OpenRoad Driver Volume 15 Issue 1 - Page 55

Volume 15 Issue 1 » 55 2018 Honda Accord » Over nine generations and 42 model years since its introduction in 1976, the Accord is undoubtedly a household name. With the introduction of the tenth-generation model, virtually everything is new or has been substantially re-engineered. Honda designers stayed true to the company’s “Man Maximum, Machine Minimum” design philosophy, shrinking the Accord’s footprint while expanding its interior space. The car’s physical proportions have been adjusted to be more premium and athletic, resulting in shorter overhangs and a bold front fascia. Honda’s move to 4-cylinder-only engines allowed designers the ability to create a shorter engine bay while also reducing weight and improving dynamic performance. There is a new 1.5-litre VTEC turbocharged 4-cylinder engine producing 192 hp mated to a CVT. An up-level turbocharged 2.0-litre 4-cylinder version is also available, with 252 horsepower mated to a 10-speed automatic. Driving enthusiasts will celebrate because a short-throw 6-speed manual option remains. A hushed cabin hasn’t historically been a Honda trademark, but the new Accord is very nicely dampened and muted thanks to extensive sound-deadening materials. Honda’s newest infotainment system is another big improvement, and finally includes knobs for tuning and volume adjustment. The available 8-inch touchscreen features vivid, colourful graphics, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. The instrument gauge cluster is now a configurable LCD screen that is clear and easy to use. The Accord also boasts Honda’s latest semi- autonomous radar-guided cruise control with lane-keeping steering assist. Nimble and adept in the corners, the Accord has very capable handling and well-controlled body roll. This latest Accord continues to strike a happy compromise between family-car-friendly space, ride comfort, and sporty driving fun. The 2018 Honda Accord starts at an MSRP of $26,490.