Civic duty calls!

The Honda Civic offers a fascinating insight into the development of a modern car.

Its progression can be broken down into aspects of the old car that needed to be significantly improved, those that needed to be retained, and those that just needed a slight modification.

This ninth-generation Civic still offering a bold and confident image but one now backed up with better build, massively superior efficiency and improved packaging.

If we take the 2.0-litre BMW engine fitted to the MINI Cooper SD as an example of a benchmark of excellence in this sector, with 143bhp and 124g/km of carbon dioxide emission, then the Honda certainly betters it.

Emitting just 110g/km of CO2 while producing a powerful 148bhp in a bigger car with far better torque is quite some achievement.

Full UK specifications, model details and pricing have yet to be revealed, so we can’t offer firm details just yet.

The eighth generation model garnered an enviable reputation for reliability which in turn helped bolster residual values.

It’s hard to see the ninth generation car deviating too significantly from that particular script.

It has taken some confidence to dive in with a replacement car before its predecessor even started to look a bit frayed, but Honda has done just that and looks to reap the rewards.

We might just be looking at the new class leader.