There are two staples in Honda’s lineup that have seemingly been a part its production line forever. Those cars are the Honda Civic and Accord. The Accord has seen many changes over its lifespan, some simple and others very extreme. As we approach the 2013 model year, we know the the Accord is being redesigned, but so far we only know the specifics of the Accord Coupe.
As of now, we officially know the specifics behind the Accord sedan, thus completing the 2013 Accord lineup. Honda’s goal with the new Accord sedan was to make it better, but not bigger. One area that Honda needed to improve upon, in order to keep pace with the CAFE regulations, was fuel economy. It’s not that the 2012 Accord got poor fuel economy – 23 mpg city and 34 mpg highway with a 4-cylinder – it just needs to constantly improve to hit the corporate lineup average of 54.5 mpg by 2025.
What exactly could Honda have done to make the 2013 Accord any better than the 2012 Accord, which is pretty nice itself?
To find out what Honda did and if it met its goal of making the Accord better, click past the jump.
Making up the body of the new Accord sedan is 55.8 percent high-tensile steel and 17.2 percent of the steel used in grade 780, 980, and 1,500 – high steel grades that the Accord has never seen before. This allows Honda to use a little less steel when making the body panels, thereby lowering its weight and maximizing its fuel economy, comfort, handling and performance. Additional weight was lost by shortening the Accord’s body by three inches.
The Accord sedan boasts a more sleek and bold exterior with its sharper body lines on the hood and doors. Down the sides of the Accord, you will notice body contours that are similar to last year’s model, only this year they are far more pronounced and a little sharper. This gives the Accord a much more defined look.
The hood is much the same way. It has similar lines to last year’s model, only the lines are more stout and obvious. These lines give the Accord more of a “get outta my way” look as it approaches, while maintaining the manners we all expect from Honda’s flagship.
The headlights are also modified from last year. Last year’s lights swooped rearward almost lazily. This year, Honda will have none of that laziness, as the headlights slant rearward with definition, almost giving the Accord a sinister stare. Also gone is the soft, swooping and almost smile-like grille from 2012 and in comes a more serious-looking, straight-louvered grille underlined with a cheeky-smile-looking chrome strip.
Beneath the grille is a wide open mouth with a thin lower lip and chicken-wire-like grating. As you move outward from the grille and the side air intake, you’ll find a set of trapezoidal fog lamps replacing the snake-eye units found in the 2012 model.
On the rear end, Honda changed up the taillights slightly to have a sharper forward-pointing tip and the entire lens extends to the trunk lid before tapering to a point. You also get a chrome applique above the license plate. On 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder models, you get a stylish set of dual exhaust pipes hanging out of the rear end.
In all, Honda basically threw the 2012 Accord in the gym and made it tone up in certain areas, giving it a stronger appearance. The biggest thing is that it still maintains the level of class that Honda Accord buyers expect.
The exterior will have nine color options, four of which are metallic colors and five are pearl colors. New colors on the Accord sedan include: Champagne Frost Pearl, Hematite Metallic, Modern Steel Metallic, and Obsidian Blue Pearl.
Now onto the interior. We actually saw this image, though very grainy, a few days ago. In that image, we made the comment that the center stack and center console simply did not match up with one another. We were really hoping that image was only a preliminary design or was so grainy that we couldn’t see a transitioning piece between the stack and the console.
Unfortunately, the high-resolution image only confirms what we saw... The center-stack-to-center-console transition is simply awful. It jumps straight from sharply angled center stack pieces directly into a plane-old center console. It does so very abruptly too.
If Honda may have had the trim surrounding the center console angle outward to better align with the lower part of the center stack, the contrast wouldn’t be nearly as noticeable. It just looks odd.
As for the rest of the interior, it looks good so far. The driver’s side looks neatly organized with a well-place speedometer. The steering wheel has a small amount of well-positioned control buttons. You also get an 8-inch LCD intelligent Multi-Information Display (i-MID) screen standard, Bluetooth HandsFreeLink interface, Pandora Internet radio, and SMS text messaging system. You can also opt for a touch screen audio system, Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System with voice recognition, and FM traffic feed.
The 2013 Accord is also the first Honda to feature HondaLink Technology, which you can connect your smartphone to and hook the HondaLink system up to music streams, media pages, Internet applications, roadside assistance, and lots more. You can also opt for Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, and Adaptive Cruise Control.
Despite being shorter, Honda did a great job with increasing very important interior dimensions. First off, the trunk has a flat-load floor, so it can carry 1-cubic-foot more cargo than last year’s model. Honda also increased rear leg room by over one inch, and front and rear shoulder room.
On the inside, you can choose from three colors: black, gray, and ivory. You can opt for either cloth or leather interior in all three colors.
If it weren’t for that funky center section, we think the Accord’s interior would be a home-run. Instead, it is now just a triple.
Safety is huge when it comes to a family sedan, and Honda did not short customers on this important part. Standard on the 2013 Accord is Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), which combines the Accord’s Drive-by-Wire throttle with its standard 4-channel ABS to enhance vehicle control when cornering, braking, accelerating, or if you make a sudden maneuver. You can also opt for Forward Collision Warning and Lane Departure Warning.
Advance Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure helps keep you safer in the event of a front-end crash, via the use of high-tensile steel and impact-absorbing front body design. You also get six airbags: dual fronts, front-side airbags, and side-curtain airbag.
Honda fully expects a top-safety award in its class and 5-star ratings across the board on all crash testing.
Engines and Drivetrains
There are still two engines available on the Accord, as there has been for many years. The 2013 model’s base engine is a direct-injected 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with Earth Dreams technology, which pumps out 185 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 181 pound-feet of torque at 3,900 rpm in the LX and EX-L trims and 189 horsepower and 182 pound feet of torque in the Sport trim level. That’s an 8-horsepower and and 20 pound-feet increase over the 2012 LX and EX-L models. There was no Sport trim in 2012.
The largest engine in the lineup this year is a 3.5-liter V-6 engine the the same Earth Dreams technology. This Engine is only found in the EX-L V-6 and the Touting V-6. It pumps out 278 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 252 pound-feet of torque at 4,900 rpm – a 7-horsepower increase and a 2 pound-feet loss from the 2012 model year.
As for transmissions, you will get a 6-speed manual as the base transmission on the LX and Sport trims with an available CVT. The EX-L trim will come standard with a 6-speed manual tranny and there’s the option of adding in the CVT. The EX trim level comes standard with the CVT transmission and has the option of a 6-speed manual.the EX-L V-6 and L Touring come only with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Trim and Transmission
LX w/ 6-Speed Manual
24 / 34 / 28
LX w/ CVT
27 / 36 / 30
Sport w/ 6-Speed Manual
24 / 34 / 28
Sport w/ CVT
26 / 35 / 29
EX/EX-L w/ 6-Speed Manual
24 / 34 / 28
EX/EX-L w/ CVT
27 / 36 / 30
EX-L V-6/Touring w/ 6-Speed Automatic
21 / 34 / 25
Those fuel economy numbers show a 4 mpg increase in the city and 1 mpg increase on the highway on the V-6 model. The 4-cylinder model sees a 1 mpg increase in the manual transmission in the city and the highway mileage remains the same, but the CVT gets 4 mpg more in the city and 2 mpg more on the highway over last year’s automatic.
The 2013 Camry should be just a carryover from the 2012 model year, so we can safely assume that all of the specs will carry over too. From the outside, the Accord has a definitely leg up, as the new Camry just doesn’t quite fit the “Camry persona.” Plus, the sporty front end just does not match up well with the all-business rear end.
Under the hood, the Camry comes standard with a 2.5-liter 4-banger that pops off 178 horsepower and 170 pound feet of torque, a 7-horsepower loss and 11 pound-feet loss to the Accord’s 2.4-liter engine. The fuel economy is almost identical between the two, with the Camry slightly edging out the Accord manual transmissions, but the Accord CVT narrowly edging out the Camry.
At the top level, the Camry’s 3.5-liter V-6 pumps out 268 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque, which is a 10-horsepower loss and 4 pound-feet loss to the 2013 Accord sedan. The Accord narrowly beat the Camry V-6 in city gas mileage 21 mpg to 20 mpg, but it crushes it in city mpg, 34 to 30.
On the inside, however, Honda can’t shake that horrific center stack, as the Camry’s interior is simply much cleaner and better organized.
We love the Accord’s new look, engine output, and fuel economy numbers. That center stack just kills it for us. The addition of a CVT to increase fuel economy is curious too, as most companies are simply enhancing their automatics to enhance mpg. As you know, we hate the CVT and think it’s a waste of space, but we love the extra mpg.
If you can live with gazing at that monstrosity of a center stack, then the Accord is a perfect fit. Then again, at least its exterior matches up, unlike the Camry, who’s front end does not match the rear end. We’ll call this one a draw...
Awesome new exterior
Great power from both engines
Excellent fuel economy
That center stack...
Lack of interior color options
CVT to increase mileage is the easy way out
All-New 2013 Honda Accord Brings Remarkable Levels of Luxury, Agility, Efficiency and Sophistication to Midsize Segment’s Legendary Nameplate
Ninth-generation Accord offers all-new direct-injected powertrain, class-leading safety innovations and upcoming plug-in hybrid model
09/05/2012 - TORRANCE, Ca: Honda today announced the all-new 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe, a storied nameplate that will once again redefine sophistication, efficiency and driving joy in the midsize class. Completely redesigned for 2013, the all-new Honda Accord provides a host of powertrain, engineering, electronic and safety firsts combined with Honda’s trademark visibility and smart design.
Better, not bigger, the completely new Honda Accord lineup includes Sedan and Coupe models powered by 4-cylinder, V-6 and hybrid powertrains, teamed to manual, automatic and continuously variable transmission (CVT) options. The 2013 Honda Accord Sedan goes on sale September 19, 2012, with the Coupe to follow on October 15, 2012. An all-new, two-motor 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) Sedan is scheduled to debut in early 2013, followed by a conventional hybrid based on the same powertrain architecture in the summer of 2013.
Using the most high-strength steel in the model’s history, the 2013 Honda Accord Sedan and Coupe bodies combine sophisticated and athletic styling with remarkable aerodynamic streamlining. Revised Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structures improve frontal crash safety, making the all-new Accord one of few midsize offerings expected to excel in the upcoming small-overlap frontal barrier crash test.
All-new Earth Dreams powertrains include the first U.S. application of Honda’s next-generation 2.4-liter direct-injected 4-cylinder engine. The 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe will also offer a more powerful and efficient V-6, and in early 2013, an all-new two-motor 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) Sedan will debut. Four transmissions are available, including the first-ever application of a continuously variable transmission (CVT) on 2.4-liter 4-cylinder models, a six-speed automatic on V-6 models, and unique 6-speed manual transmissions on 2.4-liter 4-cylinder models and the 3.5-liter V-6 Coupe. Fuel efficiency is the best ever for an Accord in the EPA Midsize class, with 4-cylinder models earning up to an EPA 36 mpg highway rating1 and V-6 models getting up to an EPA 34 mpg highway rating.1
Other new Accord technologies include the first application of the all-new cloud-based HondaLink system, which lets drivers put away their smartphones and still stay connected to the people, music and social media they love. Also debuting on the 2013 Accord is the exclusive available Honda LaneWatch blind-spot display, which uses a camera system mounted on the passenger mirror for an enhanced view of the passenger-side roadway. The all-new 2013 Honda Accord also receives a rearview camera and an Expanded View Driver’s Mirror as standard equipment.
New Accord Technology
Honda’s first use of direct injection (DI) in North America contributes to the 2.4-liter inline 4-cylinder engine’s excellent fuel efficiency and low emissions.
A new Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), available with the 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine, contributes to the Accord’s improved fuel efficiency. Honda’s unique G-Design Shift logic creates a connected feel and provides a more immediate acceleration response than conventional automatics or other CVT designs.
New MacPherson-strut front suspension improves ride and handling qualities, while also reducing interior noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). The new lighter aluminum and steel front subframe also uses a proprietary Honda friction-stir welding process.
Three features highly coveted by consumers are now standard on every new Accord: Bluetooth HandsFreeLink, USB/iPod integration and rearview camera. No other manufacturer provides this level of standard equipment. Honda’s Expanded View Driver’s Mirror is also now standard equipment on every Accord.
All Accord models feature standard Econ button with Eco Assist™
Included on Accord EX, EX-L and Touring Sedan models and EX-L Coupe, Honda LaneWatch™ Blind Spot Display provides an expanded rear view of the passenger side roadway through the intelligent Multi-Information Display (i-MID).
All-new Smart Entry & Push Button Start included on Accord EX, EX-L and Touring models.
Included on EX-L and Touring Sedan and EX-L Coupe models, Forward Collision Warning (FCW) alerts the driver when a potential collision with another vehicle ahead is detected.
Included on Accord EX-L and Touring models, Lane Departure Warning (LDW) alerts the driver when lane drift is detected without a turn signal in use.
New SmartVent side airbags mitigate the risk of excessive airbag deployment force while eliminating the need for the prior Accord’s Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS). SmartVent also allows improved heating of the passenger seatback on EX-L and Touring models.
The Accord Touring Sedan offers Honda’s first light emitting diode (LED) projector headlights for improved visibility. In addition, LED daytime running lights (DRLs) are found on V-6 powered models, while LED brake lights come on all EX-L and Touring models.
Exclusive to the Touring Sedan, Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) allows the driver to set a desired speed and a distance interval behind the vehicle ahead.
The all-new available HondaLink connected-car system allows owners to put their smartphones away and still stay connected to their favorite digital content.
The 2013 Honda Accord Sedan will be available in six model choices, including an all-new top-spec Touring trim (LX, Sport, EX, EX-L, EX-L V6, and Touring), with the 2014 Accord Plug-In Hybrid Sedan arriving early in 2013. The striking 2013 Honda Accord Coupe will be available in four model choices (LX-S, EX, EX-L and EX-L V6).
The 2013 Accord Sedan is available in nine exterior colors, including four metallic and five pearl colors. All-new colors include Champagne Frost Pearl, Hematite Metallic, Modern Steel Metallic and Obsidian Blue Pearl. The 2013 Accord Coupe is available in seven exterior colors, including two metallic, five pearl and one solid color. All-new colors include Modern Steel Metallic, Still Night Pearl, Tiger Eye Pearl and White Orchid Pearl.
As in previous generations, two gasoline engines are available on the 2013 Honda Accord Sedan and Coupe. These include a new Earth Dreams™ 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with Honda’s first use of direct injection in North America, and an Earth Dreams™ 3.5-liter V-6 with revised VTEC + VCM functions. The base 185-horsepower (hp) 4-cylinder engine is coupled to a choice of an efficient new continuously variable transmission (CVT), or a new fun-to-shift 6-speed manual transmission on selected models. The Accord Sport Sedan model provides a 189-horsepower version of the 2.4-liter 4-cylinder. Meanwhile, Accord V-6 models feature a 278-horsepower 3.5-liter engine coupled to a 6-speed automatic or, in the V-6 Coupe, a 6-speed manual transmission.
In early 2013, the 2014 Accord Plug-In Hybrid will debut Honda’s new 2.0-liter 4-cylinder two-motor plug-in hybrid system. Available in the Sedan only, this system operates continuously through three modes – all-electric, gasoline-electric and direct-drive – to maximize fuel efficiency.
Crisply styled and aerodynamically efficient, the 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe body designs are the most sophisticated in Accord history. The 2013 Accord unit-body uses 55.8-percent high-tensile steel, more than in any previous Accord. In addition, 17.2-percent of the steel is now grade 780, 980 and 1,500 – extremely high grades that have never before been used in any Accord. This contributes to higher body rigidity and reduced weight, which directly benefits ride and handling, interior quietness, performance and efficiency and long-term durability.
With its contoured body-sides, the Sedan’s exterior design is sleek, bold and decisive, while the Coupe’s design is rakish, taut and athletic. Extensive use of under-covers improve aerodynamics for increased fuel efficiency, while other advances include available LED headlights, DRLs and brake lights, mirror-mounted turn signals, and the standard Expanded View Driver’s Mirror that increases the driver’s field of vision by 4.2 degrees.
Literally every aspect of the Accord’s chassis was reviewed or redesigned to create the best possible driving experience. Altogether, the highly rigid unit-body, refined suspension technology and advanced electronics define the 2013 Accord chassis as the most capable in model history. The new Accord is quieter and more responsive on city streets, smoother and more composed on the highway, and even more faithful to the driver’s wishes on winding roads.
New features for Accord include a MacPherson strut front suspension, a steel and aluminum front subframe and electric power steering (EPS). Standard Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) on both 4-cylinder and V-6 models counteract engine noise, particularly at high rpm.
The lightweight MacPherson strut front suspension improves ride and handling qualities while also reducing interior noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). The new aluminum and steel front subframe reduces weight and, in conjunction with the new independent multi-link rear suspension, further reduces NVH. Careful aerodynamic tailoring of the underbody and suspension systems provides additional noise reductions.
The new EPS setup uses an electric motor to assist the rack-and-pinion steering rather than the hydraulic assist of the previous Accord. The result is reduced steering effort and fuel consumption, with improved precision, feel and stability.
Alloy wheels are now standard across the Accord model range, and range in size from 16 to 18 inches. Four-wheel disc brakes are also standard, as is Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) with Brake Assist, a 4-channel Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with Traction Control, and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Hill start assist is also now standard on the Accord.
A completely new interior provides a level of luxury and craftsmanship never before seen in the Accord. Available in Black, Gray and Ivory cloth or leather, the interior combines welcoming comfort with an impressive range of available technologies. Standard features include redesigned seating, dual-zone automatic climate control and simplified controls and instrumentation.
Compared to the prior edition, both the 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe offer spacious accommodations for five passengers, and a roomy trunk with a flatter load floor for greater utility. Although the Accord’s length has decreased over three inches and the wheelbase is almost an inch shorter, key interior dimensions grow. Rear legroom increases over an inch, both front and rear shoulder room increase, and trunk space is up over a cubic foot. Altogether, the interior is remarkably quiet, stylish and upscale, with high-quality materials, exemplary fit and finish, and advanced seating comfort and ergonomics.
Contemporary onboard electronics help the Accord driver seamlessly interface with the latest generation of compatible personal mobile electronics. Standard features on all Accords include a bright, full-color 8-inch (diagonal) "intelligent" Multi-Information Display (i-MID), Bluetooth®2 HandsFreeLink phone interface, Pandora internet radio interface and an SMS text messaging feature. A new available Audio with touchscreen display and the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with Voice Recognition and FM Traffic is also available.
The 2013 Accord is also the first Honda product to offer available HondaLink technology, which works with the owner’s compatible smartphone to connect the Accord with music and media resources such as Aha™ by Harman, internet apps, roadside assistance and more. Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) are also available.
The 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe offer the greatest range of active and passive safety features in Honda history. Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) is standard on all Accord models, and available new technologies include Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW).
Collision safety engineering includes the updated Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure, which improves occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal collisions, and the most extensive use of high-strength steel in Accord history. The Accord’s impact-absorbing front body design can even help attenuate energy in the event of a frontal collision with a pedestrian.
Passive-safety features include six airbags, including dual-stage, multiple-threshold front airbags, front side airbags, and side curtain airbags. New SmartVent side airbags reduce the risk of excessive airbag deployment force and eliminate the need for the Accord’s previous Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS).
Based on internal testing, both the 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe are expected to earn a TOP SAFETY PICK rating from the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) and 5-star ratings in federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) crash tests3.
Celebrating 30 years of Accord production in the United States, the all-new 2013 Honda represents the expanding capabilities of Honda in North America. Virtually every aspect of the Accord was developed, tested and finalized by Honda associates throughout California and Ohio. The Accord is produced4 in Ohio by Honda of America Mfg. Inc. using domestic and globally sourced parts.
Additional media information including detailed pricing, features and high-resolution photography of the 2013 Honda Accord is available at www.hondanews.com. Consumer information is available at automobiles.honda.com.
1 Based on 2013 EPA mileage estimates. Use for comparison purposes only. Do not compare to models before 2008. Your actual mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle.
2 Certain functions that rely on a satellite signal will not work correctly in Hawaii and Alaska. These functions include but are not limited to automatic clock updates and time zone adjustments.
3 Based on frontal crash- and side crash-safety ratings and Overall Vehicle Score in the NHTSA NCAP testing. Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of NHTSA’s New Car Assessment Program (www.SaferCar.gov). Model tested with standard side airbags (SABs). Vehicles tested under the new program cannot be compared to MY10 and earlier vehicles.
4 Honda products are produced using domestic and globally sourced parts.