By on September 13, 2014

PCOTY 150

Seven months after taking delivery of my 2014 Accord V6 6MT coupe in “Modern Steel”, we’ve finally hit the 12,000-mile mark. This might seem like a lot of mileage but it’s actually quite a bit less than it could be; I’ve put more than twelve thousand miles on rental cars in the same time period. What can I say — I’m an itinerant. Insert snarky comment about journalists who live in cities and don’t drive except on press trips here, and so on, and so forth.

It probably reduces the chances of you “clicking the jump” to say so right up front, but very little about my Accord experience has been surprising.

accord2

I’ve been measuring the Honda’s self-reported fuel mileage in 2,000-mile increments, and it’s steadily risen from an initial 23.8mpg to 26.9 in the last complete stint. Freeway driving below 80mph results in a self-reported average of 32.0 to 32.8mpg while running at 80-100mph returns about 28.5 over longer distances. The vast majority of this car’s life has been spent in a fifty-mile radius around my house, driving short trips and usually reporting about 23-25mpg during those trips. I use the “Eco” mode at all times, with the sole exception of when I’m on a racetrack and I remember to turn it off. Compared to a four-cylinder CVT, I’m losing five or six mpg as a consequence of choosing the big motor and the clutch pedals. And, as Lorde says, we’re fine with this.

Less fine with the royal “us” than the mileage: the abysmal floormats. When I was but a young sprog bullying my mother into buying a 1983 Civic 1500 “S”, it never occurred to us to ask for floormats. Everybody knew that they cost extra and that the price of the floormats was some mathematically improbable exponent of the true cost. Having already paid MSRP plus maybe ADP for your new Honda, it was particularly critical to escape the F&I office without accepting floormats, lest your payment double.

Well, that was then and ours is a far more enlightened age. In 2014 Honda rewards its higher-end customers with free floormats, and those floormats have the half-life of bohrium-262. What you see at the top of the article is an actual hole worn in the driver’s-side mat after just six months. TTAC readers who are reasonably familiar with my personal habits know that I am far more likely to wear actual leather-soled grownup long-wing shell-cordovan shoes than the average Honda buyer might be, but surely that is balanced out by the fact that I just as often drive in those stupid Vibram Five Fingers shoes or even barefoot, and that I’m a heavier-than-average user of cruise control.

Frankly, I’d have rather had the twelve bucks or whatever it cost to recycle some worn-out Dickies pants into these things removed from the sticker price, because these “free” floormats are more like “delaying actions” regarding floormats for which you’ll have to pay anyway. A few weeks ago I got more drunk than usual on a Tuesday evening and had an unusually vivid dream where I was standing in a parking lot and an aging but still attractive brunette pulled up in an SUV with Lexan rain guards mounted to the door frames.

“It’s time for you to buy new laser-measured FloorLiners(tm),” the woman told me.

“Csaba, should I do it?” I asked. And Csaba Csere appeared next to me and whispered,

I wouldn’t have let them buy thirty pages a month in the magazine if they weren’t the very best.” After a dream like that, I had no choice but to buy the MacNeil Products FloorLiners(tm). They fit as if they were laser-measured. This is the third car for which I’ve bought them and I expect they’ll be completely bulletproof as they’ve been in the past.

Alright, that was five paragraphs about floormats. What about the rest of the car? Well, this past week I used it to carry four people plus myself on the run from Road&Track‘s offices in Ann Arbor to the “Motown Mile” track at the Coleman Young Airport. It’s a forty-five-mile drive and believe it or not the Accord does just fine with three six-foot adults in the back seat for that trip. There are even cupholders for the outside passengers. Running the Accord around the Mile, I was reminded that this car possesses an exceptional match of power, weight, and dynamic capability.

There was a lot of offhand joking about how I was trying to insert the car into the comparison test so at one point I asked everyone, “Does anybody here think this car would finish last if we actually added it?” There was a lot of looking around at the fourteen cars we’d brought to the airport, and then a unanimous “NO.” With that said, one editor did refer to the Accord, dismissively, as “a front-wheel-drive Mustang.”

So far, there have been no quality problems with the car, nor has anything broken or fallen out of alignment. The brakes feel pretty soft as a consequence of modest track time and the driver’s seat feels like it might have a spring out of place — there’s a “click” at times when I sit down in it. I’ll have that looked at during the next service.

I finally got around to putting a bunch of Zaino not-quite-wax on the thing last week and I noticed that Honda’s inability to paint cars properly in the United States has yet to be completely addressed. After 12,000 miles, the Accord has more rock chip damage and wear on the front than any of my Volkswagens, BMWs, or Porsches had after three times that much distance. No orange in history has ever had as much orange peel as this Honda and where the paint has chipped off you can see just how thin it is. Oh well. My 1986 Jaguar Vanden Plas had brilliant and flawless lacquer that was approximately as thick as a trauma-plated bulletproof vest but it also failed to make it to 75,000 miles without requiring the replacement of every rubber part in the suspension and body. Choose your battles.

Although the price has been bumped a few hundred bucks for 2015, the Accord Coupe remains a fairly staggering value. What it loses to the ponycars and the Hyundai Genesis in driveline purity and high-speed maneuverability it takes back in space and ease of use. I’ve seen nothing so far to make me think I wouldn’t buy it again. This year, Honda’s gone totally wacky and added a fourth “color” to the available palette. So if you want people to know you have the new one, you’ll want “White Orchid Pearl” instead of the “Steel”, black, or red.

Out on the road, I’m often greeted by my Accord Coupe brethren by a discreet wave or a flicker of the brights — oh, who the hell am I kidding. The only way I could be more anonymous on the road would be by trading in for a blue CR-V. There’s absolutely nothing special about being seen behind the wheel of an Accord and not even I can lie to myself about it. Regardless, it continues to earn my recommendation.

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127 Comments on “Life With Accord: 12,000 Miles...”


  • avatar
    thelaine

    Yeah, first thing I buy is those floor liners. I wish you could buy a new car without carpet at all. Just some super durable and easily cleaned surface. I always thought carpet was nuts. Never understood it.

    • 0 avatar

      Honda Element has a rubber “flooring”.

      • 0 avatar
        segfault

        The absence of carpet in the Element only makes the deafening noise from the lack of sound deadening even worse.

        • 0 avatar
          dirtlawyer

          My dog trainer told me to put a few pennies in an empty beer can and shake that can at my puppy when he would relieve himself indoors. That awful noise is the closest approximation I can give to driving my Element in the rain. I managed about 8 months before trading it on an LR3.

          • 0 avatar
            rockets

            I concur on the Element’s noise level. I took mine (AWD 5spd manual) on several long trips, and it was not comfortable at all. A friend had his “Dynamat-ed” and had a carpet kit put in, and it was measurable better.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      WeatherTech puts out some really nice liners. Not cheap, but nice.

      We have five dogs and we bought a cargo-area liner for the Grand Cherokee so my wife could take the dogs to the Vet, or whatever, in case I wasn’t around with my Tundra to do it for her.

      My best friend bought a whole set for his wife’s Grand Cherokee; driver side, passenger side, both passengers in the back and the cargo area liner. Big bucks, but the liners will outlive the car and will add value if he ever sells it.

      • 0 avatar
        burgersandbeer

        As far as I can tell, the WeatherTech liners are the MacNeil liners Jack is talking about. I always knew them by the WeatherTech name as well, and only discovered this googling MacNeil FloorLiner.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        The previous owner of our farm truck shelled out for some WeatherTechs. They’re deep enough to conceivably hold a few inches of standing water, and the driver’s side even has a custom molding to fit around the 4×4 lever. Pretty awesome.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        The Weathertech mats my sister bought for her MY 2014 Durango (based on my recommendation, which both she, her husband and her kids love) are the bomb-diggety and highly recommended especially if you live in the snow/salt belt.

        • 0 avatar

          My best friend just picked up his brand new Accord (2014, 4cyl, 3 pedals) today. He loves the car. The Weathertechs are on their way. Once, in his old Corolla, some paint sloshed out of a can. The weathertechs kept the actual floor from getting painted.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            My best friend with the Grand Cherokee once spilled a 64-oz Howdy’s coke refill he and his wife were sharing on a road trip, onto the driver side floor onto the WeatherTech, where the lid came off and all that ice and liquid spilled out.

            There was fear that the syrupy drink had spilled onto the factory carpet mats. It had not.

            He pulled over to the side of the road, wrestled out the WeatherTech, dumped it, rinsed the WeatherTech with some bottled drinking water and then wiped it down with the kitchen towels and Windex he carried in the cargo-carrier, and then continued on their merry way.

            Initially he bought the WeatherTech so as not to track mud and wet boots into the GC, but they’re good for more than that.

        • 0 avatar
          raresleeper

          I’ve long though about the purchase of the WeatherTech’s.

          I especially like how the rear floor mat is just, in many applications, one LONG liner that goes over “the hump” (if such drivetrain calls for the hump).

          But $2xx? For mats? Two hundred plus? Can’t pull the trigger there.

          Or I’m just too cheap. Or I don’t make enough. One or the other.

          Meh. Woe is me.

          Heard the Husky’s are effective but smells foul upon arrival and must be “aired out”. No thank you.

          Don’t think anything called “Husky” should be in just anyone’s car, either. Less you got yourself an F-150. (Neener neener!)

          • 0 avatar
            davefromcalgary

            raresleeper,

            its crazy, but I spent $2xx on WeatherTech’s for the Verano and I’ll say that, given the fact that there isn’t really a comparable generic product for less, they have been worth every penny, and it hasn’t even reached winter yet.

          • 0 avatar
            raresleeper

            Dave- I must make the investment.

            Plus, I just realized I spent over $350 on a damned battery (Odyssey Battery).

            SO there’s no reason why I can’t invest in some interior preservation.

    • 0 avatar
      burgersandbeer

      I think the Jeep Wrangler offers non carpet. At least it used to.

    • 0 avatar
      dancote

      Long-time participant. Don’t post much. Will post every time Weather tech mats come up. If they fit your car, they’re great.

      Don’t let the “laser-cut” moniker fool you. If they work for your car, great. If the laser-cut set you buy from them doesn’t fit your car, you’re advised to trim them to fit. You will not get a refund from this company for “laser-cut” mats that don’t fit in your car. Ask me how I know.

      Just for hahas, I need to let some of our newer participants know that I was nearly barred from the site, the first time I expressed my frustration/experience with this company. Well, I’m still here because the site found that my comments were/are accurate.

      And Weather tech is still putting out laser-cut mats. As I stated above, if their mats work in your application, they’re pretty good, but, buyer beware, because the company will not stand by their claims once you’ve paid for their product.

      • 0 avatar
        drw1926

        Thanks for the heads-up, I’ll keep that in mind if I’m ever considering the WeatherTech mats in the future.

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        The U.C.C. governs sales. If the company represents that they fit your vehicle, and they do not, they must refund your money – paying for shipping both ways.

        Never had any problem when I state the law. Plus, using Amex helps.

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        My buddy has tried to order Weathertech floormats on two occasions. Both times, they contacted him after he placed his order to let him know that they weren’t the perfectly fitted versions that he expected based on the info on the website, and he’d have to trim them. He cancelled the orders without any problem.

    • 0 avatar
      Noble713

      thelaine, I read this article and thought exactly the same thing. I’m not a fan of carpet in general, but especially despise the crap they put in cars. In this day and age, cars should come with some Herculiner-like coating instead. ESPECIALLY in the trunk.

      • 0 avatar
        thelaine

        Noble713, that’s where my feet go (or “feets,” as my family often jokes). So the first thing you do is cover it up. So no one can see or touch it. Huh? Then it just starts to wear and get stained because no one thought of gravity. Everything ends up down rhere, which you then grind in under pressure with your feets. PITA, unless you got luxo-mobile. Not me.

        I even took all the carpet out of the house. Every bit. Ceramic tile or wood. Rugs where needed. Cleans right up. Carpet is just a technology for collecting dirt from my shoes and storing it.

        Carpet bad. Mongo hate.

        • 0 avatar
          thornmark

          Carpet good for elderly parents. Tile bad.

        • 0 avatar
          Gottleib

          I was thinking the very same thing. Why have carpets at all in a car. Cars of yesteryear had rubber floor covering. It is easier to clean and you would only need to have those weather tech type mats to collect debris and moisture. Why protect the floor covering anyway, just saving it for the next owner. Why not use what you paid for.

          • 0 avatar
            TwoTone Loser

            If I find that somebody has removed my carpets and replaced them with rubber pad I will cane them.

            My carpets look fine, just a quick vacuum on the weekends, and no eating in the car, unless roadtrip.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          The first thing I suggest (humbly) to anyone with a family member with allergies, asthma, frequent respiratory or sinus infections, or other such maladies, is to get rid of ALL carpeting and throw rugs (even Berber and other short pile fiber ones).

          The carpeting is bad enough, and the padding underneath wall to wall carpeting makes it worse, at trapping indoor irritants, allergens, dust, dust mites, etc.

          I was talking to a friend who coaches little league several years back, and he told me that he estimated that at least a third of kids playing in his 9 and 10 year old league have either asthma or other allergy/respiratory ailments today; his father coached little league (including one of the teams I played for when I was a lad), and it was a rarity to see any kid with such problems.

          Building codes require residential builders to build tighter homes today without having to focus on bringing a sufficient quantity of fresh “makeup” air into dwellings; the inclusion of carpeting, carpet padding & rugs, only serves to ensure that allergens, dust, mold and other respiratory irritants get trapped indoors regardless as to how fastidious any homeowner is about cleaning their home.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            One of the only good things about Floodmagedon 2014 is that it gave me a reason to tear all the carpet up in my basement. 20 year old carpet pad on a basement floor is gross anyway. Especially since it looked like no one bothered to vacuum before they put the carpet down in the mid 90s.

  • avatar
    PRNDLOL

    What does LLIL LLL mean?

  • avatar
    gearhead77

    I too love Macneils products. The price is a bit hard to swallow, but on my leased Altima wth beige interior, the floor was pristine when I turned it in, after 3 years of Pittsburgh and Cleveland winters. I was going to get them for our Odyssey, but the wife balked at the price this time, since it was $200 for three row coverage. Got the OEM Honda rubber mats, which fit, but aren’t nearly the quality of Macneil.

    Hondas cost cutting used to not be apparent. But I’ve found this isn’t the case anymore, especially in the interior trim. Easily scratched and with visible mold part lines in places, our 14 Odyssey doesn’t exude the same quality feel that our 06 Accord had. The drivers door on the Odyssey was misaligned with the fender. This caused it to rub on the fender each time it opened. It wore the paint off in 35 miles of driving. Just got approval from Honda in August to fix a problem from May, though some of that was the dealers fault.

    • 0 avatar
      Thatkat09

      I think your comparing apples to oranges. I’ve noticed with every make and model, the bigger the car, the worse the interior is. It’d be fairer to Honda to compare an 06 Accord with a 2014 Accord. The misaligned door though is unacceptable, glad your getting it fixed.

      • 0 avatar
        gearhead77

        There might be some truth to that idea, but I still think quality has slipped. They aren’t alone, but Honda use to be much better at hiding it.

      • 0 avatar
        George B

        The US and many other countries have been experiencing a fair amount of inflation that’s partly disguised by lots of effort at cost reduction. My 6th generation Accord Coupe, even in a “well-aged” beater state, still drives like an Acura TL. My 9th generation Accord Sedan, new and loaded with accessories, no longer feels like a less expensive Acura. Adjusting for inflation, the new one is also less expensive. We’re probably approaching the limits of cost reduction to hide the loss currency value.

  • avatar
    rentonben

    Honda Accord: So boring, it makes Jack Baruth write about floor mats.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    My former xB1’s factory floormats looked like that after 7 years, 7 winters, and 70k miles.

    But I don’t wear the sort of shoes you do.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    I don’t know if they salt the roads up there, but road salt kills floormats. Winter is coming.

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      Amen. And the “salt” has evolved into sophisticated mixtures whose films are hellishly difficult to clean off glass and impossible to remove from mats once ground in.

      But when I’m on those winter roads, I’m thanking whoever keeps tweaking the stuff. Especially in the early morning when yesterday’s melt would’ve previously become black ice.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        You can remove those salt mixtures by soaking the mats with apple cider vinegar. You won’t be able to get the vinegar smell out, but when you use the heater in winter, it keeps your nasal passages clear.

        • 0 avatar
          petezeiss

          Thanks for the idea but I have a personal aversion to the smell of vinegar.

          I once worked in a building where the maintenance people used vinegar to clean all the hard floors and stairwells.

          Every. Blessed. Day. Vinegar.

  • avatar
    bryanska

    So it’s still 2007 in the Honda floor mat offices.

    Same thing plagued my original Honda Fit.

    Honda: reliable because there’s nothing worthwhile to break.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      It doesn’t seem so long ago when I nearly purchased a $13kish 1992 Honda Civic manual transmission vehicle where the AC was a (I think) $800 plug-and-play dealer installed option, without floor mats.

      Two years later, I actually bought a Civic EX 5 Speed manual, that did come with floor mats, for full MSRP (the only car I ever paid anywhere NEAR, let alone within 18% of MSRP for; they were such a hot commodity, Michigan dealers were shipping them by the truckload to California Honda Dealers for a profit).

  • avatar
    robert_h

    This was easily the most entertaining account of a floor mat purchase that I have read. Or am likely to read. Half life of Bohrium-262: 84 milliseconds.

  • avatar
    burgersandbeer

    “It’s a forty-five-mile drive and believe it or not the Accord does just fine with three six-foot adults in the back seat for that trip.”

    I don’t believe it, unless all “just fine” means is you were able to stuff them in there and they could still fasten seatbelts. Six foot males with proportional shoulders can’t comfortably sit three across in much of anything, nevermind a midsize coupe.

    It’s nice that it can be done if you need to, and that’s likely more than the Mustang can say. That said, I’m sure they were miserable back there.

  • avatar
    RogerB34

    The Honda brake pads are soft meaning they wear faster than the usual pads.
    Good stoppers and easy on the disk.
    I replaced at 27k miles.

  • avatar
    mjz

    I really HATE how Honda limits not just the exterior colors, but even more maddening, usually only offers only ONE interior color selection per exterior color. So, if I want the “White Orchid Pearl” (Accord EX-L Coupe w/V-6, manual) with an all black interior, I can’t get that, only the Black/Ivory combo. Likewise, if I want the red exterior, but with the B/I interior combo, I can’t get that either. Just all black. Why not let ME choose? They already produce both interior colors, why not offer them with all exterior colors too? Ugh!

    • 0 avatar
      N8iveVA

      Yeah it pisses me off. They come down the same damn assembly line so how hard is it to do it?

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        Re: Colors… it’s not a question of how hard it is to do. It’s a question of inventory. Honda wants and needs to keep inventory low, so they don’t want to produce a bunch of cars in colors (with a MT) that would sit on the lot.

        MINI will produce cars with every color in the rainbow, but it will cost. Mercedes will also customize for you, and arrange a European Delivery Program where you can tour the factory, see your car as it’s being built, and give you a great excuse to vacation in Germany. But it will cost.

        Hmmm… I wonder how long their floor mats last.

    • 0 avatar
      Jacob

      Good question. Or why are 6MT coupes with 4 cylinder engine available only in black color? It’s a damn arrogant company, considering the same cars sold in Canada have more colors. Too bad for 6MT lovers, Mazda and Passat are now the only midsize alternative

  • avatar
    Japanese Buick

    So what you’re saying is that the floor mats Honda provides with their cars are like the ink cartridges that HP provides with their printers?

  • avatar
    b787

    Barefoot driving is awesome.

  • avatar
    Madroc

    I have the same complaint (and similar mileage) on my Mustang — the floor mats are made of tissue paper. I do wear dress shoes four days a week, but it still seems too soon to have a hole worn through them. Torn between ordering some good aftermarket mats or just stocking up from the Saleen website (which sells them as take-off parts for next to nothing).

  • avatar
    carguy

    Jack – in your next update it would be great to hear how the paint deals with stone chips. I have had a few complaints from Honda owners that even small stone chips get through to the bare metal and it would be good to know if this is true or just some people complaining.

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      Nice segue for me….

      How abut an article on SPLASHGUARDS?

      I insist upon them for myself and harangue family to get them; OEM on new cars so no paint or rust-through warranties are voided by our drilling to mount aftermarket. I’ve even bought them for a couple of my tribe who scoffed at my advice.

      They are invaluable in Salt Country. First, they keep stone chips down; second, they minimize salt spray onto those that occur.

    • 0 avatar
      carrya1911

      How you drive is going to impact it. If your car sees lots of highway miles, you’ll end up with lots of chips in the front end. If you drive mostly in the city at the lower speeds that brings, you’ll have far fewer. My car sees mostly city life and the front clip is nearly flawless even going into my third year of ownership.

      The paint on the Accord *is* thin and it will not take much to penetrate through it. I have an AVS hood protector on my Sport, and I bought a bra for those occasions where I know I’m going on a highway journey.

    • 0 avatar
      CoastieLenn

      My wife’s old 1999 Accord was terrible about stone chips but not NEARLY as bad as her father’s 2004 Accord. I was fixing rock chips in that thing bi-monthly. It seems as if my in-laws new 2014 Accord is just as bad.

      Sure, I’m a sample size of one but a 100% result yeild between three vehicles.

  • avatar
    jbltg

    Accord is one of the best-handling front wheel drive cars out there. This from a die-hard rear wheel drive fan who can get away with that “luxury” here in snowless LA.

    Just as importantly: what the hell happened to loop pile carpeting and mats? The stuff in my 1995 Miata wore like iron. All contemporary automobile carpeting now strikes me as cheap junk that is virtually impossible to clean.

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    I’ve put 3000 miles on the Altima since 7/14, and I don’t know where the hell I’ve even gone besides work! Those miles just seem to come from nowhere!

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I thought factory carpet floormats were just something to be taken out of the car the day of delivery, replaced with the all-season rubber mat of your choice, and stuck in the garage. Both my G8 mats and my Forester mats are in the garage and have never seen a foot. The Forester has the factory all-weather mats, which are horrible and not worth the $0 I paid for them (if I were doing it again, I’d get the WeatherTechs). The G8 has Hexomats, which work and wear surprisingly well for how thin and cheap they feel.

    The factory Honda all-weather mats in my ’04 TSX were excellent. Great coverage, could hold lots of muck, wore well. I’m curious if they’re still as good.

  • avatar

    I’m very pleased with the Jetta SportWagen because it enabled me to get the “Cornsilk Beige” interior color. On most of VW’s vehicles (including the rugged and capable Touareg), if you get beige leather, you get a beige carpet, and the only way to get a dark carpet is if you go with the black interior…which is what I would have had to do because I will *never* do a beige carpet again. But on the Tiguan and Jetta SportWagen, you get black carpet on all of the interior colors, including the beige. Note that most manufacturers have been doing the black carpet/beige upholstery theme for at least a little while, but VW is behind the times for the most part. Second, my SportWagen had an added package which gave me the TDI-branded all-weather floor mats and a few other items. Otherwise I’d have gone and bought rubber floor mats. So I’m sitting pretty happy because clean-up is a cinch and I’m not nervously watching the floor every time someone has a drink in my car.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      My wife’s Touareg has the Cornsilk interior and came with both beige carpet floor mats as well as the black rubber Monster mats, and I immediately installed the rubber ones from day one. They are really well constructed, a cinch to clean, and keep the carpet pristine. I liked them so much that I ordered a set of Monster mats for my GTI and replaced the carpet mats.

      A 1990 Accord I had had the highest quality carpeted mats I have ever had before or since. When I sold the car ten years later, they looked as good as the day they were new. It’s a shame that Honda appears to now skimp on this. It’s the thoughtful little things that once made Honda such an exception to the rest of the industry.

      • 0 avatar

        Yes, we’ve also had a 1990 Accord (EX, white exterior/eggplant-colored interior with leatherette upholstery), and I can say the same for *its* carpets. They held up very well. We stopped driving it in 2006, started driving it again briefly in 2011 and didn’t get rid of it until this past April, when we loaned it to a family friend and it ate its timing belt, bending all of the valves (which we don’t at all blame the family friend for). We got a lot of use out of it, considering the fact that it’s older than *I* am.

        • 0 avatar
          cargogh

          My ’90 Accord EX had 245,000 on it when I sold it. Both the upholstery and floor mats were surprisingly intact after I scrubbed all the crud off to get it ready to sell. Very impressive considering I ground grit into them with work boots for months at a time without vacuuming.

    • 0 avatar
      z9

      Not to burst your bubble about your fine TDI Sportwagen, but those “monster mats” VW charges WeatherTech prices for are the rubber equivalent of Jack’s Accord carpet mats. You’ll have worn a heel-sized hole through them in far less than 12,000 miles. If you really need to step on the word Jetta every day, keep buying a new set (replacements used to be a fraction of the VW price on Amazon) just to get a new driver’s mat. Otherwise, cut your losses now and get something that will actually last and can be hosed off in seconds. That’s the other thing that bugs me about the VW mats — all those grooves basically require a toothbrush to get clean, and then they’ll look filthy microseconds after you put them back into your car. Those grooves are also the reason why the mat is so weak under the driver’s right foot. But hey, if you ever need to wipe dog poop off your shoes inside your car I guess they serve a purpose.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Jack,
    Looking at the amount of driving you do and the ‘authoring’, you’ve done well to put 12k on the car.

    The 7 months flew really quickly.

    Enjoy the car.

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    Paint and thin metal.
    Does any lower end car really have a good paint job or thick skin?
    My Mazdas all are Coors Beer can thin. I mean, the 6 has been worked on for hail twice now!
    I spoke to an old body guy and he told me some time back in the eighties cars became super thin. He was always afraid of what would happen when he was installing aftermarket moon roofs. On some cars the whole roof would collapse inward when the cut was made.
    I will say, for all here that bash Ford…my MKS seems made like a tank! In even the worst hail here in MO the car just takes beatings and keeps on shining.
    I guess there s no way to make a solid car by cheating on the thick skin.
    You want a good car, it will weigh more.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I have a set of front floor mats from McNeil in my 99 S-10 pickup that are over 6 years old and appear to be as good as new. I also have tinted McNeil side window deflectors on all my vehicles which help with the sun and act like a rain deflector. McNeil products are pricey but in the long run they are worth it. Buy their products once and they will last as long as you need them.

  • avatar
    segfault

    The driver’s floor mat of my 2009 Altima didn’t look quite that bad at around 45k when I replaced it with Nissan’s OEM rubber mats. The rubber mats were in great shape when I sold the car at around 71k. My GLI had the Monster Mats installed at the factory (or more likely at the port) when I bought it.

  • avatar
    skor

    “while running at 80-100mph returns about 28.5 over longer distances.”

    I’d like to know where lil’ Jackie lives where he can drive 100mph ‘over long distances’….without the po-po pulling him over? Utah salt flats?

    • 0 avatar
      Nick_515

      I’d like to second that.

      Jack care to tell us about your tickets in your life some day? I mean i know being pulled over isn’t as sexy as tales of speeding, but it must be a fact of life.

      I only have ‘moments’ of 100-110 on the i-90, as well as quick passing on two-lane roads. Otherwise I stay at 80-90 most of my time. I am a constant “14 over” kind of guy, and have gotten REALLY lucky to not get ticketed in two years now. Last time it was the sweetest, babe-face cop who laser-clocked me at 85 in a 70 zone somewhere close to a big city in Ohio… come to think of it might have been Cleveland. But it’s coming, and it’s going to hurt.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      Is anything over 80 still reckless driving in Ohio? I know it was back in the 90s. It still is in Virginia.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      There’s a huge chunk of the US between roughly Kansas City and Las Vegas where the posted rural interstate highway speed limit is 75 mph and the signs are understood to mean try not to exceed 85 mph. Significant areas are now posted 80 mph with speeds up to 90 mph tolerated. Not quick bursts of speed, but set your cruise control to 85 mph and leave it there for hours.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_limits_in_the_United_States

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        “There’s a huge chunk of the US between roughly Kansas City and Las Vegas where the posted rural interstate highway speed limit is 75 mph and the signs are understood to mean try not to exceed 85 mph”

        Yup. Been on those roads myself. Even 18-wheelers barrel along at 85mph, if they are not governored down to 73mph.

        On US80 going West out of Tooelle much of the traffic flows at a sustained rate of over 100mph. I joined a group of drivers that cruised at 105mph for about an hour.

        Gas consumption in our Grand Cherokee was really, really bad on that stretch, and I had to tank up again at the first gas station we ran across,. So did all the other drivers ahead of me.

        And my Garmin was the silent witness to it all, recording it all ever so faithfully.

  • avatar
    WheelMcCoy

    “… while running at 80-100mph returns about 28.5 over longer distances. ”

    Only Jack (and maybe a few TTAC commenters) can casually say 80-100mph. I’ve flirted with 90mph, not for the thrill of it, but to keep up with traffic!

    As for floor mats, based on ad pages, Road & Track needs to change their marquee to Road & Track & WeatherTech. I generally like carpet mats; they set a warmer tone. But after wearing down the OEM carpet mats and OEM all weather mats, I recently went for the WeatherTech FloorLiners (just the front) and so far so good.

    This was quite an entertaining piece just to say “12k miles and all is well” about the Accord V6 Coupe. Hope to read more at 24k.

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    32k mile 2012 Civic reporting in, some wear on floor mats but nothing unexpected or that noticeable. I am much more worried about the driver’s left bolster getting a hole worn through. Very few stone chips on the front end. Stock Firestone Affinity tires have another 5k left in them. Oh in hot weather the “next folder” button on the stereo sticks sometimes. Oil changes seem to stretch out to 9k+ miles if I follow the monitor, and sure enough if I change the oil prematurely (0w-20 synthetic), it comes out looking very light and usable still. Dipstick goes from full to about the half mark over these intervals, I figure less than half a quart. Driving is about 50/50 commuting and highways. These newfangled synthetic oils are like water! For reference my ’96 4Runner with 112k miles uses absolutely no 5w30 conventional oil between 5-6k changes.

  • avatar
    jim brewer

    Available in just four different colors? Wow.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    I have no doubt that the Accord coupe is a supremely competent car, but the styling is just so bland, I don’t think I could buy one. Even the Accord sedan looks better.

  • avatar
    Jacob

    I wonder if Accord coupe still makes much sense considering the 2015 Mustang Ecoboost. The the same price, the Mustang will give more power, more option, and a performance package, and you could actually select a color.

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      “I wonder if Accord coupe still makes much sense considering the 2015 Mustang Ecoboost.”

      I’ll have to check the specs, but the Accord Coupe might still offer more back seat room. Honda’s shifters are also among the best in the business, and their engines are fun to rev.

      Along with more performance and choice of colors, the 2015 Mustang would definitely be less anonymous, and is RWD.

      So the deciding factor would be a TTAC Floormat Faceoff.

  • avatar

    The original floor mats in my 1994 Lexus SC400 are filthy, but show no significant wear. They certainly look better than those six month old Honda mats. Plus, my 2013 Lexus GS350 gets close to the gas mileage of that Honda.

    • 0 avatar

      Late-model GS 350? Nice. As it stands, that’s the only new Lexus I’d want to own. It’s a thrill to drive, wears Lexus’ newest school of design extremely well, and has Toyota reliability. It’s also tens of thousands of dollars more than I’d spend on a car at this stage in life. Still, what’s not to love?

  • avatar

    I bought a leftover 2013 Civic back in the spring. Fine little car, but the carpet is the poorest excuse for carpet I have ever seen! As for the floormats, they will look like new as long as I own the car, as I always put a set of old mats over them. And speaking of older mats, I have a set of mats that my parents bought from the dealer when they bought their 1992 Civic. Dad paid over $100 for them, so they were kept when the car was sold. I still use them. Other than some staining on the drivers mat, and part of the metal rod starting to poke out of the bottom, they have worn VERY well! The other three still look like brand new! Of course, I have sprayed fabric protector on them a number of times over the years, so that helps too :)

  • avatar
    jaydez

    Every factory floor mat I’ve owned in the last 10 years has done that… except Hyundai.

    My 2006 Fusion had them replaced twice under warranty before ford released new ones with a small rubber block where your heel goes to prevent it. My 2012 Focus had them replaced twice under warranty before the DCT made me give it up at 37000 miles. The factory mats I got for my 05 Explorer were worn out at 13000 miles of use.

    I just picked up a 2014 Accord Sport 6MT and was really hoping that the mats would last. I guess not. At least its covered under the warranty and I can have them replaced 3 times before the warranty is up. I really don’t want to have to put rubber mats in my car. I like soft carpeting under my feet.

  • avatar
    turboprius

    We have carpet floor mats. No big deal. Sure, they have a lot of stains, even mom’s RAV4 with only 30K miles, but they’re pretty easy to clean. My sister’s Sams Club drink spilled all over the seats and the floor mats, and this issue was solved by taking out the mats, thoroughly cleaning them, and then putting them back in.

    However, when my dad still drove the Rogue, he tore up the floor mat. Five years old and 60 something thousand miles. He just bought a no-frills replacement from Walmart. Thankfully, the Rogue has black floormats, so the dirt isn’t as hard to see as the RAV4’s gray ones.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      My approach is to buy aftermarket rubber floor mats as soon as I buy a car. Take the original carpet mats out immediately and throw them in the back of the garage. When I am ready to sell the car, I reinstall the original mats – it makes the whole interior seem like new. Then I throw the rubber mats cleaned up) in the trunk, telling the buyer that they are good for winter use.

      • 0 avatar
        turboprius

        In 2011, when our garage and garage floor were painted, the painters told my parents to park their cars on some rubber floor mats, to protect the paint and the tires. Maybe it’s because I’m not used to it, but I cannot picture those cheap rubber mats in place of the gray ones that have the RAV4 logo embedded into them. Besides, under the floor mats is still a stain-prone, carpet material.

        And in terms of selling, it doesn’t really matter. I remember being so excited when I saw mom’s MPV listed on cars.com at Team Nissan Marietta. 64,965 miles and only nine grand. It left after a week; today, I’m highly betting they just shipped it to auction. That’s probably what will happen once my parents are done with the Rogue and the RAV4.

  • avatar
    dougjp

    Honda floormats! I almost forgot about that garbage. Yes they all do that.

  • avatar
    EspritdeFacelVega

    I can’t believe that in this long thread of comments from so-called car enthusiasts not one has mentioned COCOA or SISAL mats!!! I just ordered a set of cocoas this weekend for my Infiniti M45, from cocomats.com. These were a big 50s SoCal Euro car scene thing, and were found on Porsche 356s, Jag XK140s and their ilk. Not all that expensive (around $200 for 4; they look far pricier), and incredibly cool-looking – they always draw compliments – but, best of all, they do not wear one whit over the lifetime of the car, and make it a lot easier to keep your footwells clean. I have had them in almost every car I’ve owned, and the set in my wife’s Mazda looked good enough that my Mother-in-Law asked me to get a set for her Hyundai minivan (I had to trace the mat outline for the guys at Coco Mats from the van’s carpet mats (in the same shape as Jack’s)as, curiously, they’d never received a request for a Sedona/Entourage owner). Coco Mats is my favourite, but there are several others out there.

    When I lived in the north I would swap these out in winter for factory winter mats; all makes have them. Be careful with the cheapo aftermarket Pep Boys/Canadian Tire rubber mats – cold temps will make them crack and all that lovely snow will melt under the mat, creating a mouldy mess for springtime. I don’t know about Macneils – the encyclopedic advertising in the buff books always puts me off – but Cannons, not easy to get in North America, are worthwhile.

    Lighter carpeting is daft in any car, and I happen to love lighter interiors. The standard carpet mats are all horrible, as is most automotive carpeting. In fact, it seems to be one little area where carmakers have very obviously cheaped-out in recent years, even (especially??) the luxury makes.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    5 paragraphs about floormats is a good thing.

    I bought winter floor mats when I bought my 2004 Impala and put the factory ones away. Sold the car with brand-new floormats. Stupid of me!

    When I bought my 2012 Impala, I bought winter floor mats and put the factory ones away. Last spring, I removed the winter mats and put the carpeted ones in. Why not use them?

    I really don’t like carpeting in cars because the driver’s side becomes worn and looks awful. I once owned a 1961 Chevy Bel Air that had rubber flooring. Funny, the floors were rubber but the center hump was carpeted! I believe the OEMs use carpeting for noise reduction and insulation.

  • avatar
    mikey

    @ Zackman I bought the winter rubber mats, with the octagonal pattern, and the Impala logo, for my 09 Impala, $90 bucks from the dealer.

    I put them in the trunk in the spring, and forgot about them. I don’t usually leave anything in my trunk. So when I traded the car, I never even checked. I didn’t even think about it until about a month later.

    Grrrr.

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    Our 2002 CRV has over 200k on the original full set of mats. Back then they didnt have just typical floor mats, the entire floor is covered in a set of mats that snap together between the front seats and the rear floor so it covers really well. Of course that was 12 yrs ago. Our new Civics do not seem to have cheap mats, no problems so far with them, but we did try out the OEM Honda rubber floor and trunk liners and they are junk compared to Weathertechs. But for $35 for the set they were at least cheap.

  • avatar
    tienbac2005

    My 2013 Civic came with floormats, they seem to be ok but not that great, but the actual carpeting of the car itself seemed of lower quality than I’d expect it to be. I ended up getting fitted rubber floormats instead knowing that it won’t last long with kids running in and out all the time.

    Ditto on the crappy paint jobs that Honda has on cars nowadays. I think paint has been their weak spot, even in their older ones (1993 Prelude) had some premature clear coat failure. Not parked in direct sunlight, but not in a garage under a car port did its toll.

    On the 2013 Civic, orange peel, nasty rock chips and weird looking runs on the edges (not quite runs, but looks like where the paint accumulates when it waits to dry so there is a little bump on the ends of the fender near the headlights). Poor car looks like it is crying, the paint drop is that noticeable.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Definitely cheap-o floormats. Most decent mats have a rubber section right where the wear spot is, to avoid just the problem your photo illustrates. The stock floormats in my ’08 Pilot EX-L are quite nice. However, I switch them out for rubber mats about Thanksgiving and switch them back in around the end of March. That period coincides with possible snowfalls and the associated muck in my part of the world.

    For the leadfoots amount you, the Waze app for Iphone (and, I presume, for Android phones) is the 21st century equivalent of the old citizens band radio that became common in the early 1970s, when police started enforcing the “double nickel” speed limit. Both systems are essentially crowd-sourced information about traffic, police activity and speed traps ahead on your highway. One thing for sure, if you’re doing 90+ the chances of John Law sneaking up on you from behind are pretty small.

    Macho posturing aside, in my part of the world, I can’t imagine a place where it would be reasonable to travel at sustained triple digit speeds, except possibly at 3:00 a.m., and then I would be concerned about the alertness of the pilot, not to mention seriously overdriving your headlights.

  • avatar
    KrohmDohm

    Honda is definitely cutting costs everywhere they think consumers won’t notice. The paint on my wife’s former 2012 CR-V was just thick enough to call it paint and not an airbrush job. I finally have my first substantial rock chip on my Hyundai Elantra GT 1yr3mos and 18,000+ miles into owning it. Her front end looked like it had acne after 2 years of commuting. Oh, and except for slight heel wear by the gas pedal my Hyundai standard issue floor mats look almost new after a quick vacuuming.

  • avatar
    JMII

    WOW – JB and me BOTH owned an ’83 Civic 1500S hatchback. Mine was red… but just like today that was ONE of only THREE colors available (the others were white and silver).

    #2 I assumed JB would heel/toe all the time, but by the look of those mats is the same wear pattern I’ve gotten from all my years of manual driving – and I don’t heel/toe!

  • avatar
    davew833

    I have an ’89 Accord LXI coupe and an ’89 Accord SEi coupe and both still have the original floor mats. Aside from the embroidered logos, the thick, closed-loop pile carpet mats are still in excellent condition. I suspect the carpet underneath is “like new” as well.

  • avatar
    Felix Hoenikker

    Jack,

    I’m a few days late to the party here, but just want to chime in. I took delivery of a white 2014 Accord sedan with the 4 banger and CVT in mid June. I now have over 4K miles on it in 95% highway driving. It is returning a self reported 36.4 mpg at 70 mph +/- 5 mph over the last 2K miles. Sticker says 36 mpg highway.
    So far no complaints except that the blue tooth will not pair with my One Touch Fierce smart phone.
    I am impressed by the combination of smooth handling and quiet. I found myself going 80 mph a few times without realizing it because of the lack of noise inside.
    The only part of the buying process that I didn’t need was when the F&I guy spent a half hour trying to get me to buy a third party warranty. “But. don’t you see the value in this?” he would say. I replied no I don’t because I can afford to fix things when the car is our of warranty so I don’t need to buy insurance (extended warranties) at high prices. It took three iterations before he realized that he was dealing with a hard case and just wasting his time.

  • avatar
    tarmstrong86

    Jack, given your passion for VW’s and having only owned Honda’s and Mazda’s, would going for a VW GTI wield a huge difference in reliability and dealership treatment?

    Guess you could say I would love to have a VW, but it scares the crap out of me going from my safe and reliable 60k Mazda3 and 120k Civic.

    Thanks.


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