Drove the new 8th generation Accord for a fair distance and i am impressed. It indeed is a step forward from the previous generation. It has fantastic presence and the car is quite big. The side profile quite resembles the BMW 5 Series, but hey no ones complaining.
The new Accord is more European. The interiors are plusher and the seats are very comfortable. Build quality has improved too. Doors shut with more solidity. There is ample room in the cabin be it head, leg or shoulder. The car rides much better then the previous generation and i have no complains about the ride. What i do have a complain about is the handling, which is a bit disappointing. While it may feel well planted at high speeds, it doesnt exactly feel glued to the road. Steering feedback could have been better, but it does have fantastic agility and changes direction pretty quickly. The brakes are fantastic with all round discs, ABS, EBD, BAS. But lack of TCS or ESP is quite suprising, considering Skoda has been offering it in even the Octavia.
The 2.4L engine makes the car quite fun to drive and doesnt feel strained at high revvs afterall it has Honda’s legendary Vtec technology. Its very smooth and refined but little noisy at high revvs, which is a good thing. The gearbox is fantastic, light and precise, gears slot with ease. However as most Vtec powerplants there is poor performance between 2000 rpm and 4000 rpm. Max torque of 22.2KGM at 4000RPM and 1500kgs kerb weight can be blamed for poor city performance. Fuel efficieny figures are nothing to talk about with 7.5kmpl in city and 11kmpl on the highway, but then the car in consideration is almost as big as the E Class.
The New Accord is indeed a step in the right direction. Its fantastic, value for money, rides well, is pretty comfortable and is afterall a Honda. It will set the sales chart on fire no doubt, and once the diesel comes, it will be close to perfect. Test drive report of the Toyota Camry coming soon.