Took one for a drive today, just the high/low points tossed in here for good measure:
- new dash layout is awesome and gives the feel of much more space and provides viewable area in front of the car. The 'inline' appearance of it becomes almost holographic because the depth of field of two different gauge pods.
-engine hp upgrade is a nice plus, doesen't require nearly as much wringing now and almost has lowend (for a 4, its pretty nice). This is also much nicer because its quiet.
-suspension is a far cry from the Civics of old. Though still no double wishbone, the handling is tack sharp.
-4 wheel discs finally too, and they are silky and burly all at the same time = ask the dealer to take that protective plastic off the seats before you test drive it or you'll regret it
-Spacious interior! i never thought I'd say this about a Civic, but whatever kind of ergo engineering they did to it, getting in that and my Moms accord (coupe) is very similar. Before you could tell the difference, and you're still getting down lower - but the room is there inside the car. Also has a pretty big trunk and a backseat that I could ride to NJ in if I had to. Though I do not think your shocks would appreciate it.
-location of the shifter/ebrake is pretty cool now as well. No reaching involved and it felt like the 5spd had a really short throw. Unfortunately its still FWD so it has linkages and bushings that give a little rubbery feel, but the snickety-ness is still there.
-also has that 40mpg rating now too
-drivers side window has express upanddown, and the drivers side switch has knurls on it so you can ID it from the others with ease.
-engine bay is now smaller, doesen't look too too bad - but good luck reaching anywhere behind the block. The backside of the head is now inline with the edge of the bodywork /windshield..sorta like your favorite astrovan.
Though as usual everything else is pretty easy to get to and despite the weird crunch that occured, it is somewhat 'spacious' in and around the components, you at least have enough room to get your hands where they need to be for belts,fluids,filters and such.
-oval: some of the switches and junk are now oval...not all, just some - but they look weird to me.
-the trunk badging and the word civic look weird to me too.
-it doesn't have a bed like the ridgeline, so I cannot buy it.
On the plus side, ridgelines are invoice now, and there are some to-dealer incentives