By on September 10, 2012

 

Five days ago we released the first part of the 2013 Accord review. It’s not how we normally do things, but in order to get our hands on the second best-selling mid-size sedan in America we had to agree to keep you all in suspense. If you want to know about the new Accord’s drivetrain, interior and infotainment systems, click on over to part one and then head back here when you’re done. I promise we’ll wait for you.

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Drive

The 2013 Accord is the first real foray into the CVT world for Honda. Yes, I know the Civic Hybrid and some GX models use a CVT, but they are low volume niche vehicles. Let me get one thing straight right off the bat. I love CVTs. The reason for my love-that-dare-not-speak-its-name, and the reason we find one under the hood of the new Accord is efficiency. For optimum efficiency, you want an engine to operate as close to its most efficient RPM as possible over a wide variety of speeds. For performance, you want to get the engine to its power band and keep it there as you accelerate. The problem of course has been that CVTs take a while to transition from one ratio to another which is a strange feeling if you are used to a transmission downshifting in milliseconds. Honda didn’t explain how, but somehow, the new Accord makes CVT ratio changes almost as fast as a traditional automatic. The difference behind the wheel is dramatic. If you are cruising at 60MPH and you “floor” a Nissan or Audi CVT, you get nothing for a moment, then the car starts to accelerate slowly while the tach rises. Once the tach reaches a certain point, you get maximum acceleration. Lifting the pedal produces a moment where you’re still accelerating as the CVT readjusts, then you’re back to normal. Performing the same maneuver in the Accord is more like an automatic in that the transmission shifts to a lower ratio very rapidly and returns to the higher ratio without the “rubber band” effect when you’re done passing. Compared to Honda’s 5 or 6 speed autos, I’d take the CVT any day.

From a stand still, the 185HP, 2.4L engine motivatess the Accord respectably thanks to its low-end torque (181lb-ft at 3,900RPM) and the new CVT. If you live in a mountainous area like I do, the CVT has another benefit; when hill climbing the CVT constantly varies the ratios, allowing you to keep a more consistent speed than with a traditional automatic. As much as I love a CVT, the manual transmission would be my personal preference. Available on the base, LX, Sport and EX trims, the 6-speed manual is a typical Honda close ratio manual that is skewed to the shorter end of the ratio scale for performance. The relatively low-end torque of the 2.4L engine seemed very “un-Honda” but is a welcome change. In true Honda fashion, the small four cylinder sounded perfectly happy to rev high and keep the fun going.

The 278HP, 3.5L V6 from last year is back with some tweaks to improve fuel economy. The exhaust is tuned toward a decidedly sporty note that was pleasant without being overbearing. Honda’s new 6-speed automatic sends power to the front wheels only meaning the V6 torque-steers with the best of them. The revised cylinder management system proved to be seamless and effective easily allowing the V6 sedan to average 35MPG on a 20 mile highway trip. On the flip side, the V6 lacks the low-end torque that the latest 2.0L turbos provide and Honda’s 6-speed auto isn’t the most responsive automatic. What could Honda do with a 2.0L direct injection turbo and their new CVT? Let’s hope we find out some day.

If road holding is your game, then the Sport model is for you, primarily because of the rubber choices. Most of our day was spent behind the wheel of the base LX model whose firm suspension seemed at odds with its road holding ability. When it came time to swap into an Accord Sport, the reason for the deficiency was obvious. Base Accords get 16-inch, 205-width 65-series rubber. EX and Touring Accords are fitted with 215/55E17s while sport models share the 235/45R18s with the V6 Accord Coupe. Despite the loss of the Accord’s double-wishbone suspension, the new Accord had no problems corner-carving like a solid alternative to the Mazda 6. Road noise has dropped compared to the outgoing Accord, but it is still above some of the competition. Despite the new active noise cancelling system, the Accord is still louder on the road than the Camry and the latest eerily quiet Buicks.

Drive – 2014 Accord Hybrid

Not due out until mid 2013, Honda allowed me a long drive in a prototype 2014 Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid. This new hybrid is a complete departure from everything that Honda has done in the past. Prior attempts at “hybridizing” the Accord were focused on adding some electric mojo to their V6 model for even more performance. This time around, Honda is aiming the Accord Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid squarely at the Chevy Volt, Fusion Hybrid and Camry Hybrid and even the Toyota Prius.

The first thing to cover is the system’s operation. The Civic is often derided by Prius drivers because the engine can never be disconnected, so even in “EV mode”, the engine is spinning. The Accord takes this to the opposite extreme. Under 40 MPH, the engine is incapable of driving the car directly. At speeds below about 40MPH, motor two is driving the wheels drawing power from the lithium-ion battery pack or from the engine via motor one acting as a generator. At around 40MPH, the car may engage a clutch pack that directly connects motor one and motor two together allowing power to flow from the engine to the wheels. (Whether the car clutches the engine in or not depends on the battery’s state of charge). Once this clutch pack is connected the system is capable of delivering a combined power output of 196HP, and in EV mode it is limited to about 166HP.

If you’ve driven a Civic Hybrid, you know that the system is less than smooth from a wide variety of angles. Regenerative braking is grabby and strange, transitions between EV and hybrid modes are met with unrefined jerks and vibrations. Perhaps Honda’s biggest battle with the Accord will be in convincing shoppers to give the hybrid a chance. Honda’s larger traction motor and the ability to completely remove the engine from the drivetrain makes regenerative braking as smooth as any EV on the market. More surprising is the clutch engagement when the car enters hybrid mode. Despite my best attempts, the engagement was always perfectly seamless, making the Toyota Synergy Drive system seem rough in comparison. That’s something that cannot be said of the Infiniti M35h or the Hyundai/Kia hybrid system.

Out on the road the hybrid Accord drove more like the base LX model thanks to the low rolling resistance rubber and increased weight from the hybrid system. The suspension seemed to be tuned towards a softer ride than the other models -something I appreciated, if I can be candid for a moment. It wasn’t possible to get hard acceleration numbers for the Hybrid, but the “butt dyno” and the power figures indicate it should perform above the 2.4L and below the V6. I averaged a solid 42MPG in my 45-mile, hour long test drive of the Plug-In after the battery was exhausted.

 

Drive – Coupe

With the Solara gone from the market, the mid-sized volume coupé is a strange market to try to corner, but Honda is giving it the old college try. The Accord Coupé’s selling point is an enormous back seat. The back seat dimensions may make the coupé’s side profile a little unusual, but the increase in utility is impressive. Since the Coupé is only slightly shorter than the sedan with only a slight reduction in the wheelbase and just a few pounds shed, it drives pretty much like the sedan. The exception of course is the V6 model which can be equipped with a 6-speed manual transmission. Honda was cagey on what is different about the V6′s cog swapper, but the ratios seem to be different vs the four cylinder and the clutch action is firmer and more precise. If you’re going to opt for the coupé, keep in mind that aerodynamic differences reduce fuel economy numbers vs the sedan by 1-2MPG. In addition, the 6-speed manual equipped V6 looses the variable displacement system dropping highway economy by 6MPG to 28MPG. Oddly enough, I found the Accord sedan with the “Sport” package and the four cylinder engine to be a more enjoyable drive.

 

 

Honda has announced that the base LX model accord with the standard backup cam, 8-inch infotainment screen, 16-inch alloy wheels and dual-zone climate control will start at $21,640, or a modest $200 increase over 2012. Meanwhile, the top-of-the-line Touring model, which tosses in radar cruise control, LED headlamps, leather seats, dual exhaust, the V6, and all of Honda’s new active safety tech will set you back $33,430. Overall pricing is right in line with the competition, with the Hyundai/Kia ringing in lower and the Camry a bit more expensive if you account for the feature differences. Honda has yet to release pricing on the Accord Hybrid, but expect it to start around the same$27,500 neighborhood as the Camry and Fusion hybrids. Expect the plug in to command at least a $10,000 premium over the hybrid. It’s obvious that this 9th generation Accord has some serious competition ahead with the new Ford Fusion, but Honda hasn’t taken this lying down. The Accord has doubled down on interior comfort and value by jamming more electronic goodies in every model. Their new infotainment system is finally up to par being less attractive than MyTouch but far more responsive. Camry shoppers who are looking for something a bit more fun to drive would also do well to drop by the Honda dealer.

 

Honda paid for airfare and two nights at a swanky resort, travel expenses to the resort came out of my own pocket since I drove.

 

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75 Comments on “Pre-Production Review: 2013 Honda Accord – Part 2...”


  • avatar
    22_RE_Speedwagon

    What’s this thing weigh?

    • 0 avatar

      Curb weight for the non-hybrid ranges from 3,186 to 3,559 lbs:

      http://hondanews.com/channels/honda-automobiles-accord/releases/2013-honda-accord-specifications-and-features

      The stat for the V6 manual coupe looks like a typo to me–it shouldn’t be 130 pounds less than the automatic.

      Inputting the features and pricing into TrueDelta’s database this morning. Once I get them done (figure 1 PM) it’ll be possible to compare the car here:

      http://www.truedelta.com/pricing

  • avatar
    mike978

    Sounds impressive. Alex – are you saying the new Accord (say in Sport spec) is a better car to drive (handling and ride) than the Camry SE?

    • 0 avatar
      Alex L. Dykes

      Yes, its also the nicer place to spend your time.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Thanks Alex. Did you drive a sport model? I know it has bigger wheels and stickier tyres but I have read it has some suspension and steering changes. Can you confirm this and whether they make much of a difference above the LX?

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Alex, it would be nice to know something regarding passenger room in front AND rear (leg, head, shoulder, etc.), especially since this is a family sedan; maybe a direct comparison to the competitors?

        You didn’t even have a photo of the rear seat in Part I (just sayin’).

        Some of us care about these things.

        Thanks.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        DW – Alex does show the rear and discusses the space available in the video. From the looks of it, it is spacious back there for Alex who is 6 foot tall.
        Passenger legroom is very good looking at the stats and interior volume is 103, slightly greater than the Camry, which is spacious itself.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Thanks, Mike.

        I didn’t watch the video, obviously, and only read the text review earlier.

        Edit- Okay, just watched the video, and Alex did a very good job describing the rear sear room/functionality on the video.

        I was hoping this was going to be nearly as quiet as the Camry with a near-luxury ride (especially with the 16″ wheels), as I was possibly considering it (only with a manual transmission; CVTs can go piss up a rope) as my “I just want a quiet, comfortable, smooth riding, reliable sedan” replacement for my current ride, a few years down the road.

        I already test drove the B7 Passat, and despite the massive rear seat and smoother ride than prior versions, dislike the road noise and cheap build quality, not to mention the big VW achilles heel— dreaded reliability.

  • avatar
    Dan

    “In addition, the 6-speed manual equipped V6 looses the variable displacement system dropping highway economy by 6MPG to 28MPG”

    If cylinder deactivation were worth 6 mpg, or even 3 mpg, every manufacturer would be using it.

    That 6 MPG loss is because of the EPA’s ridiculous shift schedule for manual transmissions that results in most of the test being run around 3000rpm.

    • 0 avatar

      Interesting. Do you have more info on this? I’ve often wondered how they determine pedal application and shifts.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        The EPA shift schedule is 1st to 15 mph, 2nd to 25, 3rd to 40, 3+n to 40+5n.

        On the 2012 Accord V6/6MT, that’s 1-2 at 2700, 2-3 at 2800, 3-4 at 3100.

        That’s why the 1-4 lockout was invented for the V8 pony cars. Because running a V8 at 3K for what should be (and is with any automatic) a coasting test would result in a <20 score and a gas guzzler tax.

    • 0 avatar
      nikita

      That explains why my MT Honda Fit is EPA rated only 27/33 and I regularly get 32/37 without much effort. Even the little 1.5L is capable of pulling from 2000 rpm due to the long stroke and dual cam profiles. Im in 5th gear before 45mph.

  • avatar
    slance66

    Seems like they created a pretty solid car. That’s exactly what an Accord should be. No complaints on the looks either, except for the Hybrid’s face. This will sell.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      It’s a shame they didn’t do this for the most recent Civic.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Too bad they killed the double wishbone suspension, which was one of the defining good characteristics of the Honda Accord in years past.

      I honestly don’t know if Honda/Acura is literally trying to kill itself or not at this point– okay, I actually am convinced Acura is trying to kill itself, and am coming around on Honda, also.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Being that the folks who have actually driven it say the handling is much improved over the DWB 7th gen, I don’t think anyone will miss it

        Honda completely botched the 7th gen Civic strut suspension, but promptly fixed it in the 8th gen, resulting in the fastest + best handling Civic of all time (FD2 Civic Type-R). The 8th gen Civic Si was a brilliant car and prob one of Honda’s best, only overshadowed by quicker (but significantly less refined) competitors and goofy styling. I’m tired of people crying about the death of the Honda DWB. Yes, for a race car, it is great. But w/smart design and tuning, a strut front end is fine. Its good enough for BMW and Porsche, and it was good enough for the laundry list of brilliant FWD handlers- G20, 205 GTi, Clio RS, Puma etc. I would take an 8th gen Civic Si w/struts over a DWB Honda of equal weight/HP (Prelude, Accord Type R) any day of the week.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        It’s not complicated. People want a smooth ride on crappy roads that populate the U.S., especially driving a family sedan.

        Is the new strut setup as smooth as the double wishbone Accord of yore?

        Nope.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        I remember when Honda introduced DWB on the Prelude. Most of the talk was about how it allowed lower hood heights. With today’s pedestrian impact standards obviating the benefits of low hoods, much of the reason for DWB is gone. Now if they start crash testing pedestrian dummies on the sides of the hood instead of the center…

  • avatar
    EX35

    How about some comments on handling and steering feel as it compares to the competition and previous accord.

  • avatar
    billfrombuckhead

    Still a lot of road noise from the light weight construction? New Bentley looking Malibu looks much better than this.

    • 0 avatar
      thornmark

      Malibu has gotten horrendously bad reviews.

      Compilation of negative reviews:
      The most disliked car of the year (so far)
      http://money.cnn.com/2012/07/10/autos/malibu-eco-least-liked.fortune/

    • 0 avatar
      thornmark

      Read.

      CNN didn’t review, they compiled reviews – including from this site – into an article with the theme that the Malibu is the worst new car.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Gosh that Malibu Eco in the CNN link is ugly , **** Daewoo or whatever it calls itself these days. If I want a Korean designed automobile, I have Hyundai and Kia to choose from… why on Earth they didn’t just restyle the previous successful and award winning generation is beyond me. Chrysler did it to the Sebring and now it sells, GM introduces a whole new platform and sales suffer. Looks like Bailout II: The Reckoning could be coming to a bank near you.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    I would like to see the chrome work on the front end redesigned. It looks like it just doesn’t fit with the rest of the car. Perhaps if they were able to make the chrome surround the top of the grill or just use the thin strip at the bottom it would look better.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    It will be interesting to see how this compares to the regal in manual transmission form.

  • avatar
    mikedt

    The front reminds me of the newer VWs and the rear reminds me of BMW. Bottom line, I like this new generation better than the current one.

  • avatar
    jmo

    “At speeds below about 40MPH, motor two is driving the wheels drawing power from the lithium-ion battery pack or from the engine via motor one acting as a generator.”

    Like a GE locomotive or the engines on the Queen Mary II!

  • avatar
    Polar Bear

    The hybrid looks like the front bumper fell off.

    But the regular sedan is handsome. Maybe I should trade in my Camry before it kills me with boredom.

  • avatar
    rpilot

    Is the Dark Grey(?) pictured V6 the Modern Steel Metallic or the Hematite Metallic color?

  • avatar
    tonycd

    A couple of minor points:

    The base model LX comes more loaded than base-model Accords used to, but that’s because the LX is the volume model and used to represent the middle of the line (the DX being the manual-windows stripper). Kudos to Honda for dropping the fictional price leader, but that’s really all it means.

    Also, the active noise cancellation isn’t new to the Accord, just new to the lower models. Unfortunately they seem to have opted for it as a cheaper alternative to adequate sound insulation, but I guess that’s the price of the weight reduction that produces this kind of gas mileage. This noise-for-MPG swap seems to be part of the deal on the new Altima, too. Maybe this is the answer to the increasingly common question, “What does my extra cash really buy me in a luxury car?”

    • 0 avatar
      Polar Bear

      It is cheaper and easier to sound insulate the car before components and interior goes in. This is one area I whish car makers would improve. It makes a huge difference to comfort and driver fatigue. How much would it cost to make an Accord Lexus quiet? Now I am left with stuffing the car with Dynamat after I bought it.

      • 0 avatar
        jmo

        I was under the impression that Hondas being noisy was intentional. The engineers at Honda prefer a more visceral and involved driving experience with less isolation from the environment.

      • 0 avatar
        kvndoom

        jmo, that might have been true back in the “glory days” but there’s no way it could fly in today’s high-volume family appliance world.

      • 0 avatar
        Polar Bear

        How much sound would they need for “involvement “? If they reduce the noise from say 70 dB to 60 dB I can still hear what the car is doing. But at 60 dB I can also hear what people in the back seat say.

      • 0 avatar
        jmo

        Polar,

        “If they reduce the noise from say 70 dB to 60 dB I can still hear what the car is doing.”

        If you do that, what’s the point of the Acura version?

        ILX:

        Db @ Idle: 42.5
        Db @ Full Throttle: 77.5
        Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 65.6

        Civic

        Sound level @ idle (dB) 45.0
        @ Full throttle (dB) 77.6
        @ 70 mph cruise (dB) 71

        Due to the logarithmic scale of the decibel (60 decibels is normal conversation 120 is a jet engine at taking off power) the gap between 65.6 and 71 is HUGE.

        http://www.howstuffworks.com/question124.htm

      • 0 avatar
        stuntmonkey

        > Now I am left with stuffing the car with Dynamat after I bought it.

        Have you noticed how heavy the aftermarket tar-carpet is? Question answered.

      • 0 avatar
        Polar Bear

        “If you do that, what’s the point of the Acura version?”

        1. They don’t sell Acura in my country so I don’t worry about it.
        2. Make the Accord quiet and the Acura even quieter.

        There is still some way to go. We have to get down to 30 dB or so before the sound of passengers breathing starts to drown out the car.

      • 0 avatar
        Polar Bear

        “Have you noticed how heavy the aftermarket tar-carpet is? Question answered.”

        Next question: Foam applied in the facory?

  • avatar
    200k-min

    I’d like to hear how this Accord drives compared to the new ’13 Fusion. Have yet to drive the new Fusion (anxiously waiting for a TTAC review) but in the 2012 lineup I found the Fusion decidedly most fun to drive in its class.

    Still not a fan of the styling but it is better than the Camry. Just doesn’t look even remotely sporty. Sharp contrast to the ’98-’02 generation which was the last “athletic” looking Accord IMHO. Didn’t Honda used to cater to a younger buyer than Toyota? I want an Accord with aggressive styling.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      I too am awaiting the Fusion review. Quite a few new mid-size cars in such a short time (Altima, Accord, Fusion and 6).
      I like this styling, it has a cohesiveness the Camry does (the Camry is SE spec does look aggressive and sporty from the front). I would put the Accord in the same camp as the Passat – cohesive, understated/conservative designs that will age well. The Fusion is in the new Mazda 6 camp – cohesive, but more stylish and maybe likely to age faster.

      • 0 avatar

        I’m hoping to drive a new Fusion around the 20th, and should have a review for you guys soon afterwards. I’ll likely have to get an Accord from a dealer, but if I can somehow get one by the time I drive the Fusion I’ll be sure to compare the two.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Michael – are you going to the big media event? I have been wondering when the Fusion would be reviewed since the configurator (not the initial survey) has been live for a few weeks. Unlike Honda who even with reviews still doesn`t have the configurator live one week from launch!

      • 0 avatar

        I don’t think mine is a big media event. Something local in the Detroit area, in conjunction with a party for Ford employees.

        I finally uploaded the features and pricing for the new Fusion last night, so both it and the new Accord are now in TrueDelta’s database. About to see how they compare myself. I’ve been posting price analyses for each major redesign as I upload it.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        In case anyone caught today’s Detroit News (or other local newspapers), the 2013 Ford Fusion had truly better be a “game changer” if it is to avoid suffering the fate of extraordinarily high expectation let downs that preceded it.

  • avatar
    Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

    Have Honda published the hp/torque specs of the hybrid electric motors? I’m curious to see what kind of performance that vehicle gets off the line in electric-only mode..

    • 0 avatar
      redliner

      It was in the video.

      Around 160hp up to 40 MPH, peaking at 196hp above that speed.

      Torque is 226 lb-ft at an unspecified speed, I assume from zero.

      • 0 avatar
        Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

        That’s not bad, though the electric range isn’t really that suitable for my uses. If its highway mileage is >45 my folks might be interested in one though, if it’s a better value than the Fusion Energi..

  • avatar
    redliner

    YAY! Honda has finally decided to make a major leap in their hybrid department. I was starting to get worried, because Honda’s hybrid system have never seemed as good as Toyota’s, except perhaps the original Insight.

    It will be interesting to see which way the market goes… Plug-in Prius (smaller, more inexpensive roots, better cargo capacity because of hatch) or Accord Plug-in (larger, similar economy, higher quality, less cargo space due to battery pack)

    As a tech lover, I have always liked the idea of a hybrid, but as a driver, I have yet to find one that is even mildly entertaining. Here’s hoping the Accord changes that.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Reports of Honda’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. Judging from this review, it’s back with a vengeance. I dislike the screen interface, but these days, I can make that complaint about everything on wheels — I prefer to have real tactile switchgear that can be used without looking at it.

    (Very helpful video, by the way. You do have a bit of an audio glitch at about the 6:25 mark, so you may want to check that out.)

  • avatar
    philadlj

    I was taken aback by the Accord Hybrid’s, um, “distinctive” face. Is it any less frightening in person? The Panamera and even Juke have grown on me, but this…I dunno.

  • avatar
    stuntmonkey

    Intrigued by this new hybrid system, very GM-Volt like, but let’s see what Honda can do with it.

    This upgrade is pretty much how an upgrade should go, familiar, but better. The only thing that I’m really disappointed with in this new era is the dearth of technical information coming out of Honda. Five-six years ago, not only did you have the car launch, you had explanations like how cylinder deactivation worked, how the Civic’s cracked con-rods were manufactured, how front subframes were hydroformed. Now we’ve got three significant new technologies, new DI, new hybrid, new CVT…. where are the articles? People are going to be in Honda’s take on these things if more reviewers have driving impressions like this.

    P.S. – Rumors are that the Civic refresh has a new hood stamping but looks ‘the same but different’. My guess is that it will pick up the this Accord’s nose. #samesausagedifferentlength

  • avatar
    carguy

    Nice work Alex. Honda clearly has been listening to its critics and has made the necessary quality, handling, economy and acceleration changes that Honda loyalists had asked for. The style is at best inoffensive but in my book still way ahead of the Camry and the somewhat awkward looking Altima.

    The new Fusion will be an interesting comparison. However, my faith in Ford’s reliability has somewhat declined since the Focus/Mustang transmission issues and the various problems with the new Escape.

  • avatar
    ant

    how was the electronic power steering?

    I sure wish they’d give us an off button for the electric boost.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    It doesn’t look much different from the old Accord, so I suppose that will sell.

  • avatar
    Halftruth

    “The difference behind the wheel is dramatic. If you are cruising at 60MPH and you “floor” a Nissan or Audi CVT, you get nothing for a moment, then the car starts to accelerate slowly while the tach rises. ”

    FWIW -

    I have to disagree. The wife’s 2010 Murano has lightning quick shifts and does not behave as described above. The few we test drove also shifted as quickly and did not need the pedal on the metal to do so.

    • 0 avatar
      thornmark

      Motortrend agrees with this review:

      “Honda’s new “G-Design Shift” CVT is the best I’ve driven”
      http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/coupes/1209_2013_honda_accord_first_test/viewall.html#ixzz266InEfel

  • avatar
    stuntmonkey

    This looks interesting:

    http://world.honda.com/news/2012/4120906Weld-Together-Steel-Aluminum/index.html

    Mass market friction welding on the engine subframe between steel and aluminum.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    All the enthusiasts saying “Honda is dead to me because of CVT”, well, it’s a segment you are not even going to buy. [Automatic 4 cyl sedans]

    They get used, I mean “pre-owned”, Euro luxo cars, and look down on everything. And when the luxo car breaks down, they justify it and say “well if you want to play, you have to pay….”

  • avatar

    The longevity of that CVT is the question #1 now.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Hopefully it won’t be a “Honda 5AT” pt 2. I don’t think Honda has had any major missteps recently though, so it should be fine. I’m also worried about the direct injection. Hopefully Honda went w/dual injection types like Toyobaru on the FRBZ

  • avatar
    sketch447

    I’m concerned that the new Fusion needs a tiny, wheezy turbo to attain the same fuel economy. As as we’ve seen with the Cruze, a turbo is often a mileage liability, especially if it’s “on” all the time. Like Honda, Ford should’ve refined its 2.5L. Honda is all about evolution………..by the way, kudos to TTAC for providing a highly comprehensive 2-part review. You guys and gals really go the extra mile for your readers. TTAC rules!!

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    Looks like the old Hyundai Elantra with some old Infiniti styling cues thrown in. I’m sure they’ll sell like McDonald’s or Budweiser.

    I’m going to throw a downer in for the CVT. They’re louder around town, especially at low speeds. Can you hear the CVT in the Accord at 15-30 mph? Or has Honda fixed all of that with their magic?

    Also, CVTs tend to misbehave in the cold. Especially if left in freezing temperatures overnight. Or has Honda fixed all of that, too?

  • avatar
    Seminole 95

    The noise levels are much better than the old Accord’s. They are now similar to a Camry. Edmunds inside line has the data

    • 0 avatar
      Polar Bear

      62 dB at 70 mph. Not bad. Same quietness in the Accord as in the Camry, but better to drive, nicer interior, better visibility, better design. Same price. Are there any reasons left to pick the Camry? Oh yes that darn CVT. We will see how that plays out.

  • avatar
    C170guy

    I went straight for the underhood picture. I would never buy this car based on what I saw. A lot of little bad decisions that in combination that are just too much for me, but other people might be okay with it.

    1. Automakers don’t have to put the exhaust manifold/cat A: 4 inches from something they are trying to cool, like a radiator. B: right where you will burn yourself on it first thing. C. Right next to the alternator, too. No good could possibly come from that. Seems like the engine is in there backwards, but many (not all) automakers do it this way. Always bothers me.

    2. That mickey mouse battery is for a lawn tractor, not a real car – the Japanese are great at this trick. Won’t last very long, and will be easily run down and ruined running the accessories with the engine off. I know the focus group found an X min average accessory use for Accord customers but still… Smaller batteries have harder, shorter lives, and when it’s cold out, a tiny, marginal battery that is overworked is more likely to ruin your day. Toyota is bad about this, too. I live in a place that is really rough on batteries, so I pay attention to this stuff.

    3. Tiny alternator. Not much to charge I guess, but on a cold snowy night with all the accessories on… you will ask a lot from that little battery, I imagine. I can see a viscous cycle forming. How long will it live right next to that hot manifold w/cat? At least it’s accessible when the time comes to replace it.

    4. Air intake right up front. Will pull in sand and salt to your engine/air filter from traffic ahead, and if I had a penny for each time I got a little splash of water over the hood when it rains I would be rich (and in this case I would need a new engine every time it rains. Drainage is a fantasy here.)

    5. My little econobox came from the factory stiff enough to not need a shock tower brace. Why can’t Honda figure that one out?

    The choices they made and the philosophy they used are the wrong compromises for me. I wonder what the average Accord buyer looks like on paper, using the Honda definition? I don’t suppose I fit their reconnaissance.

    Finally, this one isn’t a really a dealbraker, but who else looked at that picture and said “Wow! What are the brakes doing all the way over there?” Never seen it before, but wonder if there are any compromises behind it.

    • 0 avatar
      thornmark

      >>5. My little econobox came from the factory stiff enough to not need a shock tower brace. Why can’t Honda figure that one out?<<

      "Honda says the car would've been even lighter, but after finding out about the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's new small offset frontal crash test, additional bracing was added around the engine compartment to maintain the Accord's top ratings. Second is that Honda still makes the best front-wheel-drive manual transmission in the business. Third is the impressive performance of Honda's new continuously variable transmission."
      http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/coupes/1209_2013_honda_accord_first_test/viewall.html#ixzz271tfx2QR

  • avatar
    AM

    I heard there’s no ski pass through (or split fold down rear seat) in the 2013 Accord ?

    If it’s true (I’d like a confirmation), it’s a deal breaker for me. I own a 2009 Accord and I was gonna replace it with a 2013 (most likely), but the ski pass through is important for when we are going skiing with the kid. A split fold down rear seat would work too but I don’t expect that feature in Accord anymore…

  • avatar
    Da Coyote

    Warning on Accord seating. I finally had to give up and trade my beloved 2010 Accord because neither my wife nor I could tolerate the seats for more than 30 minutes. The test drive did not reveal this, but longer drives were painful to the point of wanting to abandon the car on the road. Internet checks reveal that this was not unique to us…and there is a movement afoot to start a class action suit against Honda.

    The dealer appeared to want to help, but in the end did nothing. This was my fourth Honda – all being reliable and fun.

    I just sold it.

  • avatar
    psundell

    Before you spend a lot of time on evaluating a Honda Accord or any Honda vehicle, make sure up front that you can live with the option package offered. Honda USA has very poor color choice options on the Accord coupe, especially the manual and is totally inflexible. For the manual four cylinder coupe, no EXL leather, EX only in black. Only three color options for the manual V-6. More color options are available on manuals in Canada then in the USA. Honda USA will not allow you to special order a color for a model even if that model’s color is exported to Canada. No loyalty bonus for long term Honda owner to take a different model because of lack of color offering. Beware, Honda USA states it will not honor the manufacturer warrantee if you purchase it in Canada and bring it over to the United States.

    Granted few companies are still offering manuals but if Honda is going to offer them have a decent choice of colors available that includes those colors that are exported to Canada. Poor color choices and option packages guarantee a poor take rate. Probably only mechanical difference is the speedometer between the USA and Canada versions. Honda coupe sales are not likely to cannibalize sales from any other part of the company. My experience in ordering a Honda has really turned off to Honda management, especially marketing. I have purchased new three Honda Accords and have driven a Honda 25 out of my last 31 years. My opinion, Honda engineering is very good but Honda marketing is very poor and short sighted. When you by a car new, it virtually guarantees the manufacturer a sizeable income stream for a long time in terms of parts, service, and financing. For some reason Honda does not understand this.


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