Honda offered a hybrid version of its mid-sized Accord sedan during model years 2003-2007, but it sold poorly and was dropped from the lineup when the eighth-generation Accord was introduced for 2008.
That initial hybrid offering was built around Honda's V-6 engine and its electric assist was seen as more of a power booster than a fuel-economy tool, which may have accounted for its lack of success in the market.
Now, Honda is set to reintroduce a hybrid model in its ninth-generation Accord range and this time around the focus is clearly on fuel economy. In fact, the company claims it will be class-leading.
Official fuel-consumption ratings are expected to be 4.0 / 4.2 / 4.1 L/100 km (City/Hwy/Combined).
The ninth-generation Accord was introduced as a 2013 model, earning honours as AJAC's Canadian Car of the Year.
The non-plug-in Accord Hybrid will arrive in Honda dealerships across Canada in October, 2013, as a 2014 model.
At the core of the system is an all-new 2.0-litre, DOHC, Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine with i-VTEC, combined with Honda’s new two-motor hybrid powertrain. Called a SPORT HYBRID Intelligent Multi Mode Drive system, it will enable three different driving modes: EV Drive; Hybrid Drive; and Engine Drive.
In "EV Drive," a lithium-ion battery pack provides stored energy to run in electric-only mode at lower speeds and in medium to high speed cruising, while "Engine Drive" sends engine power directly to the front wheels without any electric-motor contribution.
In "Hybrid Drive," both a 124-kW (166-hp) electric motor and the gasoline engine blend their outputs for acceleration and for efficient driving in stop-and-go traffic.
In appearance, the Hybrid enhances the look of the Accord sedan with unique hybrid badging and blue-accented grille and light lenses, LED lighting, a unique wheel design and a decklid spoiler.
Inside, instrumentation provides the driver with instant fuel economy and energy flow information to assist fuel-efficient driving.
Like the 2013 Accord, the 2014 Accord Hybrid is expected to earn NCAP 5-Star safety ratings and a TOP SAFETY PICK+ rating from the U.S. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).