2016 Honda Accord Test Drive And Review: The Beauty Of Competence – Forbes

Posted: Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Honda Accord has been one of the best-selling cars in the United States for well over two decades. The 2016 Honda Accord will be the subject of a light refreshing for the venerable sedan and coupe, which is currently in the middle of its ninth generation of production. The original Accord was a compact 1976 model. By 1998 and its sixth generation, Accord grew to be a mid-size model with a V6 engine option. Continued success and evolutionary redesigns brought the ninth-generation cars to market as 2013 models. Because a car company that stands still is dead in its tracks, Honda has applied a new revision to the Accord for 2016.

At a recent press event, Honda made a point of emphasizing that they are not just a car manufacturer or a motorcycle company. Honda is, in fact, the world’s largest engine company, with an output of over 28 million engines per year. Honda engines and motors can be found in cars, trucks, motorcycles, ATVs, side-by-sides and jets; in lawnmowers, string trimmers, hedge trimmers and snow blowers; in generators, refrigerators, personal mobility machines and robots; and in plenty of other applications too numerous to mention. The corporate ethos is to share engineering and production knowledge whenever practical and possible. An executive told me about one striking example: When the designers of a new Honda snow blower were looking for a small, durable motor to power the dispersal arm on their new machine, they settled on the same motor that powers the windshield wipers in the Honda Pilot.

If critics have had any complaints about the current generation Accord, they often hearken back to the enormity of the Honda enterprise, claiming that the Accord has no soul. Sure, it’s efficient, reliable and dependable. But it is not exciting or relatable. Accord can be written off as an appliance.

For a demonstrable number of consumers, efficiency, high quality and dependability are not derogatory terms. They continue to buy Accords because they work. And when their Accord ceases working after years of reliable service, Accord buyers turn around and buy another new Accord.

Still, Honda continues to change and improve the Accord, attempting to inject that spark of excitement and soul.

Accord is available as a four-door sedan and as a two-door coupe. Sedans come in six trim levels, from the base LX ($22,105), to Sport ($24,165), to EX ($25,480), to EX-L ($28,570), to EX-L V6 ($30,645), to Touring ($34,580). The Coupe comes in five trim levels, from LX-S ($24,775), to EX ($25,900), to EX-L ($28,745), to EX-L V6 ($30,925), to Touring ($34,125). This year, it’s also possible to add the Honda Sensing suite of driver assistance technologies to every trim level (except Touring, which already includes Honda Sensing as standard equipment).

Honda Sensing is a sophisticated set of passive and active safety features, including Collision Mitigation Braking System, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Assist System, Road Departure Mitigation and Adaptive Cruise Control. These technologies are just starting to trickle down from the premium brands to the popular brands, and that’s a good thing. I’m a big fan of Adaptive Cruise Control, especially on long drives or in stop-and-go traffic.

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