Well it's almost an year now so a quick update on what has happened. Ive done 12500 kms at this point and the car has had two oil changes as well as a wheel alignment done by now. By this point the civic is as common as the flu now.
The most asked question still, and at10,000+ kms we are well past engine break in etc and we can have a fair idea on actual fuel figures. The 12,500 Km mostly consists City driving, a bit of expressway, and the once a month outstation trip. Overall fuel consumption is about 10KMPL. If further elaborated on average City fuel consumption stands around 8 -9 Kmpl. In the suburbs and outstations it will do anywhere between 10-12. Anomalies being about 15 (6L/100Km) on expressways and on smooth sailing road trips like Trinco.
The Ground Clearance Issue
Honestly, I was worried about this at the start but it doesnt seem to be a big issue. One thing I noticed is that the suspension is much firmer on the Civic hence the lowering of the car even with a load is much less. On one instance I took a slightly elevated railway crossing at a bit of speed (my bad) I thought I may have sightly nicked the Muffler but I really could not see any damage at all and I wasnt sure I heard a slight sound. But as @Magnum (who drives a ground huggin' HiAce) says over time you get used to be aware of your cars height and drive accordingly. The Wide wheels also help on pothole ridden roads as they hardly fall into them...The small unpaved road leading to my house is in a horrible condition (due to a combination of Trucks hauling stuff to the neighbours house under construction+ the never-ending rain ) there are deep nasty ruts that my other ride ( EP71 Starlet) with its tiny wheels fall into but is never a problem for the Civic.
Are the gizmos giving trouble?
The automatic braking might end up being a life saver but on day to day drives it can be bothersome. The whole thing is over dramatic and the braking is sudden and violent. When a biker suddenly moves in and the auto break kicks in its sudden, violent and introduces the risk of Madushani who was tailgating you in her Honda Dio ramming you from behind.
Proximity Sensors are actually helpful specially when parking (the car is wider than your Aqua/Fit etc ) there is though a mild annoyance that has happened to me half a dozen times in an entire year. The front proximity sensor goes bonkers and starts beeping in heavy rain even when theres nothing in front. A forum member suggested that a misaligned License plate could be the culprit - I haven't investigated that yet since I've not seen this behaviour lately.
The Rain Sensing Wipers tend to over react sometimes working full speed when theres actually not much rain. All these of course can be manually changed.
Automatic Stop Start might not be a good idea for our local traffic and some users complain of the 12V battery prematurely dying. Remember this is no hybrid so the entire stop start cycle is handled by the battery alone ... Also it can be frustrating when your engine stops and you get green in heavy city traffic. I usually turn this off.
Adaptive Cruise control and Lane Keep Assist work like a charm. The sensors detect vehicles moving into your lane as well.
The motion sensor inside the car will detect movement inside the car when its locked and will start to create a racket - the idea behind this is to prevent locking in a kid or a pet. Almost every Civic user has had the surprise of the alarm going off due to a couple of flies getting trapped in the car. This also can be turned off.
I've seen some people assume the car to be slow due to the tiny engine and turbo lag but actually I feel the CVT is the biggest disappointment but in reality I'd settle for the slightly lethargic CVT than getting continuous DCT issues down the line. To have some fun turn Eco Mode off and switch to Sports mode - you can use the paddle shifters but to be honest the paddle shifters are more or less a simulation...CVT and paddle shifters are really not an ideal combo. Another thing I usually do on a cold start is to leave the engine running for a bit (2+ minutes) before actually moving. Do not rev too hard initially.
The handling is really nice - the car is made for open roads and long road trips. I drive on E03 regularly and enjoy taking the bends - the car feels really solid and planted. Braking is good. I've seen videos of folk test the cars limits by driving 200+ km/h, braking at high speed etc (mostly on E03) its dangerous and illegal.
Nothing much actually all I've done so far :
*Alloygators (19K at the Meguiars place )
* Nano coating (45K )
* Transparent protective film on the Door steps
Overall Verdict :
A year of trouble free happy motoring. Yes this is no hybrid and requires 95Oct. But thats a small trade off for a rather complete car for a sub 6Mill budget(SR). The car is a bit wide for a hatch (probably in Mazda 6 territory) so you are better off avoiding those mysterious little by-roads google maps suggest. This is no Wagon R .The car will not double up as an SUV so if you regularly travel on some remote jungle path this is not the car for you. If you live in a narrow tuk tuk lane and drive 20Km in heavy traffic you are going to appreciate the legroom and seat position but not getting to enjoy the car that much. The car is at home on the open roads and highways. A slightly wide, attention seeking drama queen thats quite easy to live with.