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2021 Honda Accord | Review & Road Test

Kelley Blue Book

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Published on May 10, 2021
For the latest Honda Accord pricing and information:

The 10th generation Honda Accord arrived for the 2018 model year. So no, it’s not new.

First, what’s new. Well, following a mid-cycle refresh…there’s the graphic…the Accord benefits from subtly refreshed exterior styling, updated features, and a new Sonic Gray Pearl paint color that I wouldn’t have mentioned if our test car hadn’t come covered in it.

As a man of the people, I’m pleased to note this vivid 8-inch touchscreen with its clearly distinguished icons, intuitive layout, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity have slinked their way down to the cheapest LX trim.

Honda has also updated the standard Honda Sensing suite of active driver assists. They say the adaptive cruise control decelerates more smoothly and that lane-keeping assist has a more natural lane-centering feel.

In terms of safety, a rear seatbelt reminder comes standard, and a low-speed braking control feature has been added to the Touring trim, utilizing the parking sensors to warn of impacts and automatically apply the brakes at speeds below 6 mph.

Elsewhere Honda has changed the accelerator yielding snappier responses…though maximum acceleration remains the same, while EX trims and above now offer all-LED lighting, wireless phone charging, Wireless CarPlay, and Android Auto, and rear USB ports, whose omission I complained about in my original 2018 Accord review.

For a “midsize” car rear-seat legroom is absurd. I’m too damn average to show it off. Mike Danger, show ‘em what I’m talking about.

Upfront the layout is simple and functional with clearly labeled buttons and controls. Oh, and when you turn the knobs they have a nice little click.

The trunk provides a healthy 16.7 cubic feet, enhanced by a sizable passthrough to the cabin.
-Speaking of, the cabin features a big center console, a deep USB-adjacent storage area, and a highly adjustable driver seat.

As a bonus, with the steering wheel set low as I prefer, I can still see the gauge cluster without obstruction.

Alright, that’s enough montage. It’s a useful gimmick I’d rather not wear out.

Amongst all the praise I should also note that more premium rear door panels might be nice in our $32k tester. I also noticed a sizable gap on the passenger side of the hood.

Moving on, the Accord drives really well. Visibility is clear in all directions, road noise is a distant rumble, and the steering provides satisfying heft with direct, predictable responses from the chassis.

Oh, let’s test that more responsive acceleration. Oh yeah, that’s snappier.

While on the subject of acceleration, the Honda Accord’s turbocharged 4-cylinder engine roster includes a 1.5-liter (192hp, 192 lb-ft) that’s powerful enough for most buyers' needs but there’s also a 2.0-liter (252hp, 273 lb-ft).

The 1.5-liter (up to 30city/38hwy) is matched to a continuously variable transmission that, among CVTs, is comparatively inoffensive. Meanwhile, the 2.0-liter (22city/32hwy) is partnered with a generally transparent 10-speed automatic transmission.

Filling out the powertrain lineup is the Accord hybrid whose two-motor hybrid powertrain (212 Total Horsepower) and lithium-ion battery pack deliver stellar efficiency for a midsize sedan. (up to 48city/48hwy)

In base sub-$25k form, the Accord LX includes dual-zone automatic climate control, 8 airbags including front knee airbags, and the previously mentioned Honda Sensing suite of active driver-assist technologies.

Available on higher trims are heated front and rear seats, leather, SmartKey entry to accompany the standard push-button start, ventilated front seats, and, reserved for the loftiest Touring trim, adaptive dampers to improve ride and handling.

Competing for your midsize sedan attention are the sporting Mazda6, the unexpectedly sassy Toyota Camry, the intriguing Hyundai Sonata, plus plenty of others (Nissan Altima, Kia K5, Subaru Legacy).

In short, you’ve got lots of great choices.

But if you come to me and say “Hey Micah, I’d like to buy a 10th-generation Accord”, I still happily give you my blessing.

00:00 2021 Honda Accord
0:25 Exterior
0:35 Interior
3:10 Driving Impressions
3:33 Engine Options
4:47 Competitors
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