NOTE: CarAdvice editorial photos used as none were provided by the owner.
With a minor facelift from its previous "bold statement" restructure in 2016, the new Civic sedan still has the same number of standard models (five), starting from the base VTi all the way to the top VTi-LX. So what changed in the MY19 facelift Civic?
Here, I'm talking about the mid-spec VTi-L, which came in at around $31,795 drive away in 2019, adding $600 extra for metallic paint. One thing you will notice was that all Civic sedan models came with the black front grille as standard, except for the base VTi - compared to the previous Civic where it was only available on the RS model. To me, it gave the styling a bit more sportiness and looked better when compared the chrome grille.
The major feature that became standard on this model was Honda Sensing, previously only available on the flagship VTi-LX. This feature offered AEB, FCW, LDW, LKAS, ACC and high beam support assist. This was a big tick for me and for Honda, with most buyers wanting/needing the active safety tech to now be basically standard on all models. This was still not the case with Honda at the time, but it improved with the VTi-L, RS and VTi-LX all receiving that active safety tech standard.
The cloth seats are really comfortable and give good support. The VTi-L also came with a leather wrapped steering wheel. It has your usual front/rear sensors, reverse camera, 17-inch alloy wheels and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but one of my favourite features is Lane Watch. This is a camera under your left mirror which will display on the touch screen when you turn on your left indicator, which is really handy as you get to see what's on your blind side without having to turn your eyes off the road. Look, it may not be blind-spot monitoring, but it is still very handy.
Power from the Civic VTi-L comes from the usual Honda 1.5-litre turbo petrol engine, which is put together with a CVT transmission. CVT's aren't everyone's favourites, but I think it actually works pretty well with this engine. It drives smoothly and just seems to work well. With 127kW and 220Nm of torque, it definitely gets the job done for you and has plenty of power, but with the turbo it may get a bit noisy if you really put your foot down. Fuel consumption has risen from 6.0 litres per 100 kilometres to 6.3L/100km which isn't a deal breaker for me, as it's still pretty good for the engine size and the car itself. The steering overall is fairly good, but at low speeds it can feel a little bit heavy, especially going around corners or reverse parking.
The Apple CarPlay and Android Auto works well and I didn't have any complications when using it. I love the digital speedo in the car; it's clear and bright and seems to be very accurate when giving you readings. The reverse camera isn't the best I've seen and used, but it's not horrible.
Now with the complications; the MY19 Civic has had a couple of removals from some models. In this VTi-L spec, you'll no longer get DAB radio and paddle shifters, which for me really aren't deal breakers. Plus you're getting Honda Sensing which is great, but it would have been nice to keep those other items while adding Honda Sensing, rather than have to compromise those to add the safety into this model. You'll also lack USB charging and air vents in the rear as well. Look, the Civic isn't the biggest sedan out there, but it should've had at least one of those two options.
The MY19 Civic was backed by a standard 5 year, unlimited kilometre warranty, which was pretty solid although there was no roadside assistance. You also got Tailored Servicing which is similar to capped-price servicing, which was also an added bonus.
Overall the Civic Sedan MY19 needs to definitely be on your shortlist if you're looking for a sedan, great safety tech, followed with a great interior and exterior styling and very good technology.