Entry Price: $23,570
Price as Tested: $36,675
When Honda announced that come 2018 an all-new 10th generation Accord would debut, there was much discussion about what the final product would be. Specifically, too many times when “new generations” are introduced the end result is an exterior redesign here, new interior pattern there and pretty much the same drivetrain as prior generations.
Not so with the 2018 Honda Accord, which has already been named North American Car of the Year.
The 2018 Accord features everything a new generation should, from brand new chassis platform, two-inch more wheelbase, lower to the ground stance and a wider, roomier interior. Add the fact that the new Accord is also slightly shorter in length and lighter in curb weight, and Honda’s recipe for success is off to a great start.
Thanks to the wheelbase extension, the rear passenger legroom is better than ever, and cargo room also increases to “best in mid-size class” dimensions. Under the hood finds the former V-6 powerplant eliminated in favor of new 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engines. Now you might think that replacing a powerful V-6 with a choice of four cylinder only offerings is a step backward, but wait until you drive one.
Our tester came in top line 2.0-liter turbo Touring dress coupled to an industry first 10-speed automatic in the front-drive class. If you like to shift, a six-speed manual is available on the Sport trim 2.0 models, but the 10-speed automatic seems the way to go.
As for acceleration, get ready to be impressed beyond expectations. The 2.0-turbo four delivers 252 horses and 273 lb. ft. of torque. It also accelerates as quick as my 1967 GTX 440 did back in the muscle car era and is capable of quarter-mile runs in the 14.2 second range at near 100 mph. Zero to 60 arrives in 5.7-seconds, making the new Accord with the 2.0-Turbo a “muscle car in family sedan dress.” Yes, it is that impressive.
The base engine is the 1.5-liter turbo four-cylinder making 192 hp and identical torque rating and pairs with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). It may not be as quick as the 2.0, but you’ll still reach 60 mph in just over seven seconds and travel the quarter mile in a bit under 16 seconds.
Inside, you will relish the all-new, wider cabin that offers more room for everyone, especially in the aforementioned back seat legroom area. Honda is utilizing premium materials in the Touring models over and above the entry LX. An eight-inch touchscreen is easier to use and thanks to all Accords for 2018 coming with tuning knobs instead of the prior “touch screen pushing and fumbling” to adjust volume and station selections. (Thank you Honda).
The exterior design is most noteworthy, as all Accords now deliver a refined, aerodynamic design with an interesting side “lip” feature. There are of course all-new front and rear fascias that really enhance the motif and it’s clearly the best looking Accord ever to come off the assembly line.
And speaking of assembly lines, notable is Honda’s dedication to the American workforce. They started building the Honda Accord back in 1982 in Marysville, Ohio, and have never looked back or ever threatened to move its facility. Including Accord’s 36 years of Ohio construction, consumers have bought more than 11 million of them. Additionally, Honda operates a total of 19 manufacturing facilities in North America which is worthy of note.
Honda’s commitment to safety is top-of-mind with the new Accord, be it the entry LX or high end Touring. All Accords now come with Honda Sensing Safety system that delivers high-tech safety features like collision mitigation braking that makes the Accord both sense and then automatically brake in the event of an unavoidable forward impact. You’ll also appreciate the adaptive cruise control, lane departure mitigation and lane keep assist, the latter which keeps you in the correct lane of traffic if you sway a bit. Your Honda dealer is ready to explain everything when you visit the dealership.
Four trim models are available, from entry LX ($23,570), to Sport ($25,780), EX ($27,470), EX-L ($29,970) and top tier Touring 2.0 Turbo ($35,800). Be assured that even the LX is well equipped, with rearview camera, LED headlamps, 17-inch tires on alloy wheels, Bluetooth, a seven-inch screen and USB to name a few items. If you want the 1.5 turbo Touring model with the CVT, it’s $2,000 less at $33,800. For electric hybrid enthusiasts, there is a new two-motor hybrid Accord available starting at $29,605.
The Touring models come well equipped, featuring everything from Honda Navigation to power moonroof to leather seating. Our tester had no options and just about every conceivable passenger, safety and mechanical enhancement. Granted, there are some options to consider, but our Touring tester was just fine and with $875 delivery came in a final retail of $36,675. Handling is superb with a great feel of the road, assisted by 19-inch Michelin tires on high-end alloy wheels that come standard on the Touring and Sport models.
Important numbers include a wheelbase of 111.4-inches, 16.7 cu. ft. of cargo space, 3,424 lb. curb weight, 39.4-foot turning circle and a 14.8 gallon fuel tank. EPA fuel mileage estimates on the 2.0 turbo automatic are not yet final, but expect 23 city and 34 highway as a good gauge. The 1.5 turbo CVT will deliver up to 30 city and 38 highway depending on model.
I’ve used up a good portion of this Accord review on the car’s overall newness, and a little bit more on its history. Instead of listing every standard feature, I’ll summarize that if you want a highly appointed midsize sedan (no more two door coupes this year), you won’t find many competitors out there in this price range, from LX to Touring.
So, just how good is the all-new 2018 Honda Accord? I surmise that had this Accord been built five years ago, it would have had an Acura badge on it.
Likes: Unreal acceleration, all new everything, sporty yet classy at the same time.
Dislikes: Some tire road noise, not much else.
— Greg Zyla writes weekly for More Content Now and other Gatehouse Media publications.