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2009 Honda Civic Hybrid Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2009 Honda Civic Hybrid was new.


Interior: 7.9

As in previous years, the auto press highlights the five-seat Civic Hybrid's outstanding quality and numerous standard features. But reviewers also note the car is not the most comfortable small car available.

  • "Simply stated, the new Civic is loaded and ready to rock." -- The Washington Post
  • "The switchgear is tight and clean. The seam tolerances are tick tight. The two-tone seating surfaces (the upholstery and hard-shell plastic are contrasting colors) look great. The Q-factor of this interior is through the roof." -- Los Angeles Times
  • "The Honda Civic continues to be one of the best small cars in terms of room, interior storage and refinement. Its controls are easy to operate and materials are of high quality." -- Edmunds
  • "New cloth materials and patterns on seats, door linings and armrests have been updated and look sharp." -- Automobile Magazine

Front Seats

Most say the Civic Hybrid's front seats provide enough support and comfort for such a small car, but they advise against frequent road trips given the lack of thigh support.

  • "The front seats are comfortable and provide abundant back support, but their short bottoms aren't as strong on thigh support. Seat cushioning is adequate, but a little more might be welcome. Backseat space rivals that of some midsize models." -- Cars.com
  • "The bottom seat cushion doesn't tilt independently of the seat back, so those with longer legs must either jack up the entire seat for thigh support, which reduces headroom, or make do with less-than-adequate thigh support." -- Forbes
  • "What isn't so great from behind the wheel is the backrest of the front seats. This time around, Honda has decided not to offer adjustable lumbar support; the result feels as if the small of your back were resting on a Duraflame log. It's uncomfortable to the point of being a deal breaker." -- Car and Driver
  • "The manual height adjustment on the driver's seat pivots on front hinges, forcing drivers to choose between seat height and legroom." -- Edmunds

Rear Seats

Most reviewers find the 2009 Civic Hybrid's back row is neither spacious nor comfortable.

  • "Foot space under the front buckets is tight on the instep." -- Car and Driver
  • "The rear seat is high and comfortable, yet foot space is tight under the low front seat." -- Motor Trend
  • "Seat cushioning is adequate, but a little more might be welcome." -- Cars.com
  • "The rear seat is surprisingly roomy, offering more leg- and head room than is found in some larger cars." -- The Auto Channel

Interior Features

Like most Hondas, the 2009 Civic Hybrid comes fully loaded, and adds leather and heated seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and heated side mirrors as an option for the new model year. Writers have good impressions of the quality and quantity of features, but have strong sentiments concerning the Civic's two-tiered instrument panel.

  • "Honda did a little more work on the Civic's interior, when compared with its minimal sheetmetal changes, notably in the form of more upscale trim options and additional tech goodies." -- Motor Trend
  • "All Civic interiors now feature a more high-tech dashboard where the gauges in front of the driver are split between a curved arrangement up near the windshield and a lower group located in the traditional spot behind the steering wheel. ... this arrangement, combined with a compact steering wheel, contributed to my initial reaction that I was in front of a video game, rather than driving a car." -- MSN
  • "Though some drivers find the two-tier display distracting, others say it makes quick visual checks of speed easier." -- Edmunds


Reviewers have a favorable opinion of the Civic Hybrid's Satellite-Linked Navigation System, which comes with Bluetooth connectivity for 2009.

Please also note that portable navigation systems are offered with similar features to Honda's in-car system, and offer more flexibility for directions in and out of the car. Check out our GPS reviews and buying guide for information on the best portable navigation units.

  • "The optional voice-controlled navigation system is the highlight of the cabin tech in the Civic...and we continue to enjoy using it. We've seen better graphics and resolution (generally in much more expensive cars), but the voice recognition system and the overall ease of use are excellent." -- CNET
  • "While the navigation system may not be as refined as Mercedes', it does offer wonderful search features. It points drivers to nearby ATMs, restaurants, gas stations, and other handy services, and ranks them according to how close they are to your current position." -- BusinessWeek
  • "Getting the navigation system also gives you the ability to play music stored on a variety of digital media cards." -- Kelley Blue Book


With only 10.4 cubic feet for cargo, the Civic Hybrid is not a great hauler.

  • "The hybrid's 10.4-cubic-foot trunk is slightly smaller than the regular sedan's 12.0-cubic-foot cargo area. Unlike the regular Civic sedan, a 60/40 split, folding rear seat -- which expands the effective cargo area -- isn't offered." -- Cars.com

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