Honda Civic 2016 vs Audi A3 – But is it Fair to Compare them?

So now it has been nearly two months since the Honda Civic 2016 hit the showroom floors in Pakistan, which means that the launch hype finally ‘looks’ to have settled down. One thing which has been pinching me ever since its debut in Pakistan, is people suggesting Audi A3 over Honda Civic, probably because of the PKR 3 million price tag of Civic’s top of the line model, VTEC Turbo. But the question, which pops into the head is that: “Is comparing them even fair?” As comparing any two things be they cars or anything else, there is a need to take into account, multiple factors for one to reach out to a conclusion, which will be the motive of this long-awaited comparison.

Have a Look: Pakistan’s 2016 Honda Civic Officially Launched in a One of a Kind Way!

First Up: Exterior & Dimensions

Civic and Audi A3 Exterior Compared

2016 Honda Civic VS 2016 Audi A3 – Exterior

As shown in the table below, when comparing the exterior dimensions of the two, the new Honda Civic takes a pronounced lead over the Audi A3. Civic brings A3 to shame as overall it is 174 MM longer, 4 MM wider and most importantly, it has a 64 MM longer wheelbase, which is critical in defining a car’s cabin space.

Audi VS Honda exterior

2016 Honda Civic VS Audi A3 Exterior Dimensions

Taking the comparison a step further, let’s discuss the exterior equipment found on the two. While the headlights of both the new Honda Civic and Audi A3 feature a decent set of LED daylight running lamps (DRLs), the mode of operation of their headlamps differs as A3 comes with brighter Xenon charged front lights than Civic’s relatively dull projector halogens. Moreover, Audi being Audi, comes stocked with amenities like the headlight range adjustment and headlamp washers while compromising on the fog lamps, which come standard on the Civic.

A3 VS Civic Exterior Configuration

Audi A3 vs 2016 Honda Civic Exterior Features

Moving on, sunroof is a quarter million rupee option on the Audi A3 while it comes included in the PKR 3.0 million price tag of the Civic VTEC Turbo. As far as the rim sizes are concerned, Audi A3, despite being the smaller one of the two in terms of dimensions has a larger 17-inch wheels as compared to Civic‘s 16-inches. Side-view mirrors of both the cars automatically retract with A3 going up a notch to include mirror heating as a standard feature.

Since looks are predominantly dependent on personal preference, I will leave it to the readers.

Number 2: Interior

Civic and A3 Interior

Audi A3 and Honda Civic’s Interior – Compared

As mentioned earlier on, Civic manages to have a 64-mm longer wheelbase, which means out of the two, it is the one to have a roomier cabin. The importance of a ‘bigger’ cabin aside, Civic and A3 both have their passenger compartments outfitted in leather. And since A3 comes to Pakistan in the form of official CBU imports, it is free from the feature cutting usually found in PKDM cars, meaning it has electronic seat adjustment as standard – a feature missing in Pakistan’s Civic. Moreover both, Civic and A3 have climate controlled air conditioning and electronic parking brakes.

Also Read: The Fragmented Lineup Of 2016 Honda Civic In Pakistan – Explained!

Audi A3 also comes with a 6-channel amplifier with ten loudspeakers as compared to Civic’s modest four. However, in Civic’s defense, it has better in-car display set-up; thanks to a larger 7-inch touch screen panel in the front and a display for rear occupants. Most importantly, it has ‘Smart Entry’ as a standard feature, which comes as an option on the already expensive Audi A3.

Audi A3 VS Honda Civic Interior Equipment

Audi A3 and Honda Civic’s Interior Equipment Compared!

Next up: Under the hood

As expected, Audi A3 has remained dominant in both the exterior and interior departments of our comparison; thanks to its “German background” and a heftier price-tag. However, when we take a look at what comes under the hood, things kind of sway to the other side.

A3 VS Civic Tech Specs

Honda Civic and Audi A3’s Technical Specifications Compared!

Honda Civic steals the limelight with its 1.5-liter VTEC Turbo engine, which produces 68 more horses and 45 more torques than A3’s modest 1.2-liter TFSI. Other than that, despite being the more affordable one of the two, Civic comes standard with cruise control, which is offered in a PKR 250,000 optional function pack by Audi for the A3.

In at No.4: Safety Features

If you read my comparison of Honda Civic i-VTEC Oriel and Toyota Corolla Altis Grande, you probably remember how Civic blew Corolla away in terms of safety equipment. But that as we know was a familiar competition and when competing with the bigger leagues (a German CBU in this case), Civic did not receive much leniency.

Audi A3 VS Honda Civic Safety Equipment

Audi A3 takes a clear lead over Honda Civic in the Safety Department

Starting with the basics, A3 being a German made sedan, comes with seven airbags spread over the cabin, while Civic being a “PKDM” offers two airbags, which according to our local manufacturers are sufficient to protect Pakistani customers. In addition to this, Audi A3 is equipped with Electronic Differential Lock (EDL) and Active Brake Assist, all of which are a part of its Electronic Stabilization Program (ESP). While ESP vs. VSA is a totally separate matter, Civic’s lack of an in-car first aid kit coupled with an absence of active safety features hands this category to the A3.

Here is Why I think comparing Civic with Audi A3 is unfair?

Now to the tough one, normally I would come down to “Which one should you buy?” or “What’s your pick” etc. but with this comparison, after comparing all the factors above, here is why I think it is unfair to compare these two. The most obvious reason is the price difference, which as shown in the table below is wider than the price gap of a base Wagon R and a base Toyota Corolla! And would you ever think of comparing a Corolla with a Wagon R? The answer would be “No” for most people. And yes I am pretty much aware of the concepts of proportionality and purchasing power, but still, the difference in price is vast enough to render the comparison unequal.

Civic VS A3 VS Suzuki Wagon R VS Honda City Price

So Why is Comparing them Unfair?

In addition to this, the reason why I think this is an unfair comparison on the basis of a price difference is because both of the cars are tailored to cater different set of buyers, because whichever side you take, you will need to resort yourself to some serious trade-offs; be it less power and more price in the case of buying an A3 or be it the poor quality and lack of features when buying a Civic. Whatever the case might be, the call would come down to the price and the sort of compromises you could make.

Have a Look: 2017 Audi A3 Facelift Coming Up Next Month in Pakistan – Price Hike Expected!


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Adan Ali

Adan is a Rising Journalism Sophomore at Northwestern University, with an inclination towards non-political investigative journalism and advertising. He is currently serving as a Research Assistant for the Arab World’s first media museum, The Media Majlis and an Admissions Diplomat at NU-Q. Adan comes with an experience of almost three years in the field of media creation, alongside Dawn, Parhlo, PakWheels, and The Daily Q occupying the roles of an Intern, Guest Writer, and Staff Reporter. Formerly, Adan has served as a Founder and CEO of The Nixor Times, a media and advertising company, besides which, he has offered his services as a Member of Board at Nixor Corporate. He tweets @adanali12 and runs a channel on YouTube.

  • Guest

    Bhai Adan Ali , you have did a wonder full job , I will request you to please write a similar article between WAGON R vxl and FAW V2 , because auto experts like you can only help us take out of confusion in deciding which car to have out of them. #Pakistani #Zero Meter #Rugged in Quality #11 lacs budget…. Bhai do some favor for the Aam Awaam …… Civic aur Audi to Wadeeron ki cars hen…. hamaray leay bhi kuch likha karen sir g…….

  • Imran

    Nice comparison
    But should have compared Honda Civic Japanese model instead of PKDM

  • Ammar

    1.2L for a 40lac+ car. What a joke.

  • An Engineer of U.E.T

    1.2 L is equally powerful as Honda 1.5 turbo… Think about LARGE SIZED OLD PC vs LATEST COMPACT LAPTOPS MUCH POWERFULL THAN OLD Computers.. AUDI is not just a car company they are researchers… They develop new technologies , publish their research, Audi is much much more technically advanced as compared to Honda…. PORSCHE and AUDI are world leader in RESEARCH……… moreover CC is just a size parameter not a power…. Just like 800cc EFI mehran produces TORQUE of 47 Nm and 660cc MIRA Produces torque of 53 Nm….. It is not joke, it is reality…. Even shocks of AUDI are technically many years advanced than Honda…. AUDI is developer……. Honda buys developed technology…. It is not a JOKE……… If you compare technically then you will find out that HONDA CIVIC is wrongly priced and AUDI is reasonably priced….

  • GIKI

    Author proved that HONDA CIVIC IS WAGON R VX and AUDI is Corolla….

  • Adan Ali

    Sadly there is no Civic in Japan

  • Adan Ali

    Sir 1.2-liter Audi is not at all as powerful as 1.5-liter Civic I will suggest you to read my article in a little more detail

  • Adan Ali

    Saying it a joke maybe a little too harsh because A3 has other features to justify its price

  • λŠℙIŘΔTĨǾ₦Š™ ❤MYCɧαṁp

    what a himself confuse wether to compare or not and still compared a try to boost civic NAKAM koshish lol honda and audi for GOD sake there is no comparison tomorrow u will start comparing grande with benz…………….honda and corolla good for pakistani market they should be compared for their ecnomical factor after sale service and avaialbility of spares and mechanics any where………………………….

  • Omar Farooq

    The smaller engine provides much better fuel efficiency, the a3 can do 19-22km/l. Civic however can’t, moreover the engine is on par with many local bigger engines when it comes to power and torque. Audi knows what it’s doing and actually keeps up with the times, not like Atlas that still sell an 8 year old car with an outdated engine for 17 lacs.

  • Guest

    It is not a joke. Fashion has changed. In the older times, German carmakers always had a larger engine. E.g Merc C & BMW 3 had the smallest engine equal to 1.8. Whereas similarly sized cars by Japanese companies had largest possible 1.6 or 1.8.

    Now Japanese companies are going for bigger engines and German companies are going for smaller engines.

    It is just a fashion. Though it has its technical and market reasons behind it.

  • Adil Saleem Khan

    the point is there is a second hand market for Audi A3 with various engine options and lower prices. Taking those into account A3 is a clear winner. Even an older A3 is technically superior to local assembled or shambled Atlas Civic!

  • lazers

    Are u comparing civix turbo or normal civic. Confused insaan.

  • Zulfiqar Ali Soomro

    And quality factor of Audi is way above the Pakistani Civic for sure!

  • Zulfiqar Ali Soomro

    Honda Civic is reasonably priced but after paying taxes, specially OWN its price hikes up unreasonably.

  • Zohaib

    really….? What an imaginary world you are living in.

  • Dr Ammar


  • Adan Ali

    I guess you forgot to read the headers on the tables I placed in my post!

  • Ammar

    I somehow find it hard to believe anyone who can shell out 40 lac for a car will care about fuel economy. Also, I think this 1.2L engine is made for specific regions. In Germany and other Western countries, the A3 comes with a 1.8L or a 2.0L engine, far more powerful than the 1.5L Turbo on the Civic.

  • Ammar

    Audi A3 comes with a 2.0L or a 1.8L engine in Germany and other countries. So I think the fashion of selling underpowered cars is limited to third-world countries only.

  • Usman Haider Sheikh

    0-160 run of 1.8tfsi a3 is one whole second slower than civic turbo and the quarter mile difference is also of merely 2 tenths, the numbers for 2.0 tfsi aren’t much ahead than civic turbo either so much powerful is only the “4 chooriyan(rings) wali gaddi” mentality.

    that said I’m not against Audi nor honda , author went bonkers about infotainment system, a weak android tablet vs an infotainment system that runs proprietary software and is integrated with other systems of a car. I also see a 2 zone climate control on A3 and the handling of A3 is much better than civic.

  • Usman Haider Sheikh

    0-160 run of even 1.8tfsi a3 is one whole second slower than civic turbo and the quarter mile difference is also of merely 2 tenths, the numbers for 2.0 tfsi aren’t much ahead than civic turbo either so much powerful is only the “4 chooriyan(rings) wali gaddi” mentality.

  • Usman Haider Sheikh

    lol, Civic is coming with similar features in malaysia and thailand while Audi isn’t offering 1.2 litre engine in a3 except for our or a few select third world markets. so he did compare an audi for pkdm with civic for pkdm.

  • Ammar

    Did you read my post before posting? I’m complaining about the 1.2L A3, not the 1.8 or 2.0L.

  • Jayy Khan

    I own a Grande as well as Audi.. And Audi is a winner when it comes to Power.. + if you put the foot down you don’t even realize and you are doing 180.. such a quite cabin.. while in Grande its like you are flying an F-16 hahaha

  • Jayy Khan

    ooo Papa Pakistanis Fit CNG and their Land Cruiser so Audi knows exactly what they are doing.. by the way it also offers a 1.5 Turbo aswell.

  • Jayy Khan


  • Jayy Khan

    Audi is quite and you dont even feel it when you are doing 180-190. But with Civic its comes with Cabin noise.

  • ABCD

    You’re a retard Pakistani who surely deserves to die.

  • ABCD

    Why the hell are you using hash tags, imbecile?

  • ABCD

    The Civic is a cheap, small car in the rest of the world, poor malnourished nigger, not a “Wadeeron ki cars.” Jahil.

  • Shani Arain

    i would pick civic anyday. Audi is awesome in every way , but srsly … 250,000 for cruise control… thats insane.

  • Kevin Enrique

    the joke engine on the Audi should make the Civic an instant choice to anybody.

  • Kevin Enrique

    lmao wtf are you talking about?

  • M Hassan Yousuf

    I have owned both a civic and an A3, and this article doesnt even mention the safety features, the ease of drive at all. The MMI system of an audi makes it way safer than any other touch screen display where the driver might have to take his eyes off the road. The lumbar support in the seats makes it extremely easy on long routes. The engine size is not everything, the inertia of the car also needs to be taken into account. The comparison is not at all justified. German engineering is way ahead of any other nation. Just do a small google search on the patents of Audi and you would know that they are not just car manufacturers. and thats actually true that you cruise at 150-160 and you dont feel like you are at that speed, unlike the civic that starts vibrating and becomes very noisy. It is value for money.