I am finding Honda something of an enigma. I have read through a range of reviews for the new Honda Civic from Fleet News to driver ratings on sites such as Parkers, and they all seem to be very positive.
The rating for Honda among company car drivers in the Sewells User-Chooser Barometer is equally positive. Put simply, drivers tend to love their Hondas.
However, looking at the Fleet Operator Attitude Survey, which gauges the opinions of fleet managers, the outlook seems more lacklustre.
Fleets which operate Hondas rate the manufacturer highly in most areas, but that doesn’t culminate in them being prepared to recommend the brand to other fleets in overwhelming numbers.
The key justifications for not running Hondas relate to issues with value for money and desirability, but these seem to directly contradict the opinions of drivers who love their Hondas.
The challenge, and the resolution to this enigma, seems to lie in reacquainting decision-makers with Honda and giving them a clear message about its core strengths, while also showing them that drivers would love their products, given the opportunity to get behind the wheel.
The excellent new 1.6-litre diesel engine in the Civic is a great persuader on its own, particularly with its impressive fuel economy (I am getting 65mpg without trying), but based on our overall experience, the Civic as a package is a strong contender for any fleet choice list.