Shown here is the first completely uncovered teaser image of the 2012 Honda Civic 5-door Hatchback, which is being built for and marketed exclusively in the European market.
It’s unfortunate that this would be a European-only affair, because already we can tell that the new Honda Civic 5-door hatchback is worlds better looking than the new Civic coupe and sedan that recently debuted on American soil. Judging by the flood of 5-door compacts that have recently debuted in America and have been selling hotly (Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra Touring, Kia Forte, Nissan Juke, VW Jetta Wagon, and the new Subaru Impreza is coming soon), as well as the subcompacts that have recently debuted and have been successful, Honda would certainly have a market in the USA.
The new Civic 5-door is receiving a new focus on refinement and handling, according to Hond, as well as a focus on interior design and refinement. Cargo capacity is expected to continue to lead the class in Europe.
The rear end design appears to have been inspired by the Honda Insight, with the light bar extending all the way across the rear end, as well as the black bar below the center lights. The taillights are equipped standard with LEDs as well, yet another improvement over the American market Civic.
The rear suspension is equipped with a torsion twist beam, which is a downgrade over the American Civic’s suspension, but is said by Honda to be optimal for premium cargo space. Despite the twist beam, Honda says that the handling will improve enough to compete with the best in the class, including the Volkswagen Golf.
This new generation of European Honda Civic will be unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show, which starts tomorrow. No word yet on any performance variants, such as a Type R, but in Europe’s hot hatch market, Honda would be stupid not to offer at least one.
Sales of Honda’s new Vauxhall Astra competitor are expected to begin in early 2012.