£18,790 - £25,405 Price range
42 - 74 MPG
The Honda Civic Tourer is one of the more strikingly styled estate cars around, and it’s also incredibly practical (the boot is huge), efficient and comfortable. Its rivals are the Skoda Octavia Estate, Ford Focus Estate, and the Seat Leon ST.
Prices start from £18,790 and if you buy your new Civic Tourer using carwow you can save £3,350 on average. A new Honda Civic is planned for 2017, so savings for the current model will get bigger as the new model gets closer.
In 2015 it was updated with a new headlight design with integrated LED lights, new bumpers front and rear, and a subtle new look inside, too.
What hasn’t changed is the Civic’s huge boot that has the capacity to see off rivals with litres to spare. Although even the Honda’s load bay is trumped by the boot in the Peugeot 308 SW.
While the Tourer spoils you with boot space, Honda hasn’t gone crazy when it comes to engine choices – there’re only two, a 1.8-litre petrol or a 1.6-litre diesel. It’s the last of those that should prove the more popular choice thanks to its extremely low running costs and meaty power delivery.
There are better cars to drive in the class, but the Civic Tourer isn’t bad in any particular way. The ride is decent but the body control is not. There are optional adaptive dampers with a Sport mode, but the Honda is far from a Ford Focus in terms of driver engagement and fun behind the wheel.
All models come with alloy wheels, electric windows all round and climate control, but get to the bottom of the spec sheet and you’ll also see standard emergency braking. That’s a relative rarity in any class of car and a nice feature to have in a family wagon such as the Civic Tourer.
Cheapest to buy: 1.8-litre S petrol
Cheapest to run: 1.6-litre SE Plus diesel
Fastest model: 1.8-litre SE Plus petrol
Most popular: 1.6-litre SE Plus diesel
Honda likes to align its Civic away from the likes of the Vauxhall Astra and Ford Focus, choosing to go after the classier Volkswagen Golf instead. That’s evident when you sit on the driver’ seat where you are met by high-quality plastics and a dashboard design that mixes sharp edges, straight lines and swoops to decent effect. In 2015 new upholstery, revised door trims and dashboard panels were introduced, but nonetheless the Civic still lacks the appealing simplicity of the Volkswagen Golf’s dashboard.
Honda Civic Tourer boot space
Arguably it’s the boot that matters most here, and while Honda appears to have gone for style over substance on the outside, that couldn’t be further from the truth once you poke your head inside – at 642 litres it’s boot eclipses even the larger Skoda Octavia Estate. There’s also storage below the boot floor. As a result, the Honda features in our Top 10 Biggest Estate Car Boots.
Honda Civic Tourer passenger space
There’s plenty of room for rear passengers, and while some taller testers complain about a lack of headroom in the front, it’s generally comfortable all-round. Reviewers say the seats are firm but supportive and there’s plenty of adjustment for the steering wheel and seat.
Honda has made sure there’s plenty of space to hide bits and bobs – you get two lidded cubbys between the front seats, a glovebox and door bins that can’t quite manage a litre bottle of water.
The Honda Civic isn’t really a car for the driving enthusiast, and in Tourer form this doesn’t change. Light steering is the main culprit, combined with a lack of feel – but at the same time testers say it makes the car “easy and predictable to drive”.
An adaptive rear damping system on higher-end SR and EX models (optional on SE Plus trim) allows you to select the best damper rates for the job at hand, from Normal, Comfort and Dynamic. One or two testers remark that whichever setting you choose, the Civic always remains comfortable. Drivers on a budget will be pleased to hear the car remains comfortable and predictable on cheaper models without the fancy dampers.
Just two power units are available, and only one is really worth buying, according to reviews.
Honda Civic Tourer diesel engines
That engine is Honda’s excellent 1.6-litre i-DTEC diesel – very frugal with fuel economy of 73mpg, largely refined unless you venture towards the red line, and punchy enough to move you down the road with minimum fuss. With a snappy gear change it’s also easy to make the most of. It’s the only engine to get free road tax in the entry level trim which rises to £20 a year if you go for higher-spec models with larger wheels.
Honda Civic Tourer petrol engines
The 1.8-litre i-VTEC petrol also has a good gearbox, but the lack of low-down torque means you’ll be venturing much higher up the rev range to make progress, denting economy. Testers say it’s smooth – and even more refined than the diesel – but even at a grand cheaper, it doesn’t suit the car as well as the diesel. It’s fuel consumption of 45mpg is commendable for a petrol but along with a £145 annual road tax bill, it’s completely overshadowed by the cheaper-to-run diesel.
It's USP is economy. Officially, the i-DTEC will reach 74.3 mpg on the combined cycle, for a tiny car tax bill of £20 a year. It's economical in the real world too - we achieved well over 60 mpg during our drive of the Civic hatchback.
Refinement is generally commended by the experts, though some say it gets a little noisy towards the top of the rev range. Performance is good too - with 118 bhp, it's more powerful than most similarly-engined rivals. Throw in a slick gearbox and strong low-down torque, and the diesel is the pick of the range.
Testers say it enjoys the same short-throw, slick gearchange as the diesel, but you need to work the (admittedly smooth) engine much harder to make progress. It's refined, but you'll need more downchanges to maintain your momentum than you would in the diesel.
Combined economy of 45 mpg is respectable but nothing special, while the optional auto (not yet tested) drags down economy and pushes up CO2 - tax goes from £140 to £175 a year.
Euro NCAP hasn’t tested the crash protection of the Honda Civic Tourer, but since it’s based on the same platform as the Civic hatchback —which has a five star Euro NCAP rating — it should perform well.
Prices for the Civic have always been high compared to the competition, but in 2015 Honda got a shot of realism and slashed them significantly. There are four trim levels and the two cheaper ones can be equipped with sat-nav for £600.
Honda Civic Tourer S
Honda Civic Tourer SE Plus
The SE Plus trim level is the one we’d go for and it builds upon the strong foundation of the S model by adding an infotainment system with a seven-inch touchscreen, a rear parking camera, climate control with separate controls for driver and passenger, cruise control, parking sensors as well as automatic wipers. There really isn’t much more kit you’d ever need.
Honda Civic Tourer SR
If you want a bit of luxury to go along with the huge amounts of standard equipment you can opt for the SR trim which comes with sat-nav, heated front seats and a leather interior.
Honda Civic Tourer EX Plus
The range-topping EX Plus model is now cheaper than it used to be and it comes with a list of features as long as your arm including LED headlights, keyless entry, a seven-inch touchscreen with sat-nav, leather upholstery and blue ambient lighting.
A three-year/90,000-mile warranty could well prove tempting if you rack up huge miles.
If you’re on the hunt for a practical, comfortable and cheap-to-run estate car, then Honda’s Civic Tourer should be near the top of your list – particularly the diesel model.
It does mean spending a little more than you would on some rivals, and the eye-catching styling and unusual interior design could prove a little much for some. But factor in a roomy cabin and typical Honda reliability and there’s plenty of appeal here.
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