2018 Honda Accord Review: Attention Must Be Paid!
2018 Honda Accord Review: Attention Must Be Paid!

Source : My Articles
Author : Kelsey Mays>

Now in its 10th generation, Honda's mid-size sedan is lower and wider than before, with sunken seating positions and a more coupelike profile (compare it with the 2017 model here). It comes in five trim levels: LX, Sport, EX, EX-L and Touring. Its base drivetrain is a turbocharged, 1.5-liter four-cylinder (192 horsepower, 192 pounds-feet of torque) and continuously variable automatic transmission. Compare the trim levels here.

Replacing 2017's optional V-6 engine is a turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder (252 hp, 273 pounds-feet of torque) and a new 10-speed automatic on the Sport, EX-L and Touring. The Sport offers a six-speed manual with either engine, which marks the first time in a decade you can get a stick shift with the top engine on an Accord sedan. Honda hopes that will satisfy those who mourn the discontinued Accord coupe.

At a Honda media preview in New Hampshire, I drove automatic and manual versions with both engines. (Per company policy, Cars.com pays for its airfare and lodging at such automaker-hosted events.) Other editors also evaluated the 2018 Accord at Cars.com's offices, and we've tested every major Accord competitor.

A pair of turbo four-cylinders replaces last year's non-turbo four-cylinder and V-6. Output ranges from 192 hp to 252 hp.

The turbo 1.5-liter four-cylinder has more than adequate oomph for a base engine, with enough on tap for sustained uphill climbs on twisting mountain roads. The automatic transmission has some telltale nonlinearity starting out, common with CVTs, but it fakes a nice gear-kickdown sensation when you call for more power at cruising speed. The optional turbo 2.0-liter is palpably quicker off the line: Stand on the gas and it launches with a fierceness reminiscent of the Chevrolet Malibu's excellent turbo 2.0-liter. The Camry's big V-6 feels quicker if you rev it all the way out — the Toyota thunders ahead where the Accord plateaus a bit — but Honda's 2.0-liter turbo brings snappy punchiness that's entertaining in its own right.

Row your own gears, and the 1.5- and 2.0-liter engines feel more similar. The six-speed manual has a high clutch take-up and medium throws, but swift accelerator response that makes for easy rev-matching. Aside from some noticeable turbo lag with the 1.5-liter, both engines have similar power characteristics, with torque that comes early and stays late. The 2.0-liter just has notably more of it.

The Accord Sport has a sport-tuned suspension with fixed-firmness shock absorbers, while the Accord Touring has a softer overall ride but with adaptive shocks and adjustable firmness. I drove both, and ride quality is firm either way because 19-inch wheels and low-profile P235/40R19 tires accompany both trim levels regardless of engine. The adaptive shock absorbers add a degree of control that evokes a pricier car, and even the Accord Sport stops short of the prior Accord's deliberate choppiness. The adaptive shocks change firmness in Sport mode, but I didn't observe a huge difference between the modes. One editor thought the Touring rode well overall, but I found both setups busy. If isolation and comfort is all you want, look elsewhere in this class or consider the other trim levels, which pair a third suspension setup (regular, non-sport tuning with no adjustability) with 17-inch wheels and higher-profile tires. Honda didn't have any such trims to evaluate at my drive event.

Handling recalls the well-mannered Honda Civic, with quick-ratio steering and limited body roll. Flick the wheel a few degrees and the nose reorients immediately. Nose-heavy understeer comes steadily if you push the car hard — an area in which the Camry (yes, really) and Ford Fusion have an edge — but the Accord's dynamics are far from a liability.

With a long hood and plunging grille, the new Accord bears some of the most adventurous styling in the nameplate's history.