The Honda Civic Sedan is known for being an economical and practical mode of transportation. That is most certainly true, but when it comes to the Civic Sedan's new Si trim, you need to tack on a few more adjectives.
The best word to start with would be fun. This performance-oriented version of the Civic reaches 197 horsepower and is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission only - there is no automatic available. Although it is said to be capable of reaching 145 mph, it is weak on torque at 139 lb.-ft. Fuel economy is good, especially for a sporty car like this; you can expect 22 mpg in the city and 31 on the highway.
The Si comes with many sporty features, such as speed-sensitive power steering, an independent front suspension with MacPherson struts, an independent, double-wishbone suspension, and limited slip differential. The relatively low-slung car handles very well on its standard 17-inch wheels (which you can opt to upgrade to 18-inchers). You'll also find in the package power power windows and locks and a 350-watt audio system with 7 speakers (including a subwoofer) that is ready for XM Satellite Radio; avaaible options are a navigation system and summer-specific tires.
Safety features run the full gamut, from ABS and airbags (dual-stage fronts, front sides, and side-curtains) to active head restraints. The driver's seat includes a height adjustment for the most comfortable and safe positioning.
This sleek car, which was previously only available as a coupe, has an aerodynamic profile that cuts through the air, minimizing drag and helping to get the most out of that tank of gas. It's built on Honda's Global Compact Platform with a solid-unit body of 50-percent steel.
Inside you'll find a nice interior where the sporty atmosphere is continued. The dash is high-tech and a bit busy, but it is designed to put the most necessary gauges where the driver can most readily see them with the least distraction.
The Si sedan also bears the marks of any performance car: a rear spoiler, a shiny exhaust end, and deep, body-hugging sport seats. The steering wheel and shifter knob are wrapped in leather, and the pedals are made of aluminum.