The biggest news for the 2014 Honda Civic is not the coupe's swollen lower face, as it turns out. It's that Honda has finally ditched the optional five-speed auto in the beleaguered compact coupe and sedan, replacing it with a CVT. That's one thing it has in common with the new WRX.


Honda had a Civic Coupe on the stand that most people were using to lean on while they watched the FCEV Concept unveil. Most of the changes to the Civic are under the skin. There's that CVT, which Honda calls a "sporty CVT" and says is derived from the one in most 4-cylinder Accords. Sporty it is not, but it does gain two mpg in the city and one in the combined estimate, bringing the rating to 30/33/39 for self-shifting Civics.

Other changes are more limited to top-trim EX and EX-L cars. The LaneWatch blind spot camera mounted in the right-side mirror is now standard, as is a proximity key. There's also a new radio you can touch, pinch and grab. That doesn't sound nice.


Oh, and the Civic Natural Gas gets an optional leather interior. You know people managing government fleets love to have easy-to-wipe seats.

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