2002 Honda Civic Si -- Introduction

10/26/2001 2:25:56 PM

The legendary "Si" badge returns to the Honda Civic lineup for 2002 with the introduction of an all-new, European-bred, Honda Civic Si Hatchback. It is designed to set class standards for all-around performance, style, safety and functionality, combined with Honda's industry leading DQR - dependability, quality and reliability.

Under the hood is a high-output, double-overhead-cam, 2.0-liter engine that uses Honda's new i-VTEC (the "i" stands for "intelligent") system to deliver 160 horsepower and 132 lbs-ft of torque (the most ever for a Civic). This new engine system builds upon Honda's patented and race-bred Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control (VTEC) technology with the addition of a new VTC (Variable Timing Control) system that continually adjusts the intake camshaft phase according to engine speed and load. The result is outstanding performance across a broad and more accessible power range, class-leading fuel efficiency, and exceptionally clean operation as the i-VTEC system helps the 2002 Civic Si meet strict 2004 Low Emissions Vehicle II (LEV II) standards.

Making the most of the Civic Si's powerplant is a close-ratio 5-speed manual transmission. The shifter is mounted "rally style" to the center dashboard, within easy reach of the driver for quick operation.

For driving enthusiasts, the Civic Si features firmer dampers and springs than other Civic models. Front and rear stabilizer bars and larger wheels and tires also enhance the Civic Si's sporty feel. Variable assist Electrical Power Steering (EPS) enhances steering feel and also contributes to improving fuel economy. For enhanced braking performance, the Civic Si is equipped with large-diameter disc brakes at each corner, ABS and electronic brake distribution.

For 2002, the Civic Si returns to its roots with a three-door hatchback configuration that combines compact exterior dimensions with a roomy and versatile interior. A high-curvature rear end maximizes interior space and combines with an easy opening tailgate for easy cargo loading and unloading. In keeping with its sporty demeanor, the Civic Si features such exterior accents as a mesh front grille and a rear roof spoiler. Inside, the Si boasts deeply sculptured performance seats, a 60/40 split folding rear seat (which can be folded down completely to create a flat cargo floor), dramatic black-on-white gauges, a silver central control pod, and a thick three-spoke steering wheel.

The Si's performance heritage dates back to 1984, when Honda released the first Civic S Hatchback. In 1986 the "S" evolved into the Civic Si, with the addition of fuel injection along with added interior features, exterior features and an upgraded suspension. From 1988 to 1991, the Civic Si Hatchback starred in the U.S.'s booming sport-hatchback market. By 1992 the Civic Si was the first North American Honda model to benefit from the introduction of VTEC technology. After a brief hiatus for the Si model, the Civic Si returned in coupe form for the 1999 and 2000 model years.

Concept and Development Targets
Honda's goal in designing the 2002 Civic Si was to return the performance leader to the Civic lineup and respond to the expectations of young, performance-oriented buyers. The resulting 2002 Civic Si is an exclusive model in its own right--a car with distinctive hatchback styling, the i-VETC high-output engine and handling tuned with a decidedly European flavor. At the same time, the Civic Si retains the virtues that all Civics are known for: efficient operation, advanced environmental technology, safety features and value.

Performance ---- Because Honda designed the Civic Si with young buyers in mind, responsiveness and a fun-to-drive feel were of paramount importance. To meet these goals, Honda engineers equipped the Civic Si to deliver all-around class-leading performance and exceptional ride and handling. Highlights include:

  • A new high-output, DOHC, 2.0-liter engine with "intelligent" i-VTEC system
  • 160-horsepower at 6500 rpm and 132 lbs-ft of torque at 5000 rpm (a 20% torque increase compared to the previous Civic Si)
  • Close-ratio, 5-speed manual transmission
  • Rally-style shifter mounted on center instrument panel
  • State-of-the-art Control-Link MacPherson strut front suspension with centralized steering gearbox, allowing longer, high-mounted tie rods for improved toe control
  • Compact, high-performance Reactive Link double-wishbone rear suspension
  • Front and rear stabilizer bars
  • Electrical Power Steering
  • Variable assist steering
  • Large-diameter front and rear disc brakes
  • ABS
  • Electronic Brake Distribution
  • Large-diameter (195/60R15) tires on alloy wheels

Design ---- The three-door hatchback shape of the Si is an entirely new configuration for the seventh-generation Civic. To capture the attention of image-conscious younger buyers, the Civic Si offers a sportier look both inside and out, including:

  • European hatchback styling, including high-curvature rear end and tailgate (for maximum utilization of space and easy cargo loading and unloading)
  • Mesh-type front grille
  • Rear roof spoiler
  • Dual-tipped chrome exhaust
  • Power moonroof
  • Standard sport seats
  • 60/40 split folding rear seats (can be folded down to make fully flat load floor)
  • Contemporary instrument panel with distinctive black-on-white gauges

Safety ---- Safety, of course, is a priority for any new-car buyer, and the Civic Si is equipped with a wide array of state-of-the-art safety technology--including:

  • Advanced, dual-stage front air bags
  • Dual seatbelt pre-tensioners and load limiters for both front-seat passengers
  • Three-point seat belts in all seating positions
  • Available side SRS air bags
  • On vehicles equipped with side air bags, the front passenger's seat has a side air bag cutoff system that will prevent the side air bag from deploying if a child (or a small-statured adult) is leaning into the side air bag deployment path
  • "LATCH" (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) child safety-seat anchors for each rear outboard seating position.
  • Four-star NCAP target
  • Four-star SINCAP target
  • IIHS Offset "Good" rating target (highest possible)

Environment ---- Since the first CVCC model, the Civic has earned a reputation for its fuel efficiency and advanced environmental technology. The 2002 Civic Si is no exception. Highlights include:

  • The cleaner-burning, i-VTEC engine which is expected to meet the 2004 Low Emissions Vehicle II (LEV II) standards
  • 25 percent reduction in NOx
  • Estimated fuel economy ratings of 26/30 mpg city/highway (pending EPA certification)
  • Outstanding recyclability. For instance, all instrument panel parts are made of Olefin, making them completely recyclable

Value ---- Bang for the buck is another Civic hallmark, and here, too, the Civic Si follows in its forebears' footsteps. The Si boasts a comprehensive standard-features list, including:

  • Premium AM/FM audio system and CD player with four high-performance neodymium-magnet speakers and two tweeters
  • Power moonroof
  • Power steering, power windows, power mirrors
  • Alloy wheels
  • Keyless entry system with anti-theft engine immobilizer
  • Intermittent rear wiper/washer
  • High-efficiency air-conditioning system

Comfort ---- The Civic Si hatchback provides excellent roominess and utility as Honda engineers focused on maximizing interior space and accessibility. Highlights include:

  • Comfortable and supportive sport seats
  • 60/40 split rear seats that fold forward and down quickly with a single pull lever--creating a flat cargo floor that easily accommodates luggage and even larger items such as golf bags
  • A low cargo-floor height for easy loading and unloading
  • Increased rear-seat headroom and legroom

"Man Maximum/Machine Minimum" Philosophy
The 2002 Civic Si embraces Honda's longstanding "Man Maximum/Machine Minimum" design philosophy. In essence, it means maximizing the total environment for the driver and passengers, while minimizing the space needed for mechanical components. The goal is to increase the driver's ability to enjoy the car safely.

The end result is a 2002 Civic Si delivering an intelligent balance, intuitive human fit, dynamic and modern styling, and appeals to drivers everywhere.

Improving Quality 10 Times
"Improving Quality 10 Times" is the goal behind a development and manufacturing campaign code-named "Q10." This philosophy is reflected in every aspect of the 2002 Civic Si--from the initial designs through to the final manufacturing process. Some of the areas where the Q10 initiative is most evident on the Civic Si are in the areas of increased body accuracy--making significant improvements in the fit and finish of panels and interior components.

In short, the 2002 Civic Si represents an all-around package for today's young buyers looking for a fun-to-drive, fully equipped, small performance car. It offers exceptional performance, style, versatility, safety and the dependability, quality and reliability Honda products are known for.

Features List

2002 Honda Civic Si Hatchback Includes:

  • 2.0-liter, 16-valve, DOHC four-cylinder engine with i-VTEC
  • Computer-controlled Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI)
  • Direct Ignition System
  • 110,000-mile tune-up intervals
  • Four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock braking system (ABS)
  • Electronic brake distribution
  • Electrical power steering
  • Variable assist rack and pinion steering
  • Front and rear stabilizer bars
  • Lightweight alloy wheels
  • Keyless entry system with theft-deterrent engine-immobilizer system
  • Cruise control
  • Power windows, power door locks, power mirrors
  • High-capacity air-conditioning system
  • 6-speaker (two are tweeters) AM/FM high-power stereo with clock and CD player
  • Advanced dual air bags (SRS) with dual inflators
  • Available side SRS air bags
  • Dual front seat belt pre-tensioners
  • 3-point seat belts at all seating positions
  • LATCH system (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren)
  • 2-speed intermittent windshield wipers
  • Rear window intermittent wiper/washer
  • Front cup holders
  • 60/40 split fold-down rear seatback
  • Remote fuel filler door release
  • Tachometer
  • Maintenance interval indicator
  • Low-fuel indicator light
  • Low-oil pressure indicator light
  • Headlights-on reminder
  • Trunk-open indicator light
  • Front door pockets and storage bins
  • Driver's footrest
  • Coin box
  • Dual vanity mirrors
  • Front chin spoiler
  • Rear deck spoiler

Development Process
The new 2002 Civic Si Hatchback will be built exclusively at the new Honda of the U.K. Manufacturing plant in Swindon, England and is the latest model to arise from Honda's Global Product Supply Network. This unique supply system makes efficient use of Honda's global auto plants and increases the speed, efficiency, and flexibility of the company's manufacturing operations.

In 1994, to enhance the complementary relationships between different regions, Honda created four regional operations based in the Americas, Europe, Asia/Oceania, and Japan. In 2000, Honda further divided the Americas into two regions, North and South America. The region compliments and supports the capabilities of the others. For example, American Honda has exported more than 600,000 U.S.-assembled automobiles to more than 90 countries (including Japan and European nations) since 1987. In this way, Honda's local plants serve not only as regional supply bases, but as part of a true global network.

A major challenge in implementing this global manufacturing strategy was ensuring a consistent level of quality around the world. To meet this challenge, Honda established the New Model Center in Tochigi, Japan. Here, Honda engineers were able to gather to provide critical input on product development and to make suggestions on how best to build new automobiles. The result is improved quality and efficiency--both at the highly automated assembly plants in Japan, the U.S., and Europe, and at smaller, less automated plants in developing nations.

The 2002 Civic Si Hatchback, like its Civic Coupe and Civic Sedan siblings, is to be built using Honda's New Manufacturing System. The system employs highly flexible welding robots and assembly-line layouts to reduce investment in new tooling, while shortening the time needed for new model development and manufacturing ramp up.

This flexible system will also allow Honda to adapt more quickly to changes in the marketplace, with the production capability to add or change products in a short period of time--with minimal new investment.

Honda has also applied a new development system called Digital Manufacturing Circle (DMC). This new automobile development system uses state-of-the-art Information Technology systems to increase the speed and efficiency of the new model development process. The DMC system connects all the processes of Honda R&D, Honda Manufacturing, and Honda suppliers by computer network, allowing them to share the same computer-digitized drawings to develop new product designs through digital simulation. As a result, Honda is able to develop new vehicles in a shorter time using fewer costly prototype models and parts.

Export of the 2002 Honda Civic Hatchback from England to Japan will begin this fall (2001). Export to North America (including Canada) will begin in early 2002. Annual North American sales volume is estimated at about 12,000 units. The Swindon plant also will provide 2002 CR-V models for the North American market.