It’s that time of year when the morning commute coincides with orange sunrises as we slip towards the winter months. As pretty as they may be, the shallow glare of the sun can actually be quite a dangerous thing ñ even the most flexible of sun visors are often unable to help. Thankfully our Honda Civic has several active safety features to prevent close encounters with other traffic.
A suite of safety kit comes under the banner of ëHonda Sensingí, which is standard on every Civic trim level. Lane Keeping Assist can prevent you from straying from your lane by sounding an alert and even adding steering inputs to keep you within the lines. Adaptive Cruise Control not only makes lengthy journeys that bit easier, but also maintains a safe distance from the car ahead. However, the real lifesaver in those aforementioned sun-glaring scenarios is the Collision Mitigation Braking System. Using this technology, the Civic can alert you to obstructions in the road and apply the brakes if you donít take action. In slow or stop-start traffic this can be the difference between having to swap insurance details and not. Of course, as a driver you should never totally rely upon these systems, but together they go a long way to help prevent those avoidable prangs.
With the changing of the seasons, weíre also going through that transitional phase of weather where it can be a blue-sky-day one moment, but raining cats and dogs the next. Our SR trim Civic is prepared for such eventualities thanks to its automatic wipers and headlights. It sounds like a simple thing to get right these days, but truth be told, some manufacturerís cars struggle. Hyperactive wipers and lazy adaptive full beams are all too common, but Iím pleased to report that the Honda can be trusted to do its job without any manual interference.
In other Civic news, a recent update to iPhone software allows the 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system to display Google Maps when connected via Apple CarPlay. This is nothing new for those of you who have an Android device, but it has been something many Apple users have been waiting a long time for. Apple Maps is very pretty, and the Civicís Garmin navigation system is great at avoiding traffic, but Google Maps has more data at its disposal to make decisions, and offers more functionality. As this feature was added in a routine update on my phone, it was a pleasant surprise to find the new icon when I started the car one morning.
Our ëlady in red’ has been on the Diesel Car fleet for a few months now and has constantly proven itself as a frugal and practical family car. Its sharp looks havenít worn off either with the darker nights, making the Civicís ëboomerangí tail lights even more distinctive. I still catch the neighbours twitching the curtains for a glimpse of the carís origami-like creases.
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Date arrived 20th June 2018
Fuel economy 80.7mpg (combined) 56.2mpg (on test)
The distinctive lighting signature looks great on dark nights.
Fathoming the unergonomic radio menus is still like solving the Da Vinci Code.