Honda is chanting the mantra in which the automotive industry magically delivers “a collision-free society” by leveraging the latest technology. Though this is hardly a novel marketing strategy, even for Honda, and one that predictably requires you to be patient because the company says it won’t be arriving as standard equipment until 2030.
While some brands are running away from the full-size sedan segment as if it were populated with venomous rattlesnakes, others are re-upping their wares on a decently regular basis. The latest? Honda, with its venerable Accord.
Just don’t think it’s going to make as much power as it once did, okay?
Hello there and welcome to the first edition of the TTAC Quick Drive. This is basically a short version of a car review that we will apply either when a test vehicle doesn't really need a full review (perhaps its a mild refresh and mechanically unchanged) or we didn't get a lot of miles on a car (perhaps we drive a vehicle at an event for only 15 minutes). We may also use this to preview the full review of a vehicle that will publish later.
The Honda Pilot has been with us for four generations now, showing up for duty after the suits at Honda finally figured out two decades ago that Americans were serious about their thirst for XL SUVs. For 2023, the model earns new looks, a revamped interior, and a more powerful V6 engine.
Honda hasn’t sold the Prelude in more than 20 years, but a crop of new rumors have us hoping to see an electrified version of the iconic Japanese coupe. Australia’s Drive uncovered a story from Japan’s Best Car publication that says Honda will bring the Prelude name back in 2028 on a new EV.
For 2023, the Honda Civic LX is getting the boot – effectively making the Sport the new base trim. But this also means the model will become $2,100 more expensive than the previous generation. The good news is that the Sport comes with more features, though that may be of little consolation to cash-strapped buyers that had hoped the sickly global economy would result in cheaper and more practical automobiles taking the stage.
It has been exactly 45 years since Honda announced it would put plans in motion to begin building vehicles in the United States. Given that important date in company history, we shouldn’t be too surprised it chose today to announce they are investing several billion dollars in Ohio, all earmarked for EVs.
One could be forgiven for worrying that when Honda updated the Civic, it would muck things up. Make a good thing worse. Especially when it comes to the enthusiast-oriented Si trim.
The eleventh-generation car debuted last year as a 2022, and the Si version followed soon after. As most of you no doubt know, the Si is the hopped-up performance version of the Civic, though it’s not the highest-performance trim. That would be the Type R, which is currently on hiatus for the moment – the 2023 Honda Civic Type R will bow soon.
The new Civic Type R is one of the most anticipated Honda vehicles in decades. Besides a few teaser images, the automaker has been characteristically mum on specs and details. That changed late yesterday when Honda dropped a load of new information on the car, including horsepower and engine specs.
Honda is reportedly considering tweaking its global supply chain to create a firm distinction between the Chinese and global markets. While the whole world has seen production stymied by restrictive protocols introduced in response to COVID-19, the Chinese Communist Party has retained a zero-tolerance policy that appears to have totally upended its economy and resulted in continued factory stalls. That's bad news for several Japanese automakers that have stepped up their reliance on Chinese production.
Last year, roughly 40 percent of Honda's automotive production (which includes part sourcing) came through China. This year, the company is allegedly wondering how to tear itself away from the market without losing the ability to sell cars to its massive population.
Honda is showing off the 2023 Civic Type R prior to its official debut on July 20th to whet global appetites.
While the manufacturer said “the camo is coming off” in its latest round teasers, the model remains heavily obscured to maintain hype before the big reveal. Though the vehicle has historically not strayed all that far from mainstream Civic variants, often adding some aerodynamic enhancements to make the Type R more stable at speed. Based on what we’ve seen of the camouflaged test mules, that looks to be the recipe once again.
One of the things this author has always appreciated about the Honda Ridgeline is its car-like qualities. More than once, the phrase “Accord on stilts” has escaped my lips when talking about the Ridgeline with fellow auto scribes, and I meant it as a compliment.
Imagine my dismay to find that the refreshed 2021 Honda Ridgeline felt jussssst a bit more “trucky” than before.
Honda has begun teasing out the electric Prologue in earnest, with its latest offering being a sketch of what appears to be a lifted Civic. Though what we’re actually seeing is the brand’s newest “adventure-ready” SUV tapping into the same inoffensive design language that now graces the ever-popular sedan.
The styling is neutral, perhaps even a little dull. But it’s unlikely to put anybody in a bad mood and is still rounded off in all the places one would expect from an EV. The Prologue looks as though it could come from Lucid, just with a dash of rugged design from Rivian and underpinned by Honda’s current design language. There’s little to gripe about, though there’s also not much to ogle.
Ahead of Honda’s planned EVs offensive for the United States, the automaker has announced a deluge of hybrid variants of existing products. However these new vehicles will come at the expense of the Insight, which the company had just confirmed will be discontinued after 2022. In its stead will be new hybrid trips for the CR-V, Accord, and Civic — the latter of which served as the template for the passing model.
“Early morning, April 4, shot rings out in the Memphis sky” — so goes the lyric from one of my favorite ’80s rock songs, U2’s great “Pride (In the Name of Love), referencing the death of Martin Luther King, Jr., which of course took place on a fateful spring day.
Now that I’ve burned that lede from the list of possible references to be used someday, let me pivot to something that’s happening this coming April 4 — something much less serious than the death of a civil-rights activist.
The wraps come off the 2023 Honda HR-V.
Much like the V20 Toyota Camry covered by Rare Rides recently, Honda’s CA generation Accord was a big, important step forward for Honda’s mainstream sedan. Designed for a global market and manufactured in many different countries, the CA Accord put the nameplate on the minds of many a middle-market American consumer. Let’s take a trip back in time, to when cars were still square.
Sketches of the next bite-sized Honda surfaced this morning, showing a vehicle with an admittedly big gob but wearing proportions that are a smidgen less awkward than the machine which has been around now for very nearly a decade in some markets. If this were pre-pandemic times, we’d be bleating that a Right Spec would help buyers select the best of what’s being cleared out of dealer lots in favor of the new rig. That’s hardly the case these days.
Nevertheless, it’s entertaining to learn where the different trims land in terms of desirability. Let’s find out what’s on tap for the final model year of this HR-V generation
The North American International Auto Show, aka the Detroit Auto Show, isn’t taking place in January anymore. It’s set for a move to September.
But that didn’t stop the traditional North American Car and Truck of the Year award ceremony from taking place at [s]Cobo Center[/s] Huntington Place this morning.
With some copies of the existing Civic Type R trading for exorbitant sums, it should come as no surprise that the Big H has been working on a new iteration based on the latest-gen Civic introduced earlier this year. While there are still plenty of details up in the air – powertrain and price to name just two – these official images give us a great indication of what the thing will look like.
Spoiler alert: It won’t be as startling as the last one.
Honda is recalling nearly 789,000 vehicles over a defect that could cause the hood to fly up while driving. While anyone wanting to reenact their favorite scene from 1995’s Tommy Boy is going to be thrilled, those less eager to follow Chris Farley into an early grave will probably want to get their car repaired ahead of any hilarious mishaps.
A report filed by the manufacturer with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) listed the affected models. They include the 2019 Honda Passport, 2016-2019 Honda Pilot, and 2017-2020 Honda Ridgeline. This impacts 788,931 vehicles globally, with the vast majority (725,000) being located in the United States.
Our Buy/Drive/Burn today is yet another reader suggested trio, this time from SoCalMikester. Mike wants to take a look a three quite affordable compact hatchbacks from 2007. Honda, Nissan, and Scion are all on offer today, but which one’s worth your limited number of 2007 dollars?
The next Honda Civic Si is here, and on paper, it seems to keep the flame going nicely.
Not just in terms of performance specs, but also in terms of how the Si tends to differentiate itself from other Civics. This Si appears to be similar to the previous-gen car in terms of how it’s set apart from the lineup.
Honda has previewed the upcoming Civic Type R, now that it has prototypes testing at the Nürburgring. Knowing that the public would soon be seeing leaked photos of the model whizzing around the Rhineland, the manufacture has offered up some flattering images of it wearing a minimal amount of camouflage.
While the paint scheme still manages to break up its lines, this is probably the best look we’ll be getting of the model until the production version is ready to be revealed. For all intents and purposes, this is the 2022 Honda Civic Type R.
Yesterday I ripped Honda a bit for producing a 2022 Honda Passport TrailSport that seems light on actual off-road chops.
Some time afterward, I received press materials about a Passport TrailSport project vehicle that is supposed to actually preview the TrailSport’s future off-road abilities.
We wrote recently about Honda’s new TrailSport trim. I theorized it would first go to Ridgeline and perhaps be a competitor for other brand’s off-road truck trims (Chevy’s ZR, Ford’s FX4, etc) and then perhaps go to Passport as a trim with some light off-roading features.
Turns out “light” is an overstatement.
Honda’s Ridgeline pickup is a really good truck.
It also has a bias towards on-road performance, unibody construction, and a reputation for being a truck for urban and suburban use.
In other words, it’s not rugged enough, despite a recent makeover that made the styling more macho.
Life circumstances force some folks to buy minivans. Others do so for the utility – coolness be damned.
Regardless of why one buys a minivan, he or she probably anticipates that the driving experience will be far from fun. But that’s not always the case – Chrysler’s Pacifica Hybrid (review forthcoming) isn’t a chore to drive. And Honda’s Odyssey is more engaging than the Chrysler.
Relative to the class, of course. We’ll get to that.
Last month, we wrote up the news that Honda will be working on a battery-electric vehicle called the Prologue — not to be mixed up with the Prelude — and the company would work with General Motors, using GM’s Ultium battery packs.
Why would Honda, known especially for engine development, pair with GM?
Despite issuing some of the most realistic messaging pertaining to electric vehicles you’re likely to encounter within the automotive industry, Honda has started to come around to making bold commitments that it’ll probably have to revise. In April, the company stated that it wanted EVs and fuel-cell vehicles to make up 40 percent of all new-vehicle sales by 2030 — with the figure climbing to 100 percent by 2040.
Right now, its alternative energy products include the Honda Clarity and marvelously executed Honda E (neither of which are likely to be available in your area). But more vehicles are coming and the brand recently announced the starting point for the business’ battery-electric offensive targeting North America. The whole shebang is supposed to kick off in 2024 when the all-electric “ Prologue” goes on sale.
The Honda Civic hatchback has arrived and managed to match the 11th-generation sedan’s clean looks so completely, that we’re wondering how many people will be able to spot the differences from afar. It’s a major departure from the previous generation, where the hatchback represented some of the boldest styling the company ever tried. Honda has clearly tried to build something less polarizing this time around, with current Civics taking a lot of influence from the fifth-generation cars — which are best known for their tastefully understated exteriors, general ubiquity, and being one of the most frequently modified automobiles in history.
Those Civics were also largely indistinguishable from each other when viewed from the front. That’s true today as well, with the only glaring distinction between the body styles being the modern hatchback’s bubble butt and unique taillights. There are also a few trim pieces that separate the two. But the most meaningful differences revolve around packaging, with the hatchback offering more options than it used to.
There is an unfortunate exception, however.
Honda has sent us a teaser pic of the 2022 Honda Civic hatchback, seen above, but buried in a press release that’s mostly filled with the usual P.R. spin is this nugget: “An available, fun-to-drive 6-speed manual transmission.”
Yep, the stick ain’t totally dead yet.
Last week we challenged you to pick a Buy from V6 versions of the 2007 Toyota Camry, Nissan Maxima, and Honda Accord. The overwhelming feeling in the comments was in favor of an Accord purchase (and I agree with you). Today though, we step back a decade to the 1997 model year.
Does the Accord still win your vote in the Nineties?
In contrast to the Try Very Hard Japanese sedans of the Nineties, the early and mid-2000s period was a time for Japanese manufacturers to rest upon their laurels. It was a time to save some cash, and put in a bit less effort than in the tiring decade prior.
And lucky you, today you get to pick one to buy.
The term “soft roader” is often thrown around as a pejorative aimed at crossovers, particularly ones that have some limited off-road ability but don’t look particularly rugged and/or are just not likely to be used for anything other than family-hauling duty.
Hear me out for a sec, though: What if it’s not OK for a crossover to be a soft-roader, but actually desirable?
The 2022 Honda Civic sedan has finally arrived, donned in conservative body panels that make the automobile come across as more attractive and adult than its predecessor. While the tenth-generation model had a lot going for it, its appearance was quite polarizing. Honda designers created an angular buffet that made every Civic look as though it had been customized inside a videogame where caricatures of gearheads argue with each other about who will become the local street racing champ.
It was perhaps too exciting for a vehicle that’s primarily designed for mundane tasks, which is why Honda ran in the complete opposite direction with the eleventh generation. Reminiscent of the straightforward fifth-generation model, the newest Civic boasts the cleanest bodywork we’ve seen in decades and will provide a significant amount of wiggle room for designers to better differentiate performance variants.
The last time your humble scribe traveled on an airplane to test drive a new car in some location that is “not here” was just over a year ago. That vehicle was the Honda CR-V Hybrid.
While in Tucson, Honda reps told us to keep an eye on our inboxes for an upcoming drive of the updated Civic Type R. This raised my eyebrows, as I knew the changes to the Type R for 2020 were fairly mild, though they did promise some improvements to the already excellent driving dynamics.
The first-generation Honda Civic sold very well in the United States, but it’s just about impossible to find early examples in junkyards these days; I’ve managed to photograph a few ’78s for this series and that’s it. Why? The cars in rust-prone areas dissolved quickly and those in low-corrosion regions got driven to death well before the beginning of our current century. Here’s the oldest discarded 1973-1979 Civic I’ve managed to find since at least the late 2000s.
While the Honda Civic Sedan Prototype we saw last year was already a shoo-in for the production model, there’s always a chance that the brand will go against its own instincts and try to dazzle us with something that’s never coming to market. But it’s one of those “snowball in hell” kind of deals.
In addition to Honda being ultra-consistent and delivering prototypes that actually represent for-sale models, an example of the 2022 model year Civic leaked in China and we doubt the company has any intention of redoing the exterior just to surprise our market.
Honda has announced that CEO Takahiro Hachigo will be succeeded by the automaker’s head of research and development, Toshihiro Mibe. The company’s board held a meeting on Friday to finalize the decision, noting in a release that Mibe would officially be taking over leadership responsibilities on April 1st. A resolution of the general shareholder meeting is scheduled for June 2021, at which point Hachigo is assumed to be retiring from the business.
Mibe joined Honda’s engineering team in 1987 and had worked his way up to head of R&D in 2019. Since 2020, he’s also been working as the brand’s senior managing director. He’s to be tasked with taking the manufacturer into “the next era” — which we’re guessing entails strengthening its commitment to electric vehicles. Though the manufacturer also stated that “a new value system is spreading all around the world” adding that this change in management would help reflect that as it strives to solve social issues.
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- MelanieRichardson GOOD
- El scotto @jwee; Sir, a great many of us believe that Musk is somewhere (pretty high) on the spectrum and move on.I work on the fringes of IT. Most of my presentations get picked over extensively and intensely at meetings. I'm smart enough to know I'm not that smart and willingly take advice from the IT crew. I bring them Duck Doughnuts too. We also keep a box of Crayolas in the meeting room.At one meeting an IT guy got way into the details of my presentation, the meeting went long as we discussed my target audience. Same IT guy insisted it was a disaster and would fail miserable and that I was stupid. Yeah, F-boms get dropped at our meetings. I finally had enough and asked if he was such an expert, did he want to stand up in front of 30 senior executives and give the presentation? His response was a flat "NO". He got the box of Crayolas. For you non-military types that means shut up and color. Musk is the same as that IT guy, lots of gyrations but not much on follow-through. Someone just needs to hand him a box of Crayolas.
- FreedMike The FJ Cruiser would be a better comeback candidate. The gang back at Toyota HQ must be looking at all those Broncos flying off Ford lots and kicking themselves.
- Tassos 2015 was only 7 years ago. $58k is still a whole lot of $ to pay for a vehicle. FOrtunately one can buy a flagship vehicle with great active and passive safety for half this amount, if one does the SMART thing and buys a pre-owned luxury flagship vehicle. they have historically been SCREAMING BARGAINS. A breadvan on stilts SUV, wether the more compact Macan or the more bloated Cayenne will never pass as a Flagship Vehicle. No matter how well it drives or how reliable it suprisingly is. It still is a breadvan on stilts.
- Sean Ohsee Bring back the 100 series and its I6 diesel.