Honda has released details of the new Accord, due to go on sale in Europe this June.
Generally considered one of the best value propositions in the highly competitive D-segment of the sedan market, the venerable Accord sedan and touring derivatives are set to reinforce their enviable reputations.
Styling has seen a move away from the characteristically rakish Honda design language to amore proportioned, muscular style.
Dynamically the styling hides a design which has seen a lowered centre of gravity (18mm), wider track (75mm) and all-new front double wishbone and rear multilink suspension with variable rate dampers.
Engines, always a highlight in Honda products, are split into three options: one diesel and two petrol. After shunning diesel power for decades, Honda has brought it substantial engine building expertise to bear with regards to turbodiesel power.
Subsequently the new 2.2-litre i-DTEC common-rail turbodiesel, four-cylinder engine produces 110kW at 4 000r/min and 350Nm at 2 000r/min.
The performance to economy coefficient promises to be highly attractive too, seeing a 212km/h top speed, 9.6 second 0-100km/h sprint all whilst retaining 5.6l/100km average consumption. The diesel models will only be available with a six-speed manual gearbox.
The tow petrol engines are the 2- and 2.4-litre, four-cylinder i-VTEC evolutions. Producing 115kW at 6 300r/min and 148kW at 7 000r/min respectively the 0-100km/h sprint times of 9.3 and 7.8 seconds are hardly a surprise for the six-speed manual models.
Average consumption is 7.2l/100km and 8.8l/100km respectively with a 212km/h top speed for the 2-litre and 227km/h maximum for the 2.4. The petrol models are available with a five-speed automatic transmission too.
Optionally available on Executive grade on 2.2 i-DTEC and 2.4 i-VTEC is Honda's Advanced Driving Assist System (ADAS), a suite of three ground-breaking technologies that raise safety to a new level.
The first of these is the Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) which uses a camera to detect the car deviating from a traffic lane and provides steering torque when necessary, thereby reducing the burden of motorway driving while at the same time enhancing safety.
Ventilated disc brakes front and rear with ABS, EBD and Brake Assist keep things tidy when necessitating emergency braking and avoidance action too.
These systems complement the Accord's passive safety features which include front seatbelt pre-tensioners and load limiters, dual stage front airbags, driver and front passenger side airbags, full length curtain airbags and ISOFIX fittings and tether anchor points for secure childseat fixture on all models.
Honda's new dampers automatically adjust compression damping characteristics to suit the vehicle speed, cornering forces and road surface. The dampers use an ingenious "deflector plate stack" when the compression forces reach a certain level, when encountering a large bump or dip in the road at high speeds.
When severe forces act on a damper, oil cannot move quickly enough through the damping orifices and the effective damping rate climbs, resulting in an excessive shock transmitted into the vehicle body.
When severe conditions are encountered, the plate stack deflects, allowing oil to pass through at a higher rate and in essence "capping" the damping rate at a preset level. This markedly reduces the shock transmitted into the body while enhancing handling stability and road holding.
The new Accord features 'floating' backlit instruments and contained within the centre of the speedometer face is an LCD multi-information display showing a variety of information - controls positioned on the steering wheel allow the driver to cycle the display through multiple screens of information.
In a sense it echoes much of the radical interior architecture and ergonomics which was first seen on the current Civic range.
Entry level Accords are equipped with a radio/single CD player with built-in 30W 4 channel amp and six speakers. Higher grade models have a premium audio system with 6 CD changer unit located in the centre console, a separate high power amp delivering 45W x 8 channels and no fewer than 10 speakers.
Fifth generation and later iPods can now be played via the USB docking point located in the centre console storage box, where an auxiliary jack point and power outlet can also be found.
The Accord is now wider by 80mm and that translates directly into a roomier cabin with 65mm more shoulder width, for example. Luggage capacity for the sedan is an impressive 467-litres and 395-litres for the station wagon with all seats in place.