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Radical revisions are rare in the popular midsized sedan segment. Yet the 2018 Honda Accord brings wholesale changes—from curvy, coupe-inspired styling to turbocharged engines—in what is a dramatic makeover for a perennial segment leader.
Consumer Reports applauds Honda for making advanced safety features, including forward-collision warning and automatic emergency braking, standard equipment across all Accord trims.
CR rented a top-shelf Touring model from Honda to gather our initial impressions. Clearly, Honda has evolved the traditionally conservative Accord, and the result appears to be as satisfying as ever. The new version starts arriving at dealers in mid-October.
One of the biggest changes to the Accord’s new mixture is the switch to turbocharged four-cylinder engines (a 1.5-liter version and a 2.0-liter version) and giving up on any V6 version.
We were impressed with the slickness of the 2.0-liter turbo, 10-speed automatic drivetrain from the moment we stepped on the accelerator pedal. Although you might miss the sound of the V6, this punchy turbo-four delivers strong, smooth power, yet stays refined, even when the engine is really pushed. The automatic transmission is smooth and responsive, and it delivers almost imperceptible shifts.
The 2.0-liter turbo-four (adapted from the Civic Type R) that puts out 252 hp replaces the lively and beloved 3.5-liter V6. This new engine is linked to an all-new 10-speed automatic transmission. Either engine type is available with a six-speed manual (a rarity these days) in the Sport trim. A four-cylinder hybrid will join the lineup in early 2018.
The smaller, 1.5-liter base engine produces 192 hp and is mated to a continuously variable transmission. We’ve seen this engine before, in the Civic and the CR-V. This is the most powerful base engine ever in an Accord. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates the Accord 1.5T at 33…