There’s a bit more here than meets the eye.
As we speak, the ever-popular 2022 Honda Civic sedan is hitting dealers nationwide. In about a weeks’ time, we’ll see the updated hatchback model. What’s missing from the picture for the time being, though, is both the hotter Si model, and of course the king of the hill Type R. The latter will naturally be along in due time, but the 2022 Honda Civic Si is next up on the launch calendar, and before that we have a proper look at what certainly looks like the next-gen model.
Like the outgoing tenth-generation, casual observers may not spot the Si for what it is at first glance. Especially in this gray hue, it looks like the standard sedan in three-quarter view. However, there are some clues that help give the game away for the higher-performance version. The mesh grille kicks off the changes — with this car wearing a little bit of camouflage to hide the minor changes along the bumper over the regular car. The Si loses that small lip that fostered some division on the styling, at least in some comments leading up to our side-by-side 10th versus 11th-gen comparison. That small detail alone makes the Si look quite a bit sportier, to my mind. Most of the remaining details look similar to the sedan, including the headlights and remaining front clip.
Then there are the wheels. Now, you can get those wheels on the regular Civic sedan as part of the HPD package, available on Sport models (shown below). That adds some blacked out trim pieces, the 10-spoke wheels and a rear deck spoiler. On the less powerful sedan, however, you’re limited to a 2.0-liter engine with 158 horsepower and 138 lb-ft of torque, mated to a continuously variable transmission.
What can we tell about performance?
Out back, there are some signs you can expect sportier ambitions out of the 2022 Honda Civic Si. The exhaust pipes are identical to what you’d get on the Touring model, which packs a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. The old Si also used this engine, and it’s certain to make another appearance in the eleventh generation model. Apart from the pipes, the lower rear fascia looks slightly different to the standard Civic’s Touring trim, giving off a bit more of a sporty look. Check out the car’s back end below:
It looks like there’s one more small clue to this car’s identity — the badging. No, you can’t see it since Honda decided to tape over the three rear badges. However, while the left and center badges are clearly the size of the “Civic” script and Honda’s brand logo respectively, the right side looks too small to say “Sport” or “Touring”. More to the point, those cars have already been revealed at this point, so it’s not like we wouldn’t know what’s hiding under there. The magic of the Civic Si has been the improved performance without all the boy-racerness of the Type R, and Honda’s certainly keeping that stealthy look going.
In the old model, the 1.5-liter turbocharged four-banger put out 205 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. Even better for three-pedal enthusiasts, it only came with a 6-speed manual transmission. We expect the same here, although Honda may well give us a bit more oomph this time around. Same goes for the Type R, though we may have to wait a bit longer for that one. At this point, it’s unclear whether the automaker will continue its drip-drip-drip approach of launching the sedan, then the hatchback, then the Si and Type R separately, or bundle the two together to cap off the 11th-gen’s commencement.
At any rate, don’t expect a two-door version of any Civic this time around — the coupe is officially dead. While I understand that, I do feel some pity as I loved the “old” Civic Si Coupe. The more practical sedan is the one I’d actually buy, though, so I’m excited Honda’s at least keeping that going.