The Honda Civic has ruled the compact sedan world, together with the Toyota Corolla, for many years. The Corolla was always the plain, reliable, slightly dull one, while Honda's cars were more rewarding to drive, offered clever features inside, and generally were younger and more fun.
But in the face of economic upheaval, surging competition from the Hyundai Elantra, Ford Focus, and Chevrolet Cruze, and an effort to keep costs down while boosting gas mileage, Honda may be stumbling a bit.
The 2012 Honda Civic, the first redesign in six years, remains comfortable and spacious, and all models have higher gas mileage ratings than their predecessors.
Honda gets a huge dollop of green points for offering three separate high efficiency models. First, there's the Civic HF, a gasoline model that boosts the the 28 mpg city, 39 mpg highway ratings of the standard gas Civic to 29 mpg city, 41 mpg highway--for a combined 33-mpg rating. Both cars, incidentally, return higher ratings than Honda's...
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