Honda hopes its new diesel engine will help it revive sales of its latest Civic

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 18, 2011

Honda looks forward to the revival of sales for its newest Civic in Europe with the introduction of a smaller diesel engine. The current Civic, which is not the company's bestselling model in the region any longer, is only offered in a single diesel, which is a 2.2-liter unit that is too huge for customers who prefer 1.5-liter or 1.6-liter diesel engines.

The company has created a 1.6-liter diesel to be offered in the European Civic by late next year. Alessandro Skerl, who oversees Honda's Italian unit, stated that the new 1.6-liter diesel engine will be essential in a market such as Italy where most of the buyers of compact vehicles prefer diesels.

Skerl further stated that vehicles with small diesel engines of 1.6-liter displacement or less comprise at least 50 percent of compact segment sales. Additionally, he disclosed that the 1.6-liter diesel is anticipated to cover 65 percent of Civic sales. The company is postponing the launch of the Civic due to shortages of components brought about by the floods in Thailand. Honda had planned to begin the rollout of the ninth-generation Civic in Germany and the U.K. in late January.

Shipments are now anticipated to start by the end of February. The Civic debuts with 1.8-liter and 1.4-liter gasoline engines and a 2.2-liter diesel unit. The diesel is its most eco-friendly engine, with power boosted by 10hp to 150hp while carbon dioxide emissions are lessened by 20 percent to 110g/km.

The European Civic still has the fuel tank under the front seat to enhance cargo space and roominess. Meanwhile, the U.S. and Japanese Civics have the fuel tank placed between the trunk and the back seat. [source: Autonews]

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