Honda Accord review
The Honda Accord is a premium alternative to mainstream saloons. It's not the largest car in its class, but it's luxurious and well equipped
Back in its heyday the Honda Accord provided a stern challenge to the likes of the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4, offering excellent build quality, an upmarket interior and sleek styling. It's been around for a while, though, and it's suffered somewhat in terms of efficiency and driver appeal.
The Accord now sits somewhere between more mainstream saloons such as the Ford Mondeo or Vauxhall Insignia and the lower end of the premium market where the likes of Audi’s A4 and the BMW 3 Series reside.
It's available as either a saloon or estate, but there's no hatchback alternative unfortunately. Practicality isn't a strong point for the Honda Accord, either, with boot size and rear legroom failing to match that of its competitors.
The Honda Accord is available in four different trim levels - entry-level ES, ES GT, EX and top-of-the-range Type S. The Honda Accord isn't necessarily a high-achiever but it's definitely an all-rounder with tonnes of safety features and equipment. It offers lots of accessories and a decent driving experience too.
Our choice: Accord 2.2 i-DTEC ES 4dr
The Honda Accord is starting to look a little outdated, especially when you compare it to the quirky Honda Civic. Inside, though, it boasts superb build quality with lots of soft-touch plastics and solid-feeling switchgear.
The Honda Accord's interior is definitely more upmarket than that found in the Ford Mondeo or Vauxhall Insignia, but it's just a shame the Accord lacks the image and appeal of a BMW, Audi or Mercedes.
If you want large alloy wheels, you'll have to opt for top-spec Type S models - but these command a significant premium over entry-level versions. On the plus side, even entry-level ES cars get smart touches like a leather steering wheel and gear knob, USB connectivity and cruise control.
In the Honda Accord line-up you'll find two petrol engines and one diesel. All offer decent performance. The entry-level 2.0-litre i-VTEC petrol comes with 154bhp and is generally quite smooth, while the 2.4-litre i-VTEC is the quickest in the line-up - it reaches 0-62mph in just 8.1 seconds. Both petrol versions, however, offer poor fuel consumption at 41.0mpg and 33.0mpg respectively.
We'd recommend the 148bhp 2.2-litre i-DTEC diesel Accord - it's impressively refined, smooth and manages 53.0mpg. The Honda Accord isn't as thrilling as a BMW 3 Series on the road, but it offers precise steering and minimal body roll.
The Honda Accord received a maximum five-star rating in the Euro NCAP crash safety tests, making it one of the safest cars in its class. All models get lots of safety equipment, too, including electronic stability control (ESP), six airbags and anti-whiplash front headrests all as standard. Meanwhile, optional extras include lane keep assist and adaptive cruise control.
Honda, as a manufacturer, finished sixth place in our 2013 Driver Power manufacturer ratings survey. The Honda Accord itself actually finished 25th in the 2013 Customer satisfaction survey, which is impressive for a car that's definitely starting to feel a little outdated. Overall, owners praised the in-car tech, build quality and reliability of the Honda Accord.
Despite its large dimensions, the Honda Accord isn't as spacious as you'd think inside. A narrow boot opening on the saloon model makes loading large items of luggage a bit of a pain. Meanwhile, there's only 467 litres of boot space on offer – leaving the Accord trailing behind most of its rivals. Those after more practicality might do well to consider the Honda Accord Tourer estate, which offers a maximum boot space of 1,183 litres.
All Honda Accords come with 60:40 split/fold rear seats as standard, but passengers won't find as much rear legroom as you would in a Skoda Superb. One thing also lacking in the Honda Accord's range, is a hatchback alternative.
The Honda Accord seems a bit off the pace in terms of economy and emissions. Stop-start isn't available regardless of which model you choose. That said, the 2.2-litre i-DTEC diesel is the most efficient in the range, and promises fuel consumption of 53.0mpg. It still emits 138g/km of CO2, however, which means that road tax is more expensive than for most of its rivals.
The entry-level 2.0-litre i-VTEC petrol manages just over 40mpg and 159g/km of CO2 with a manual gearbox. Meanwhile, the 2.4-litre petrol is somewhat thirstier. With CO2 emissions of 199g/km you'd be paying more than £250 in tax a year. Honda definitely has a lot of catching up to do in this department, with most rivals offering stop-start or turbo petrol engine technology to boost their efficiency numbers.