The Honda Accord is one of the most popular cars in the United States, with an almost intrinsic reputation for reliability. However, as the automaker works to overcome quality concerns, how does the 2019 Accord stack up?
Safety & Tech Features
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ACE Body Structure
Active Safety Systems
Did You Know
The Accord was the first Japanese car to be manufactured in the USA. Production has been ongoing at Honda’s Marysville, Ohio plant since November 1982.
The Honda Accord arrived in the United States in 1976 and is arguably the automaker’s most recognizable nameplate. American buyers have expressed their love for the Accord over the last four decades, more than any other passenger car. Total U.S. sales of the Accord exceed 13 million to date. Honda’s reputation for quality and reliability are taken almost inherently, despite evidence to suggest the brand is struggling on that front.
How does this jive with the 2019 Honda Accord? We took one for a lengthy test drive to find out.
Honda Accord: What’s New For 2019?
The 2019 Accord carries over from the complete redesign in 2018. In its 10th generation, the Accord is lighter by 42 lbs. and stronger by way of a newly-engineered, ultra-high strength steel body and chassis. The Honda Sensing safety package is comprehensive as are the technology offerings in general. The new Accord has tech niceties like Bluetooth, 4G LTE Wi-Fi capability, and wireless charging.
What Engine Does The Honda Accord Have?
Standard: 1.5-liter, direct-injected VTEC Turbo with dual Variable Timing Control.
Available: 2.0-liter, direct-injected VTEC Turbo with dual Variable Timing Control.
Available: 3rd-generation Honda iMMD, two-motor hybrid power unit (Hybrid model).
Features & Options: All The Goods
Our test car was a 2019 Honda Accord Touring with the 2.0-liter turbo and a 10-speed automatic. As the top trim level, the Touring treated us to a laundry list of features. Standard equipment includes leather-trimmed seats; leather-wrapped steering wheel; moonroof; navigation with voice recognition; multi-view rear camera; Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; and a premium audio system with 10 speakers. The upgraded stereo compliments the Touring’s standard Sirius XM Satellite and HD radio.
The Accord’s little extras go a long way. Our test car had a fold-down center arm rest for backseat passengers; remote start; auto dimming rearview mirror; front auto up/down windows; sunglasses holder; and an external temperature display. These items may not seem like much – and may even be taken for granted as cars become more advanced these days – but things like the auto windows make it easy in the drive-thru or while entering a parking garage.
How Much Is The 2019 Honda Accord?
Total MSRP for our test car, including destination: $36,870. By comparison, the 2019 Honda Accord starts at $23,870.
The Honda Accord Centers On Safety
The 2019 Honda Accord lives up to its reputation as a family-focused vehicle, especially in the Touring trim. With safety a greater concern for a new generation of parents, Honda is trying to meet them where they are. Standard safety features on the Accord Touring include Adaptive Cruise Control; Collision and Road Departure Mitigation systems; and Lane Keeping Assist as part of the Honda Sensing package. Our Accord also had blind spot detection and the LATCH system for child seats.
Parents may be at ease driving the new Accord because of its chassis. For a minute now, Honda has used what they call Advanced Compatibility Engineering, sometimes written as “ACE” for short. ACE is, in so many words, the car’s safety architecture. It diverts energy away from occupants while minimizing the often unpredictable damage done during a collision with a vehicle of another size. ACE differs from traditional designs in how it directs impact energy to both upper and lower structural elements.
All 2019 Honda Accords employ ACE and we believe in it strongly.
Interior Highlights: Cool & Warm
The Touring trim level pampered us with soft leather seats and a colorful eight-inch touchscreen display. The light gray interior felt inviting and made everything easy on the eyes. We liked the heads-up display which is adjustable for taller or shorter drivers.
The Accord is all about the little niceties and extras, the Touring’s premium stereo and satellite radio being a fine example. We tuned in for the Gallery on Watercolors (SiriusXM, channel 66) and the cool jazz filled up the Touring’s warm cabin. It made the drive very enjoyable.
There is more than enough room up front and the same in the rear, even for taller riders. Trunk space is generous at 16.7 cubic feet, 0.9 cubic-feet larger than the previous Accord. There’s plenty of room in there for luggage, sports gear, groceries, you name it. With the spacious interior and large trunk, the 2019 Honda Accord will fit any number of potential buyers, from active families to a single guy earning some extra dough driving Uber.
Honda Accord Touring: Engine & Fuel Mileage
Our tester came with Honda’s new 2.0-liter turbo, which borrows much of its design from the 2017 Civic Type-R engine. With a low inertia, mono-scroll turbo and direct injection, the plant produces 252 horsepower and 273 lb-ft. of torque. A new 10-speed automatic helps put power to the front wheels. EPA ratings on our test car came in at 22/32 city/highway and 26 combined.
The Accord’s standard engine, a 1.5-liter turbo, produces 192 horsepower and 192 lb-ft. of torque. This engine attaches to a continuously-variable automatic with G-Shift Control. Said powertrain configuration in the Touring trim improves fuel economy to 29/35 city/highway and 31 combined.
Those who have owned Accords all their life will feel right at home, as will a first-time buyer. In the Touring trim, the Accord is nice but not overly fancy; technologically-advanced but not unnecessarily complicated; even luxurious but most certinately not gaudy. Day in and day out, it’s relatively easy to drive.
The 2.0-liter turbo isn’t exactly fast and furious, but it is feisty when necessary. Getting down exit ramps to merge with traffic is not difficult, and the 10-speed automatic makes acceleration smooth and seamless. Fuel economy is solid regardless of city or highway driving. While the new Accord comes with an Eco mode, we seemed to get the same fuel economy even in Normal mode (about 33 mpg combined, well above the window sticker). Either way, gas mileage is a strong point for the 2019 Honda Accord.
The Accord’s new suspension uses a combination of MacPherson front struts with a rear multi-link setup. Our Touring test went farther yet with an Adaptive Damper System. As a result, the 2019 Honda Accord is mostly smooth and quiet on the open road.
One Concern During Our Drive
While we respect Honda’s commitment to safety, the Honda Sensing package gave us a headache at times. Heading south from Detroit, Interstate 75 is a work in progress. It’s a rough and bumpy stretch of road between the Motor City and Toledo, Ohio. Combine that with a nasty cross wind and the Accord’s Road Departure and Lane Keeping Assist systems were not just sensitive, but outright confused. We were fighting the car to maintain control.
We recommend switching those systems off in a situation like this. Otherwise, on a smooth road, we had no issues with the active safety features. In all fairness to Honda, the owner’s manual describes the systems for “convenience only” (page 554) and explains how they are not a substitute for responsible driving.
Conclusion: Solid Car All Around
Minus our experience with the safety systems, it’s hard to find fault with the 2019 Honda Accord. Most things will likely be subjective and have little to no bearing on the car’s actual performance. For example, we don’t like the exterior styling at all. Not even a little bit.
However, based on the specifications and taking it on a week-long test drive, the 2019 Honda Accord will easily satisfy anybody looking for a nice car at a reasonable price.
Carl Anthony studies mechanical engineering at Wayne State University, serves on the Board of Directors for the Ally Jolie Baldwin Foundation, and is a member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association and the Society of Automotive Historians. Before going back to school, he simultaneously held product development and experiential marketing roles in the automotive industry.