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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My passion is also my business, as I am with the Toronto based Hav-A-Kar Auto Group. I sell or lease any make of car, van or truck available in Canada. My interest in all things "car" has helped me with my many clients in Ontario over the past 20+ years. Please give me the opportunity to assist you.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Sept 17: It's about time, Honda!

 Well, it sure is about time. The dear old Honda Civic has been redesigned for 2016. Sure that's news, since this is such an important car for Honda, but the important news is that, the Civic will now be one car, one design for everyone. None of the Europe gets one, we in North America got another one, which is not nearly as exciting. Think I'm making this up? If you've read this blog before, you know how I've ranted about the beautiful Civics cruising the highways and biways of Europe. To refresh your memory.......

This little beauty has been the European Civic for the past, approximately, five years. Two or four doors, this one was stunning either way (for a Civic, that is). Ours has been like your best friend's plain sister. Nice to be with behind closed doors, but nothing to brag about in public. Now the Euro version was the opposite, that friend's sister was a stunner and one who you'd love to show off to your other (less fortunate) friends. And the Type R was not only great looking, but promiscuous as well (to carry on with the sister metaphor). Now we are also getting the powerhouse R, as well the thoroughly and beautifully designed new and now, universal model.

Remember how it all got started, those so may years ago? History time, of course, so here is the pre-Civic Honda that set the stage for the sales steamroller that, the Civic would become.......

This is the little 600 (well, weren't they all little?), intro'd at a time when Honda was known big time for their motorcycles. Not much chance that a cycle manufacturer could put together a good car, was there? This 600 was Honda's effort immediately before dropping the 1973 Civic on us........

Time to dredge out the friend's sister analogy again? I think not. Nothing special here, except a small Japanese car that was very good, but rusted prematurely, but, hey, didn't everything back in the day? Innocuous start for the mega car company that Honda would become.

Although the Civic has been Canad'a best selling car for a handful of years (17 to be exact), Honda got complacent, and rested on their laurels too much. The result? Still number one, but cars like the very stylish Hyundai Elantra were giving it a run for its money. Time for a re-think.

And this rethink was unveiled today........

Looks big, but designs can be deceiving. Of course, it is bigger than the original of its big brother Accord, but then, everything has increased in size over the past forty years. Either way you look at it, this is a great looking car and one has to wonder, if it will steal sales from the Accord? I believe it certainly will win back those folks who were wooed by the cool looking Elantra.

Well, it sure is about time, Honda. Good to see that you can change your conservative ways, at least as far as North America is concerned. Thank you for this "gift" - better late than never!

Until next time......


  1. One has to admit that Honda has done a remarkable job in its development. It started (as far as cars are concerned) with the Civic, and when Civic owners were ready to move, up, Honda had the Accord. Marketing genius, however logical, as well. The Americans were somewhat slow to react and it cost them a major share in auto sales.

    Years before that, the British learned a good lesson in the motorcycle industry. In 1937 Triumph came out with the Speed Twin, a revolutionary motorcycle that took the world by storm. Then Triumph made the biggest mistake of its life by promoting its designer to management. He got so full of his own success that he couldn't see the invasion coming. The next designer in line saw the Japanese 'Tsunami' and actually had a line of motorcycles designed and ready to face off against the Japanese. His designs were promptly dismissed with: 'When the riders of Japanese motorcycles are ready to move up, they'll buy ours.' Big mistake that all but ruined the British motorcycle industry.

    Back in North America, auto makers almost did the same thing. But there were also a lot of other factors that affected the outcome too. Having worked for a GM dealer, I was privy to some information which has in the past sparked some major debates. So I'll sign off by saying that Honda is doing the right thing by narrowing down (and standardizing) its products. I wish it luck...

  2. George, good history lesson. Complacency has never worked well. I've also never figured out why some of the Japanese (Honda) and European (Ford, GM) brands send us a lesser model and keep the good stuff at home. Nice to see that changing in all those cases.