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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

All-new Honda Civic bows as ‘prototype’ sedan in North America

Sedan will be joined by a hatch with the Type R confirmed and slated for arrival either next year or in 2022.

UPDATED: A Honda spokesperson has meantime confirmed to Car and Driver that the Civic won’t be offered with all-wheel-drive, therefore quashing rumours made earlier this year of a possible all-paw gripping Type R.

Honda has officially taken the wraps off of the eleventh generation Civic in North America, despite billing it as a prototype.

Unveiled only in sedan guise with a hatchback confirmed for 2021 along with the sporty, North American market exclusive Si as well as the red-hot Type R, the Civic closely derives most of its looks from the Accord with the grille being a clear nod to that used on the Jazz, while the coupe-like rear end bears some resemblance to the previous generation hatch.

Finished in a colour called Solar Flare, the prototype rides on 19-inch black alloys, which will be offered in production form together with the colour, and boasts a prominent lower air intake, L-shaped daytime running diodes integrated into the headlights, front roof pillars moved backwards, mirror relocated closer to the doors and a subtle boot spoiler as well as L-shaped LEDs within the rear light clusters.

Said to have been designed with younger buyers in mind, Honda has only detailed the interior via a single sketch, which nonetheless shows a minimalist design with not only a freestanding touchscreen infotainment system said to measure nine-inches, but an Accord-style centre console, three dials on the facia for the climate control, a digital instrument cluster and a mesh design for the dashboard with the actual air vents being hidden.

Unsurprisingly, no further details regarding spec was made, with Honda merely stating that the Civic will be offered with “multiple new active and passive safety systems”, as well as a revised version of its Sensing suite of driver assistance systems.

As initially reported, details regarding the Civic’s powerunits were not revealed, although reports are it will continue with the outgoing model’s turbocharged 1.5-litre engine, the normally aspirated 1.8 and in the case of the Type R, possibly a hybrid version of the outgoing model’s 2.0-litre turbo. Certain markets will also get a three-cylinder 1.0-litre turbo and a hybrid with a plug-in hybrid likely to join at a later stage. Transmissions will once again consist of a six-speed manual or a CVT.

While still to be confirmed, chances are that the Civic will be making its local market debut sometime next year with the sedan taking preference over the hatchback, which will once again be limited to the Type R. More details, including spec and drivetrain, will be revealed later.

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