With the current Civic RS already having received a bold new look and brand new attitude, Honda ‘thought’ they’d make it a little bit psychic too. We went along to check out the new Civic RS ‘Sensing’ and somehow they knew we were coming.
We took a look at the tenth, yes, tenth generation Honda Civic last year and were more than suitably impressed. A racy front with an aggressive styling, coupe body design and reshaped tail end. The interior space is class-leading and modern with the RS model sporting leather seats and contrast stitching. The RS model also came (and still does) with a powerful 1.5L DOHC VTEC turbo engine that delivers 220Nm and 127Kw while offering 6.3L/100km efficiency and 144g/km emissions.
So what of the new ‘Sensing’ model? Well, the handling has been upgraded for starters. For those that are interested, hydraulic bushings and RS stabilisers give you a firmer feel should you wish to be more enthusiastic around the bends. The RS model I played with had the extra sporty exterior, new bumper and grille, a cool body coloured bootlid spoiler and came in a very ‘smart’ Phoenix Orange colour.
On the subject of smart, let’s not forget the Civic’s new advanced sensing suite. In many ways, the list of protective systems that this five-star ANCAP Honda has up its sleeve is vast but with the addition of cameras and radars I wish to point out a few of my faves.
To keep you on the road and between the lines, the Civic RS has a lane and road departure mitigation system. Orange warning signs flash up on the digital instrument cluster informing you of the impending issues. Should you not pay heed, the vehicle’s lane keep assist system will add a few steering wheel inputs, gently moving the car back into lane. Should the Civic sense the possibility of impact, the collision mitigation system will pre-load the brakes and send you a warning alert, visual and audible, then visual, audible plus light brake, and finally, visual, audible plus light brake. Let’s hope you never see, hear or feel any of those.
Features you’ll be happy to utilise though are adaptive cruise control, and low-speed follow. Essentially, the Civic will simply lock onto the car in front and maintain the same distance, even if it slows to a full stop, making heavy traffic a breeze. Auto high beam will keep the way ahead immersed in light but is also courteous to oncoming cars, automatically ‘dipping’ in order not to blind them. Plus, Honda’s smart ‘Lane Watch’ remains. A small camera on the passenger side door mirror displays the entire near side of car (and of any traffic that sits in the left hand lane) on to the infotainment screen; blind spots be gone.
The Honda Civic RS remains a fun car to drive, actually more so thanks to the uprated suspension, but the addition of the easy to use and oh so protective ‘sensing suite’ makes this everyday performance motor nigh on psychic.