open or loose ambient air temperature harness, or foreign objects blocking the sensor.
  • Code P0101 or P0102 is an indication that the mass or volume air flow circuit is suffering from a low input. This could be due to a faulty or dirty mass airflow sensor, a flaw with the air filter box or intake, leaks in the PCV system, or incorrect parts installed in the air intake system. The same resolution is needed for codes P0111 and P0113, which are indications that the engine control module is noting an incorrect reading for the air intake temperature.
  • P0117 and P0118 mean that the engine coolant temperature sensor is detecting an incorrect temperature. P2185 means that an incorrect voltage is being noted. You may need to have a look at your coolant sensor or any other flaws in your cooling system.
  • Code P0125 means that the Civic's ECU is not detecting an appropriate heat level in the cooling system. This could be due to a faulty coolant temperature sensor or an insufficient amount of coolant.
  • The P0135, P0137, P0138, and P0139 codes mean that one of the banks of the oxygen heat sensor is malfunctioning. P0141 and P0155 mean that the heater element of the circuit that manages the heated oxygen sensor could be defective. An inspection of the detected sensor and its circuitry will need to be conducted.
  • A fuel timing error will bring up the P0149 code. This could be due to a faulty fuel timing solenoid, misaligned timing marks on the mechanical sprockets, or a defective fuel pressure sensor, pump, or control actuator. You'll also need to inspect the lines for leaks.
  • P0171, P0172, P0174, and P0175 mean that the fuel injection system is running too lean on one of the banks. Inspect the air intake for leaks or the condition of the front heated oxygen sensor. You can also inspect the fuel injectors, exhaust gas leaks, and fuel pressure.
  • Codes P0300, P0301, P0302, P0303, and P0304 indicate that misfiring is detected from the cylinders. This could be due to faulty spark plugs or issues with the ignition, distributor, camshaft or crankshaft sensors, or a leaking head gasket. It's also worth inspecting the engine compression. The last digit in these codes indicates the number of the misfiring cylinder.
  • If you see the P0335, P0339, P340, or P341 code, this is related to the crankshaft position sensor circuit. This could be due to damage sustained by the crankshaft-position sensor, reluctor rings, sprocket, or cam chain.
  • P0365 indicates a lack of voltage from the B sensor of the camshaft position in the first bank. This could be due to a faulty position sensor.
  • Code P0404 means that the exhaust gas recirculation valve or sensor is not adhering to the specification parameters. P0489 signifies that the recirculation of the exhaust gas is low. You'll have to inspect the components to ensure that there is no wear or damage.
  • P0453 is an indication that there is a high voltage on the fuel tank pressure sensor. P145C means that the range or performance of the sensor is faulty. You may need to look at replacing the sensor or inspecting the harness and circuit connection.
  • If there is a low voltage on the oxygen sensor circuit, the P0143 code will be displayed. To resolve this, you'll have to inspect the exhaust before the catalyst for leaks. The sensor's wiring may also need to be looked at.
  • If you're suffering from a large leak in the evaporative emission-control (EVAP) system, the P0455, P0456, or P0457 codes will emerge. To resolve this, you might have to inspect the fuel cap, tank, or EVAP system for leaks. P0443 indicates a circuit malfunction for the EVAP's purge control valve. This could be due to a short in the wiring or a faulty valve.
  • P0497 means that a low purge flow is being detected by the EVAP while P0496 detects a high purge flow. P0498 and P0499 mean that the EVAP's vent canister shut valve has been compromised. Both of these could be due to a faulty control solenoid valve, harness, or electrical connection.
  • If your Honda Civic's powertrain is idling at a higher RPM than expected, you'll see the P0507 code. This could be due to an intake or vacuum air leak but a faulty idle air conditioner valve, electric throttle control actuator, or carbon buildup on the throttle body.
  • The cold start idle air control system that is in charge of warming up the catalytic converter may be ineffective if you encounter the P050A code. This could be due to a clogged air filter, a failed idle air control valve, powertrain control module, or mass airflow sensor. The throttle body assembly or wiring could also be defective.
  • If you encounter the P0533 code, this means your Civic's air conditioning refrigerant pressure is higher than what is safely advised. P0532 means it is too low. You may need to look at servicing your air conditioning system. There could also be damage to the electrical connection. Too much moisture in the system could also create blockages in the expansion valve.
  • P0562 will indicate that vehicle's voltage is lower than the desired amount. This could be due to several factors relating to the Civic's electrical system, including a defective alternator, voltage regulator, or battery.
  • Code P0606 means that there is a malfunction from the engine control module processor. P060A refers to an ECU power relay circuit malfunction. If the module itself is not damaged, you should inspect the power supply circuit or update the software.
  • If there is a low voltage from the relay coil control circuit, code P0685 will display. The most common issue for this is a faulty relay but a blown fuse, faulty connection, or aged battery could also cause this.
  • Automatic models that experience a transmission range sensor circuit malfunction will generate the P0705 code. P0706 and P0717 means that there is an issue with the transmission range switch or speed sensor. P0720 or P0722 reflects a malfunction with the output speed sensor circuit which results in inconsistent transmission shifting. These are likely due to a faulty sensor or switch, valve body, or transmission. You may also need to inspect the wiring or transmission fluid.
  • P0128 indicates that the coolant thermostat is operating below the regulating temperature. It could likely be due to a faulty thermostat or coolant temperature sensor.
  • P0087 means that the pressure on your fuel system is too low. Your Civic could be suffering from a clogged fuel filter, a failed fuel pump, or a restricted fuel line.
  • If you come across the P0183 code, your fuel temperature sensor circuit is suffering from a high input. This could mean your sensor is faulty or its harness is opened or shortened. The electrical connection may also need to be inspected.
  • A knock sensor circuit malfunction will bring up the P0325 code. This could be due to the sensor, an improper electrical correction, or a faulty ECU.
  • P0332 refers to a low input being detected on the knock sensor 2 circuit on bank two and could mean that your powertrain is pinging. This would likely be due to a faulty knock sensor, a lean air-fuel ratio, or an issue with the cooling or exhaust gas recirculation system.
  • Code P0420 and P0430 mean that there is an issue relating to the catalytic converter. This means that your catalytic converter is faulty or the oxygen sensor is damaged and delivering incorrect readings. Also, check the fuel system for leaks and the manifold for cracks.
  • P0451 relates to the EVAP's pressure sensor range but will likely be due to a damaged gas tank or pressure sensor. The wiring surrounding the tank may also need to be inspected.
  • The P0463 code means that a high input is being detected from the fuel level sensor and could provide an incorrect reading of the fuel level in your Honda Civic. To resolve this, inspect the fuel level sensor, pump, float, or gauge cluster for any faults. Your fuel tank could also be impaired.
  • If you encounter the P0502 code, it means that a low input is being received from the vehicle speed sensor. Consider inspecting the sensor, hub bearings, ABS tone rings, or the engine control unit. The car could also be fitted with the incorrect tire size or a faulty instrument cluster.
  • The P0718 code relates to an intermittent failure of the input shaft speed sensor. This could be caused by a faulty transmission speed sensor.
  • Automatic Honda Civic models may reflect the P0741 code relating to the torque converter's clutch which may fail to engage. You'll come across the P0746 or P0962 code when there is a fault with the clutch pressure control solenoid valve. These could be due to a faulty transmission, solenoid, valve body, or transmission control unit.
  • P0843, P0847, P0878, and P0848 mean that there is an issue with the transmission fluid pressure switch. This could likely be due to a contaminated or low level of transmission fluid. The pressure switch may also need replacing.
  • The P0429 code means that there is a flaw with the catalyst heater control circuit. You'll have to inspect the temperature sensor to see if there are any damages or faults.
  • Honda's P0713 code refers to a fault with the transmission fluid temperature sensor. This could be because of a damaged transmission or dirty fluids.
  • Code P0732 means that an incorrect ratio is being noted for the second gear. You could be suffering from this because of low or contaminated transmission fluid.
  • P0756 or P0776 means that a solenoid in the transmission is stuck or inactive. It could be experiencing this due to a low transmission fluid reading or other malfunctions related to the transmission.
  • If you come across the P0812 code, it means the ECU has detected an issue with the reverse gear input circuit. Your Civic's reverse switch could likely be broken or the wiring may be damaged.
  • The P1659 fault code will be displayed if the electronic throttle control system is malfunctioning. This is likely due to a faulty relay or poor electrical connection.
  • P0001 is the code you'll get if there is an issue with the fuel volume regulator control circuit. You could be experiencing this if the plug to the fuel regulator is disconnected. It could also be due to corrosion in the sensor connector.
  • If your Civic sustains an ignition coil circuit malfunction, you'll encounter the P0351 or P0352 code. This means you may have to replace the ignition coil or spark plug. There could also be a vacuum leak in the intake manifold or carbon buildup in the throttle body.
  • P1129 means that your manifold absolute pressure sensor circuit is reading higher than expected. This could be due to a faulty sensor, harness, or electrical connection.
  • P0AE1 refers to the Civic Hybrid in particular. This code means that there is an issue with the battery precharge contactor circuit which could be due to a faulty system main relay.
  • The P1077 code signifies that the intake manifold runner control system is malfunctioning at a low RPM. This may mean you'll have to repair or replace the intake manifold runner control valve, harness, or electrical connection.
  • An engine overspeed condition from your Honda Civic will bring up the P0219 fault code. This is brought up due to a faulty engine speed sensor or engine control unit but it is a fault that is common among younger drivers with little mechanical sympathy.

2006-2011 Honda Civic Common Problems

R18A1 Engine Problems

Pre-facelifted models suffered from a catastrophic tendency to crack the engine block. Honda never detailed what the issue was and never submitted the range to a recall but it did extend the engine warranty to 10 years. It is assumed that this issue is the result of a casting issue that causes coolant to leak out while driving and leads the powertrain to overheat. Unfortunately, the only way to remedy this issue is to replace the engine, which can cost up to $3,000. You may also notice a tapping sound emitting from the engine bay. This would mean that you'd need to adjust the valve clearances which can be conducted during a routine service. The R18A1's tensioner pulley of the accessory drive belt will also need replacing at the 60,000-mile mark. You'll know it is on its way out when you start to hear a distinctive noise. 2008 and other Honda Civic models struggle with left motor mount problems that can result in shaking and shifting. It'll be a bit more aggressive than the standard cold-start vibrations at which point it will need to be exchanged.

Mileage: There is no clear indication as to when you can expect the engine block to crack, but you should inspect the exhaust manifold for coolant leaks regularly as this is an indicator of the block's integrity. Valve clearances can be adjusted every 30,000 miles while the tensioner pulley for the accessory drive belt should be exchanged every 60,000 miles.

Cost: Replacing the engine block of the R18A1 is a significant investment that could exceed the $3,000 mark. The inspection of valve clearances should be conducted in your 30,000-mile service which should cost around $660 and every 30,000 miles thereafter. The left engine mount will cost $70 excluding the $100 labor cost.

How to spot: The engine block's condition will start to falter if you notice coolant leaks around the engine bay and on the floor. Once spotted, the issue should be resolved immediately as the damage can be severe. A faint tapping noise from the engine will indicate that the valve clearances will need to be adjusted while a distinctive vibration may mean that your left engine mounting will need replacing.

LDA-MF5 Engine Problems

The LDA is based on Honda's dependable L-series engine family which has developed a reputation of being very trustworthy and long-running. If you ensure that the engine is routinely serviced, there's no reason why you should suffer any serious issues. Besides the recall, the IMA battery pack has also garnered a reputation for being trustworthy and boasts an average lifespan of 10 years but the brand did issue a recall. Problems relating to the 2006 to 2011 Honda Civic Hybrid's battery, CVT transmission, power steering, air conditioning, brakes, charging, or acceleration are not commonplace.

Paint Problems

2006 to 2011 Honda Civic models tend to struggle with paint problems. Cars that have been parked in the sun for extended periods are also victims to clear coat and paint issues that will require you to conduct a full-body respray which will be a costly procedure. If you find a model that is still in good cosmetic condition and do not have undercover parking facilities, consider protecting the exterior paint with routine waxing and polishing. Also, consider reapplying the clear coat. No recall for the Honda Civic's paint has been issued.

Mileage: Based on information sourced by current owners, this is an issue that is based more on the age and location of the car but severe cases seem to affect those that have covered more than 100,000 miles. Usually, cars that reside in Rust Belt states would be more susceptible to such an issue but in this case, that does not appear to be factual.

Cost: Depending on the rate of deterioration, the cost to bring the Honda Civic back to showroom condition can vary from hundreds to thousands of dollars as it is a very labor-intensive task.

How to spot: Peeling or fading paint and the clear coat coming off, exacerbated by excessive sun exposure and worse in rust-belt states.

Less Common Problems And Problem-Free Areas

The eighth-generation Civic is a mechanically sound car if you excuse the cracking engine block but some owners have noted quality-control issues from within the cabin such as a driver's side power window switch problem, a rapidly deteriorating hood release cable at the handle, and a windshield-wiper motor-failure problem that prevents the wipers from parking.

No brake, rear suspension, acceleration, catalytic-converter, throttle-body, or fuel-pump problems have been reported for the 2008, 2009, 2010, or 2011 Honda Civic.

The 8th-generation 2006 to 2011 Honda Civic sedan range doesn't suffer from electrical problems including the radio, speedometer, digital display cluster, fuel gauge, computer, starter/starting, alternator, electric power steering, battery, ignition, immobilizer, fuel pump, or cruise control in general. The Honda Civic's manual and automatic torque converter transmissions, including the gear and clutch, are free of problems, too. Problems relating to the door locks, moonroof, ignition switch, headlight, climate control, air-conditioning - or AC - compressor, heater, ABS, or gear selector are also not commonplace.

Which One To Avoid

It would be best to avoid any pre-facelifted eighth-generation Honda Civic model powered by the 1.8-liter engine predominately due to the engine block that tends to crack. 2006-2007 models also feature a slightly shorter list of standard features, thus providing less comprehensive ownership experiences.

Which One To Buy

The 2008 Honda Civic EX-L is the most attractive model as it comes upholstered with leather for the seats, armrest, and steering wheel. It's also a comprehensively fitted model with heating for the front seats, a five-speed automatic transmission, and key safety features such as brake assist and traction control with stability assist.

8th Gen Honda Civic (FG1/FG2/FA) Verdict

The eighth-generation model may not be the most exemplary example of the Honda Civic heritage but it does maintain the ethos of providing simple and dependable day-to-day motoring. A car that tends to crack its engine block is a glaring red flag, but considering that this only affected pre-facelifted models, the updated range shouldn't be too much of a concern.

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