2018 Honda Accord Hybrid

Performance


$25,100 MSRP
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2018 Honda Accord Hybrid Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.3

The 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid gets decent power and acceleration from its powertrain, but it doesn't live up to the performance standards set by some other midsize cars. The Accord Hybrid handles adequately and rides smoothly, and its regenerative brakes are smoother than in other hybrids.

  • "So how is the driving experience? The answer is long, but it can be summed up in three words: Pretty darn good." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "It's always fun to think about mountain roads and road trips, but the reality is that most of us spend more time in parking lots. The Honda is good in that environment, too, thanks in part to variable-ratio steering, excellent outward visibility and a multi-angle rearview camera." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Honda has made the steering noticeably heavier for its new Accord, a change that will please driving enthusiasts and frustrate those looking for an easy ride." -- New York Daily News

Acceleration and Power

The Accord Hybrid features a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and two electric motors that produce a combined 212 horsepower. For its automatic transmission, the Accord Hybrid uses an electronic CVT, where interactions between the gas engine and electric motors transfer drive force directly to the wheels.

The Accord Hybrid's engine provides adequate power for most driving situations. It doesn't deliver the energetic jolt that some hybrids have off the line. While the Accord Hybrid never feels hurried, neither does it feel slow.

According to EPA estimates, the Accord Hybrid earns 47 mpg in the city and on the highway. Those are some of the best ratings in the class. They far exceed the numbers of nonhybrid cars, and the Toyota Camry Hybrid is the only midsize hybrid to earn better numbers.

  • "I was able to drive an early version of the 2018 Accord Hybrid and found the acceleration to be on the relaxed side, more than acceptable but lacking the EV-style rush of torque that we've come to expect from cars like the Volt. But, this was just a hand-built prototype that had spent the day getting flogged by journalists, so a fresher car with a full battery pack may very well perform better." -- CNET
  • "Like the previous Accord hybrid, the new car revs high, groans, goes quiet, and shoots to high revs all over again like it's packing a continuously variable automatic (CVT), despite the fact that this Honda doesn't have a transmission at all (it employs direct-drive gearing). … Honda says our test car was from early in the production run and that it was essentially 'built by hand,' and officials claimed the hybrid's driving behavior might improve by the time it goes on sale early next year. But for now, it's not much different from what we found in our test of the 2017 Accord hybrid." -- Car and Driver
  • "The Accord Hybrid uses a 2.0L Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine that develops 143 horsepower and 129 lb-ft of torque. A compact electric motor boosts total system output to 212 horsepower. The Accord Hybrid uses a single gear transmission to route power to the front wheels." -- Left Lane News

Handling and Braking

The front-wheel-drive Accord Hybrid provides a smooth ride that's rarely bothered by road imperfections. This is more of a cruising car than a corner carver, and while there's good steering feedback, the Accord Hybrid doesn't handle as well as some rivals. On the upside, the brakes are smoother than some hybrids' regenerative braking systems.

  • "Honda also nailed the suspension tuning. Here, the hybrid delivers the same creamy, unperturbed ride and alert handling as the other Accord models. When driven in stop-and-go traffic under moderate throttle, it may be the best version for appreciating the Accord's quiet interior and upscale finishes." -- Car and Driver
  • "Handling recalls the well-mannered Honda Civic, with quick-ratio steering and limited body roll. Flick the wheel a few degrees, and the noise repoints immediately. Nose-heavy understeer comes steadily if you push the car hard - an area the Camry (yes, really) and Ford Fusion have an edge - but the Accord's dynamics are far from a liability." -- Cars.com
  • "Combined with excellent highway steering feel and helpful Honda Sensing technologies … the Accord is as comfortable covering long distances as it is running errands. We expected a smoother highway ride as a result of the tuning flexibility afforded by the adaptive dampers, but while the suspension was well-sorted the Touring's 19-inch wheels and low-profile tires rendered it more sensitive to road imperfections. Most Accords will be equipped with 17-inch wheels and taller tires, which will help it better soak up the small stuff." -- Kelley Blue Book
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