A symbol of affordable performance, the new Civic Si is here to deliver more bang for the buck despite the fact it's slightly less powerful than its predecessor. The turbocharged 1.5-liter gasoline engine now produces 200 horsepower, which means it's down by five ponies compared to the model it replaces. However, the horsepower number doesn't tell the whole story as the engineers have found other ways to improve the sporty sedan.
For example, the 192 pound-feet (260 Newton-meters) of torque you got in the previous-generation Civic Si now kicks in 300 rpm earlier, at 1,800 rpm, which should translate into more spirited acceleration off the line. At the other end of the rpm scale, Honda says it has tweaked the engine to deliver more power than before between the 6,000 rpm peak and the 6,500 rpm redline.
As previously announced, the 2022 Civic Si is a manual-only affair by featuring an upgraded six-speed gearbox with rev-matching tech borrowed from the Type R. The engineers have revised the transmission to deliver 10 percent shorter throws and a better shift feel, enhanced by the aluminum shift knob with leather inspired by the one you'll find in the Type R.
For the latest iteration of its VW Jetta GLI rival, Honda has developed a new dual exhaust system with 27 percent better exhaust flow than the regular Civic Touring. In addition, the single-mass flywheel is now 26 percent lighter than the single-mass unit of the previous Civic Si and the engine delivers a quicker throttle response thanks to a 30 percent decrease in the flywheel's inertia.
Gallery: 2022 Honda Civic Si
A limited-slip differential is part of the standard equipment, as is the multi-link rear suspension. As you would expect, the Si's brakes are bigger than those of the regular Civic, with 12.3-inch rotors at the front axle (+1.2 inches) and 11.1-inch rotors at the rear (+0.9 inches). Those 18-inch wheels with a 10-spoke design and a matte black finish are exclusive to the spicy version and come wrapped in 235/40 R18 all-season performance tires or optional summer rubber. The Blazing Orange Pearl paint we first saw in November 2020 on the Civic Prototype is also only for the Si.
The exterior styling brings a more aggressive yet subtle evolution of the regular model, with a trunk lid spoiler finished in glossy black to complement the dark finish of the side mirror caps and window surrounds. An underbody spoiler at the front denotes it's the Si, along with the red badge on the front grille taken from the 2022 Civic Hatchback.
The interior has been largely carried over from the regular 2022 Civic Sedan, but with a multitude of red accents, aluminum pedals, and a pair of sporty seats with integrated headrests and improved lateral support. Much like the standard compact sedan, it gets a seven-inch digital driver's display and a nine-inch touchscreen with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. As standard, the Si features a 12-speaker Bose sound system with a subwoofer.
With Honda axing the coupe body style for the Civic's eleventh generation, there's not going to be another two-door Si. The sedan will go on sale before the end of the year and will be followed by the manual-only Type R hatchback in 2022. Also next year, we're going to see the much-hyped Acura Integra as a five-door sporty liftback with three pedals and presumably related in terms of underpinnings to one of the hotter Civics.