Sedan scuffle: GAC Empow vs. Honda Civic

gac empow vs honda civic

Two of the hottest sedans to have come out recently are the GAC Empow and the 11th-generation Honda Civic. And while both can be considered humble daily drivers, they certainly have what it takes to make heads turn wherever they may go.


  • How many variants does the GAC Empow have?

    The GAC Empow has three variants and is currently priced from P1.135 million to P1.283 million.
  • How many variants does the Honda Civic have?

    The Honda Civic has three variants priced from P1.368 million to P1.775 million.
  • On that note, we’ll see how these two sedans stack up against each other to find out which suits your budget and your motoring needs.

    Tale of the tape

    The GAC Empow measures 4,700 millimeters (mm) long, 1,850mm wide, and 1,432mm tall. It has a wheelbase of 2,736mm.

    gac empow

    As for the Honda Civic, this vehicle boasts an overall length of 4,678mm, an overall width of 1,802mm, and an overall height of 1,415mm. Its wheelbase is 2,735mm long.

    honda civic rs

    Clearly, the GAC Empow is the larger of the two sedans. Its substantial dimensions may not only contribute to better road presence but may also hint at a roomier interior space. Their wheelbases, on the other hand, are virtually identical, which means ride comfort is basically the same.


    At the front, the GAC Empow is fitted with a large horizontal grille flanked by LED headlamps and LED daytime running lamps (DRL). Further to its side are faux air vents, surrounded by carbon fiber-like trims, that give the GAC Empow a striking and aggressive face.

    astara gac launch 2

    To its side are mirrors finished in carbon fiber-like accents as well as alloy wheels that either come in 16, 17, or 18 inches — depending on the variant.

    The rear features fierce ruby diamond tail lights, diffusers, and quad exhaust pipes.

    astara gac launch 5

    Meanwhile, the Honda Civic is equipped with a sleek-looking honeycomb grille with either halogen or full LED headlamps, depending on the trim level. Further, the base variant does not get a front fog light. However, all models across the range receive LED DRLs.

    All-new Honda Civic

    Its side is highlighted with side mirrors that have integrated turn signals. Like the aforementioned GAC Empow, its alloy wheels come in 16, 17, or 18 inches, depending on the variant.

    Honda fitted the Civic’s rear with LED tail lamps, a high-mount stop lamp, subtle spoilers, and a twin exhaust pipe.

    All-new Honda CIvic

    Overall, the GAC Empow and the 11th-generation Honda Civic are neck and neck when it comes to their exterior features. That said, we call this round a tie.


    Inside, the range-topping variant of the GAC Empow comes with a leather steering wheel with paddle shifters, leather-trimmed seats with GAC emblem branding, a center console with carbon fiber-like appliques, and a rear air conditioner vent (also with carbon fiber accents).

    astara gac launch 6

    Additionally, the GAC Empow boasts a large screen that combines a seven-inch digital instrument panel and a 10.25-inch infotainment system. The infotainment unit has CarPlay and Bluetooth connectivity.

    astara gac launch 3GAC GS8

    Similarly, the top-of-the-line Honda Civic is equipped with a three-spoke multi-functional leather steering wheel, leather (with suede)-covered seats, a sleek carbon fiber-trimmed center console, and rear air conditioning vents.

    All-new Honda CIvic

    For digital screens, the Honda Civic is fitted with a 10.2-inch digital instrument cluster and a nine-inch touchscreen audio unit.

    All-new Honda CIvic

    The well-designed interior of the Honda Civic gives off the feeling that it’s more well-made compared to its Chinese counterpart. However, the GAC Empow does wow with its modern-looking digital screens (that quite resembles the infotainment system in the face-lifted Kia Seltos) and the subtle details in its leather seats.

    That said, this round goes to the GAC Empow.


    The GAC Empow is powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged gasoline engine mated to a seven-speed wet dual-clutch transmission. According to the Astara-distributed brand, the GAC Empow makes as much as 168 horsepower (hp) with 270Nm of torque.

    As for the Honda Civic, its power comes from a 1.5-liter gasoline engine mated to a continuously variable transmission. This setup, per Honda Cars Philippines Inc., makes 175 horses and 240Nm of pulling power.

    With a more trusted, reliable engine, we give this round to the Honda Civic.


    Safety-wise, the GAC Empow is equipped with airbags, seatbelts, an electronic stability program, hydraulic brake assist, hill-start hold control, electronic brake-force distribution (EBD), an anti-lock braking system (ABS), an electronic parking brake with auto-hold, a tire-pressure monitoring system (TPMS), a front parking sensor, a rear parking sensor, and a rearview camera system.

    Similarly, the Honda Civic offers a suite of safety features, which include airbags and seatbelts, ABS, EBD, variable stability assist, hill start assist, emergency stop signal, and Honda’s G-Con safety structure.

    Additionally, all Honda Civic models come equipped with the Honda Sensing, which adds adaptive cruise control, low-speed follow, a collision mitigating braking system, a lane keeping assist system, road departure mitigation, lane departure warning, auto high beam, and lead car departure notification.

    With better safety features, this round goes to the Honda Civic.

    Variants and pricing

    GAC Empow

    GAC Empow

    GAC Empow GS – P1.135 million
    GAC Empow GB – P1.215 million
    GAC Empow GE – P1.283 million

    The above pricing is only introductory and is valid only until March 31, 2023. After the said date, the below pricing will apply:

    GAC Empow GS – P1.225 million
    GAC Empow GB – P1.305 million
    GAC Empow GE – P1.348 million

    Honda Civic

    All-new Honda Civic

    Honda Civic S Turbo (Honda Sensing) – P1.368 million
    Honda Civic V Turbo (Honda Sensing) – P1.583 million
    Honda Civic RS Turbo (Honda Sensing) – P1.775 million


    The Honda Civic emerges as the better vehicle between the two when it comes to their standard features. Having a more powerful and reliable engine as well as a better suite of safety features does make compelling reasons to get the 11th-generation Civic sedan.

    However, it does not mean that the GAC Empow is no good. Its modern exterior and tech-savvy interior make for an appealing choice for car buyers who are eyeing future-proof cars.

    Photos from GAC, Honda, Juan Paulo Papa, and Roy Robles

    Also read: 

    GAC Motor PH brings in Empow, all-new GS8

    Cabin check: What’s inside the GAC Empow

    The 'best Honda Civic ever' is now in the country

    GAC EMPOW vs Honda Civic Comparison

    GAC EMPOW 55
    • ₱1.225 - 1.348 Million
    Honda Civic
    • ₱1.368 - 1.775 Million
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