Honda released an all-new Civic for the 2012 model year, but according to Consumer Reports, the all-new Civic falls below the previous generation. Previous Civics have been on Consumer Reports’ highest rated small sedans lists as well as Top Picks in five of the last 10 years, but the 2012 Civic will not be part of that party.
The redesigned Civic LX’s score dropped a whopping 17 points to a mediocre 61 from the previous generation’s very good 78. It scored second-to-last in CR’s ratings of 12 small sedans, followed only by the recently redesigned VW Jetta. Consumer Reports’ testers found the 2012 Civic to be less agile and with lower interior quality than its predecessor. It also suffers from a choppy ride, long stopping distances, and pronounced road noise.
“While other models like the Hyundai Elantra have gotten better after being redesigned, the Civic has dropped so much that now it ranks near the bottom of its category,” said David Champion, senior director of Consumer Reports’ Auto Test Center in East Haddam, CT.
Will buyers care? The VW Jetta sedan is supposedly the worst car on the list, but it’s sales were up 121 percent in June.
Check out Honda’s response after the jump.
In a broad sense, we disagree with Consumer Reports’ findings. Without question, the small sedan segment is more competitive than ever. In virtually every way, the completely redesigned 2012 Civic is a step forward. The new Civic excels in areas that matter to small-car customers, including fuel efficiency, safety, and reliability. Among the Civic’s greatest competitive strengths, is a smooth and efficient powertrain that, in Consumer Reports testing returned, “… an impressive 30 mpg overall on regular fuel and 47 mpg on the highway.” Also noted in Consumer Reports findings, the Civic excels in the area of safety, with a long list of important features standard on all trim levels, and a class-leading ‘Top Safety Pick’ rating from IIHS. Lastly, the Civic has a stellar reliability history with Consumer Reports, and we are confident that the new Civic will be a reliability leader as well.