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Test Drive column: 2020 Honda Accord

Greg Zyla
More Content Now
2020 Honda Accord

Entry price: $24,020

Price as tested: $37,597

This week it’s the 2020 Honda Accord we review, now in its 10th generation and coming off a complete redesign in 2018. New for 2020 are an improved infotainment system and a few minor tweaks here and there. As for EPA classification Accord is a five-passenger midsize design and it’s been a Honda best-seller for years.

Built in Marysville, Ohio, since 1982, there are six distinctive trims available for 2020. Included are the entry LX ($24,020), base Hybrid ($25,620), Sport ($26,830), EX ($27,920), EX-L ($30,420) and two top tier Touring models in Hybrid ($35,290) or 2.0 Turbo ($36,250). Notable is that even the LX trim comes well equipped with both high tech safety far beyond what the competition may offer on its entry and lower cost models.

Also notable for 2020 is the expansion of Hybrid availability. Consumers can now order a hybrid drivetrain in the EX and EX-L for $1,600 more or as a no cost enhancement in the Touring trim. However, our top line Touring tester came with the more powerful 2.0-turbo engine and necessary 10-speed automatic which is way quicker than the hybrid.

These new Accords are a bit shorter in length, but thanks to the longer wheelbase and lightness in curb weight, it’s an overall design winner. Its rear passenger legroom improves while cargo room increases to a “best in mid-size class” nod.

Under the hood you’ll find one of two turbo four cylinder engines. The base engine that comes on all trims including the hybrid is the peppy 1.5-liter turbo inline-4 cylinder making 192 horses and identical torque rating of 192 lb. ft. This engine pairs with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) and you’ll reach 60 mph in just over a respectable seven seconds.

The second engine is the aforementioned 2.0-liter turbo four that powers our top class Touring tester and as an option on the Sport model. Coupled to an industry first 10-speed automatic, the Touring 2.0 delivers 252 horses and 273 lb. ft. of torque. It also accelerates as quickly as most of the muscle cars from back in the 1960s, and is capable of quarter-mile runs in the 14.2 second range at 100 mph. Zero to 60 arrives in 5.7 seconds, making the new Accord with the 2.0-Turbo and the paddle shift 10-speed automatic a “muscle car” in family sedan clothing.

Now, if you order the Sport with the 2.0 engine, you can choose from either the 10-speed automatic or, for you gear shifters like me, a six-speed manual that is still available. However, adding the 2.0 Turbo with either manual or automatic will add $4,350 to the Sport’s base price. (Remember, true performance costs money as this 2.0 Sport upgrade is the real deal).

Our Touring’s handling is superb with a great feel of the road, assisted by 19-inch tires on nice spoke alloy wheels that come standard on the Touring and Sport models. The EPA fuel mileage estimates on the powerful 2.0 turbo automatic are 22 city and 32 highway (some of the lowest in class) while the 1.5 turbo CVT will deliver up to 30 city and 38 highway depending on model (some of the highest in class). The hybrids are the best when it comes to fuel mileage, and should be test driven as 48 city and 48 highway are the EPA estimates. The 1.5-liter hybrids end up with 212 horses combined thanks to the twin motor hybrid motivation.

Honda utilizes premium materials building the Touring models over and above the entry LX. An eight-inch infotainment system is now standard and easier to use thanks to the stereo now utilizing knobs for tuning and stations instead of the prior “touch screen only” that was cumbersome. Heated and ventilated seats are also notable, as are the standard high-tech smart phone compatibility, wireless phone charger and heated rear seats.

A Wi-Fi and 430 watt, 10-speaker SiriusXM satellite stereo system comes standard with the Touring models while a power moonroof is standard starting with the Sport 2.0 turbo and up trims. Also, not all Honda Accords are Apple and Android compatible as this connectivity is not available on the entry LX and base Hybrid trims.

The exterior design is very impressive, as all of these new Accords are refined and very aerodynamic in appearance and are clearly the best looking Accords ever to come off the Ohio assembly line.

As always, safety is a Honda top priority. All Accords come with Honda Sensing, a distinguished safety system package that includes collision mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition, lane departure warning and lane keep assist, the latter which corrects steering if you sway from your lane of motion. Thanks to Honda Sensing, even if you opt to for entry LX you still have one very high-tech car in your driveway with top rated 5-star government safety ratings.

The top line Touring models arrive with lots of standard amenities, featuring everything from Honda Navigation, head-up display, leather seating and much more. Our tester had just about every conceivable passenger, safety and mechanical enhancement and just three options including an all-season floor mat package for $158, cargo organizer for $87 and body side molding for $225. These options brought the final tally to $37,597 with $955 delivery included.

Important numbers include a wheelbase of 111.4-inches, 3,428 lb. curb weight, 39.4-foot turning circle, 16.7 cu. ft. of cargo space and a 14.8 gallon fuel tank.

Regardless of choice from LX to Touring, this 10th generation Honda Accord rates very high in my recommendation book.

Me? I’ll take a 2.0 powered Sport with either the 10-speed automatic or a six-speed manual. They’re both awesome fast and masquerade well as the family cruiser.

Check with your Honda dealer for current incentives and lease offers.

Likes: 2.0 muscle car performance, standard safety items, Accord build quality.

Dislikes: Touring model pricey, no Apple or Android on lower trims, nothing else worth noting.

Greg Zyla writes weekly for More Content Now and Gannett Co. Inc. Contact him at greg@gregzyla.com or at 303 Roosevelt St., Sayre, PA 18840.

2020 Honda Accord