The 2012 Honda Accord earned a solid Total Car Score in the midsize sedan category, indicating two things: The Accord is still a well-liked, popular choice for a family sedan or sporty coupe, but it is not the segment leader that it used to be.
It’s not that the Accord has faltered. It still offers plenty of passenger room, smooth and efficient engines and a quiet, well-mannered ride. And it earned perfect scores in vehicle safety tests.
Yet the competition, especially from Korea, offers cars that are more interesting to look at and more fun to drive, while still providing much of the spaciousness and comfort that have been Honda benchmarks.
Many of these competitors offer great value, too. Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, for example, is standard equipment in many of the Korean sedans, yet you have to order the top-dog EX-L model to get it in the Accord.
Critics also felt the Accord’s interior design seemed dated and drab compared to the segment’s newcomers.
The Honda Accord was freshened last year, but its TCS for 2012 indicates it’s time for Honda to shore up its bread-and-butter family car with something brand new, or new enough, to hold off its competition.
The 2012 Honda Accord is available as a four-door sedan or two-door coupe.
Engines available in the sedan include two 2.4-liter four-cylinders, one producing 177 horsepower and 161 pound-feet of torque (for LX, LX-P and SE models) the other good for 190 hp and 162 lb-ft (for EX and EX-L models). A 3.5-liter V6 making 271 hp and 254 lb-ft is available for EX-V6 and EX-L V6 sedans.
Accord coupes are fitted with either the 190hp inline-4 (LX-S, EX and EX-L models) or the V6 (EX V6, EX-L V6 models). Transmission choices vary: Some four-cylinders are fitted with a five-speed manual transmission; the EX-L V6 coupe gets a six-speed manual; the rest receive five-speed automatics.
Standard equipment on all Accords includes power windows and door locks, a tilt/telescope steering column and a six-speaker sound system. LX-P sedans get a powered driver’s seat, while SE sedans receive heated leather front seats and leather trim.
Those items don’t get into the coupes until the top-line 2012 Honda Accord EX-L, which also comes with Bluetooth, automatic climate controls and a premium sound system with satellite radio in both coupe and sedan models.
EPA ratings range from the2012 Accord four-cylinder sedan’s 23 mpg city, 34 highway and 27 combined to 17/26/21 for a V6 coupe.
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