You’ll be able to (and will) get the Accord in Sonic Grey.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

The Honda Accord will get just a few little enhancements this yr, none of which ought to hamper the perennial success of this easy-to-like household sedan. That is extra necessary now than ever, too, because the 2021 Accord faces in opposition to more and more stiff competitors. Along with the Honda’s longstanding archrival, the Toyota Camry, firms like Hyundai, Kia and Nissan are providing higher midsize choices than ever earlier than. Fortunately, the Tenth-generation Accord was a winner from the get-go.

Like

Clean, robust turbo powerSpacious, snug, quiet interiorEngaging and refined to driveLots of normal driver-assistance tech

Do not Like

No all-wheel drive optionNot as environment friendly as some competitorsInfotainment tech might use a refresh

In actual fact, this Accord was so good out of the gates that its mid-cycle refresh is proscribed to only a few styling tweaks, minor cabin tech upgrades and a few mannequin positioning/packaging adjustments. Truthfully, the largest information for the 2021 Accord is an improved hybrid drivetrain, which my buddy Andrew Krok talks about intimately in a separate assessment.

Visually, the slimmer LED headlights and wider grille of my Sport tester do not actually transfer the needle come what may, though I’ve to say the Accord’s new Sonic Grey paint possibility — which initially debuted on the Civic — seems to be completely sizzling. LX and EX-L fashions roll on milquetoast 17-inch wheels, whereas Sport, Sport SE and Touring trims get snazzier 19s, wrapped in 235/40-series tires.

Honda’s 1.5-liter turbo I4 continues to be the bottom engine possibility, placing out 192 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque. A extra highly effective 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four is out there with Sport and Touring fashions, bringing a wholesome 252 hp and 273 lb-ft to the occasion. Unhappy trombone time, although: The Accord’s six-speed guide transmission possibility goes away this yr. The 1.5T engine comes commonplace with a constantly variable transmission and the two.0T has a 10-speed computerized. And earlier than you complain, know that solely a super-duper-small proportion of Accord consumers really spec’d the guide gearbox. In different phrases, y’all solely have yourselves responsible.

One other factor you possibly can’t get on the Accord? All-wheel drive. I do know AWD may sound like an oddity for a midsize sedan, however an increasing number of automakers are embracing this foul-weather friendliness in an try to appease clients who merely don’t desire an SUV. Not reserved for the Subaru Legacy, the Kia K5, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry all provide AWD now. Go to your Honda vendor searching for all-wheel drive and so they’ll fortunately present you a CR-V.

These 19-inch wheels are distinctive to the Accord Sport.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

The two.0-liter I4 is a complete peach of an engine — appropriately, because it’s successfully the identical unit used within the pleasant Civic Kind R. You’ll be able to trip a easy wave of torque from simply 1,500 rpm, and the 10-speed transmission is pleased to hang around within the decrease finish of the engine’s rev vary, taking advantage of that turbocharged woosh. Alternatively, this implies the 10-speed gearbox is usually hesitant to kick down and go-go-go-go-go when fast freeway passes are demanded, although when you run the Accord in its Sport mode, the transmission isn’t solely snapper to shift, however holds onto gears longer, too.

With the two.0-liter engine, the Accord ought to return an EPA-estimated 22 miles per gallon within the metropolis, 32 mpg on the freeway and 26 mpg mixed. That is… high-quality. However equally highly effective turbocharged rivals just like the Nissan Altima and Subaru Legacy are barely extra frugal. After all, if gas effectivity is a prime concern, you are in all probability higher off simply sticking with the 1.5T, or for that matter, an Accord Hybrid.

The Sport 2.0T has largely the identical suspension setup as different Accord fashions, save for the Touring, which gives adaptive dampers. However even with out ’em, the Accord Sport strikes a superb stability of consolation and composure; this automotive will eat up freeway miles with cool, collected confidence and it will not get all pissy when you toss it right into a nook with gusto. The steering is properly weighted and fast to reply and, usually talking, the Accord feels extra agile than absolutely anything else within the class, besides perhaps the Mazda6. Possibly.

The cabin might sound somewhat plain, however it’s quiet, snug and neatly organized.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Greater than its outright sportiness, although, the Accord has an aura of refinement that is lacking from different midsize sedans. There is a feeling of premium solidity that makes this Honda easy to drive. Mix that with a quiet cabin and cozy seats, and lengthy stints behind the wheel of the Accord are something however fatiguing.

This Honda is a straightforward automotive to dwell with everyday, too. The inside may lack the flashy design of some newer sedans just like the Hyundai Sonata, however the entire Accord’s controls are precisely the place you count on them to be and each floor you contact seems to be and feels very nice. Head- and legroom is beneficiant for each entrance and rear passengers and there are many little storage cubbies all through the cabin, together with one beneath the local weather controls that homes a wi-fi charging pad on higher trims.

Each 2021 Accord now comes with an 8-inch touchscreen operating Honda’s Show Audio multimedia system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are commonplace and might be operated wirelessly on any Accord that has the aforementioned charging pad. These are small tech upgrades, however considerate ones. That stated, the Show Audio software program actually lags behind what a number of different automakers provide when it comes to design and performance and the Accord cannot compete with the larger screens and higher-res shows present in rivals just like the Sonata and K5. Throughout its full portfolio, Honda might actually stand to offer its infotainment tech a lift.

Each 1.5-liter and a couple of.0-liter turbocharged engines can be found.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Not less than driver-assistance tech is in excessive provide. Each Accord will get adaptive cruise management, lane-keeping help, traffic-sign recognition, forward-collision warning and computerized high-beam headlights. Sadly, blind-spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert is not accessible on the decrease trim ranges and you may solely get a head-up show on the top-end Touring. It is all nice tech to have, however man, the lane-keeping help and forward-collision warning certain are delicate. I discover myself turning them off most of the time.

Beginning at $25,765 together with a $995 vacation spot cost, the 2021 Honda Accord stays competitively priced throughout the midsize sedan class. You’ll be able to’t get right into a 2.0-liter mannequin for something lower than $33,105 and a top-of-the-line Touring will run you slightly below $38,000. That is just a few thousand {dollars} greater than you may pay for an equal Hyundai Sonata Restricted, although the latter does not have as a lot energy and is not fairly as good to drive. The Hyundai gives extra putting design, an extended guarantee and means higher cabin tech, although — three issues which can be arguably extra necessary for the typical household sedan purchaser.

Nonetheless, whereas some rivals may surpass the Accord in particular features, none really feel as wholly well-rounded. Properly-built, good to drive, refined and good-looking, Honda’s midsize sedan continues to be an important purchase.

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