2020 Honda Civic Si vs. 2019 Mercedes AMG CLA 45

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Using vehicle speed sensors and seat sensors, smart airbags in the Civic Si deploy with different levels of force or don’t deploy at all to help better protect passengers of all sizes in different collisions. The Civic Si’s side airbags will shut off if a child is leaning against the door. The AMG CLA 45’s airbags don’t have smart features and will always deploy full force.

Both the Civic Si and the AMG CLA 45 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

Warranty

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Honda’s powertrain warranty covers the Civic Si 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the AMG CLA 45. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the AMG CLA 45 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 3 times as many Honda dealers as there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Civic Si’s warranty.

Reliability

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From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Honda vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Honda 2 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Civic Si gets better fuel mileage than the AMG CLA 45 (26 city/36 hwy vs. 23 city/30 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Honda Civic Si uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The AMG CLA 45 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Civic Si has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The AMG CLA 45 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Civic Si stops shorter than the AMG CLA 45:

Civic Si

AMG CLA 45

60 to 0 MPH

106 feet

109 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling

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The Civic Si’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The AMG CLA 45 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

The Civic Si Sedan handles at .97 G’s, while the AMG CLA 45 pulls only .96 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

Chassis

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The Honda Civic Si may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 550 pounds less than the Mercedes AMG CLA 45.

The Civic Si Coupe is 7.4 inches shorter than the AMG CLA 45, making the Civic Si easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

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The Civic Si Sedan has 2.1 inches more front legroom, .9 inches more front shoulder room, 1.4 inches more rear headroom, 10.3 inches more rear legroom and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the AMG CLA 45.

Cargo Capacity

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The Civic Si Sedan has a much larger trunk than the AMG CLA 45 (14.7 vs. 13.1 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

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The Civic Si’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The AMG CLA 45’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Civic Si detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The AMG CLA 45 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

Model Availability

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The Honda Civic Si comes in coupe and sedan bodystyles; the Mercedes AMG CLA 45 isn’t available as a coupe.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Civic Si owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Civic Si will cost $10570 to $11825 less than the AMG CLA 45 over a five-year period.

The Civic Si will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Civic Si will retain 54.01% to 55.27% of its original price after five years, while the AMG CLA 45 only retains 51.35%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Civic Si is less expensive to operate than the AMG CLA 45 because it costs $855 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Civic Si than the AMG CLA 45, including $173 less for a water pump, $310 less for a muffler, $1 less for front brake pads, $372 less for a starter, $448 less for fuel injection, $164 less for a fuel pump, $50 less for front struts and $321 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Honda Civic Si will be $34493 to $36038 less than for the Mercedes AMG CLA 45.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/15

Consumer Reports® recommends the Honda Civic Si, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Civic Si was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 2 of the last 2 years. The AMG CLA 45 has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The Civic was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 2 of the last 23 years. The AMG CLA 45 has never been an “All Star.”

A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the Civic as the 2016 North American Car of the Year. The AMG CLA 45 has never been chosen.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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