Maybe the SUV craze is overrated after all.
What do Ford, GM, and Stellantis all have in common? They lack compact sedans in their respective lineups. Was killing sedans like the Focus and Cruze the right thing to do? For their automakers, probably. But Asian brands like Honda are proving that compact sedans still play vital roles in the US market. Honda has announced the latest Civic, now in its 11th generation, remains the best-selling retail passenger car in the US for the sixth year straight and has been a sales leader in the compact segment, in general, for 12 consecutive years.
Since 2011, it's been the best-selling vehicle among Millennial buyers and now it's luring in Gen Z customers. It also boasts multicultural appeal; everyone knows the Civic nameplate is synonymous with reliability, value, and a fun-to-drive attitude.
Since 2016, almost two million Civics have been sold in the US and, for the past three years, has retained its crown as the best-selling certified pre-owned car. The Civic nameplate has been around since 1973 and over 12 million examples have been sold. Honda didn't break down the sales between sedan and hatchback variants, but it's safe to say that both have a valuable place in the automaker's lineup, otherwise we wouldn't have seen both launched new for 2022.
"Our all-new 11th-generation Civic is the benchmark for the compact car class and a runaway success with young, first time and multicultural buyers," said Mike Kistemaker, assistant VP of Honda national sales. "Coupled with the HR-V and our CPO program, Honda has a strong three-pillar approach to capturing young and first-time buyers into the future." And then there's the performance-focused Civic Si and upcoming next-gen Type R hot hatch.
The former is quite possibly one of the best all-around performance car bargains with a starting price tag of just $27,300. That'll get you a 1.5-liter turbo inline-four engine with 200 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque plus a six-speed manual gearbox.
Now sold only as a sedan, the Civic Si is an affordable choice for those who need a solid daily driver with some attitude. And then there's the next Type R. Like its immediate predecessor, we predict this new hot hatch will be returning to the Nurburgring to set a new front-wheel-drive production car record. It'll have to beat the Renault Megane RS Trophy-R's time of 7:40.1.