Interior

There are two things anyone who steps into a Civic will immediately notice: The dashboard is very deep, punctuated by a radical two-tiered display that's straight out of a Star Trek shuttle pod. Then there's the interior quality. Nothing in its class has materials that are as nice to the touch, nor do any feel as solid as the Civic's do. The Nissan Sentra may come close on this front, but I'll take the Civic's friendly ergonomics and numerous bins any day.

My tester came equipped with leather, which was quite nice — though not on par with the new Accord or Odyssey's — but that's not a feature I think many economy car shoppers would necessarily choose. It brings the price of an EX model from $18,710 to $19,910. However, the one feature I don't like in the Civic is the standard cloth material on the seats. It's a "fuzzy" material, which to me seems like it won't wear well and is prone to generating static shocks. That said, fellow Cars.com reviewer Kelsey Mays prefers that material to other types of cloth. To each his own.

The seats themselves were both supportive and comfortable, and the cabin feels spacious for front passengers. There was plenty of footroom in back, but headroom was tight. Despite the specs indicating otherwise, the legroom was much better than in the new Ford Focus sedan I recently tested.

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