Monday, August 25, 2008

2008 Civic EX follow up

Well, my family and I have just returned from a little road trip during which I was able to get some more serious seat time in our new Civic EX Coupe. If you read my initial impressions of the car, you know that my only gripe with the car was somewhat vague steering and soft suspension. I was most concerned with the car's nervous feel. On the highway the car darts all over and that continued to an annoying degree on this road trip that consisted of about 1000 miles of driving.

That nervous feel was my only real complaint about the car during the trip. I did however find the reason for that condition which I'll tell you about in a minute. Here is a hint, it's something I should have checked earlier and it was not anything mechanically wrong with the car. Aside from that, the car performed flawlessly and was fairly comfortable for such a small car. My son didn't complain about the cramped back seat during the trip so I assume it was bearable.

The best part of the trip was the gas mileage. The Civic is rated at 36mpg highway and we managed to average over 39mpg for the two tanks we used on the trip. Pretty impressive. Most of that was highway with some local driving and a fair bit of stop and go traffic. I was in no way trying to squeeze the most mileage out of it. If I had, I may have hit 40mpg.

Now about that nervous highway handling. I decided not to give the car a once over prior to departing for our road trip, checking the fluids and tire pressures, since it's a brand new car. Bad move. I assumed everything was as it should be from the dealer. Well, you know what they say about assuming. I should have known better than to assume that the dealership checked everything before handing the car over to us. It turns out that the tire pressures were all off from what they should be. Three of the four tires were over 39psi when the recommended pressure is 32psi. The fourth tire, the left front, was only at 31psi. I think that right there should explain the darty, nervous feel. I've corrected that and it should make a big difference. I'll see the next time I get to drive it.

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