Honda gives hints about new Civic
It will be the ninth generation of the Civic and will go on sale in spring 2011.
The new Civic will be fighting for a spot in what has become an increasingly competitive compact-car market. Where once the Civic had to worry about its main rival the Toyota Corolla, now there are many new entrants into the segment, including competitive small cars from the American automakers.
Ford Motor Co. is launching its new-generation Ford Focus, which has done well overseas, in markets where the small-car segment is a larger percentage of sales than in the United States. General Motors Co. is selling its new Chevrolet Cruze, a compact that has received initial good reviews from the auto press. Additionally, South Korean manufacturer Hyundai is about to launch a new version of its Elantra. The car is bigger than previous generations but can get up to 40 miles per gallon.
At the same time that Honda is bringing out a new-generation Civic in America, it has decided to eliminate the model in its home Japanese market, citing the popularity of even smaller cars.
Honda also has decided to stop selling its Element small sport-utility vehicle in the United States at the end of the model year.
-- Jerry Hirsch
Illustration: New Honda Civic. Credit: American Honda Motor Co.