2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback Review: Practicality And Fun Rolled Into One?

It's the most expensive version of the standard Civic, but is it the one to buy?

The 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback (yes – that’s its official name) gives you a lot of car for the money, and it’s fun too.

I need to get one thing clear, the 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback comes with a 6-speed manual transmission as an option. That helps make it fun for sure; however, the continuously variable transmission (CVT) still allowed for some sporting driving. Toyota and Honda have built some decent CVTs, and the one Honda placed in this turbocharged hatchback feels tight and responsive – but there is a catch.

Performance and driving the 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback:

Having the more powerful, turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 180 horsepower pulling you along is pretty sweet. It’s the second most powerful version of this engine, giving up 20 horsepower to the Civic Si. Making 177 lb-ft of torque, this peppy powertrain can net up to 36 mpg combined. It drops a bit (to 34 mpg combined) with the manual transmission, but the overall result is still impressive.

I spent my time driving the CVT, and it was a great ride.

Overall body control and noise is impressive on nearly every road surface. Despite the thin rubber on those 18-inch wheels, it never felt harsh in the cockpit. In fact, as much as I hate to say it – it truly feels like a smaller Honda Accord. I know, everybody is saying that, but it’s because it’s true. This new Civic simply feels like a demure Honda Accord.

That’s good news, because the Accord is an outstanding driver in all trims. This 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback embodies much of the charastics of the bigger car, and maintains its playful spirit as well. Part of that has to do with the multilink rear suspension, which is tuned with a balance in mind.

While the 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback doesn’t grip like a Honda Civic Si – it has great control on corners. Unlike the Si, which is a tad harsh on certain roads, the Civic Sport Touring Hatchback is much more compliant.

There is one issue: passing power. Sure, there’s plenty of grunt for a small car in most situations; however, passing power takes time. You have to crank it up to 6,000 rpm for maximum horsepower, and the CVT takes a moment to chanel that power up front. It’s not slow, but it can feel sluggish to some.

Compared with the 2022 Honda Civic Si:

Yes, the Civic Si will drive circles around the Sport Touring – but it’s not as composed as an overall daily driver. Also, the Sport Touring gives you a much more comfortable interior, nicer amenities and a quieter commute. It’s more efficient, and it’s still fun to drive.

Hell, I never thought I would say that driving a CVT could be fun – but, here we are.

There is one HUGE point that the 2022 Honda Civic Sport Touring Hatchback shows off that makes it super compelling – its utility. Having 24.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat, the Honda Civic Hatchback opens up to an impressive 46.2 cu-ft of space when needed. That just a hair under the VW GTI and Ford EcoSport’s capacity. On top of that, (when equipped with a manual) it’s the closest thing you can get to a Civic Si hatchback.

Bottom line (save some $$):

With its fun, and buttoned-down driving character – mixed in with its excellent utility, this Honda comfortable interior this is a fine car for $31,000. Do yourself a favor and look at the EX-L if you want the CVT, 180 hp engine, and need to save a few grand. If you don’t mind less power, but still want the hatchback and a manual, you can look at the Sport with its 158 hp engine. You will save a LOT of money.

Or… you can spend about the same amount of money and get a loaded 2022 Honda Civic Si and have a ridiculous amount of fun, with a bit less utility.

Man…if only Honda made a hatchback version of a Civic Si!