The Honda Civic has been the best selling car in its class in the United States for three years in a row now. To keep that streak going forward, Honda is refreshing the Civic Hatchback for 2020. The compact Honda hatch will be getting exterior and interior styling updates, new technology, and, much to the approval of enthusiasts, wider availability of the Civic's six-speed manual transmission.
On the outside, the 2020 Civic gets a new front bumper with revised fog light housings and a body-color crossbar, blackout headlamps, and an updated version of Honda's signature “wing” grille. The rear fascia gets a similar treatment with new lower bumper openings and body-color crossbar. Sport Touring models get new LED headlights with wider and longer light beams, and all models offer new alloy wheel designs, in your choice of black or dark gray.
Depending on the trim level, interior changes include different treatments to the dashboard, with Sport models getting a geometrical pattern, LX and EX models a painted pattern, and the upscale EX-L and Sport Touring trims get brushed black. An eight-way power driver's seat is now standard on EX Civics, along with leather wrapping for the steering wheel and shift knob. Sport models get their own unique upholstery and embossed dash trim similar to that on the current Civic Sedan Sport models. Sport Touring models now come with Honda's HomeLink, as well as the option to shift gears yourself with a six-speed manual transmission, for the first time on that trim level, in addition to the CVT automatic.
The Civic Hatchback Sport—arguably the gem of the lineup at the most tempting price of $23,680 for the manual, including destination fees—gets an upgraded 7 inch touchscreen with an eight-speaker audio system, up from four drivers, along with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, Smart Start pushbutton ignition, and Smart Entry keyless entry. Owners of late-model Hondas, like yours truly, will be interested to see if the entry system is smart enough to let you lock a running car from the outside, instead of just beeping at you, letting everyone around you know what you're trying to do.
All models get better sound insulation, too.
The factory is slated to close within the next couple of years but for the time being, all 2020 Honda Civic Hatchbacks for the U.S. market will be made at Honda's Swindon, UK assembly plant. The new three-doors go on sale tomorrow, starting at $22,580, including delivery charges. Or, you can wait for a super-clean turn-of-the-century Civic Si to go up for sale again and pay something similar.