by Karl Furlong
Still fresh from its arrival for the 2022 model year, the new Honda Civic Si sedan we review here returns without any significant changes, not that anything desperately needed changing. The latest Si still has all the key ingredients that have always been associated with the badge: a reasonable starting price, just enough power to have fun, and the continued presence of a manual gearbox. While the 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine's output of 200 horsepower lags behind both the Volkswagen Jetta GLI and Hyundai Elantra N, the Honda is the only one of the three with a sub-$30,000 price. Balance is the word that comes to mind when driving this car, with an ideal blend of sportiness and comfort, and the interior is both smart and practical. It doesn't demolish its rivals in any specific area, but rather, the Civic Si's strength is in how it does everything well.
Besides a slight price increase, no other major changes have been introduced for the 2023 Civic Si. It now starts at $28,800, an increase of $1,500.
The new price for the 2023 Honda Civic Si begins at $28,800, an MSRP that excludes the destination charge of $1,095. With only a few options, the price of a fully loaded Si doesn't rise much higher than this in the USA.
See trim levels and configurations:
1.5L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Honda has set up the Civic Si beautifully, and the result is a sporty sedan that gets all the basics right. It's quick enough for most, the shift action of the gearbox is precise and has a pleasingly short throw, and the handling limits are higher than they were in its predecessor. Available only as a front-wheel-drive model, the chassis is never overburdened by the 200-hp turbo engine, and grip levels are excellent. As for the steering, it is communicative and accurate, so first-time drivers can quickly get comfortable with pushing the car.
The heightened focus on sportiness means that the ride is firmer than in other Civic sedans, and the Jetta GLI also rides more smoothly, but the Civic Si stops short of feeling harsh. It still has the ability to smooth out bumps in the road and always feels composed.
Overall, this is a brilliant effort from Honda, but with a few more horses and a more exciting engine note, the Civic Si would be untouchable.
Yes, the Honda Civic Si is a good car, and perhaps even a great one. While not as stirring to look at or to drive as the Civic Type R, the Civic Si is the perfect middle ground between the base Civic and the much pricier, all-conquering Type R. Whether commuting to the office in traffic or enjoying faster weekend drives, the Civic Si delivers the goods. It's practical, built to a high standard, isn't overly sanitized, and won't break the bank. It's difficult to pin down any serious flaws, but if pushed, we'd mention the warranty that is outclassed by its Hyundai rival, as well as the four-cylinder engine that could do with a bit more character and power. Even taking these aspects into account, the new Civic Si is a brilliant extension of the nameplate.
Instead of an extensive range of trims, there is only one Civic Si to choose from, and that's perhaps one of the car's downsides - you either take it as Honda specced it, or you don't buy one at all. We'd have ours in the fiery Blazing Orange Pearl that livens up the styling, and the HPD styling package does the same thing. Including destination, that brings the total cost of the Civic Si to $31,480.
The most popular competitors of 2023 Honda Civic Si Sedan: