After seeing those leaked patent images and a namesake prototype, the car’s design is not much of a secret anymore, so the camouflage is to some extent futile. What’s actually more interesting is underneath the hood which as you can see wasn’t properly closed on this disguised prototype. That is because there were some wires sticking out from the upper area of the hood and these were connected to measurement equipment in the cabin. The driver had access to the engine's parameters using a laptop linked to the testing hardware.
Chances are the prototype was powered by Honda’s turbocharged, three-cylinder 1.0-liter gasoline engine which will make its debut on a production car. It will be offered on the Euro-spec Civic Hatchback alongside the turbo 1.5-liter already available in the U.S.-spec Civic Sedan and the familiar turbodiesel 1.6-liter i-DTEC.
Details about the three-banger’s exact output have not been released by Honda, but Autocar had the opportunity to test a prototype with the 1.0-liter unit a while ago. At that point, the engine was rated at 127 horsepower (94 kilowatts) and 148 pound-feet (200 newton meters) of torque delivered through a six-speed manual transmission.
While those numbers weren't final, the production-ready 2017 Civic Hatchback equipped with this engine will likely have a very similar output. Honda has already announced this version of the new Euro Civic will have CO2 emissions of only 99 g/km, so it will be able to return 66 mpg U.K. (55 mpg U.S. or 4.2 liters / 100 km).
Set to be assembled in Swindon, U.K., the Euro-bound 2017 Honda Civic Hatchback is slated to go on sale early next year. It won’t be a Euro-only affair, as Honda has plans to sell the model in North America where it will be offered exclusively with the turbo 1.5-liter hooked up to a six-speed manual or a “sporty” continuously variable transmission.
An official reveal of the 2017 Civic Hatchback will take place later this year.