Honda Accord Review: Models, Price, Reliability and More

Honda Accord Review: Models, Price, Reliability and More

Undeniably one of the most iconic cars to hail from Japan, the Honda Accord debuted in 1976 at the height of the global oil crisis, which sent gas prices soaring to heights that consumers had never seen before never before.

Thanks to its reliability and frugal use of fuel, it wasn't long before drivers fell in love, allowing the Accord to pave the way for other automakers to follow suit with their own gas-efficient sedans, like the Toyota Camry and Nissan Maxima.

Fun fact: Honda supposedly chose the Accord's name specifically to showcase the company's dedication to seeking accord – an official pact or agreement – between humankind and the automobile. 

Shortly after the early hatchback models arrived in 1976, the Honda Accord became one of the first vehicles by a Japanese automaker to make a splash in the North American car market. In fact, the Accord was the first import to win the title of best-selling car in the United States, in 1989 specifically. 

So it’s no surprise that since its release, Honda has sold approximately 18 million Accords worldwide. 

These days, the Honda Accord – a name that's now 45 years in the making – is a solid staple of the global auto industry, to say the very least. 

For years the solid, dependable sedan occupied the top-selling slot in Honda's lineup, only to eventually succumb to the CR-V crossover SUV. Nevertheless, it remains one of the most popular makes and models of cars around the globe. So if you're in the market for a used vehicle, the Accord most certainly belongs on your list of finalists.

What trim options are available on the Honda Accord?

The Accord comes in five trim levels: the LX base model, the Sport, the Sport Special Edition, the EX-L, and the Touring. 

Depending on the trim, the Accord features two engine options. Under the hood of base models and lower-trim editions is a 1.5-liter, 192-horsepower four-cylinder that churns out 30 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the freeway. Upper-trim variants get a 2.0-liter, 252-horsepower four-cylinder that travels up to 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the freeway. 

New base model Accords – the LX – start at $24,770, while the top-tier Touring editions go for $36,900. Used models bring significant savings on both cars. Base Accord LX models hovering between $12,000-$15,000 and Touring models as little as $23,000.

Used Accords, however, ensure major savings, averaging between $13,000 and $14,000. Some go for as little as $8,500.

How has the Honda Accord changed over the years?

A legacy that's on its way to being half a century in the making, the Honda Accord has gone through its fair share of aesthetical updates – growth spurts, namely – over the years. Since debuting the car in the mid-1970s, Honda's engineers have stretched the Accord's body so that modern-day models now measure nearly two feet longer and nine inches wider than the original 1976 edition. 

First sold as a four-door sedan as well as a three-door hatchback that Honda discontinued in 1989, they also produced two-door coupe versions of the Accord from 1997 to 2017. Before that, from 1989 to 1997, the Accord was also available as a station wagon with a rear tailgate door.

These days, Honda only offers the Accord as a four-door sedan body style whose current look touts sleek, sharp lines and edgy but stylish finishes that give it a modern feel that's fit for the 21st century. The Accord is racier and more playful than ever before, and it's most certainly peppier than most other midsize cars, too. It feels grounded and quick in curves, especially with the larger of the two engine options, making for a driving experience that's surprisingly all in all fun. 

Honda gave the Accord a complete redesign with the 2018 model year, which featured new turbocharged engine options, a more sizable trunk, and additional safety features. The Accord finally earned the ability to connect to smartphones, thanks to the addition of Android Auto in 2016 and Apple CarPlay in 2017. For 2019, the 2.0-liter engine became standard in the Touring model, while all Accord trims received additional standard and add-on infotainment features. Most recently, in 2021, the Accord roster swapped the EX trim for the new Sport Special Edition trim. As of 2021, all Honda Accords feature automatic transmissions only.

How fuel-efficient is the Honda Accord?

It comes with little surprise that the Accord ranks as one of Honda's top-sellers and also happens to be easy on the wallet when it's time to pull up to the gas pumps.

The Accord puts out 30 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the freeway with the smaller of the two four-cylinder engine options, while the zippier 2.0 engine variant runs up to 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the freeway.

It's also worth noting that the Accord came as a forerunner of cars to offer a hybrid option, which was first available with the 2005 edition. Hybrid Accords stretch up to a total of 48 miles per gallon of gas in both the city and on the freeway.

2017 Honda Accord Sport SE (from $18,350)

 2017 Honda Accord Sport SE (from $18,350)
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 2017 Honda Accord Sport SE (from $18,350)
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How does the Honda Accord compare to other midsize sedans in terms of safety?

The Accord earned comparably impressive ratings from the Institute for Highway Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Both organizations graded it to be among the most trustworthy midsize sedans available today.

When it comes to driver-assist safety features, the Accord doesn't disappoint. Standard features include automatic emergency braking, traffic-sign recognition, pedestrian detection, lane-trace and lane-keep assist, lane-departure and forward-collision warning, adaptive cruise control, and rearview cameras. Plenty of additional upgrade options exist as well on the Accord, including reverse automatic emergency braking, rear-cross traffic alert, a surround-view parking camera system, and blind-spot monitoring.

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How does the Honda Accord's interior measure up?

The Accord features a decently sized interior for a midsize sedan that offers ample seating and legroom for up to five full-size adults in both the front and rear. In fact, the Accord's cabin is one of the most spacious compared to other midsize sedans, with top-notch materials that in higher trims are on par with those of Honda luxury name badge Acura.

The 16.7-cubic-foot trunk is on par in terms of size compared to other midsize sedans, with room to carry plenty of cargo, and it makes for even more space with the rear seats folded down.

In terms of its infotainment system, the Accord comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, with Amazon Alexa as an optional upgrade, all of which are accessible via an 8-inch touchscreen.

2014 Honda Accord EX (from $18,250)

2014 Honda Accord EX (from $18,250)
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2014 Honda Accord EX (from $18,250)
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Way A-OK for the Honda Accord

Safe, reliable, stylish, sensible and affordable, the Honda Accord embodies the perfect mix of traits that make for a quality car.

Given that they’re proven to last, the perk of opting for a used Accord over a new model is obvious, too: all the savings.

Shift's inventory includes nearly 200 Accords from which to choose, all of which you can buy directly online from the comfort of your home. Best of all, you can rest assured that whichever model you choose will have no hidden issues, thanks to Shift's 150-point inspection, and trust that you're getting a fair, up-front price from the start.

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Author
Shift Editorial Team