1996 Honda Civic LSi 1.6 16v
Reliable engine, but the marque is overrated
I was given this Civic to be a cheap car to run, because Honda's are "really well made".
I think this is a bit of a myth in all honestly. This Civic, on which the Rover 400 is based, is hardly a great example of good build quality.
It is a low mileage car, and although it is ten years old, I know it had been suffering from the problems listed for many years.
Basically from what I have seen, the engine is fantastic. It would take a lot to kill it, but it is clear Honda have used very substandard parts elsewhere.
Bodywork. The door was going rotten from the bottom after about 5 years. This is appalling really, and I am told it is a combination of poor quality steel and poorly designed seals and drainage points.
Suspension also wore quickly. I have had Renaults with over 100,000 miles on their original suspension without any problems, so you would think a 60k mile Civic would be fine - WRONG! The bushes must also be substandard as they are worn.
Lastly the exhaust. Well actually the heat shield. The detailing is poor and the bolts rot away, leaving it hanging down and rattling again the exhaust.
Overall I think Honda's and all Japanese cars are overrated. The parts are much more expensive than european cars, and I can't see why anyone buys them. It is an ugly car, it isn't built that well, and costs a lot to insure.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 9th November, 2007