2022 Honda Civic Review

Christian Wardlaw, Independent Expert | Jun 16, 2021

Introduction - Find the best Honda deals!

The 2022 Honda Civic requires no introduction. Since the first Civics went on sale in America in 1973, this compact car has been one of the best-selling models in the country. If you haven't owned one yourself, you've probably known someone who has.

Redesigned for 2022, the Civic returns first as a 4-door sedan and later as a 5-door hatchback. Honda builds sedans in Canada and makes hatchbacks in the United States (previously, the Civic hatch hailed from the United Kingdom). As this review is written, Honda has not revealed details about the redesigned 2022 Civic hatchback, other than to confirm that it will be available with a manual transmission and that a high-performance Type R variant will return to the lineup.

This review covers the new 2022 Civic sedan, which is available in LX, Sport, EX, and Touring trim levels. A sporty Civic Si model will return to the lineup, too, and driving enthusiasts will be able to row their own gears in that model.

Philosophically, the 2022 Honda Civic is the same as it was before. It is a compact car, roomy enough for four adults, and equipped with a good-sized trunk. But no part of the 2022 Civic has gone untouched, as Honda strives to return the car its clean, simple, and sporty roots. 

What Owners Say About the Honda Civic - Find the best Honda deals!

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Morning Mist Blue Front Quarter View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

According to data collected from verified owners for the J.D Power 2020 Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study, 58% of previous-generation Honda Civic owners are male (vs. 54% for the segment), and the median age of a Civic owner is 48 years (vs. 49).

Owners say their favorite things about the previous-generation Civic were (in descending order) the:

  • Exterior design
  • Driving feel in a tie with fuel economy
  • Powertrain
  • Feeling of safety

Owners indicate their least favorite things about the previous-generation Civic were (in descending order) the: 

  • Setting up and starting
  • Interior design
  • Driving comfort
  • Getting in and out
  • Infotainment

In the J.D. Power 2020 APEAL Study, the previous-generation Civic ranked number three out of 11 compact cars.

What Our Independent Expert Says About the Honda Civic - Find the best Honda deals!

In the sections that follow, our independent expert provides an analysis of a Civic Touring sedan equipped with Morning Mist Blue paint, which costs $395 extra. The test vehicle's price came to $29,690, including the $995 destination charge required to ship it from Ontario, Canada, to your dealership.

Getting In and Getting Comfortable

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Front Seats

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Getting into and out of a Civic takes some effort because the car sits so low to the ground. But, once you enter the cabin, you'll be impressed by its upscale appearance, elegantly intricate detailing, and high-tech displays.

Comfort levels are high. Honda has redesigned the Civic's front seats, intending to improve chest, pelvis, and thigh support while making them more comfortable for what the company calls the "sitting bone." The changes work to excellent effect, making the Civic a great place to spend time. Heated front cushions are available, too.

Automatic climate control is standard in all Civics, with dual-zone temperature control starting with EX trim. Honda does not provide rear-seat occupants with air conditioning vents, though, an unfortunate oversight considering the back seat is agreeably comfortable for adults. Touring trim also loses the rear seat cushion heaters that were previously available.

Similar to other Hondas, the interior exudes quality. This observation is especially accurate of the new Civic, which features authentic honeycomb-pattern metal mesh on the dashboard, behind which Honda hides the car's climate system air vents. Most Civics have a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and Touring trim includes leather seats. The switchgear is especially satisfying to use.

A center console divides the front seats, and for 2022 it's a more conventional design compared to the innovative approach Honda previously took with the Civic. However, the cupholders are now more accessible, and with Touring trim, Honda locates the wireless smartphone charging pad forward of the transmission shifter. In addition, Honda designed the console trim to hide dust and resist fingerprints.

Overall, the new Civic's interior is about the same size as the previous-generation car. But the vibe is entirely different, reflecting a greater sense of maturity, refinement, and sophistication than before.

2022 Honda Civic Infotainment System Review

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Interior Dashboard

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

According to J.D. Power data, previous-generation Civic owners did not like the infotainment system in their cars. Honda solves that problem for 2022.

Two different infotainment systems are available for the 2022 Civic. With LX, Sport, and EX trim, a 7-inch touchscreen display is standard. The Touring trim upgrades to a 9-inch touchscreen. Both include smartphone integration, a stereo power/volume knob, and either a tuning knob or tuning buttons.

Standard equipment highlights include:

  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • HondaLink connected services
  • Text messaging support
  • One USB port for front-seat occupants

Additionally, with Touring trim, the infotainment system comes with:

  • 9-inch touchscreen
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • SiriusXM satellite radio
  • HD Radio
  • Navigation
  • 12-speaker Bose premium sound system
  • Three additional USB ports

After you start the Civic, it takes a few moments for the infotainment system to load, which can cause some minor frustration. But once the technology is operational, it responds quickly to inputs and accurately to voice commands. Honda even includes a small shelf at the bottom of the display where you can rest your hand while operating the system.

Setting up personal preferences is easy, too, thanks to a reduction of the number of menus and a reorganization of main-screen apps. In addition, the navigation map represents a significant upgrade in terms of its size, graphics, and data display. Honda also offers Smart Shortcuts with the Touring trim level's system, which uses predictive learning to propose frequently used functions.

Every 2022 Civic also has digital instrumentation. A 7-inch panel is standard with LX, Sport, and EX trim, while the Civic Touring offers a more sophisticated and robust 10.2-inch configurable display. This version also includes an "Activity Monitor" that shows when the Civic's headlights, brake lights, and turn signals are active.

For the first time in a Honda vehicle, a Bose premium sound system is available. It's standard with Touring trim and includes 12 speakers in addition to Centerpoint 2 and SurroundStage technology. Bose worked with Honda early in the Civic's gestation period to ensure proper speaker placement and rich sound quality, and it delivers.

Unfortunately, given the youthful demographic Honda targets with the new Civic, the 8-speaker setup in the Sport and EX trim levels fails to impress – especially after experiencing the Bose components.

What It's Like to Drive the 2022 Honda Civic

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Morning Mist Blue Side View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Honda offers two familiar, but updated, powertrains for the 2022 Civic. The LX and Sport continue with a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine generating 158 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 138 pound-feet of torque at 4,300 rpm. Honda pairs it with an updated continuously variable transmission (CVT) with new Step-Shift programming and an early downshift function during braking to make these versions of the car feel more lively and engaging to drive.

Upgrade to EX or Touring trim, and the new Civic uses a turbocharged 1.5-liter 4-cylinder engine making 180 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 177 pound-feet of torque between 1,700 rpm and 4,500 rpm. These are increases of 6 horsepower and 15 pound-feet over the previous-generation car. A CVT is standard and benefits from the same revisions Honda makes to the different CVT in the LX and Sport.

Additionally, the new Civic sits on a longer wheelbase with a wider rear track. Honda reworks the Civic's suspension to produce what it claims is a 20 percent smoother ride without any compromise in handling. Handling also improves due to the car's retuned steering and increased structural rigidity. As a result, the Civic feels athletic and is pleasurable to drive.

Driving enjoyment is baked into nearly every Honda, even if the company doesn't tout this quality in the same way that automakers like BMW and Mazda do. That's why, despite relatively modest power, a CVT, and all-season tires, a Civic feels light and lively in your hands, engaging and energetic.

Honda believes 40 percent of new Civic buyers will choose the Sport trim level. Unfortunately, that's a bit of a misnomer because while this version of the car feels sporty in corners, acceleration in a straight line is merely adequate.

Turbocharging supplies the more accessible and broad swell of torque that gives a Civic EX or Touring driver a little bit of a thrill. It is almost always ready to supply enough response to push you back a little in your seat, and these versions of the Civic surge forward in a predictable and manageable fashion.

Everything about how the new Civic drives is consistent, smooth, and stable. As a result, you come to trust how it will behave in various situations, and this connection between human and machine is a hallmark of great driver's cars. Indeed, the 2022 Civic Touring approaches the line delineating compact and sport compact cars. It bodes well for the return of the Civic Si.

If, however, you're the type of driver who cruises freeways instead of carving corners, the Civic is exceptionally capable as a long-distance cruiser. Depending on the road surface, it is hushed inside, too. And during the daily commute, the Touring's turbo gives you the point-and-shoot ability to take advantage of holes in traffic.

No matter who you are or where you're going, getting into and driving a 2022 Honda Civic is neither a chore nor a bore.

2022 Honda Civic Honda Sensing Review

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Safety Menu Instrumentation

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Honda gives the 2022 Civic a significantly improved Honda Sensing collection of advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS). 

The package includes the following features:

  • Adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow
  • Forward-collision warning
  • Automatic emergency braking (Collision Mitigation Braking System)
  • Lane-departure warning
  • Lane-keeping assistance (Road Departure Mitigation System)
  • Lane-centering assistance (Lane Keeping Assist)
  • New: Traffic Jam Assist
  • New: Traffic sign recognition system

Upgrade to EX trim, and the car includes a blind-spot warning system. In addition, Touring trim adds rear cross-traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, and low-speed braking assistance to prevent bumping obstacles at low rates of speed.

A new front-facing camera doubles the field of view to improve Honda Sensing's smoothness, accuracy, and responsiveness, and to support new features. Additionally, the 2022 Civic has ultrasonic sonar with four front and four rear sensors.

In use, this new version of Honda Sensing is remarkably sophisticated, and especially in comparison to the previous-generation Civic. The new blind-spot warning system is also a substantially better solution than the previous camera-based Lane Watch, which only worked on the right side of the vehicle. However, Honda restricts the availability of this feature to EX and Touring trim, an odd decision given that the automaker expects the LX and Sport to account for 70 percent of all sales.

2022 Honda Civic FAQ - Find the best Honda deals!

2022 Honda Civic Sedan Trunk Room

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

How much cargo space does the 2022 Honda Civic have?

Open the Civic's trunk, and you'll find 14.8 cubic feet of cargo space with the LX, Sport, and EX trim levels. The Touring's Bose premium sound system components hang lower into the trunk from the parcel shelf above, so this model can carry 14.4 cubic feet of luggage. 

The rear seat folds down to expand utility, and with EX and Touring trim, it is a 60/40-split design. Honda also supplies a handle to close the lid without putting your fingers on the dirty exterior paint.

Does the 2022 Honda Civic get good gas mileage?

Based on Honda's estimates, yes, the Civic gets good gas mileage. The automaker claims that its powertrain refinements result in net increases for nearly all trim levels. Numbers range from a low of 30 mpg in the city for the Sport trim to a high of 42 mpg on the highway for the EX trim.

Naturally, your results may vary. For example, the Touring test vehicle averaged 30.4 mpg on the evaluation loop. Granted, it includes a rise and fall in elevation ranging from sea level to about 1,800 feet. And testing included plenty of enthusiastic driving with the Touring's Sport driving mode active. But this remains unexpectedly short of this car's 34-mpg estimate for combined driving.

Using our result, multiplied against the Civic's 12.4-gallon fuel tank capacity, you can expect the car to provide a driving range of about 375 miles.

Is the 2022 Honda Civic safe?

Because the 2022 Civic is all-new, official crash-test ratings are unavailable as this review is published. However, Honda has made significant changes to the 2022 Civic to improve safety.

Highlights of the car's safety changes include:

  • Honda upgrades the car's Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure to improve crash compatibility with larger vehicles
  • New front airbags debut with a new design that limits head rotation in certain kinds of collisions
  • The Civic gets standard rear side-impact airbags for the first time
  • Honda Sensing improves with a new camera, sonar units, and added functions
  • A blind-spot warning system with rear cross-traffic warning is available
  • Revisions to the Civic's front-end aim to reduce pedestrian injury if the car strikes a person
  • New "activity monitor" tells the Touring’s driver if the headlights are on or off
  • Standard seatbelt monitor and rear seat reminder system help to ensure safety

Like all automakers do when they redesign a vehicle, Honda says the new Civic will get top ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Time will tell if that prediction is accurate.

How much is the 2022 Honda Civic?

When the new 2022 Civic goes on sale, prices will range from $21,700 for the LX trim to $28,300 for the Touring trim. The destination charge costs an extra $995.

What are the 2022 Honda Civic competitors?

In the J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study (IQS), the Kia Forte ranked highest in the compact car segment. The Hyundai Elantra and the Volkswagen Jetta were the next highest-ranked models. 

In the J.D. Power 2020 Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout Study (APEAL), the Nissan Sentra ranked highest in the compact car segment. The Volkswagen Jetta and the Honda Civic were the next highest-ranked models.

Other competitors to the 2022 Civic include the Mazda Mazda3, Subaru Impreza, and Toyota Corolla.

Independent Expert Opinion - Find the best Honda deals!

2022 Honda Civic Touring Sedan Morning Mist Blue Rear Quarter View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

It has never been a better time to buy a new compact car. Today's choices are as roomy as yesterday's midsize sedans, and in top levels of trim, they encroach upon luxury brands as far as technological sophistication, design, and refinement are concerned. In addition, several electrified and performance variants are also available, ensuring that you can find the right car at a surprisingly affordable price.

With that as background, it is easier to understand why, despite its inherent goodness and a complete redesign, the new 2022 Honda Civic doesn't set new standards in the segment. It isn't the roomiest compact car, the most powerful compact car, the most efficient compact car, or the most technologically advanced compact car. Moreover, it doesn't offer all-wheel drive, an electrified powertrain option, a generous warranty, or appealing ownership perks such as free scheduled maintenance.

But, just as there isn't anything particularly notable to praise in comparison to the competition, neither does the Civic provoke much in the way of criticism. It performs every task you expect of a compact car and does it with style, sophistication, and substance. It is a great car, among great cars.

Christian Wardlaw is a veteran digital automotive journalist with over 25 years of experience in test-driving vehicles. In addition to JDPower.com, his work has appeared in numerous new- and used-car buying guides, newspapers, and automotive industry trade journals.

The opinions expressed in this review are the author’s own, not J.D. Power’s.

No portion of these reviews may be reproduced, distributed, publicly displayed, or used for a derivative work without J.D. Power’s written permission. © 2021 J.D. Power

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