It was possible to get into a Sport-trimmed Honda Civic before the 2019 model year, but you’d have to agree to the hatchback bodystyle first. Not everyone gazed upon that particular Civic’s styling with admiration and desire.
Not a problem. If buyers don’t want a five-door Sport, we’ll give it to ’em in coupe and sedan form, Honda figured. And so it is for 2019. However, checking the box for this slightly more aggressive treatment fails to bring aboard one of the hatchback version’s best attributes.
That, of course, would be the turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder found in the hatchback Civic â€” and more specifically, the added power found under the Sport model’s hood. Sport-trimmed hatch models generate 180 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque (in manual transmission guise), a 6 hp and 10 lb-ft improvement over the base LX.
The hatch is still the go-to for those wanting more power but unwilling to spend what it takes to get into an Si. In sedan and coupe form, the Sport keeps its 2.0-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder, though opting for Honda’s typically excellent six-speed manual over the CVT makes the most of that 158 hp and 138 lb-ft.
It looks like there’s extra power on tap, and that’s really the main appeal of any model’s Sport trim. On this one, a thin, geometric center exhaust mimics the Si, while blacked-out chrome trim up front adds an extra level of menace. A decklid spoiler makes its appearance, but only on the sedan. As well, the lower front fascia and rear bumpers of both bodystyles see trim-specific design changes. Ten-spoke, 18-inch alloys come standard and carry over the murdered-out nighttime motif, while foglights help guide the way forward.
In terms of tech, Sport models gain 7-inch Display Audio with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Honda’s quick to mention the presence of a volume knob. For all 2019 models, the Honda Sensing suite of driver-assist features comes standard, bringing lane-keeping, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control to the safety mix.
What does it cost to leapfrog the LX? The automaker’s keeping mum until closer to the on-sale date, though it’s worth noting the 2018 hatchback Sport model adds $1,600 to the LX’s MSRP. The added tech surely portends a modest increase in base sticker price.