Honda Civic vs Accord: Comparing Two All-Star Sedans

Honda Civic vs Accord: Comparing Two All-Star Sedans

Honda is known for manufacturing durable and reliable vehicles, so it's not uncommon to see early model-year editions still zooming around. If you're in the market for a reliable used car, it only makes sense to look into getting your hands on a Honda. But, with a lineup of exceptional vehicles to choose from, deciding which Honda – the Civic or the Accord – best suits you can be a challenge.

If you need more room than these compact and midsize sedans have to offer, you may be interested in Honda's range of larger vehicles like the Odyssey or the Pilot.

Since the two are so comparable, you could be wondering what the differences between the Honda Civic versus the Accord are. In that case, keep reading as we compare them to help you decide which one matches your lifestyle, with highlights on performance, size, interior tech features, safety, reliability, and price.

How does the Civic perform compared to the Accord?

The Civic is well-known as a street performer among car enthusiasts, so it's no surprise that this athletic-looking Honda is a treat to drive on the open road. It's available as a sedan or hatchback, with two powertrain options: a standard two-liter, four-cylinder engine or a turbocharged, 1.5-liter, four-cylinder option. All models of this compact car come with front-wheel-drive.

Equipped with the standard engine, the Civic achieves 158 horsepower and a fuel efficiency of 31 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway. For those with a need for speed, the sportier trim models with the turbocharged engine can reach up to 180 horsepower, with minimal change in fuel efficiency.

The Accord is the more sizable option, as it's technically a midsize sedan. It features heftier powertrain options, including a standard 1.5-liter, four-cylinder or a two-liter, four-cylinder engine, both of which are turbocharged. Additionally, you can opt for a two-liter, four-cylinder hybrid engine. 

The Accord shares the same energetic look, much like the Civic, but bears an added touch of sophistication. So its aesthetics, combined with its smooth driving experience and quiet ride, give it a more grown-up vibe. Despite its weightier body size, the Accord's standard engine is a close match of the Civic's when it comes to fuel efficiency, delivering 30 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway, with an output of 192 horsepower.

How do the Civic and Accord compare in terms of size?

Even though it's a compact car, the Civic offers a surprising amount of room for you and your friends, with additional space for cargo. Up to five people can fit and not feel cramped, thanks to its 99 cubic feet of passenger volume. The sedan can hold plenty of gear in its 14.8 cubic feet of trunk space, while the hatchback offers 22.6 to 25.7 cubic feet behind the back seats and 46.2 cubic feet with the back seats down.

Taller folks won't feel stuffed into the Civic's cockpit, with 39.3 inches of headroom in the front and 42.3 inches of legroom. Above-average height riders may be more comfortable riding shotgun on longer trips, with 37.1 inches of headroom in the back and 37.4 inches of legroom.

The Accord allows friends and family increased wiggle room, thanks to its 105.6 cubic feet of passenger volume. You'll also have room for all your gear, with 16.7 cubic feet of trunk space and back seats that fold down to accommodate bulkier or awkwardly shaped packages that may not fit otherwise.

The front seats of the Accord offer similar dimensions to the Civic's, with 39.5 inches of headroom and, just like the Civic, 42.3 inches of legroom. The difference is in the back seat, where passengers are allowed 37.3 inches of headroom and 40.4 inches of legroom. This additional passenger space makes the Accord ideal for traveling with more than one adult passenger.

What type of interior and tech features do the Civic and Accord offer?

The Civic's interior is impressive, with clean and modern styling and comfortable seats for everyone. It offers user-friendly cabin controls with a four-speaker audio system. The seven-inch touch screen infotainment system allows Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free calling and audio streaming. Additionally, you can integrate your Apple or Android smartphone to access more features.

The Accord's interior is where luxury meets practicality. The cabin controls and the eight-inch touch screen infotainment system offer perfect placement for ease of use. And, like the Civic, you can connect your phone via Bluetooth for calls and audio streaming. If it's an Apple or Android device, you can integrate with the system to unlock additional features as well.

2015 Honda Civic EX-L (from $16,950)

2015 Honda Civic EX-L (from $16,950)
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2015 Honda Civic EX-L (from $16,950)
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How do the Civic and Accord rank in terms of safety and reliability?

The Civic has held a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association for many years consecutively. It has received good crashworthiness ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for several years as well. 

For any model year scored by NHTSA, the Accord achieved a five-star rating. It also ranks as a top safety pick of the IIHS consistently for several years. Keep in mind to check any make and model yourself when considering a new or used vehicle.

The Civic and the Accord come standard with Honda's lineup of driver-assist and safety tech, including a collision-avoidance braking system, road departure assistance, adaptive cruise control, and lane-keep assist, among others. Also, you'll find a rearview camera for added safety and convenience.

As for reliability, J.D. Power ranked the Civic a whopping 76 out of 100 and the Accord an impressive 82 out of 100. A rating of 70 to 80 is considered average, while 81 to 90 constitutes as great.

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Which car has a more affordable price, the Civic or the Accord?

A new Civic starts at $21,700 for the base model and rises to $28,300 in the highest trim model. While the cost of buying new may seem attractive, you can get a used model for $6,950. With prices like that, you're likely to find a preloaded model with cash left over for a rainy day or your next vacation.

The Accord also offers approachable pricing on new models, with the base model starting at $24,970 and the top-tier trim starting at $31,290. Still, with used models listed as low as $8,950, you could technically buy three for the price of one, but you won't need to since Hondas are so reliable.

2014 Honda Accord EX (from $18,250)

2014 Honda Accord EX (from $18,250)
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What's better, the Honda Civic or Accord?

The answer to this question comes down to personal preference. Do you like the sportiness of the Civic or the practicality of the Accord? If you're curious how the Accord compares to other vehicles in its class, you may also want to check out this comparison of some of the best sedans to buy used.

Whichever model you decide upon, Shift offers fair, no-haggle prices determined by data and algorithms. You have hundreds of options at your fingertips without ever having to step foot in a dealership. And if you're still stuck on choosing between the Civic or the Accord, why not book a test drive and see for yourself?

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Shift Editorial Team