Skip to Content

Honda Civic LX vs EX 2014 (Comparing the Upgraded Models)

Honda Civic LX vs EX 2014

Honda’s iconic compact car has received a lot of upgrades over its lifespan.

But when the ninth generation Civic rolled out, it wasn’t well received. So, in an unprecedented move by an auto manufacturer.

Honda scrambled to tweak the sedan for the following year and restyled the coupe for 2014.

Always one of the top sellers in the compact car segment, it’s a move that says a lot about Honda’s desire to remain on top of the leader board and stay competitive in the automotive industry.

In what follows we compare the Honda Civic LX vs EX 2014 model year.

The Pre-2014 Honda Civic

The ninth generation Honda Civic began in 2012 and lasted until 2015. But it was the 2012 model that was lambasted for taking the soul out of the Civic.

All but devoid of character, was the language Car and Driver used to describe a Civic that felt much like the previous generation.

Some of the upgrades designed to refine worked to rob the car of much of the characteristics that made it such a beloved automobile for consumers and enthusiasts looking for something more exciting than a Toyota Corolla.

Although the 2012 Civic featured new sheet metal giving it a longer hood and more interior room for passengers.

There was little to differentiate the ninth generation Civic from the outgoing eighth generation.

Improving the Ninth Generation Civic

Honda worked fast to tweak the sedan and refreshed the coupe for 2014. After undergoing some major improvements and enhancements.

The most noticeable changes could be seen in the coupe. It gained a sleeker silhouette, while both cars receiving revised front and rear ends, along with more aggressive lines.

And although the performance-oriented Si model was the major benefactor of those enhancements, the LX and EX are Honda’s most popular trim levels within the Civic range.

As such, Honda’s popular compact retained solid reliability and safety ratings, a premium interior, refined handling and zippy engines into the 2014 model year.

See also  Are Miatas Good Drift Cars? (All You Need for Going Sideways)

Honda’s willingness to make all these improvement within such a short time of launching a new generation also demonstrates the Japanese automakers commitment to raising the bar for small cars.

Now let’s look at the improvements that are more specific to the LX vs the EX trim models.

Transmission Options

For both the coupe and sedan, the old five-speed automatic transmission in the 2012 model was replaced by a CVT (Continuously Variable Timing) in 2014 which improved ride quality.

According to Honda, the CVT weighs less. It has less friction and offers a 22% wider gear ratio than the old automatic.

This means that your choice of transmission whether you choose a 2014 LX or EX comes down to a five-speed manual or a CVT.

But where the CVT comes standard on the EX and EX-L models, it’s offered only as an option over the five-speed manual in the base LX.

Fuel Economy

Honda Civic is renowned for its fuel economy.

Not only did the new CVT improve ride quality, it also improved fuel economy.

Honda attributes this to reduced internal friction and a wider gear ratio compared to the old automatic.

The taller overdrive ratios cause the engine to idle lower at 1400 rpm at cruising speeds and 1000 rpm when coasting.

This contributes to EPA fuel ratings of as high as 30 mpg city and 39 mpg highway.

For 2014 the LX and EX series other improvements toward fuel economy include a freer-flowing exhaust.

The coupe has an EPA rating of 30 city and 39 highway. While the sedan gets 31 city and 41 highway.

Engines Choices

Efforts to deliver a new ninth generation Honda Civic weren’t better under the hood.

You got the same 1.8-liter SOHC 16-vavle i-VTEC four-cylinder motor as the eight-generation car.

Although engine power was only bumped up from 140 to 143 horsepower for both coupe and sedan in 2014, it’s still an improvement over the 2012 model.

See also  8 Cars That Look Like the AE86 (Hachi-Roku’s Whip)

In both the 2014 LX and EX trim levels you get the same 1.8-liter inline four in the coupe and sedan.

The zippy engine makes the Civic fun and peppy to drive.

Alex Kierstein from Road and Track said, the CVT doesn’t even suck all the fun out of the 143 hp on tap.


Pricing is another aspect that’s helped the Honda Civic be crowned the bestselling car worldwide year after year.

Pricewise, there’s hardly a difference between the LX and EX models. When new, an LX had an MSRP of $19,000. While the MSRP for a new EX was $21,090.

There’s an EX-L model that gives you all the same standard equipment as the EX, including navigation that added up to an MSRP of $24,240.

Even as a used car, the 2014 Honda Civic is a great option with an average price of $13,800.

Interior Space

Despite the generational upgrade, the 2012 Honda Civic interior only received some mild styling updates including three inches of shoulder room and a 1.6-inch rear legroom.

But the use of cheap plastics ruined the overall feel.

The 2014 Honda Civic offered drivers even more upgrades to design.

The interior of both the LX and EX cars eschewed the cheap plastics for better quality materials.

Front seats not only received more adjustable features. But the cloth examples feature an upgraded Tricot weave.

And the split-level dash looks better integrated in this generation. All these tweaks work to help the Civic feel more upscale. And gives you a more comfortable and ergonomic place to sit during commutes and road trips.


Okay, so if the features are so close. Why should you get the EX over the LX? Well, along with the CVT as standard equipment.

See also  11 Honda Cars with a Digital Speedometer (No More Games)

The EX also offers keyless ignition. A tilt and telescoping wheel. Audio and cruise controls on the steering wheel.

Front and rear door pockets instead of just front door pockets in the LX. As well as front seatback storage.

You got features like keyless ignition, a larger touchscreen displays enhanced smartphone integration and a blind spot camera.

The interior was given even more higher quality materials and a more upscale look than the 2012. While the front and rear of the coupe and sedan got restyled.

2014 Honda Civic Performance

But what makes a Honda Civic a Honda Civic is its pleasant driving experience.

Many of the refinements Honda made to give the car a more upscale feel, like the slowed ratio power steering only served to decrease the car’s tactile-ness.

The softened suspension also took away from the nimbleness Civic buyers are used to.

Honda’s challenge was to deliver a car that doesn’t look cheap in the face of cost cutting and increasingly sophisticated competition.

So, for 2014, not only did the coupe’s rear and front fascia become more stylized. But the car received a stiffer rear anti-roll bar and 10% higher spring rates.

The Civic coupe is also 1.5 inches shorter and sits lower than the sedan to give it a sportier appearance.

One aspect that makes the Civic coupe feel livelier is the crisp braking feel.

Body control and handling are flat with almost no body roll.

But again, Honda went so far in trying to refine the Civic that while steering feel is quick. It feels over boosted for a sports coupe.