The popular Honda Accord will receive a complete redesign for the 2018 model year. For its 10th generation, key updates will be an all-new platform, the addition of Honda Sensing as a standard feature and a new range of turbocharged gasoline engines.
In terms of appearance, the new Accord features a low-slung fastback design in some ways akin to the Honda Civic. The grille has been revised with a broad chrome wing positioned above a larger front air intake port. The car will be over 2 inches longer and 0.6 inches lower overall compared to the current generation. The extra length helps improve rear passenger legroom by an impressive 2.5 inches.
Inside the cabin, drivers will appreciate improved visibility thanks to narrower front pillars. The instrument panel has been revised and will feature a new 8-inch touchscreen audio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Critics of the current car's system will appreciate the addition of physical knobs for both volume and tuning instead of having to swipe with the touchscreen.
Touring models get a new 6-inch Head Up Display that will be able to display vital stats like current speed, turn-by-turn navigation and more. Tech users will appreciate the addition of wireless device charging and NFC technology that enables automatic phone pairing. 4G LTE support will also enable over-the-air updates.
In terms of engines, the big news is a complete shift to turbocharging. The entry-level engine will be a 1.5-liter 4-cylinder turbo mated to a choice of either a 6-speed manual or a CVT transmission. Output will stand at 192 hp with 192 lb-ft of torque, an improvement of 7 hp and 11 lb-ft over the current 2.4-liter engine.
Perhaps more importantly, the 3.5-liter V6 will no longer be offered. For 2018, Honda will offer a 2.0-liter turbo mated to a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Like the 1.5-liter, this will also be offered with the option to choose a 6-speed manual. Power ratings will be 252 hp and 278 lb-ft, which equates to a loss of 26 hp but a gain of 21 lb-ft versus the outgoing V6.
The vehicle will be offered in some familiar choices of trim levels: LX, Sport, EX, EX-L, EX-L with navigation and Touring. The 1.5-liter turbo will be available in each, but the 2.0-liter will not be available in the LX. For 2018, Sport models get a slightly different manual transmission featuring a new short-throw shifter for a more engaging shifting experience.
As for safety, all Accords will benefit from the addition of standard Honda Sensing. The feature adds a collision mitigation system with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control and more. For 2018, the system gains traffic sign recognition. Buyers will have the option to choose additional features like a blind spot monitor, parking sensors, cross-traffic alert and more.
Expect a full review closer to launch.