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 Leisure

Honda has a new Accord

29th July, 2017

By ASWAN YAP

These days, it seems like Honda is putting a new model in showrooms every few months although it is not really the case. However, as a global player, it has to introduce a new model at least once a year and also refresh existing ones which would be around for 5 years.

Internationally, the latest one is the all-new Accord that was revealed in the USA recently. It made its global debut there instead of Japan because the Accord has been the best-selling sedan in America for many years. This is quite an achievement when you consider that America such a huge market and highly competitive but the Accord obviously offers what buyers want.

This is the tenth generation of the model which was Honda’s second world car after the Civic. Japanese carmakers typically use a platform over two generations and as the ninth generation was the second one to use the previous platform, this generation gets a totally new one. This has allowed the engineers to incorporate more advances to lighten as well as make the body structure more rigid.

There’s an advanced new chassis design and two all-new, high-torque direct-injected and turbocharged engines. The new Accord also has the world’s first 10-speed automatic transmission for a front-wheel drive car and a new generation of Honda’s two-motor hybrid technology, along with a host of new safety, driver-assistive and connected-car technologies.

“We are redefining the Honda Accord for a new generation of buyers by bringing something unexpected that challenges the idea of what a mainstream sedan can be. Even as we advance core values like great driving dynamics, safety performance and efficiency, the distinctive design of this all-new Honda Accord will help it appeal to both head and heart in equal measure,” said Jeff Conrad, Senior Vice-President of the Automobile Division of American Honda Motor Company, at the global debut of the model in Detroit.

Drawing on the design principles established for the model since the first model was launched in 1976, Honda’s designers and engineers went back to the fundamentals of proportion and stance with a low and wide body and expansive visibility. At the same time, the new car gained a sporting and athletic appearance which led to a thoroughly modern, sporty and premium sedan design.

Compared to the previous generation, the new Accord has a longer wheelbase (+55 mm) and a slightly wider body. However, the body length is almost the same as before but underneath, the tracks are wider. The upper body with the window glass is positioned further back on the body, giving it a new stance and proportion. The combined effect of these changes is a more premium look, highlighted by shorter overhangs, a bold front face, long and low bonnet, and a visual centre of gravity moved closer to the rear wheels.

Inside the new Accord, the seats have been moved slightly inward for improved hip, shoulder and head room while enhancing occupants’ freedom of movement. With extra wheelbase, the designers could move the rear seats more rearward, giving the occupants there almost 55 mm of rear legroom. This is said to be one of the most spacious rear seating areas in its class.

The new Accord also boasts a larger, more premium and tech-savvy interior that complements its athletic and elegant body design. The panoramic forward view is enabled by its lower cowl and by front roof pillars that are 20% narrower and moved rearward relative to the driver’s seating position.

The new Accord takes an entirely new approach to performance by offering three advanced new powerplants (availability depends on market) – two direct-injected and turbocharged 4-cylinder engines and the third generation of Honda’s two-motor hybrid powertrain technology.

Of significance is the introduction of a new engine which is 1.5 litres in size. It’s the same one as used in the latest Civic and has a lot of new technology. With direct injection, turbocharging and dual Variable Timing Control (dual VTC), it produces 192 ps at 5,500 rpm and 260 Nm of torque from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm. That’s more than the 2.4-litre engine that’s been used before!

The new body structure is lighter and more rigid, utilizing 29% ultra-high-strength steel, the most extensive application of this weight-saving material in any current mass-produced Honda car. Depending on the variant, the total weight is down from 50 to 80 kgs.

Key body features include the latest generation of Honda’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure with crash stroke front frame, tailor-tempered rear frame members for improved crash-energy absorption, and the extensive use of structural adhesives for increased rigidity, cabin quietness and weight reduction.

This new Accord will come to Malaysia as well although it may be another year before it is launched. In the meantime, the company is busy trying to meet demand for the BR-V, City, Civic and the new CR-V.

   
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