Honda’s all-new 2012 Civic launched in the spring and its been a constant topic of discussion, but not in a good way. Many critics feel that Honda has lost its way and the new Civic is the proof, since it is not as impressive as the generation it replaced. Consumer Reports is not a fan of the new Civic and even went as far to remove it from its “recommended” list. Now Consumer Reports is going even further by documenting Honda’s decline in several of its recent tests.
In the past, Honda’s models dominated Consumer Reports’ Top Picks list, but as recently as 2006, Honda’s redesigned and new models have failed to impress. Back in 2006 the previous generation Civic was released and Comsumer Reports gave it a score of 78, six years later the 2012 Civic only managed an overall score at 61. Other Honda models like the Honda Odyssey have also declined in competitiveness. The Odyssey went from a 91 in 2005 to an overall score of 83 points. Two of Honda’s hybrids are far from recommended, the CR-Z and Insight.
According to Consumer Reports there seems to be a theme with Honda’s new models that have lead to the lower scores. Consumer Reports complains that Honda’s vehicles have stopping distances that are too long, too much road noise and lower quality interior materials. Probably the worst thing: They aren’t as fun to drive as past Hondas.
Honda’s are still pretty reliable and have great resale value, but how long can that sustain the brand. Honda has needed to improve the Acura brand for years, but now it looks like it also needs to improve its core business as well. What do you think? Is Hyundai the new Honda?