"What is that?" It is the question that the road worker asks his colleague when we pass the gentlemen. The question permeates the interior. Grab it 25 years ago this would never have been asked. Because then the Honda Civic of the first generation – facelifted or not – was still part of the fleet in our country. Or of the collective memory. Today everything is different. The Japanese super mini from the XNUMXs has become a rare sight.
The black Honda Civic with the two-speed automatic transmission and the 1200 cc engine makes its kilometers under the smoke of Rolde. Henk Jan Robroch – a Honda fan for decades – is happy with his car, which he bought in 2008 in a fully restored condition. Since the purchase he has driven 9000 kilometers with his Civic.
Highly restored Honda Civic 1200 Hondamatic
The now rare Honda has been superbly restored over the past decade, and it shows in everything. Originally, the Honda Civic was yellow, but anyone looking for remnants of the previous color will be disappointed. Today, the little Japanese wears a black coat, and that color pattern continues inside the excellently preserved Honda. In addition, restored or not, the Civic also shows the high quality standard that Honda used in production in the XNUMXs.
Professional and very solid
To start with the interior: this alone shows how the carmaker screwed together the Honda Civic. As with the restoration, the traditional finish was accompanied by the use of beautiful materials. You feel that base and we perceive it from the front of the interior. It offers a remarkable amount of space for a car of this size. This comes at the expense of space in the back and the volume of the luggage compartment, but that is a concession that many buyers of these cars were happy to make in the XNUMXs.
Interior: great for each other
The relatively small chairs offer an entirely acceptable seat. It offers a good view of the few instruments that the beautiful cockpit of the Honda Civic exhibits. Pleasant: the chrome accents on various panels and the wood strip over the dashboard give a luxurious impression. It's all just fine in the Civic, which also has a radio mounted in it. The hinges and locks are top notch, given the extent to which the doors, the hood and the tailgate can be closed. This is done in a resolute manner and is accompanied by a confidence-inspiring sound. It has to do with the excellent base and the punctual restoration carried out during the previous decade.
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Excellent driving dynamics
The driving dynamics of the Honda Civic can also count on approval. The sturdy chassis feels nice and dynamic, and certainly not stout. The Civic is easy to drive. Another plus of the car is its lively engine, which is also larger in volume than that of several contemporaries in its segment. The block (with 103.000 kilometers of life experience) picks up smoothly in combination with the automatic transmission. This fact provides the little Japanese with spirit and maturity. The combination engine/gearbox therefore ensures fresh performance. With this two-stage composition, the gear shift is flawless and shock-free. It is nice that manual operation is possible with the hydraulic Hondamatic gearbox. Also can 2 stand be switched on to drive away. In that case, switching on and off does not have to be accompanied by manual operation of the poker.
Tribute to a rarity
It is also now clear why the Honda Civic turned out to be a golden opportunity for Honda in the 1237s. The clever combination of compact dimensions, economy of consumption, excellent workmanship and the non-conformist engine volume of XNUMX cc for this class ensured a large fan base. The frequent use for everyday use, the mediocre steel quality (not only for Honda in the XNUMXs) and the late acceptance of Japanese classics have ensured that the Honda Civic one has also become a rarity in classic circles. The answer to the question "What is that† we have given, and we will do so again. It is the Honda Civic of Henk Jan Robroch. And a beautifully restored ode to an excellently finished car, which technically can be counted among the best of its time in its class. A topper!