2019 Honda Civic vs 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI

2019 Honda Civic
2019 Honda Civic
$19,550MSRP
Overview
Overview
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2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
$27,595MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2019 Honda Civic
$19,550MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
$27,595MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now

CarGurus highlights

Winning Vehicle Image

According to CarGurus experts, the overall rating for the 2019 Honda Civic is 7.8 out of 10, while the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI scores 8.2 out of 10. Based on these ratings, the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI is the better choice for those seeking a blend of performance, technology, and safety features. Its powerful engine, advanced handling capabilities, and superior infotainment options make it a standout in its class.

Overview

MSRP

$19,550

MSRP

$27,595

Average price

$19,286

Average price

$23,404

Listings

1252

Listings

152
Ratings & Reviews
User Reviews
User Reviews

Expert reviews

7.8 out of 10

Expert reviews

8.2 out of 10
Pros
  • Fun to drive
  • Great handling
  • Excellent value for money
Cons
  • Cramped back seat
  • Stereo is lacking

2019 Honda Civic Reviews Summary

The tenth-generation Civic has been out since 2016, and for 2019, Honda makes only minor tweaks to this compact car's winning formula of style, value, and performance. Lots of cars are good these days, but the Civic has been consistently good for more than 45 years. This is a car that drives and feels like a more expensive car, and whether you choose a sedan, coupe, or hatchback among four engines and two transmissions—hooray for variety—the Civic rewards you. The 2019 model reminds us why.

2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI Reviews Summary

Small, fun cars hold a special place in my heart. I’ve always been a fan of little yet mighty automobiles, and not just because they put performance within easier financial reach. You simply cannot help but smile when you drive one, and smiling is good for you. So, think of the 2019 Volkswagen GTI as a contributor to a healthier lifestyle, because you’ll be smiling plenty from behind its steering wheel.
Popular Features & Specs

Engine

2.0L 158 hp I4

Engine

2.0L 228 hp I4

Drive Train

FWD

Drive Train

FWD

Seating Capacity

5

Seating Capacity

5

Horsepower

158 hp @ 6500 rpm

Horsepower

228 hp @ 4700 rpm

MPG City

25

MPG City

25

MPG Highway

36

MPG Highway

31
2019 Honda Civic
2019 Honda Civic
$19,550MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
$27,595MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2019 Honda Civic
$19,550MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
$27,595MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now

CarGurus highlights

Winning Vehicle Image

According to CarGurus experts, the overall rating for the 2019 Honda Civic is 7.8 out of 10, while the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI scores 8.2 out of 10. Based on these ratings, the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI is the better choice for those seeking a blend of performance, technology, and safety features. Its powerful engine, advanced handling capabilities, and superior infotainment options make it a standout in its class.

Overview
MSRP
$19,550
$27,595
Average price
$19,286
$23,404
Listings
Ratings & Reviews
User reviews
4.6
4.6
Expert reviews

7.8 out of 10

Read full review

8.2 out of 10

Read full review
Pros & cons
Pros
  • Fun to drive
  • Great handling
  • Excellent value for money
Cons
  • Cramped back seat
  • Stereo is lacking
Summary
The tenth-generation Civic has been out since 2016, and for 2019, Honda makes only minor tweaks to this compact car's winning formula of style, value, and performance. Lots of cars are good these days, but the Civic has been consistently good for more than 45 years. This is a car that drives and feels like a more expensive car, and whether you choose a sedan, coupe, or hatchback among four engines and two transmissions—hooray for variety—the Civic rewards you. The 2019 model reminds us why.
Small, fun cars hold a special place in my heart. I’ve always been a fan of little yet mighty automobiles, and not just because they put performance within easier financial reach. You simply cannot help but smile when you drive one, and smiling is good for you. So, think of the 2019 Volkswagen GTI as a contributor to a healthier lifestyle, because you’ll be smiling plenty from behind its steering wheel.
Video
Popular Features & Specs
Engine
2.0L 158 hp I4
2.0L 228 hp I4
Drive Train
FWD
FWD
Seating Capacity
5
5
Horsepower
158 hp @ 6500 rpm
228 hp @ 4700 rpm
MPG City
25
25
MPG Highway
36
31
Look and feel
2019 Honda Civic
7/10
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
10/10
The 2019 Honda Civic, while not as stylish as the 2019 Mazda3, still brought its own brand of upscale style. It featured a new gloss-black upper grille, a revised lower bumper, and larger 18-inch wheels. The sedan's silhouette was graceful, with a long hood balancing the sizable cabin and short tail, which had unique wraparound LED lights. The Touring-trim test car came with chrome door handles and LED headlights that looked like hundreds of tiny crystals. For 2019, Honda added a new Sport trim with a center-mounted exhaust and some exterior flash of the performance-oriented Si trim for thousands of dollars less. The Civic Hatchback had a tall and aggressive rear end, while the Coupe model offered a more balanced alternative. The max-attack Civic Type R, available only in hatchback form, was essentially a race car. The interior maintained a high-tech yet simplified theme, with a central LCD screen for the tachometer and speedometer, a thin center stack with minimal buttons, and clean, linear lines. Despite a starting price under $20,000, the Civic's fit and finish felt high quality, with tight panel gaps and durable switchgear, buttons, and fabrics. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI looked innocuous, appealing to those who preferred stealth. Its 2-box design, honeycomb grille, red accents, and fat twin exhaust outlets hid a powerful engine. The GTI was available in S, Rabbit Edition, SE, and Autobahn trims, with prices starting at $27,595 and topping out at $37,095 with the optional 7-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic. The Rabbit Edition, a limited-production vehicle, featured a gloss black finish for the 18-inch wheels, rear roof spoiler, and side mirror caps, and came in unique colors like Urano Gray and Cornflower Blue. Inside, the GTI's straightforward approach was evident in the dashboard design, instrumentation, and controls. The car exuded quality, with the only shenanigans arising from the driver's directives. The jaunty Clark Plaid cloth upholstery in the S and Rabbit Edition trims added a whimsical flavor. The GTI's conservative styling and attentive tailoring, with a bit of attitude layered on for effect, made it a favorite among driving enthusiasts.
Performance
2019 Honda Civic
8/10
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
8/10
The 2019 Honda Civic offered a range of engines. The LX and Sport sedans and coupes came with a 2.0-liter inline 4-cylinder engine producing 158 horsepower and 138 pound-feet of torque. The sedans had a standard 6-speed manual transmission, while the coupe's manual was standard only on the Sport. EX and above trims, like the Touring, received a turbocharged 1.5-liter inline-4 with 174 hp and 162 lb-ft, paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). The hatchback exclusively featured the turbo engine, making 180 hp in the Hatchback Sport with a standard manual transmission. Front-wheel drive was the only configuration available for all Civic models. The Si and Type R models were the real gems, with the Si boosting the 1.5-liter engine to 205 hp and 192 lb-ft, and the Type R producing a staggering 306 hp and 295 lb-ft from a heavily boosted and re-engineered 2.0-liter engine. Both the Si and Type R came exclusively with a stick shift. The Civic's engines delivered smoothness and refinement, with the turbo engine offering better mid-range acceleration. The CVT was impressive, simulating gear ratios without straining the engine. The Civic's handling, steering feel, and suspension were superb, making it a joy to drive. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI, with its turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, saw its output increase from 220 horsepower to 228, peaking at 4,700 rpm. Torque remained at 258 pound-feet, arriving at just 1,500 rpm and sticking around through 4,500 rpm. The GTI featured a torque-sensing limited-slip differential, known as a VAQ differential, which maximized traction and reduced understeer. The GTI's handling was heroic, with Bridgestone Potenza RE97AS P225/40R18 tires contributing to its performance. Acceleration was fast, with the GTI reaching 60 mph without needing third gear. The clutch action was light and effortless, and the stick glided easily into each gear. The engine and exhaust provided a pleasantly grumbling soundtrack. The GTI's ride was stiff, with plenty of bounce and chop on imperfect pavement. An adaptive damping suspension was optional with SE trim and standard on the GTI Autobahn. The GTI's steering was perfection, with progressive, variable-ratio steering responding to the smallest driver inputs. The GTI's brakes, borrowed from the Golf R, were sensitive and effective.
Form and function
2019 Honda Civic
8/10
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
8/10
The 2019 Honda Civic's interior featured a touchscreen with a volume knob and five shortcut buttons, making it easier to use than previous models. The three-spoke steering wheel controlled the central display in the instrument panel, providing quick access to various functions. The rear seat offered surprising roominess, with optional two-stage heated outboard seats. Cargo space was significant, with the sedan offering 15.1 cubic feet in the trunk (14.7 with a rear subwoofer), the coupe offering 11.9 to 12.1 cubic feet, and the hatchback offering up to 25.7 cubic feet and 46.2 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. The center console provided ample storage, and visibility was good in all directions. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI offered height-adjustable front seats with robust bolsters, wrapped in plaid cloth or available leather. The seats accommodated various positions, and the flat-bottom steering wheel, clear gauges, and sensibly arranged controls provided a comfortable driving experience. Storage was plentiful, with a cavernous glove box, wide and deep lower door-panel bins, and a smartphone tray. The backseat offered acceptable comfort, with ideal thigh support and backrest angle, though leg space was tight. The trunk held 22.8 cubic feet of cargo, with maximum cargo space measuring 52.7 cubic feet. The GTI's visibility was excellent, with a flat hood and thin pillars.
Technology
2019 Honda Civic
7/10
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
6/10
The 2019 Honda Civic's Android-based infotainment system felt dated compared to newer Honda models. However, it redeemed itself with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The 450-watt, 10-speaker stereo on the Touring trim no longer rattled the back window, and Honda's Garmin-based navigation was a standout feature. LaneWatch, a camera mounted on the right-side mirror, provided a live feed of the blind spot, enhancing safety. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI's infotainment system included a 6.5-inch touchscreen display, Bluetooth hands-free calling and music streaming, and Car-Net App Connect with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Mirror Link platform support. The SE trim offered an upgraded system with an 8-inch display, HD Radio, satellite radio, and a 6-month trial subscription to Car-Net Safety & Security services. The Fender-brand premium sound system was available for the SE and standard for the Autobahn, which also included a navigation system. The GTI's adaptive LED front lighting system and semi-autonomous parking assistant system added to its technological appeal.
Safety
2019 Honda Civic
9/10
2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI
9/10
The 2019 Honda Civic featured Honda Sensing as standard on all trims except the Si and Type R. This included forward-collision alert with emergency braking, lane-keep assist, and adaptive cruise control. The IIHS rated various 2016–2018 Civic models with its top Good rating in all six crash tests and Superior for crash-prevention features. The NHTSA awarded the 2019 Civic five stars in all categories, except for four stars for the coupe's passenger-side frontal crash rating. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI offered forward-collision warning with pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, and a blind-spot-monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert as a $450 option on the S trim. The Rabbit Edition included these features as standard. The GTI SE added Car-Net Safety & Security plan with automatic collision notification, SOS emergency calling, and more. The GTI Autobahn included adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam headlights, lane-departure warning, and lane-keeping assist. All GTIs featured Volkswagen’s automatic post-collision braking system. The NHTSA awarded the GTI five stars in all categories except for a 4-star rating for the front passenger in the frontal impact test. The IIHS gave the GTI high marks, though front passenger protection received an Acceptable rating in the small overlap frontal impact test.
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