Ace of Base: 2018 Honda Accord LX
The 10th-generation Accord sedan has been thrust into a marketplace infatuated with crossovers and all-wheel-drive machines of every type and description. Lower, wider, and with more interior room than its predecessor, the Accord’s new clothes wear well, tapering to the rear with a fastback flair. You just know there’s at least one Honda sales person out there using the words “four-door coupe.”
Thing is, some folks are so brand loyal to the Honda marque that they’ll buy one simply because the word “Accord” is hammered onto the trunk lid. For the rest of us, let’s take a look at this year’s base model Accord and see if it measures up to our Ace of Base yardstick.
The base Accord comes standard with Honda’s suite of Sensing safety features, standing ready to cry foul if the driver puts a wheel wrong. The assistive technology helps one stay aware of their surroundings, bundling adaptive cruise control with lane keeping and road departure mitigation systems. For it to be included on a $23,570 sedan is nothing short of remarkable.
Under the hood is a direct-injection 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-four, making 192 horsepower and a like amount of torque. Peak twist is available nearly off idle (1,500 rpm) all the way up to five grand, making this mill a responsive little unit. The sole transmission in this base Accord is the CVT. Want to row your own? You’ll need to make the $2,200 walk to the Sport trim, sir.
In an incredible fit of largesse, Honda ladles on the $0 paint choices ranging from Radiant Red to the superb Kona Coffee hue shown here. Why didn’t I choose the look-at-me crimson like I normally do? Because it is only available with a beige interior, that’s why. Black cloth is far superior.
The Accord’s infotainment system now features a brace of knobs, one for volume and one for tuning, the way that nature and Soichiro Honda intended. A 7-inch color LCD screen features all manner of Bluetooth and audio options, plus it displays images from a multi-angle rearview camera. Vexingly, satellite radio doesn’t appear until the $27,470 EX trim.
Dual zone climate control assures that both front seat occupants are comfortable. There are no heated seats at this price, and the rear bench folds down as a single unit. Push button start, cruise control, and a tilt/telescope wheel are all shared with more expensive Accords.
Up front, the 2018 Accord LX sports expensive-looking LED headlights not unlike the ones found in Acuras, at least at first glance. They do a convincing job of portraying an upscale appearance, even on the base model. Some may take issue with the 2018’s proclivity to jut the top of its grille forward a bit, like a dog with an overbite. I do not find it offensive, yet. Check back with me in a couple of months.
LEDs adorn the base Accord’s brakelights on its tail, with a couple of snazzy integrated LED light bars thrown in for good measure. Door handles and mirrors are body color, so one needn’t worry about flat black trim advertising your base-model thriftiness to the neighbors. A 17-inch alloy wheel is found at each corner.
Does the 2018 Accord LX make the Ace of Base grade? Given its price of $23, 570 and laundry list of standard equipment, I think it does … even if one is forced to take the CVT rather than a manual. However, the base LX offers a remarkable feature-to-price ratio and, quite simply, it’s an Accord. To some, especially loyal owners who’ve bought multiple copies in the nameplate’s 40 years, that’s all that matters.
For the rest of us, it is simply a great family conveyance that’ll retain more than a shred of resale value and isn’t yet another milquetoast crossover. That by itself is worth an Ace of Base stamp of approval.
Not every base model has aced it. The ones which have? They help make the automotive landscape a whole lot better. What do you think of this choice, B&B? Let us know in the comments. Naturally, feel free to eviscerate our selection.
The model above is shown with American options and is priced in Freedom Dollars. As always, your dealer may sell for less.
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I had high hopes for the 2018 Accord but I don't think it's for me. I'm looking for a comfortable midsize sedan with three features: heated front seats, android auto and advanced safety features. The Accord LX has the latter but not the heated front seats and android auto - I'll need to purchase the EX for those features. But for substantially less money I could get the Hyundai Sonata SEL with the Tech package. I'd love to buy the Accord but is it really worth it over the Sonata? I'll have to do more investigating but right now I'm leaning towards the Sonata.
"Black cloth is far superior." The black cloth interior is the only aspect of my 2014 Accord EX that I can't stand. Unlike beige, it shows everything and never looks clean. Not to mention living on the gulf coast with a black interior.