2006 Honda Civic, Futuristic and Fuel Efficient

Physician's Money Digest, June 2006, Volume 13, Issue 6

Considering the conditions ofthe environment, petroleumreserves, your personal safety,and your pocketbook,you absolutely want to consider theHonda Civic. With the Civic, Hondahas been able carve out a niche for thesocially conscious driver who wants alot of car for a little money withoutwasting natural resources.

Fuel and Safety

The Honda Civic achieves fantasticfuel economy, which is a top concernamong today's drivers. All new Civicmodels get at least 30 mpg city and38 highway. And not only is the fueleconomy good, but it burns veryclean. The Civic houses an aluminumalloy engine that features the uniquei-VTEC system. This design actuallyeliminates a bit of pumping losses thatoccur in low-engine load situations.The trick is that an intake valve staysopen a bit at the beginning of the compressionstroke: this effectively lowersthe volume that is compressed. Theresult is an environmentally consciousmotor that doesn't drain your walletat the pump.

The Civic is not only fuel efficient, butalso safe. Honda is committed to providingthe latest in safety, including seatbeltpretensioners, front in-seat side airbags,dual-stage front airbags, side curtainairbags, active head restraints, anantilock brake system, and a strong bodystructure. We are disappointed thatHonda is not offering the proven activesafety of stability control on any Civic.

Sleek Modern Design

As you can see by the Civic's look, itis easy on the eye without showy detail.This design theme incorporates the"one-motion-form." The styling is appealingand appears to have an organicflow to it. The sedan's front windshieldis steeply raked, which creates very goodaerodynamics. Honda's special structureis called "ACE" and is outstanding theway it redirects energy away from theoccupants as much as possible in animpact situation. So many intelligentfeatures appear in the standard vehicle,which is surprising. The four wheelsstretch to the corners of the frame evenmore than before, increasing the ridequality. The suspension is more reactive,giving a more comfortable, precise, controlledride. The steering is nice, butsomewhat dull. The rigid structurereturns a comfortable ride that we wishwas a touch quieter.

The all-digital instrument panel(with the exception of the rpm meter,located lower in front of the steeringwheel) is fairly innovative, with thespeedometer and gas gauge on thedashboard right at eye level. Thebluish-purple hue is pleasant. We wishthere was more engine informationavailable besides temperature. Thesteering wheel is well thought out andcomfortable to the grip. With all of theglass surrounding the cabin, the driverhas a very open environment, however,the sheet metal rises up enough to providea feeling of security. The wholecar is pleasant and well designed tomeet requirements of futurists inNorth America. The EX model, withits navigation system, clearly appealsto the efficient intellect and offers theultimate in human/automobile interfaceat a reasonable price. Besides theEX model, the 2006 Civic also comesin DX, LX, Si, and hybrid models.

Jean Swenson and Ashly Knapp are independent research

reporters and the founders of AutoAdvisor.com.