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2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Review and Road Test

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As of October, the most fuel efficient mid-sized sedan in America is the Honda Accord. Or so Honda says. After all, Ford has been trumpeting a matching 47 MPG combined from their Fusion. Who is right? And more importantly, can the Accord get Honda back into the hybrid game after having lost the first initial hybrid battles with their maligned Integrated Motor Assist system? Honda invited us to sample the 2014 Accord Hybrid as well as a smorgasbord of competitive products to find out.

I’m alex dykes and this is the most fuel-efficient midsize sedan in america this is the all-new 2014 honda accord hybrid now the mid-sized sedan part of that statement is very important to keep in mind because of course the prius and the prius c are more fuel efficient than this accord hybrid but the prius is a midsize hatchback or liftback depending on how you

Want to look at it so there’s a little bit of word mincing there but suffice it to say the accord hybrid is very exciting because it gets 50 miles per gallon in the city 45 on the highway and a combined ranking of 47 now of course that ford fusion hybrid does get 47 city 47 highway with a combined 47 mile per gallon range but in our tests we were unable to get

More than about 41 miles per gallon average over about 600 miles with that ford fusion hybrid even if we drove it very very nicely on the highway it was really very difficult to get the 47 miles per gallon that ford claimed out of the fusion hybrid weight has something to do with it but also i think that the epa estimates from that fusion hybrid were just a little

Bit optimistic compared to the accord plug-in which we’ve already seen before there’s a lot less differentiation in the regular hybrid model the accord plug-in gets a very large sort of mouth like opening right here and instead the hybrid gets the same grill as the regular honda accord hybrid although it’s tinted blue we also have blue tinted headlamp modules and

Optional leds since we’re looking at the top-end touring model we do have those option leds right here and we also have the radar sensor for the adaptive cruise control the 2014 accord hybrid is the same base vehicle as the 2013 accord which is the most recent generation and that 2013 accord bucked the growing trend in this segment by actually shrinking for the

2013 model year although we do have a little bit more rear seat legroom that means the overall dimensions of the court are among the smaller in this segment the court has long been known for elegant and restrained styling and that’s definitely happening right here in the 2014 hybrid we have a fairly tall greenhouse for this segment and that improves rear visibility

For rear passengers especially children which are a little bit closer to the seat that’s very different than you’ll find in every other entry in this segment because they’ve all gone for very coupe like styling in which the slant and slope of the rear roof really starts right around here and then drops precipitously as it goes towards the back end it makes the car

Look an awful lot sexier than this accord but it really hampers practicality especially for the rear occupants there aren’t many changes for hybrid duty out back we do get standard led tail lamps in the hybrid model we get an altered rear air diffuser as well so what’s so exciting about this hybrid system let’s start off right here with the engine this is a 2 liter

Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine produces 141 horsepower and 122 pound-feet of torque it has honda’s latest vtec system as well as a variable cam phasing system which allows it to produce that hundred twenty two pound-feet of torque over a very broad rpm range this is then mated to an electric motor generator which produces approximately a hundred and forty-one

Horsepower or so when it’s generating that’s in terms of electrical power generation and then over there on that far side we have a 166 horsepower 226 pounds of torque electric motor that electric motor is mated directly to the wheels via a single speed gearbox there’s no transmission in the general sense in this accord hybrid as a result there’s also no reverse

Gear if you want to go in reverse it just spins that same motor backwards now you’ll notice i didn’t say anything about this engine being directly connected to the wheels and that’s because under 44 miles per hour it’s not it is not capable in this hybrid system for this engine to directly physically apply power to the wheels it has to generate power with that

Motor generator and then send that power electrically to the 166 horsepower electric motor in order to drive the wheels that’s what’s different about this system is that under 44 miles per hour you only get about 166 horsepower out of this combination however over 44 miles per hour when it can lock up a clutch pack that directly connects the motor and the generator

With one another that’s when you can get 196 horsepower combined out of the accord you can definitely see that in the 0 to 60 time which we’ll talk about a little bit later definitely in the profile of the acceleration curve the lithium-ion battery pack in the trunk can discharge at a rate of about 55 horsepower so that means if your electrical demands from that

166 horsepower motor exceed 55 horsepower or so it’s going to turn on this gasoline engine to start generating power and sip it off to that 166 horsepower motor that’s a decent amount more power out of the battery than you’ll find in the toyota prius hybrid or the toyota camry hybrid which means that easy only mode the accord hybrid can drive faster and more often

This is exactly the same drivetrain you’ll find under the hood of the honda accord plug-in hybrid except that they insert a much larger battery pack in the and to give you approximately 16 miles of eevee only range the court has probably one of the best front seats in the midsize sedan segment these seats are very large they are nicely upholstered and they’re

Also fairly soft we have a tilt telescoping steering column with a decent range of motion and all accords get a power driver’s seat a power passenger seat is available as an option exl and touring models get a leather wrapped steering wheel well that bass hybrid model gets a urethane steering wheel the rear seats in the court are very comfortable for the midsize

To dance segment even though the accord doesn’t have the most rear legroom here this seat is adjusted for me at 6 feet tall and i do have about 4 or 5 inches of legroom left if i sit behind myself but there are mid-sized options with more room where the accord really excels is the ease of entry and exit because of this profile of the accord and this fairly tall

Greenhouse getting in and out of the accord is very easy it’s also much easier to look out of these windows than any of the other entries in the segment one unfortunate thing about the hybrid accord is that in hybrid trim we lose the ability to flip and fold these rear seatbacks to fold them flat for extra cargo room and there’s no trunk passed through in the

Accord hybrid like there is in the camry or the fusion all models get adjustable height seatbelts so you can see right there on the passenger side since we’re in the touring model we have this perforated leather upholstery which is very attractive it’s also available in black over here on the door panels we have a faux stitched side door panel soft touch right

Here in the black section and then this portion is hard plastic if we move on over to the dashboard the dashboard is all soft touch plastics in the dark upper portion this is sort of a faux wood trim and this lower panel is hard plastic we have a reasonably sized glove box in the accord hybrid and you can’t stuff a tablet pc in there and close the glove box fairly

Easily the dashboard has a double bump theme going on with this one bump for the instrument cluster and another bump for the infotainment spring if attainment screen is standard on all models of the accord but its function varies a little bit since we’re in the touring model we get navigation up there if you’re in the lower end models you don’t get this secondary

Touchscreen right here instead that upper screen does all the functions for you from trip computer to your audio system in our particular system we have this split screen affair with the souris going on here in this particular screen and navigation controls being done by this joystick right down here below climate controls right here and then if we continue on down

You’ll find your usb and auxiliary input power outlet over there our tester has heated seats we have a standard gearshift nothing funky going on in the accord hybrid we do have an eevee mode button and the evening mode button is fairly aggressive in the accord hybrid allowing you to stay in eevee in higher speeds and you’d be able to in some of the toyota hybrids

We have large cup holders in the accord hybrid easily capable of carrying large american-style takeout drinks and a fairly decently sized center console with an extra power port right there the accord hybrids instrument cluster is shared with the plug-in we’d have a power and charge meter over here transmission indicator this blue line around the gauges which is

Fairly attractive full color lcd inside the speedometer and then over there on that other side we get a battery level indicator as well as a fuel indicator hybrid models get a slightly tweaked steering wheel which i think makes the interior of the hybrid accord just a little bit more harmonious than the regular accord part of the reason is the regular record in

The touring model has this sparkly black plastic surrounding this screen right here and then there’s no other sparkly black plastic in the car it’s very difficult to see in this video but the plastic right here around these buttons has kind of a slight sparkle to it it has some sort of a i guess you’d call it very microscopic glitter right there inside the plastic

In terms of function controls these buttons controlled that lcd right there in the centre of the gauge cluster these are our cruise control buttons our radio control buttons over here and then our phone buttons right there the steering wheel is wrapped in a very nice soft leather this is a very luxurious feel in the exl and the two ring models if you want to know

More about the infotainment system in the accord hybrid just go ahead and click that link down below to the full review of the honda accord ix we don’t have too much time to go over that in this accord hybrid review so just click on over there to that regular tx review and then come right on back to the accord hybrid with any of these mid-sized hybrids there is a

Trunk space penalty to be paid and it’s about three cubic feet for the accord hybrid it is less of a penalty than the accord plug-in which gets a fairly small trunk i have the largest roller bag you can carry on a domestic flight you can fit probably six to eight of them in the trunk which is a fairly reasonable amount we do lose points in our exclusive trunk comfort

Index for not having a handle to more easily close the trunk lid on the inside or on the outside so overall we square six out of ten points in our exclusive truck comfort index the hybrid follows the regular accords trim lines fairly closely the base accord is fairly comparable to the e ex trim of the standard accord it’s about four to five thousand dollars more

Depending on how you get the additional feature content going on right here in the hybrid there’s an e xl model which adds leather and a leather wrap steering wheel and a touchscreen radio and then there’s the top and touring model which adds navigation and a number of other features pricing for the accord hybrid starts at twenty nine thousand one hundred fifty

Five dollars which does make it one of the more expensive starting prices in the mid-size hybrid sedan lineup the fully loaded touring model goes for thirty four thousand nine hundred five dollars but that’s fairly similar to the top and trim in all of its direct hybrid competition hybrids are all about fuel economy and that’s an area where the accord excels we’ve

Been averaging between 45 and 47 miles per gallon during our day and about 120 miles of very mixed driving that’s right around it’s epa combined score the kia optima and the hyundai sonata hybrid scored of 35 miles per gallon the last time we had them just slightly under there epa score the toyota camry exceeded its epa score by hair giving us 40 miles per gallon in

The same test and the ford fusion scored well below its epa number at 41 miles per gallon that ford fusion was slightly disappointing in terms of fuel economy but overall i really liked the rest of the car so i can forgive it that just a little bit and a lot of this really depends on your driving style as well as the roads you’re driving on and the conditions we’re

Wandering around texas it’s 95 degrees outside we have the air conditioning blasting in this car and we’ve been driving on mountainous roads going fairly quickly between 50 and 70 miles an hour and that’s right around the 45 mile per gallon supposed ranking for this car so do keep that in mind when you take a look at those fuel economy numbers in terms of absolute

Performance the accord is very middle-of-the-road we ran from zero to 60 in seven point nine seconds which places us just a little bit behind the fusion at 7.3 the camry at 7.2 but a little bit ahead of the optima and sonata twins which rang in at 8.3 this is also a decent amount faster than something like a passat tdi which is right around nine and a half seconds

To 60 unlike most of the hybrids out of the market the accord hybrid is a true serial hybrid below forty five miles an hour so there’s no way that this engine can provide any mode of assistance directly and mechanically to the wheels below that speed as a result it feels very much like an electric car out on the road we have all 221 pounds feet of torque available

Instantly we get an awful lot of front-wheel peel if you turn off the tracks control it’s a little bit fun that way we also get a decent amount of torque steer when you’re flooring the car very much like you’d get in the accord v6 than the accord for silver so it is more of a hybrid in terms of field between the four cylinder and the v6 honda hasn’t said how much

The court hybrid weighs yet but judging by the way this car feels out on the road i’d slot it somewhere between the v6 accord and the four-cylinder accord that’s possible because honda’s made a few tweaks to the chassis most notably an all aluminum engine cradle rather than a steel cradle to help save weight and lithium ion batteries really don’t weigh too much i

Don’t expect this to mode hybrid system to wait that much more than a regular automatic transaxle either the right on the accord is very civilized and that’s thanks to damper technology that’s worked its way down from the acura lineup and now into this accord hybrid these new dampers are not found in the regular accord they’re only in this accord hybrid model so

That is something to keep in mind when you’re comparing them back-to-back because the feel on the road is slightly different we have a slightly more compliant ride in the accord hybrid but we don’t have as much tip dive or body roll in the accord hybrid as we do in the regular record overall the accord hybrid does very well in this segment i think that the ride

Quality is slightly better than the ford fusion although the handling is not quite as good in terms of overall cabin quietness this really excels and hybrid drivetrain smoothness is absolutely a first-place win for the honda accord hybrid overall i would tie this with the ford fusion hybrid which is faster 260 it does have a slightly better behind the wheel feel

But i really like the other features in this honda accord with high fuel economy numbers from this accord hybrid a comparison between this and the prius is not only inevitable it’s also entirely appropriate the prius is a mid-sized car as well it’s just a lift back slash hatchback however you want to look at it and this is a regular sedan the prius is between

Two and four thousand dollars cheaper than an accord hybrid depending on how you configure them and what options you go for however for that extra money with the accord you get a much more powerful vehicle you get a better handling vehicle you get more comfortable seats so you get better quality interior materials and honestly i think the accords better-looking

As well again i’m alex dykes this has been our quick look at the 2014 honda accord hybrid be sure and click that subscribe banner at the bottom of your screen so you can be updated on all of our latest videos including a more detailed review of the accord hybrid when we can get our hands on one for a complete week people have been asking me for a final statement

On reviews so here’s one for you i would definitely buy the accord hybrid i wouldn’t just recommend it to people this is a car that i would actually buy myself i really like the way the accord drives i like the way that it handles it’s gotten much quieter in this generation it has radar cruise control leather seats all the features except for cooled seats that

I really want in a car and the hybrid system in this vehicle is probably the smoothest one that’s currently available it’s definitely lightyears ahead of the toyota hybrid system although i do really like the way that the toyota hybrid system works this system is much smoother it’s also more efficient than every other entry in this segment in our informal tests

Here in san antonio we scored 10 miles per gallon better than in our average in the ford fusion hybrid about 11 miles per gallon better than the camry hybrid and a decent amount more than the hyundai or kia hybrids

Transcribed from video
2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Review and Road Test By Alex on Autos