Took a short look and test drive at the Accord 2013 today, a white
EX-L sedan, CVT, no nav.
Dashboard is updated to a zippier style, and all models now have
larger screen supporting more functions.
Some reviews say visibility is increased - at worst it is not
decreased, pretty much the same, I think.
Steering is MUCH lighter. Some review say it sucks particularly at
highway speeds, I may have to go back and test that out. The CVT is
MUCH more responsive to pedal input. All the reviews I've seen say
Honda has done the best job yet making the CVT driveable - even if
that does include having it pretend to pause at what would be gear
shift points. The salesman mumbled something about how the CVT is
meant to be more responsive, apparently it's a least a minor sales
Only the sport model has paddle shifters, salesmen did not think they
could be added to the EX-L. There was no way to "instruct" the tranny
using the stick, which is still built as heavily as if it were
connected to something and wasn't just a fly-by-wire transducer. I
much prefer the new BMW stick, that feels more like the game
controller that it sort of is.
The new strut front suspension? Well, I didn't toss it around much on
a quick one-mile drive, and that numb steering doesn't really
encourage it. One review notes that even BMW M3 and Porsche have gone
to this, and it's supposed to help reduce noise, and the skidpad
numbers are actually improved. Well.
EX-L now has turn signal lights on the mirrors - a geegaw I've wanted
The lane change warning consists of the camera in the right mirror
suddenly appearing on your screen. What is warned is that you are
turning the wheel to the right - not that there is anything there!
The Accord uses the stereo to produce noise-cancelling signals.
The car does ride more quietly. Apparently, all the reviews were
ragging on Honda for being "noisy", when it was really only following
its own 30+ year tradition of letting through a little more road noise
to be sportier, provide more feedback. Well, perhaps we've all
outgrown that now. I'm curious about wind noise, which has been a tad
higher in recent models than I'd liked - if that isn't just because
everything else has already been quieter, whatever the mags say.
Similarly I'm not in love with the zippier dash, I'd be OK with the 50
year old style of analog speedo and tach that my 2010 still has, but I
guess that's life in the 21st century. The heater and radio buttons
on the center dash are slightly better than last model, but still busy
and generic ... but then ergonomics for controls is just a totally
lost art these days everywhere you go.
The standard painted alloy wheels are ugly and cheap - though the
previous models' polished alloys weren't very nice, either. I might
inquire about options there, I dunno, though a nice set of wheels can
Wheelbase is reduced an inch, overall length about three inches,
interior space is either slightly increased - or decreased, one review
said. Back seat legroom is supposed to be improved.
Overall, it's a few minor improvements over the previous. The big
question for me is the CVT. May just have to buy one and drive it for
three years to find out.
The car seems OK, but I have to say, that old Honda spirit is not in
evidence, but then it hasn't been for quite a while.