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Honda Civic

Honda Civic (Japan, 1972-1979)

Honda > Civic > Gen.1
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History, development and general characteristics

The Honda Civic was premiered in 1973, right when the 1970’s oil crisis struck. This was actually a good timing for the Japanese brand because its rather economic model was much more affordable than its North American rivals, overcoming them on sales success. In fact, the Japanese car industry has a long-set tradition for affordable and economic high quality vehicles.

The first generation Honda Civic had its sole assembly line at Honda’s factory of Suzuka, Japan. The production of this model ceased in 1979 when the revised second generation Civic arrived.



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Engine and Transmission

The first Honda Civic was released with a 1.2-liter engine that could barely produce 50 hp. An optional 1.5-liter powerplant with 53 hp was added to the line-up. The 1.2-liter unit got upgraded in 1974 to 52 hp, while the 1.5-liter version was revised in 1978 to be able to produce 60 hp.

The 1st generation Civic holds a front-mounted engine over a front-wheel drive system. The cars came with standard 4-speed manual transmission, but in 1975 a 5-speed manual unit was also made available. There was also a 2-speed ‘Hondamatic’ automatic transmission.



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Chassis

  Platform (no data)   Suspension Front and rear independent suspension.   Steering Rack-and-pinion.   Brakes Power front disc brakes and rear drums.



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Body and Design

The Honda Civic was released with two available bodywork styles, so that the customer could go for either a 2-door coupe or a 4-door sedan. A 5-door station wagon Civic was added to the range in 1975. And it wasn’t until 1978 that Honda started to include 3- and 5-door hatchbacks in the Civic’s line-up.



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Trivia

The Honda Civic’s introducing adverting campaign in the United States stated «Honda – we make it simple», as a way of showing the public the economic and undemanding cars that the company produced. The brand also liked to state on their ads that the compact-sized Civic was even roomier than many larger cars.



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