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The Honda Civic has been around for a long time—over 50 years at this point. Throughout its history, its almost always been a high-quality commuter car that offered a more gratifying driving experience than competitors like the Toyota Corolla. Though, like any car, the Civic has imperfections, the 11th generation is one of the best Civics yet. Good Housekeeping has noticed and awarded the 2023 Honda Civic the “Best Compact Car.” Let’s find out what makes the 2023 Civic so darn good

The 2023 Honda Civic punches above its weight class

A bright red 2023 Honda Civic compact sedan model speeding past a building entrance with a blurred background
2023 Honda Civic Sedan | American Honda Motor Co., Inc.

The Honda Civic isn’t ashamed to be an economy car, but in 2023 the expectations for a compact sedan are much higher. With consumer interest in sedans and hatchbacks waning and a new Corolla hitting the market in 2019, Honda had to bring a killer product to compete.

The 11th-generation Civic, now in its second year, definitely achieves killer product status. Even in the $23,450 LX trim, the Civic has excellent safety features like Honda’s collision mitigation braking system, road departure mitigation system, multi-angle rearview camera, traffic sign recognition, and even lane-keeping assist. If you step up to the EX, you get a blind spot monitoring system, and if you spring for the Touring trim, it includes parking sensors and cross-traffic alert.

Not only does the Civic have tons of standard safety tech, but it’s got a surprisingly big interior, reports Car and Driver. In the front, you get 37.7 inches of headroom and 42.3 inches of legroom, while in the back, 37.1 and 37.4, respectively. That’s 2.5 inches more rear legroom than a 2023 Toyota Corolla! Legroom aside, the interior is a genuinely lovely place to be. The quality of the materials and a very clean layout make for a very Audi-like interior.

Fuel economy is also a plus with Honda’s smallest sedan. The LX and Sport trims, with their 2.0L four-cylinder, get 31 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway, while the 1.5L turbocharged engine in the EX and Touring is rated at an astonishing 33 city mpg and 42 highway mpg. To top it all off, the 2023 Honda Civic comes standard with all the features consumers expect in a modern car. Apple Carplay and Android Auto are standard, along with an excellent 7-inch touchscreen and adaptive cruise control. 

The Civic is worth every penny

The 2023 Honda Civic LX is just over $23k and comes with an impressive host of features. The Sport trim might be worth the additional $1,600 just for the much improved eight-speaker sound system and nice cosmetic touches like the leather-wrapped steering wheel and beautiful 18-inch black alloy wheels.

The EX trim is probably the sweet spot for $26,450. The most important addition is the 180 hp 1.5L turbocharged engine which is an absolute peach. It revs quickly and has some real grunt, especially in the mid-range. If the engine doesn’t convince you to spend $3k over the LX, the EX trim includes heated seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a power moonroof.

Spending $30,050 on the Touring trim might be more than you need, but it does come with many goodies, including leather seats, a 12-speaker Bose sound system, fog lights, and an upgraded 9-inch touchscreen. The extra goodies are lovely, but it’s hard to beat the value of the EX.

The Honda Civic was in good company on Good Housekeeping’s list

Good Housekeeping awarded its 25 best family vehicles by category. Honda appeared a few times, with the Accord winning “Best Sedan” and the CR-V winning “Best Compact SUV.” Honda is killing it right now, especially regarding interior quality—very hard to beat in its price range.

The Toyota Crown took the “Best Full-Size Sedan” award with its unique design and insane fuel economy. On the luxury side of things, the Audi S3 took the “Best Luxury Compact Sedan” category, taking the interior quality of the Civic up a notch and adding some proper performance with its 2.0L engine and snappy seven-speed DCT—basically a fancy Golf R sedan. The Genesis G80 also appeared alongside Honda adjacent to the Accord in the “Best Luxury Sedan” slot. Like Honda, the G80 punches hard for the price and shows Genesis knows how to play the luxury game. 

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