The Honda Civic Tourer has distinctive sharp looks and provides excellent utility.

Much of this flexibility is offered by its class-leading boot space with magic seats for maximum loading capacity.

In terms of appearance, the Swindon-built vehicle is one of the best-looking estates on the market, boasting curves and lines that don't always go hand in hand with a big luggage area at the back. The Tourer’s long, sleek profile is very easy on the eye.

While its looks may be quite radical, it is still designed with a good deal of common sense. The Tourer provides 624 litres of boot space with the seats up, and with the seats down this rises to an impressive 1,668 litres.

What's more, because the Civic’s fuel tank is under the front seats rather than the rears, the seats fold almost perfectly flat in an instant.

During a long distance family outing, my children were clearly more than happy with the space in the back of the vehicle.

The ride is also very smooth, with the Adaptive Damper System doing a good job of preventing bounce while absorbing bumps. The overall experience is enhanced by the very comfortable, soft and wide seats.

When switched into Comfort mode, even Yorkshire's bumpier rural roads are dealt with very capably. When the roads open up, Dynamic mode means the Civic can be driven with more vigour.

In the cabin, there's a rather nice two-tiered effect when it comes to the displays, with a digital display at the top and the analogue instruments below. There’s also an information screen up the top while the infotainment system sits in the middle.

There are also plenty of connections for all sorts of devices and no shortage of cubbyholes and storage solutions in the cabin, too, including a big central storage bin that doubles as the location for the multiple media input ports and one of the two 12-volt power sockets that should let the kids charge a compatible device on the move.

The EX-Plus version, tested here, has a wide range of features included as standard, such as keyless entry and electrically adjustable lumbar and side supports.

Another nice, yet subtle touch is the interior blue ambient lighting in the front door linings.

In the engine room, the diesel option has a combined figure of 72.4mpg, which is clearly a tempter for anyone looking to save on fuel costs.

A range of other engine options are also available on the Civic Tourer, including numerous 1.8-litre petrol models, starting at just over £20,000 for the i-VTEC S manual and rising to £27,690 for the i-VTEC EX Plus auto.

The petrol engine is smoother and quieter than the gutsier and more frugal diesel.

The Civic Tourer offers almost everything a great everyday car needs, combining style with practicality.


Model: Honda Civic Tourer 1.6-i DTEC EX Plus manual

Price: £27,960 as tested

Tax band: B

Performance: Top speed 121mph, 0-62mph in 10.5 seconds

Engine: 1.6-litre diesel unit producing 119bhp and 221lb.ft of torque

Transmission: Six-speed manual gearbox driving the front wheels

Economy: 72.4mpg combined

CO2 Rating: 103g/km of CO2

Will's ratings