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  1. #1
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    Thinking about purchasing a used Honda Civic Hybrid

    Hi all,

    I'm new to this forum and this is actually my first posting =). I have been in the market for a car these past few weeks. After doing some research, and reading forums, I have decided on a Honda Civic Hybrid. I just had a few questions I was hoping some of you guys could help me out with.

    1) What are the differences between the 2003, 2004,......2007, 2008.

    2) Are there any differences in performance as well between each model?

    3) Is there any year that stands out in your mind as the best model for the HCH?

    4) I have been reading about the tax rebates for purchasing a hybrid vehicle. Does this apply to purchasing a used hybrid?

    5) Lastly, are there any suggestions or specific things I should look for when looking at used HCHs.

    Thanks in advance for all the input!

    Arthur

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  3. #2
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    Welcome to the forum !!!

    Quote Originally Posted by CFused View Post
    1) What are the differences between the 2003, 2004,......2007, 2008.
    First generation model (2003-2005)
    Second generation (2006-2010)

    Quote Originally Posted by CFused View Post
    2) Are there any differences in performance as well between each model?
    Yes, the second generation is generally more improved in many areas. These are just some of them:
    Performance
    Fuel economy
    Comfort, equipment & refinement
    features & sophistication (EV propulsion, electric AC, etc)
    Safety
    Environmental performance and PZEV, Tier2/Bin2 pollution rating
    Reliability

    Quote Originally Posted by CFused View Post
    3) Is there any year that stands out in your mind as the best model for the HCH?
    Pick the most recent as it benefits from the incremental improvements in the areas described above.

    Quote Originally Posted by CFused View Post
    4) I have been reading about the tax rebates for purchasing a hybrid vehicle. Does this apply to purchasing a used hybrid?
    Nope. Used hybrids are not eligible.

    Quote Originally Posted by CFused View Post
    5) Lastly, are there any suggestions or specific things I should look for when looking at used HCHs.
    Look for models that have a good maintenance history especially those performed at a Honda dealer. If it still has a good warranty left in it then it may be a good deal, but it all depends on how "Flinstone headed" the previous owners were. Also, have the car inspected by a Honda hybrid technician before buying it.
    Avoid manual transmission gen 1 Civic Hybrids unless you're willing to drive them properly and it has a recently changed battery pack.

    Cheers;

    MSantos

  4. #3
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    DEciding to go Hybrid?

    Take my advice... and WAIT until Honda improves the technology a little more. I am driving a 2006 Civic Hybrid, purchased in JUly 2006... first few months, great highway driving... 60+ MPG... after first service... guess what, I'm lucky if I get 35 MPG, combined highway/city. I did much better in my Honda Accord.

    SEcondly, there's a lot of flaws in the car. I've had a 14 month problem with my driver's side window, coming off track, refusing to go up. Rain pouring in on the highway. Dealer says, "Oh, we'll lube it." Twice lubed, same problem. I've had 3 recalls, only one of which I received in the mail... made appt. went in... no parts.

    Went in today, learned there's another recall... or computer upgrade which may improve gas-mileage. Had it done. Wait and see.

    Servicing the Hybrid is 2 1/2 times the cost of a regular car...

    I have 15, 800 kms on the car (<10,000 miles) and already frustrated. Can anyone relate? I'm unsure if the dealers service department even know a lot about this technology... because they can't answer a straight question!

  5. #4
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    Sorry to hear about your personal problems with your car Gman1964.

    As I ponder about your issues I cannot help but to see your issues as mostly dealership related problems. Granted, the window track issues have happened to a fair number of people already even though there are many of us who really do not know what you are talking about. No worries.
    Although it did not happen to me (I have 2 HCH's) I do know people/cases who've had the issue. The problem is that they've had their issue successfully looked at you have had no such luck with your dealership. Correct?

    On that note: You service your HCH which includes an oil change, and then your mileage falls. I would venture to say that maybe your dealership failed to use the right oil? That kind of a mileage drop right after an oil change often points to the wrong oil being used. It is that simple.

    On the issue of recalls:
    Most of the recalls the gen 2 HCH had, were non critical recalls. I suggest you look at the average recall incidence in the first two years for the auto industry and you'll still find the HCH to be one of the most solid production designs on the market. It is all about perspective especially when you sample other models and makes.
    Please look at the software updates as an added value for the owners. I certainly do.

    About the servicing cost:
    Again, it depends on where you service your car and on what is done. Again, most of us have a totally different experience. It becomes even more interesting if you consider that the oil changes occur less frequently that they would on other models and makes. Yes, you pay more per oil change but you also do it less often. To some of us it is a wash.

    About your dealer:
    Agreed. Bad dealers can really drive people mad. We see the exact same thing with Toyota hybrids as well. If you can, please considering visiting another dealer if at all possible and compare their knowledge and professional competency. In the end it is all about about much training they provide their people and most often than not, poorly managed service departments skimp on the training A LOT. The fact that they failed to order the right parts in for your recall shown how poorly run the outfit is. (this I know well)

    If you have any questions or issues please post them on this forum... Especially when you believe your dealer is not giving you straight answer.

    BTW: Which province are you from (Ontario/Niagara region?)? Would you be willing to post the name of your dealership?

    Cheers;

    MSantos

  6. #5
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    DEalership Issues?

    Thanks Santos for your insights. The dealership is: (removed for courtesy)

    Can you imagine, from July 2006 to December 2007, I had difficulty driving at night because my low beam headlights were too low... the Honda Service Department told me in the fall of 2006 that this could not be adjusted. So, I had to use extra caution and stay on well-lighted highways and city roads. Finally this week, I found someone who could adjust them correctly.

  7. #6
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    Have you tried "Image Honda" in nearby Hamilton?
    How about "Henley Motors Ltd" in your area?

    I wish it was any different, but many Honda owners really have to look around a little in order to find the better dealer. Sometimes the better dealer is a little farther away.

    Cheers;

    MSantos

  8. #7
    MSantos, I'm wondering about:

    "On that note: You service your HCH which includes an oil change, and then your mileage falls. I would venture to say that maybe your dealership failed to use the right oil? That kind of a mileage drop right after an oil change often points to the wrong oil being used. It is that simple."

    myself. Just had the car in for "B" "1" "2" service: oil/filter change, front/rear brake inspection, and engine intake/cabin filter change.

    Since, our mileage has gone from roughly 6 l/100km to 7 l/100km.

    My first suspect was an overly tight parking brake lever, which I backed off to the spec'd. 8~10 clicks to full lock. But our mileage continues to suck. Was just thinking last night: maybe they put in 5W20?? Or??

    I'm not sure that they would pull a sneaky, but not sure. The bill says:

    4 08798-8023C 4 OW20 GF4 1 LITER

    Can you think of any (cheap) way to tell, short of some sort of viscocity test.

    It could very well just be our short trips, getting into the wettest and coldest time of the year, but it really took a dip...

  9. #8
    FWIW, just checked: the oil on the dipstick looks super thin, almost like oily water, and it's currently +3 centigrade (at the most) in our garage. The transmission fluid level is up to the top of the hot level, I'm guessing they topped that up, I don't recall it being that high before. Could that impact mileage?

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mendel Leisk View Post
    FWIW, just checked: the oil on the dipstick looks super thin, almost like oily water, and it's currently +3 centigrade (at the most) in our garage. The transmission fluid level is up to the top of the hot level, I'm guessing they topped that up, I don't recall it being that high before. Could that impact mileage?
    Mendel:

    You are absolutely right. Too much oil in the crankcase is not good for optimal FE at all. Usually Honda dealerships are pretty good and put only the right amount of oil. But could it be that they over filled it for you this time?

    Based on what you see, I would say they did.

    Sadly, I know of no cheap & sure way of verifying the oil short of doing a standard lab oil analysis.

    Cheers;

    MSantos

  11. #10
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    I'm getting ready to trade-in a 2006 HCH... 9,600 miles! Fed up with low mileage, recalls, lack of service. Incompetent technicians. Just getting run arounds by the dealer. Honda is really goofing up on these hybrids.

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