A Class Above: 2016 Honda Accord V-6 Sedan Tested

when does a luxury car stop being a luxury car? when it’s a honda accord.

Your Accord may not have styling, interior materials, or luxury class options, and you’d rather be subtle in those areas; Heck, it doesn’t even offer options, with Honda directing buyers to one of several pre-packaged trim levels (EX-L and Touring, in the case of the V-6 version) with just the paint color and a few dealer accessories to choose from. choose. but the chassis? This is premium, high-end stuff with the stuff to go toe-to-toe with many cars that carry much higher price tags.

Reading: 2016 honda accord review car and driver

your best chassis, please

In fact, wheel control on our top-spec Touring V-6 test car was impressive, with no vibration or jerking to be detected, even over broken pavement. The Chord not only soaks up bumps like it’s suspended on shamwows, but it also controls your body movements very well when you decide to drive harder. Spin the car around a turn and you get an immediate feeling of obedience and unflappability, with what qualifies as a flat-cornering attitude among its competitive set. The steering isn’t fast like a sports car—who wants that in their family sedan?—but it’s progressive, light, and tells the driver what’s going on at the front wheels, much like the steering we enjoy in many Audis. . if there were such things as auto chassis sommeliers, this would be the one they’d look to in the back room for the best customers.

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The brakes feel strong (this Accord’s 176-foot stop from 70 mph with all-season tires is par for the segment) and the compliant, easily modulated pedal adds even more driver confidence. One annoyance: The brake system is a bit eager to engage the abs during hard riding. However, this is good for panic stops, especially for the type of driver, read: most, who is nervous about diving too deep into the pedal travel. in normal driving, this is not a problem.

The 3.5-liter V-6 makes 278 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, enough to make the chopping-and-pushing job of daily traffic easy, and it has a nice grunt that gains a bit of grit additional above 5000rpm or so since vtec variable valve timing is engaged. It’s pretty smooth, too, almost rivaling the syrupy silkiness of, say, a Mercedes-Benz V-6. The Honda Six also features cylinder deactivation during light load situations, which helps save fuel on the highway, and we can’t say we’ve ever felt or noticed it in operation. That said, while the EPA rates the V-6 Accord at 21 mpg city and 34 mpg highway, we managed just 21 mpg over 750 miles of mixed driving. Those who prioritize efficiency should opt for the four-cylinder, which has returned 30 mpg in our hands. V-6 buyers are likely to be more interested in its easy power anyway.

Everyone can appreciate the luxury sled vibe of this car, which is enhanced by its standard six-speed automatic transmission. This traditional torque-converter automatic is far preferable to the four-cylinder model’s continuously variable transmission, a gearbox that proved a fatal flaw for a sports car according to a recent comparison test. (That car finished third of four.) The V-6’s six-speed transmission is excellent, selecting gears with fluid but decisive action. it also features a sport mode that will keep engine revs up during spirited driving, though we wanted even more involvement in such situations. Honda pairs this engine with a manual transmission in the Accord Coupe, but we understand the decision not to offer one in the four-door—the acceptance rate would be microscopic. Still, a set of steering wheel paddles that Honda makes standard on V-6 automatic coupes would be nice. transport them here, please.

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that’s infotainment

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One area where the Honda falls short is its infotainment system, which is responsive but has poor ergonomics. As an older member of Honda’s current lineup, this 2016 model year marking this car’s mid-cycle update, the Accord still features the ill-conceived split-screen center console arrangement that can make finding information difficult. The update upgraded the lower screen to Honda’s latest capacitive touch technology, but that wasn’t a step up in terms of usability, lacking tight controls. We humbly request that Honda at least return the volume and tuning knobs to their dashes.

but that’s about it for the demerits. The gauges in the instrument cluster are easy to read, the seats are comfortable for extended periods, and the sight lines are good in all directions. Compared to most modern cars, the Accord’s C-pillar’s blind spots are commendably small and its rear shelf low. Many manufacturers enlarge the trunk of their cars by making the rear quarters higher, thereby reducing the view through the rear window, but Honda has managed to balance visibility with cargo space very well. The Accord’s trunk capacity is among the segment leaders.

Space is often said to be a luxury, and in addition to its roomy trunk, the Accord has a palatial interior space. The rear easily accommodates forward- and rear-facing child seats behind front occupants of various sizes, with room to spare. There are also plenty of bins and cubbies up front, and plenty of head, leg and elbow room. The interior also features an easily accessible USB port, which is key for Apple CarPlay use, as Apple has yet to enable wireless CarPlay. It’s quiet inside, with this Accord registering the same sound level at 70 mph (69 decibels) as a Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

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In many ways, the Accord V-6 Touring is as big a luxury car as many Acuras made by Honda’s own luxury division. This isn’t necessarily a good thing for Acura, but it’s great for Accord buyers.

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