PREVIEW: 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid, priced lower

Michael James

The fifth and newest addition to the Honda Accord electrified vehicle lineup will debut March 23 when the 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid is unveiled at dealerships at a lower price than the previous model.

The Accord Hybrid, sibling to the 2018 North American car of the year, will have a starting price of $25,990, including its $890 destination fee. The price reflects a $4,505 price drop from the 2017 model, according to Honda.

The 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid debuts March 23.
The 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid debuts March 23.

The Accord Hybrid lineup now comes in five trim levels: Hybrid, EX (new), EX-L, EX-L Navi (new), and Touring. The newest Accord has an estimated gas mileage average of 47 in city and highway driving.

The new Accord Hybrid will offer a lengthy list of standard equipment: 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights (low beam) and taillights, dual-zone climate control, Smart entry with push-button start, a 7-inch TFT digital driver’s meter, and a multi-angle rearview camera.

The Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technologies are also featured. It bundles adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow, collision mitigation braking system, road departure mitigation, lane departure warning and traffic sign recognition.

The 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid is powered by the third generation of the carmaker’s two-motor hybrid powertrain. It’s matched with a 2.0-liter DOHC i-VTEC Atkinson-cycle inline-4 engine with 40-percent thermal efficiency to an electric propulsion motor. It generates 232 lb.-ft. of torque for 212 horsepower. The Accord two-motor system operates without the need for a conventional automatic transmission.

Helping to maximize energy generation are steering wheel-mounted Deceleration Selectors. Similar to transmission paddle shifters, the Honda Accord Hybrid’s Deceleration Selectors allow the driver to toggle between four levels of regenerative braking performance. The right selector increases regenerative braking; the left selector reduces regenerative braking. The system reduces stress on the brakes while simultaneously increasing battery charging via regeneration.

The Accord Hybrid’s powertrain operates by seamlessly shifting between three drive operations. There’s EV Drive (100-percent electric motor), Hybrid Drive (electric motor and gasoline engine ) and Engine Drive (gasoline engine), utilizing power from the gasoline engine and electric motors to accommodate the current driving conditions.

The 2018 Accord Hybrid benefits from a 2.16 inch longer wheelbase and a 32-percent smaller intelligent power unit (IPU). It’s now mounted under the rear floor instead of in the trunk, allowing for the inclusion of a 60/40-split rear seat. As a result, the Accord Hybrid provides the same people- and cargo-hauling space and flexibility as its conventionally-powered counterparts. Add it all together and the 2018 Accord Hybrid delivers class-leading cargo space (16.7 cubic feet), interior space (122.3 cubic feet), and rear legroom (40.4 inches) all while reducing its overall footprint.

The newest Accord Hybrid joins an expanding line-up of electrified Honda vehicles. It includes the Clarity series – Clarity Fuel Cell, Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-In Hybrid. The 2019 Insight compact hybrid sedan is pending.

These vehicles represent the next generation of Honda. The company’s goals is to expand it electrified vehicle sales to two-thirds by 2030.

The new Accord Hybrid joins the Accord 1.5T and 2.0T in Honda’s all-new, award-winning 10th-generation Accord lineup. The new Accord has been called “America’s Best Sedan” by Car and Driver magazine, and in January was named 2018 North American Car of the Year.

Article Last Updated: March 21, 2018.

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