2016 Honda Accord Sport with Honda Sensing
Class: Midsize Car
Dates Tested: 10/06/15-10/12/15
Miles Driven: 241
Fuel Used: 9.0 gallons
Real-world fuel economy: 26.8 mpg
Driving mix: 60% city, 40% highway
EPA-estimated fuel economy: 26/35/30 (city, highway, combined)
Base price: $25,965 (not including $820 destination charge)
|CG Report Card|
|Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide's impressions of the entire model lineup.|
|Room and Comfort||B+|
|Power and Performance||B-|
|Fit and Finish||B+|
Options on test car: None
Price as tested: $26,785
The great: Roomy and nicely appointed cabin, sporty handing
The good: Refined ride, strong dollar value
The not so good: Oddly shaped trunk may complicate cargo storage
Honda is spiffying up its Accord intermediate for 2016 with some cosmetic tweaks and a few new features. Wisely, it’s keeping most of its big seller intact.
Consumer Guide® had the chance to try out the Sport model, which ranks second from the bottom of the six Accord sedan series. It’s a solid, comfortable, and attractively priced car with few flaws—just a few.
Jumping up to a Sport from the base LX brings along a 10-way power driver’s seat (with power lumbar support), leather-wrapped steering wheel, aluminum pedals, 60/40 split-folding rear seat back, 19-inch alloy wheels, LED fog and daytime-running lights, dual exhaust outlets, and body-color side sills and decklid spoiler. Like other 4-cylinder Accords, the Sport engine is a 2.4-liter dohc design with variable valve timing and direct injection; unlike the others it makes 189 hp at 6400 rpm (a gain of four horsepower) and 182 lb-ft of torque at 3900 rpm (an increase of one lb-ft).
CG’s test car was equipped with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), which comes with paddle shifters in the Sport. (A 6-speed manual is available, too.) It was also packing the Honda Sensing suite of electronic safety systems that includes collision-mitigation braking, road-departure mitigation, forward-collision warning, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control. With the CVT and Honda Sensing, a ’16 Accord Sport starts at $25,965.
The 2.4 is fairly smooth and provides decent scoot. Some noise is heard under determined acceleration, but otherwise the engine is pretty quiet. EPA mileage estimates for the 4-cylinder/paddle-shifter-CVT powerteam are 26 mpg city, 35 mpg highway, and 30 combined—slightly less than for CVT-equipped cars without the paddles. This driver averaged 29.0 mpg from a 130-mile trip that involved 41 percent city-type driving. Note that a push-button-selected “Econ” mode is available to drivers who want to wring as much fuel economy as they can from the car.
There was an air of quiet sophistication to the test car’s interior with a piano-black console surface, chrome highlights, and carbon-fiber-look accents on the instrument panel and doors. Soft surfaces were distributed over the dash and doors in areas that passengers were most likely to touch. The comfortable and supportive seats were clad in vinyl and fabric.
Driving controls are large and legible, and the vehicle-information display shows up well, too. Audio selections are easy to program through the central touchscreen, but climate controls are somewhat busy with lots of buttons, including a few with repetitive push. Lots of glass, thin A-pillars, and rear pillars that aren’t too thick help this Accord maintain Honda’s record of designing in excellent visibility. There’s nice head and leg room up front; rear passengers enjoy good head room and acceptable leg room, but more than two adults sitting across the back seat will be crowded.
Personal-item storage starts with a fairly ample glove box. Leavening this is a small covered console box with a power point inside. Two small bins are found where the dash meets the console—one of them covered and containing USB and auxiliary inputs. Two open cup holders rest in the console. There are modest front-door pockets with bottle holders; rear door pockets are slightly smaller versions of those in front. Pouches are affixed to the back of each front seat, and rear passengers can also take advantage of a pull-down center arm rest with two cup holders.
The trunk opening is wide, and the flat floor is full-width at the rear of the car, but narrows behind the rear seat where wheel houses intrude. Overall, the space is fairly long, however, and capacity is good. The folding rear seats open up more storage room—with some limitations. When folded, the seats rest a few inches above the height of the trunk floor, and a bulkhead constricts the pass-through opening.
The Accord is a well-built and fairly efficient car. If it has any kind of bothersome blot, perhaps it is a lack of stand-alone options, another Honda “tradition.” All 2016 Accords have a rearview camera and Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, but to get things like leather seats, a moonroof, heated mirrors, push-button starting, navigation, satellite radio, advanced connectivity capability (like Apple CarPlay or Android Auto)—even a lockable glove compartment—requires spending for a trim level above Sport rank.
For about $7000 less than the average new-car transaction price, you can buy this roomy, sporty, smart-looking, efficient, and family-friendly sedan. My single complaint is that Apple CarPlay isn’t available on the Sport. For that, and Android Auto, you need to move up one trim level to the EX. If you’re not being swept into the movement toward small crossovers, you need to add Accord to your test-drive list. And, if you can live without leather and CarPlay, check out the high-value Sport.