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Awards 2008 - Lower Medium: Honda Civic

Date: 22 January 2008

Honda Civic

Honda's Civic has always been reliable and cost-effective to run, but the new Civic has taken that base and added a large dose of user-chooser popularity, thanks mainly for its sporty styling.

With Honda sitting neatly between the high-volume brands and the established prestige brands, the Civic has been taking sales from both.

In 2007, the car's first full year of sales, Honda sold more than 16,000 to fleet with a further 28,000 to retail buyers. The past year also saw the launch of the three-door version of the car, including the Type-R hot hatch.

A limited range of diesel engines - just one - hasn't diminished the car's popularity, perhaps because it's such a fine unit. In the Civic, the refined diesel returns well over 50mpg on the combined cycle and has plenty of power.

The result is that, whenever we've put it up against its rivals on cost, it romps home as the winner.

The icing on the cake for the Civic is the Hybrid version, more about which in the Green Car of the Year category.