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2014 Honda Accord Hybrid First Impressions

Here’s the deal: As green as we all want to be, we also (from what I gather, anyhow) want to drive cars that feel normal and familiar. We don’t want to be shocked by bite-y regenerative braking or bumped around with jerky power-source changes or even confused by shifter set-ups and gauge clusters. Humans are creatures of habit, and although we are trying desperately to change those habits, it ain’t easy.

Well, Honda is here to make the transition into green driving that much easier with their brand new Honda Accord Hybrid.

The real beauty of this midsize sedan is the fact that it will truly save you money at the pumps, save the planet just a little, and save your sanity by being as close to normal as possible.

What is a Honda Accord Hybrid?
Essentially, the Honda Accord Hybrid is the Honda Accord we all know and love, with a brand new 2.0L L4 Atkinson cycle engine and a high-output lithium-ion battery pack.

The Accord is Honda’s flagship model and has been one of the best-selling cars in the USA for just over 20 years. While it began as a three-door hatchback in 1976, the Honda Accord evolved into the ninth-generation model we now see today. The Honda Accord is available in sedan, coupe, and once more as a hybrid.

2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Price and Specs
This latest version of the Honda Accord starts at a higher price point than the outgoing base model; a 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid will set you back $29,590 without any options added. Opt for the higher-end Hybrid Touring version and you’re looking at a starting price of $35,690.

For that coin you get the same engine in both, a 2.0L DOHC i-VTEC 4-cylinder along with a lithium-ion battery. The entire system is referred to as a two-motor hybrid Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive (i-MMD) setup according to Honda. This engine is part of Honda’s high-efficiency Earth Dreams Technology division.

Together, the hybrid system supplies the 2014 Honda Accord with 196 horsepower. While the gas engine produces 122 lb-ft of torque, the electric drive motor’s push is 226 lb-ft.

The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid only comes with one transmission choice: an electric continuously variable transmission (E-CVT).

Of course, the most important spec in all of this is the fuel consumption rating for the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid. This sedan will see numbers in the 3.7L/100km in the city and 4.0L/100km on the highway. Impressed? Well, the combined rating dips below four at 3.8L/100km.

Driving the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid
Besides being a terrible fuel-efficient driver (I failed miserably at Honda’s “get the lowest fuel mileage reading” contest throughout the drive), I’m quite a good Honda Accord driver, and I enjoyed every moment behind the wheel.

The best thing about this hybrid is that it truly doesn’t drive like one. The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid feels, blissfully, exactly like the regular, gas-powered sedan. Besides the silent start-up, which is always a bit disconcerting as you search the gauge for the green “GO” car indicating the car is in fact on. However, once that’s sorted and the Accord Hybrid is set in “D,” you really are good to go, and go quite well.

I was most impressed with the brakes on the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid. Despite being a regenerative system (a new electric servo brake that Honda claims yields an 8% improvement in regeneration), it wasn’t unpleasant. In fact, braking was the best part. I merely had to hover over the brake pedal and the Accord Hybrid would gently come to a stop.

The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid switches seamlessly between gas and all-electric mode. While the EV mode is really only used for parking lot and traffic scenarios, as well as waiting at lights, it is rather nice to have.

A small vibration and a bit of engine noise are all the sensory cues you’ll get that the engine has engaged after EV mode, and of course the power/charge digital read-out on the gauge cluster also indicates which mode you’re in.

Inside and Out of the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid
Essentially, this hybrid version of the Accord sedan is identical to its gas-powered brethren. Exterior looks are near-identical save for hybrid badging and uniquely styled 17” five-spoke alloy wheels and low rolling resistance tires. There are also special-to-hybrid models blue accenting on the upper grille, along with blue-tinted headlights (with energy-efficient LEDs available on the Accord Hybrid Touring model).

Again, blissfully, the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid looks nearly identical to the gas-powered version. There’s comfort in familiarity.

Comparing the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid
Honda has re-entered the highly competitive segment. From the Ford Fusion SE Hybrid (in my opinion, the best-looking of the bunch) to the Toyota Camry Hybrid (with Toyota’s storied and award-winning history of hybrid technology), the Honda Accord Hybrid has some serious and stiff competition. Will it come out on top as the gas-powered Accord has? If nothing else, the Honda name will carry it quite far.
 

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    2014 Honda Accord
    honda accord 2014
    2014 Honda Accord
    Review this Vehicle
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