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2020 Honda Civic Si - First Drive

A smart daily that doesn't cost a fortune and is still really fun to drive—like it has been for generations—is a value proposition that's hard to ignore

Ceso Bagay
Nov 25, 2019
Photographer: Honda

As the saying goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." The 2020 Honda Civic Si Coupe and Sedan are both far from broken, and—if you've been paying attention —also among our favorite cars available on the market today, with a starting MSRP of just $25,000. It's a lot of (fun) car for the coin, but we'd expect nothing less from a Civic grade that has become over the past 30 years an icon in the North American sport compact segment. The Si is still THE perfect entry vehicle into Honda performance, and here are our 5 takeaways from recently getting to drive the latest 10th-gen. for the first time.

2020 Honda Civic Si Coupe driver side front view 02 Photo 39/39   |   2020 Honda Civic Si - First Drive


With this "midcycle refresh" there really wasn't a whole lot for Honda to mess with. There are no big body changes with the update, but right off the bat you'll notice the Civic Si Coupe and Sedan's newly redesigned front bumper, lower grill, and LED headlights and fog lights, giving it an overall sleek and aggressive look; for the rear bumper on the Civic Si Sedan only, there's a minor aesthetic update on the lower grill. Both Civic Si Sedan and Coupe now come standard with newly redesigned matte black 18-inch wheels, wrapped in all-season tires or with factory option summer tires.


Inside the Civic Si, you'll notice the added red accents on the seats and a touch along the dash trim. The rest of the interior is standard Civic, which is fine. What's also new to the midcycle refresh is Honda Sensing, which is now standard on the Civic Si Sedan and Coupe, along with a powered moonroof, heated front seats, and lastly, Honda finally added a physical volume knob to the infotainment system with improved Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. As far as fuel economy, the Civic Si gets 26 city/36 highway, and 30 combined, which is good and will save you plenty at the pump (if you live in California, that is). If you need a vehicle that can haul your belongings, friends, be comfortable daily, and good on gas, the Civic Si definitely checks all of the boxes.


On the capability side of things, the Civic Si doesn't disappoint. It's still powered by a 205hp, 192 lb.-ft. of torque, 1.5-liter DOHC direct-injected turbo four-cylinder engine mated to 6-speed manual transmission, which is standard on Civic Si models, but what you'll find that's different about the midcycle refresh is a shorter final drive, which is enough reason to spend the few extra dollars over most of the rest of the Civic lineup for the Si (unless you're looking for the pure performance—and corresponding premium—of a Civic Type-R). We should also note the Civic Si handles not too dissimilarly from its track-ready Civic TCA race car kin.


We've already seen plenty of examples of the 10th generation Civic, including our neighbors at Honda Tuning project Si build. Companies like Greddy, 27Won, Hondata, PRL, and AEM Electronics, to name just a few, already have bolt-on upgrades for the 10th-gen. Civic Si and there won't be a shortage of aero mods and lip kits in the marketplace as well. For those looking for something hardcore, HPD offers a Civic Si TCA race car program that you can literally purchase online, which builds and supports a turnkey race program for $52,500 that does not include delivery, but is ready to compete in the Pirelli Challenge TCA Class.


The Civic Si Coupe and Sedan have already hit dealership lots with a starting MSRP of $25,000, not including a destination charge of $930 and the option of summer tires. From the exterior and interior styling upgrades, added pep, and a laundry list of technology and safety equipment, what more can you ask for under $30,000 that is affordable and has the aftermarket support? Not much. It's a great daily that doesn't cost an arm and a leg and is still really fun to drive—like it has been for generations—making the 2020 Civic Si a value proposition that's hard to ignore.

2020 Honda Civic Sis 02 Photo 39/39   |   2020 Honda Civic Si - First Drive


Torrance, CA
Santa Clarita, CA
By Ceso Bagay
14 Articles



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