Lucky you, America. You get to buy Honda Civic Natural Gas anywhere in the country now, from sea to shining sea. You get to fuel up with America’s extensive homegrown reserves, without the inevitable fearmongering that comes from overseas fuel. You get to cut down on carbon dioxide emissions (for our amber waves of grain, purple mountain majesties, etc). And to top it off, the car is even built in America—Indiana, to be specific. If this isn’t the rolling equivalent of a Toby Keith song, I don’t know what is.
This inadvertent patriotism comes at a price—the Honda Civic NG starts at $26,155, or a substantial chunk of change for environmental friendliness. That’s a lot of price to pay for a car that needs compressed natural gas fueling stations, which are still few and far between. Honda’s Satellite-Linked Navigation System has a database full of refueling stations, but it’s a $1500 option.
Regardless, even the addition of a 3600-psi fuel tank behind the rear wheels, the Civic NG retains all of its practicality. The regular car’s 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine has been modified to handle natural gas. Mileage ticks in at 27/38 mpg for city and highway, which can be achieved through the Civic’s ECON mode that yells at you (through colored lights, anyway) if you’re driving too wastefully. Bluetooth and USB connectivity are standard, and steering wheel controls add to the convenience factor.
The Civic NG is now available across 38 states, when it was once limited to New York, California, Utah, and Oklahoma—and Honda hopes that this availability will increase awareness of natural gas vehicles. All 200 dealerships that will carry the Civic NG will also be able to service it.