Honda Refutes Consumer Reports Review of 2012 Civic

Honda Refutes Consumer Reports Review of 2012 Civic

Being the savvy multinational corporation Honda is, it has to take its knocks with some tact. And with its reputation marred by Consumer Reports’ dragging of the 2012 Honda Civic through the muck, it’s no surprise that Honda has issued a statement claiming that they “fundamentally disagree” with the magazine’s review.

Both Honda and Consumer Reports, of course, have valuable reputations in the minds of consumers. And so, “they are definitely finding fault with someone they have shown a lot of love in the past,” said John Mendel, executive vice president of sales for Honda North America.

Mendel picks apart the CR review and finds that “Consumer Reports’ own testing found that Civic’s smooth and efficient powertrain returned “…an impressive 30 mpg overall on regular fuel and 47 mpg on the highway. Only one other compact car the magazine tested did better.” In addition, “as noted in Consumer Reports findings, the Civic excels with a long list of important safety features that are standard on all trim levels.”

Rival publication Motor Trend, “which knows a thing or two about ride and handling,” picked Civic 2nd among eight compact cars in a recent comparison test. This, Mendel says, is proof that the Civic is still a player in the already-competitive small car market. “However, we disagree with Motor Trend as well—we think there is no better compact car than Civic.” Hey now, don’t get greedy!

Lastly, Mendel notes that CR only reviewed one model of the Civic, the LX sedan, while there are six different models across three trim levels. While this could be construed as a fair point, we doubt that some of the Civic’s greater shortcomings could be drastically improved with the ticking of an options box.

Click here to read AutoGuide’s 2012 Honda Civic review or hit the jump to watch the video:

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  • like it

    I’ve owned my 2012 Civic for 2 months now (3,500 miles). I really like it, not sure why all the negativity. I’ve never owned a Honda before, but have been very pleased with performance and gas mileage (one of the main reasons I bought it). I drove the competition prior to purchase and the Honda seemed so much better to me. The Elantra felt unrefined and lacking smoothness. The Cruze was very nice, but a little smaller back seat room.

    I’m averaging 37 MPG with mostly highway, but I don’t baby it either. I would highly recommend this car!

  • Danny

    I think CR, like most of the automotive press, was underwhelmed by the new Civic. Couple of things CR didn’t take into account….great resale value and overall long-term reliability. All of Civic’s competitors, except for the Toyota Corolla, lack these 2 important factors for buying a new car. As much as I like the new Hyundai Elantra, where will it be in 5-7 years? A Honda Civic will give me that peace of mind.

  • Robert

    The Civic is falling behind the competition in terms of technologies etc. Hyundai /Kia/Ford have made a lot of progress. Even the APA (the automobile protection association in Canada) has good things to say about the Hyundai cars(they are usually pro Japaneses). I must agree with Danny, resale value is still playing in favor of Honda/Toyota. The resale value is something people should consider when buying a new car. Never the less, I do hope Honda wakes up!

  • jake

    i cant believe honda is that naive to think there still in the same market as other manufatures. they have fallin behind and its a sad day when i see a brand new honda and think it looks like a kia

  • MX5Bob

    Honda has rebutted CR’s review, but I wouldn’t say they refuted it. It’s hardly a surprise that they the Civic is the best compact.

  • mrjim

    Well, what really matters isn;t what Honda or CR thinks. It’s what compact sedan buyers think. Over 100 of them conducted a detailed evaluation of the 2012 Civic against the new Focus, Elantra, Cruze, Jetta and 6 other competitors in a recent test by The result? Civic is very good, but not the best. Check it out…

  • Darren

    @jake, wake up, the Honda looks like a kia? I agree the Elantra is appealing but I have checked a few Hyundai dealerships and they cannot give me the deal Honda has. And they are not giving me a quality, reliable car that Honda can. I picked up my Civic last night and i’m very very impressed. I know that in 7 years time, this car will still be solid. Doesn’t look like a kia at all!

  • Mark Perreault

    Honda needs a shakeup, complacency has set in, while the Korean’s have jumped into bed with an unabashed avant-garde stylist, Honda has remained at best stale. Kia/Hyundai have taken a Risk, Risky yes, swinging for the bleacher’s , yes! The Koreans are doing something right. Bring a Gti ,battlling, Hatch back …Back!. I don’t mean your Secretary’s Hybrid, but something a gen Y would love to hop in and hop up, and give a little xitment . Pardon my grammar and spelling,but I hope you give the car buying consumer something to take notice of. If this were a matter of shame, the designer, would be sharpening his sword for his hari-kari.

  • Roger Ferrara

    Learned of the Honda Civic EX back in 2003.Decided to lease and was so pleased with reliability and resale that I decided to lease the 2008.Ditto on reliability again that I decided to extend the lease for an additional two years.
    I have based my last two decisions on consumer reports findings and hope that the 2013 will come back favorable with CR.Reliability was the number one factor in my decision to lease the 2003 and 2008 Civic.I am disturbed that CR made the decision and reported what they did on the 2012.If they do I would purchase a Honda Civic again.
    Honda executives giving their views on the 2012 will not convince me.What owners of the 2012 say will.I’m hoping that future comments on how the 2012 performs will be positive.Proof that the the integrity,reliability and handling of the 2013 has been restored as evidenced by CR will be my deciding factor as to whether I stay loyal to Honda.The only facts I can go by is how my 2003 and 2008 performed.And they were superb just as CR said they were.A MESSAGE TO THE EXECS,”RELIABILITY,RELIABILITY,RELLIABILITY.

  • Phil

    i owned a 1998, 2003, 2006, 2011 civic coupe and now PROUD owner of a 2012 civic coupe, CR’s review is unjustified in my opinion, the new civic is, true, only a mild evolution from the outgoing civic, but is at least no worse, and far better in my opinion. i find the suspension both sportier and more comfortable, its loaded with new features, it looks nice on the outside, and if the interior could use richer material, it looks nice and remains functional. Is the 2012 civic perfect? …but it remains a good compact car, its reliability will be that of honda as it uses known and proven powertrain and i just don’t know what to think of CR who rates dated cars like the nissan sentra or kia forte better ??? if honda wanna kick it up a noche for 2013, good! but i lost faith in CR …not in honda

  • Rob

    I just bought the 2012 Civic EX after test driving the Mazda 3 and the Kia Forte 4d sedan.

    Both the Mazda and Kia had such dreadfully dark (I mean cave-dark) interiors – and in the Kia – an equally dreadful dashboard with red displays making it look garish. The Kia’s exterior was beautiful and I really hated walking off the dealer lot without buying it.

    The Civic EX had a very tasteful and cheerful interior with light grey / beige interior color scheme that really turned the sale for me. While the 2 tier dash is a bit odd – it was not depressing like the Kia. Dark colors DO effect one’s mood – and the superior handling / acceleration of the Mazda just couldn’t compensate for me. I found the Civics acceleration and handling to be almost as good – and certainly good enough for me – and even fun.

    If Mazda and Kia can’t brighten up that interior – I don’t think I’ll ever see one parked outside my house.


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