2012 Honda Civic Euro-spec: first official photos released

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 12, 2011

Honda released today the first photos of the 2012 Civic Euro-spec, showing a clean and dynamic exterior design as well as a high quality interior. According to Honda, the 2012 Civic is inspired by a “blended wing body aeroplane in which the fuselage and wings blend into a single body for superior aerodynamic performance”.

The new 2012 Honda Civic promises to provide a more refined and quieter driving experience, ensuring comfortable journeys on any road condition. The development team has worked diligently to sharpen every detail of the vehicle’s build, design and aerodynamics in order to optimize the interior refinement in the new model.

The engineers have ensured that that the new Civic is suitable on various road conditions by testing it in Europe. In addition, they made good use of Honda’s anechoic (echo-free) chamber in its Swindon R&D facility in order to fine-tune the cabin insulation. In the anechoic chamber, the automaker was able to modify the construction and design of the roof lining as well as how it interacts with the bodywork.

The aerodynamic efficiency of the new Civic also played a vital role in maximizing its refinement.

Several development team members tapped on their Formula One experience in order to help produce a vehicle that integrates excellent high-speed stability and a low coefficient of drag. The meticulous work on the Honda wind tunnel has enhanced performance, produced an exceptionally quiet interior and reduced fuel consumption.

According to Kazuo Sunaoshi, Development Leader – Chassis, improvement on the refinement and noise of the new Civic was not just done through one method, but an accumulation of various minute details. He added that his major challenge was to achieve the same vibration levels and noise as those of its European competitors, a goal that he was able to accomplish.

When the 2012 Honda Civic was first conceptualized, the designers toyed with the idea of having the 'Lean Energetic' design, which takes into account how environmentally conscious the world is today and also considers the car brand’s vitality. That direction helped the designers come up with the 'Clean-Dynamic' concept.

The design team had many different inspirations to get their ideas from, including the blended body airplane, where you have the wings and fuselage seamlessly blended in a single body helping it have great aerodynamics while also remaining very quiet and comfortable. They also took inspiration from the track outfits and swimwear worn by the best athletes.

Looking at the first few sketches, you could see the elegantly flowing designs that take its cue from the blended body airplane. The blended body concept was designed by University of Cambridge engineers. There were also elements that took its cue from low resistance swimwear with only subtle borderlines seen on the car’s surfaces. The fender and bumper lines are seamlessly blended. The new design was very different from the previous designs and gave the new Honda Civic a more intelligent image, rather than just hinting at the engine power and strength.

These design inspirations are used time and again during the entire design process, and have been used as a benchmark for other design elements. The team also has to strike a balance between design and functionality, while trying to work out a clean design with a dynamic look and a premium feel, as well as pragmatism in every step.

The exterior looks

The design team behind the 2012 Honda Civic wanted to preserve the futuristic and athletic elements for the car while also making it more elegant. To do this, the new Civic is 20 millimeters lower and 10 millimeters wider than the previous model and has a design that underlines the car’s athleticism, elegance, and practicality.

With research, the designers have to figure out how the car’s five-door design could still look as sporty as the three-door sports cars. The new car’s cab forward styling is given more emphasis by the lessened use of side glass. The rear window glass area was reduced, giving the new car the appearance of having a smaller cabin than traditional five door cars available to the European C market.

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