The overall ride of the Civic IMA was smooth, the suspension coped well with uneven road surfaces cosseting the occupants.
How It Drove - Ride and Handling
The overall ride of the Civic IMA was smooth, the suspension coped well with uneven road surfaces cosseting the occupants. The electric power steering was a bit on the light side although at higher speeds it did weight up but lacked real feedback. On the plus side electric power steering draws less engine power reducing fuel consumption and It made light work of town driving particularly parking.
Saving the environment doesn't mean skimping on safety - the Civic IMA features Anti-lock brakes (ABS), Electric Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Emergency Brake Assist (EBA), front ventilated disc brakes and rear disc brakes as standard. The front and rear spoilers also improve the car's aerodynamics reducing wind noise inside further improving fuel efficiency.
Ease of Use
The Honda Civic IMA is no different to drive than any saloon car except that you will make less visits to the petrol station. The cabin is uncluttered, ergonomically laid out and visibility is excellent all round.
In answer to the main question people have asked about the car - No you do not have to charge the battery overnight by plugging it into the mains. Just fill it with unleaded petrol and the Civic IMA recharges itself on the move when necessary - Its as simple as that. The instrument panel is innovative and informative - and an indicator flashes to advise you when to change up or down a gear for optimum fuel efficiency. There is also a dial which indicates whether the electric motor is charging or assisting the engine which lights up a stunning shade of deep blue.
The climate controlled air conditioning was very efficient and had an economy mode for further fuel savings. The windscreen wipers were quiet and cleaned the whole of the windscreen effectively.
The Civic IMA doesn't compromise on space and even though the battery pack sits behind the rear seat it still has a spacious boot with 341 litres of space. There is a remote boot release button inside the car or you can use the key to access the boot. However, it would be helpful to have a boot release on the key fob for ease of access. However, if you should overflow the boot a lightweight aluminium roof rack or a top box is available as a cost option.
Honda Civic Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Honda Civic IMA Executive|
|Colour||Satin Silver Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||12.8 seconds|
|Top Speed||111 mph|
|Fuel Type||Petrol - Unleaded|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||65.7 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-year/90,000 mile (whichever comes first) mechanical warranty|
3-year paint surface warranty
6-year rust through warranty
8-year/100,000 mile warranty for the IMA components
|Price (when tested on the 24/02/04)||£ 15,000|