The Look 

The Drive

On Board Computer

Camera & Parking

Seats & Rear Bench 

Cup Holders & Cubby Holes

Boot

Safety (Euro NCAP) 

Maybe one for the sporty family

Starting price: £22,500

Pros

Stylish look

Tinted rear windows

Cons

No boot button

Rear space

Only 2 child seats on back seat

Poor storage in the back

Intro

In all honesty, we’re not sure whether the Honda Civic would work well as a family car.  It has many great qualities, which we’ll tell you about, then you can be the judge as to whether it would suit your needs.

It has an eye-catching look – sporty and sleek, with a spoiler on the back. There are 6 trims, depending on the engine size – S, SE, SR, EX, EX Sport Line and Sport.  We drove the petrol Sport in automatic.  The driving mode can be put into “sport mode” allowing you to manually control the gears which are operated by paddles behind the steering wheel.  This is where you’ll feel like you’re driving a sports car, however we’re not quite sure how often your average parent will use this feature!  Having said that, in automatic, the Honda Civic is a great car to drive.  Despite the car feeling rather long with a lower seating position, you do feel safe on the road.  Cruise control comes as standard to make those longer journeys more pleasant, but go for the EX or EX Sport Line trim and you’ll gain blind spot indicators and smart entry.

If a hybrid car is a must, you’ll have to wait for the much anticipated 2022 model.

Interior

There’s nothing too exciting about the interior of the Honda Civic and it does feel quite dark and claustrophobic.  The 7 inch touchscreen is small in comparison to many other cars in this category, but it does sit fairly high on the dashboard, allowing for a mere glance to the left. There are also shortcut buttons to the side of the screen, making it much easier to navigate through the infotainment system, as opposed to working your way around the on-board computer by touch.  Smartphone integration comes as standard, meaning you are able to access your phone’s apps through the screen, which is something we wouldn’t be without.

Dual climate control comes as standard on the Sport and we were pleased to see it is operated by buttons and dials as opposed to being through the infotainment system, as with so many cars.  It just feels safer this way whilst you’re driving.  Unfortunately, there are no air vents in the back for the kiddies.

If parking sensors are on your “must have” list, then don’t consider the S or SE trims.  With the Honda Civic being quite long in length, we would only be happy with the addition of sensors making parking the car easier.  The Sport trim has a rear camera, but it was not as crisp and clear on the touchscreen as with some cars.  Sadly a 360° camera (bird’s eye view camera – we love these) is not an option.  Having said all this, there is good visibility with the retractable wing mirrors, which are also heated for those winter months.

Seats & Passenger Space

Seats are synthetic fabric; however, leather seats are available on the EX or EX Sport Line, making life so much easier with little ones and their mucky paws!  If you opt for one of these trims, you’ll also gain heated seats in the front and rear for those colder days.

There’s plenty of space in the front for the driver and passenger, and whilst the leg room in the back is ok for adults, sadly the same cannot be said for the height.  The roofline slopes downwards and you really do feel somewhat claustrophobic.  Claire actually banged her head getting out and she’s only 5ft 6” !  It also feels incredibly dark.  This maybe great for a sleeping baby, but it’s not ideal for any of the other passengers.

However, if the Honda Civic is still your choice, you’ll be pleased to know there are 2 ISOFIX points on the back seat and we were able to fit 2 child seats on there.  Sadly, the space in the centre, once these are in place, is on the small side and whilst you will get a 3rd passenger in there (all be it at a squeeze), you won’t get a 3rd booster seat in the gap. Privacy glass (tinted windows) comes as standard to keep out the sun’s glare, should it decide to make an appearance!

Cups & Cubby

There’s a reasonable amount of storage in the Honda Civic.  The glove box is a great size and you’ll find a storage tray for phones and keys with 2 USB ports behind the gear stick. There are 2 cupholders in between driver and passenger seats which could accommodate our large water bottle and a small amount of storage in the arm rest.  Our water bottle could also fit in the front door bins, leaving plenty of room for other bits and bobs.

Unfortunately, there is limited storage in the back and it would seem families haven’t been considered in our opinion.  You won’t be able to fit anything into the door bins other than a water bottle.  There is a central armrest that drops down revealing 2 cupholders but that’s your lot!  Good luck trying to find a place for that colouring book or iPad on longer journeys.  There are no USB ports in the back either.

Boot Space

The boot is a great size – 478 litres, that’s bigger than many cars in this class.  Honda have included a “cargo room protector,” a waterproof, tough, anti-slip, washable mat.  This is a fabulous additional feature that protects the boot from wear and tear from prams, bikes, dogs etc.

We had no difficulties placing our stroller in there, but it’s worth noting that the widest part of the boot is near the entrance so this is where you will have to put it.  Therefore, you will have to stretch over the stroller to place school bags, shopping bags etc in there, meaning ultimately these items will need to go at the back of the boot – not always ideal.  The same can be said for a pram.  That said, there is plenty of space around the pram for family paraphernalia.

There is also quite a drop down to the boot floor, so you will need to lift items up and over. Sadly, there is no powered tailgate (boot button) so you’ll have to grapple opening the boot if you’ve your hands full!

Summary

In summary, we’re not sure the Honda Civic would make an ideal family car.  If you disagree, we would suggest dismissing the S or SE trims and instead consider the higher trims to gain family essentials like leather seats and parking seats.  It’s a sporty car with a good size boot that may suit some families, but not all,

Car seats used in this review – 2 x Graco Tri Logic (width 40.8cm) 1 x Maxi-Cosi Pebble (width 43cm)

Car Dimensions - Kate and Claire

Dimensions

4518 mm (L) x 1799 mm (W) x 1434 mm (H)

Boot Capacity - Kate and Claire

Boot Capacity

478 Litres

Backseat Size Kate and Claire Reviews

Backseat Dimensions

114 cm

Miles per Gallon - Kate and Claire

Miles per gallon

33.2 – 49.6

Range - Kate and Claire

Range

N/A

Speedometer - Kate and Claire

Speed

0-60 mph in 8.2 – 10.5 secs