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Avg. Price Paid:$7,395 - $14,753
Original MSRP: $14,810 - $29,500
MPG: 26 City / 34 Hwy
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2008 Honda Civic Interior

This interior review was written when the 2008 Honda Civic was new.

Reviews applaud the quality of the 2008 Civic's passenger cabin, which features materials some might consider upscale for this class.   The Civic places among the top cars in its class in our Interior rankings -- most of its significant competition, in fact, comes from its smaller corporate cousin, the 2008 Honda Fit.  Both are well-appointed with excellent fit and finish, with the Civic featuring a more conventional layout but interior styling many regard as futuristic, while the Fit offers a more conventional interior appearance combined with a unique seat configuration that allows for more versatile use as a hauler.  Detailed pictures of the 2008 Honda Civic's passenger cabin can be found in our photo gallery.

  • "Civic is more comfortable than most rivals, despite being only as big inside as it absolutely needs to be." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The Honda Civic continues to be one of the best small cars in terms of room, interior storage and refinement. Its controls are easy to operate and materials are of high quality." -- Edmunds
  • "Third, fourth and fifth passengers would be happier in the sedan's backseat than in the coupe's, because the sedan features about four more inches of legroom and two more inches of headroom than the cozy coupe." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Great seats and an instrument panel out of Blade Runner." -- Los Angeles Times

Front Seats

Most reviews find the cabin of the 2008 Civic a comfortable place to ride.  In a class where many manufacturers skimp on building supportive seats, the Civic's seats are often labeled comfortable.

  • "The front seats are comfortable and provide abundant back support, but their short bottoms aren't as strong on thigh support. Seat cushioning is adequate, but a little more might be welcome. Backseat space rivals that of some midsize models." -- Cars.com
  • "Front seats are comfortable but skewed dimensionally in favor of shorter drivers. The bottom seat cushion doesn't tilt independently of the seat back, so those with longer legs must either jack up the entire seat for thigh support, which reduces headroom, or make do with less-than-adequate thigh support." -- Forbes
  • "The driver's seat is comfortable and supportive for backs young and old" -- Washington Post

Rear Seats

Some reviewers find the rear seats cramped, but others disagree, and small back seats are the rule in this class. A few reviews do note the lack of a split-folding rear seat, a strange omission since the 60/40 split has become standard on most competitors.

  • "The rear seat is low, typical for a Honda, and the foot space under the front buckets is tight on the instep." -- Car and Driver
  • "The rear seat is high and comfortable, yet foot space is tight under the low front seat." -- Motor Trend
  • "The back seat, in particular, is worthy of note. There's plenty of head and knee room for six-footers--even the one who must sit in the center position. Though the cushion there is less comfortable than those in the outboard positions, the floor is flat so the seating is reasonably comfortable. That's rare in an era when most cars disrespect the center-rear passenger." -- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
  • Disagreeing on interior room, a Detroit News tester wrote, "It is hard to consider buying this car when the primary driver is six feet tall and finds his legs bent, even with the seat all the way back."

Interior Features

The interior of the 2008 Honda Civic is well-appointed for this class, and test drivers consistently praise its list of standard equipment.  It is visually dominated by an unusually configured instrument cluster.  While critical reception of the layout was mixed in 2006, by now most reviews agree that Honda succeeded with this configuration.  Entertainment and navigation features are often cited as giving the car a more upscale feel than much of its competition.

Although the Civic is offered with the well-liked Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System, you might want more flexibility with your navigation system. Check out our GPS reviews and buying guide for insight into the best portable navigation system for your small car.

  • "The Civic's dash features an unusual layout. An analog tachometer is in the traditional location but the digital speedometer and gas gauge are at the base of the windshield. Though some drivers find the two-tier display distracting, others say it makes quick visual checks of speed easier" -- Edmunds
  • "The design works to good overall effect. The speedometer's digits are in driver's line of sight for viewing without taking focus off road." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The cockpit effect isn't just noticeable -- it makes you feel like you're piloting a video game." -- The Car Connection
  • "Oddly, the Civic's steering-wheel rim feels rubbery and almost cheap, which is out of character for Honda." -- Cars.com
  • "The car is missing a good stereo, rear-center armrest and cupholders, and a split rear seat; it only folds down as one piece. The driver gets no steering-wheel controls in the LX, but does get the only telescoping steering wheel [in the class], an auto-up driver's window (also found in the Lancer), cool, easy-to-read analog tach/digital speedometer combo, and the best-feeling switchgear in the pop-price segment." -- Motor Trend

Cargo

2008 Civic sedans provide 12.0 cubic feet of cargo room, while the coupe has 11.5 cubic feet.  The size is adequate for most reviewers, but not exceptional.  Some reviews make note of the abundance of interior storage bins and pockets, a detail many manufacturers overlook in this segment. 

  • "A wide, tall trunk with a generous opening and low liftover," but "the lid hinges intrude on the cargo area."-- Consumer Guide
  • "There are storage areas galore. The console has an armrest-covered bin, two adjustable cup holders, a cell-phone tray and two cubbies for miscellaneous items. Large pockets adorn all four doors, but there are no cup holders for the back seat occupants." -- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
  • "You can flip down the rear seatbacks to enlarge the cargo area via a big pass-through opening between the trunk and rear-seat area." -- MSN
Review Last Updated: 2/17/09

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