2020 Honda Civic SI review by Mark Fulmer
Another Best Seller Still Rocks
By Mark Fulmer
The Auto Channel
Even though the last three years has seen Honda's Civic claim the crown of best selling car in America, it has not become complacent. This reliable front-runner has kept making improvements. This year you have: a modified exterior, a modified interior, a manual transmission, and the usual improvements and updates of the tech systems.
Power. The 2020 Honda Civic SI engines boogie down the road with 174 horsepower from the standard 1.5L turbocharged engine, and for drivers who enjoy the shifting motion there's the new 6 speed manual giving you 177 lb-ft of torque, as well as 180 horsepower. Couple that up with the tried-and-true CVT transmission with its enhanced driving dynamics as well as legendary fuel efficiency and a sticker that starts at 26K and its no wonder they sell so well.
Tech modifications. A 7-inch touchscreen, 10-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™, Smart Entry keyless entry, Smart Start push button ignition, Sport trims with the CVT also come with remote start. HomeLink® is also standard. The physical buttons and a volume knob are a good step backward, and the improved voice recognition helped a lot when dictating an address into the nav system.
If you've had no fun trying to connect your USB charge cord then you'll like the addition of the Civic's corded connection. Larger cup holders in the center console, and improved buttons on the steering wheel are also quite useful. And here's to the multi-angle rear view camera with normal, top-down, or wide view of your rear and surroundings.
Honda Sensing safety suite, with adaptive cruise control (a real boon to crowded freeways and long journeys) and automatic emergency braking plus lane-keep assist, automatic high beams, and Honda's passenger-side-view lane change camera.
Hot knob. If you get triple digit heat in your summers, be aware that the aluminium gear shift knob can really heat up while the car is sitting in the heat. If you cover the dashboard with one of those reflective bubble-wrap sun guards and it shades the knob, you be ok. Otherwise consider buying or making a little cover to use during those heat waves.
Quiet and roomier. All Civics are noticeably quieter, reducing wind, road, and engine noise with the addition of more sound insulation in the floor, trunk, and front and rear fenders. As usual the space-utilization is well thought out with a larges hatch opening and 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and an improved side-pull cargo cover that is built-in and reversible.
If you like a highly enjoyable driving experience and a good sticker price, the Si will make you sigh.