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STYLING | 8 out of 10
Instantly recognizable and much sleeker-looking than most of its competitors
Interior is innovative, entertaining even, without sacrificing functionality
slightly bolder look
As the 2010 model year rolls in, the Honda Civic has now gone four years since its last major redesign, yet it still manages to look fresh.
At the time it was introduced, the Civic was a little far out design-wise, with a swoopier, more ached roofline; a stubbier, yet more aerodynamic front end; and a bold, two-tiered video-game-like instrument panel that made other small-car dashes look plain.
By now, the Civic fits in with a crowd that has largely started to emulate it, while still managing to look fresh. Numerous reviewers like the look overall. Cars.com thinks that the Honda Civic is "instantly recognizable and much sleeker-looking than most of its competitors." Motor Trend reports that, "when the latest-generation Civic first hit the market, many were surprised by its unusual styling, but the Civic's looks have proven a hit with buyers." Car and Driver points to the “the large, fast windshield, minivan-like front end, and UFO-style two-tiered dashboard” as love-it-or-hate-it design elements.
Last year Honda added, according to Car and Driver, "new head- and taillights and a new grille and front bumper design," along with "some new colors and alloy wheel designs.”
The unusual two-tier instrument panel layout definitely causes a stir, but Honda sticks with it through last year’s styling touch-up. According to Motor Trend, "all Civic sedans now feature a sporty three-spoke steering wheel." Overall, the dash design has more positive than negative comments, with Cars.com saying, "though the design is very different than most instrument panels, it doesn't take long to get used to and see the logic in it." ConsumerGuide reviewers feel that the dashboard design "works to good overall effect" in both the sedan and coupe, but they lament the fact that "the navigation system takes time to master, has undersized buttons, and absorbs too many audio functions."
The space-age interior design is a little over-the-top for some, but it still looks fresh, and in all, the 2010 Honda Civic strikes the right chord.