Like the sedanvariant of Honda's popular compact, the Civic Coupe enters the latest model year as a ground-up redesign that includes an all-new chassis and the choice of a turbocharged engine for the first time in the nameplate's 10-generation history. The new model year also ushers in a number of significant technical improvements.
Though still recognizable as a Civic, Honda designers pushed the enveloped a little farther with the latest redesign, adding a bolder front fascia that includes a chrome grille bar, optional LED headlight and lower air inlets.
The coupe takes the new design language even further than the sedan does, with a lower roof and slightly wider body to accentuate its shorter overall length, making it look more hunkered-down and aggressive than its four-door sibling. A further-lowered hip point for the front seat passengers also gives the coupe a more cockpit-like feel. The Coupe's longer doors get unique interior trim topped off by appropriately enormous grab-handles.
In addition to more room, passengers will also enjoy a redesigned cabin that includes a conventional gauge cluster and an available 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system that can run both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Soft-touch materials have been employed through the Civic's interior, giving the compact a more premium feel.
Dynamically, Honda wanted its coupe to be a bit more engaging than the sedan, trim-for-trim. From the most basic LX all the way up to the Touring model, the Civic Coupe is the sportier choice.
All Coupe models have increased front roll stiffness and firmer damping. EX-T models get larger wheels, firmer spring rates and increased front/rear tension. Touring models are tuned for a more premium feel, but also feature lightweight wheels to keep the fun factor alive.
Under the hood, the same basic powertrains are available (a 2.0L with a manual or a CVT and a 1.5L turbo paired only to the latter). The 2.0L, naturally aspirated engine is available in the LX and LX-P trims. It makes 158 horsepower and 138 lb-ft of torque.
Despite being the workhorse of the lineup, it's the only one available with a manual transmission for the time being. With the six-speed, it's good for 26 mpg in the city, 38 on the highway and 31 combined. The CVT bumps that to 30 in the city, 41 on the highway and 34 combined.
From the EX-T trim on up, the only engine available is Honda's new 1.5L turbo. Boasting 174 horsepower and 162lb-ft of torque, it's the engine you want. And when the six-speed becomes available later on, it'll be the one you need. With the CVT, it'll get 31 mpg in the city, 41 on the highway and 35 combined.
A six-speed manual transmission will eventually be offered with the turbocharged engine, but not for this model year.
Trim Level Breakdown
The Civic Coupe follows a very similar trim breakdown to the Sedan's, however some of the features have been consolidated or re-arranged to better suit the typical style-oriented coupe shopper.
The Civic LX's standard equipment list includes automatic climate control, electronic parking brake, LED daytime running lights, 5-inch LCD screen with integrated rear-view camera, Bluetooth connectivity, Pandora compatibility, steering wheel-mounted controls, capless refueling and 16-inch steel wheels with full covers.
The LX-P package adds premium audio, smart keyless entry and push-button start. This is the highest trim level available with the 2.0L, naturally aspirated four-cylinder.
The Civic EX-T adds to the LX-P's equipment list a 7-inch Display Audio touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a 450-watt premium sound system with sub-woofer, Honda LaneWatch, and heated side mirrors.but includes upgrades like SiriusXM satellite radio, heated front seats, a dual-zone automatic climate control system, fog lights and a body-colored deckled spoiler. The Civic EX-T also gets the 1.5L turbocharged engine with remote start and 17-inch wheels.
Stepping up the EX-L model nets leather seats with an 8-way power adjustment for the driver, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, automatic dimming rear-view mirror and an available satellite navigation system.
The top-spec Civic Coupe Touring includes a, standard navigation, power adjustable front passenger's seat, heated outboard rear seats, rain-sensing windshield wipers, chrome door handles and the Honda Sensing suite of safety features. The Touring also receives slightly thicker anti-rolls bars for a sportier driving experience.
All Civic models ship standard with advanced front, side, and side curtain airbags. The Civic Coupe's front and side airbags are equipped with a new venting technology that helps reduce the risk of injury for passengers "out of position" during the time of a collision.
In order to help avoid a crash altogether, every Civic model can be equipped with Honda Sensing. That safety suite includes advanced technologies like collision mitigation, lane departure warning, forward collision warning, lane keeping assist, road departure mitigation and adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow. True to Honda's streamlined ordering process, Honda Sensing is the Civic's only standalone option.
All but the entry-level Civic LX gets Honda's LaneWatch system, which provides a video feed of the passenger's side of the car via a mirror-mounted camera. The system is intended to reduce the Civic's inherent blind spots during lane change maneuvers.
The coupe market is a shrinking one. For now, the Civic Coupe can count amongst its competitors the Scion tC and the Kia Forte Koup. For the buyer who likes having three doors rather than two, the Volkswagen Golf is also an option.