January 5, 2017
You’ve narrowed down your choices to the 2017 Honda Accord, and feel confident about that choice. You’ve even decided that you need the four-door sedan model and want to opt for a version that has some added features, so the EX model looks appealing. But now the 2017 Accord has a hybrid model, which offers many of the same features. So which option is the right one for you?
In terms of exterior design, the standard Accord and the hybrid option offer many of the same features: chrome accents, rear window antenna, automatic halogen headlights, and heated side mirrors with integrated LED turn signals. Basically, there is little difference in the exterior design between the standard and hybrid.
On the interior and under the hood, however, these cars start to part ways. The standard Accord offers significantly more shoulder and storage space, but the legroom between the two are comparable. The hybrid offers 143 horsepower compared to the standard 185, which means you’ll notice it when you accelerate to get on the highway or to change lanes.
Since both the gas-powered and the hybrid model are built on the same Accord frame, you’ll get all of the same benefits of the ACE frame, which minimizes the forces you might feel in a frontal crash by dispersing them. The Accord adds to this base-level engineering with a series of standard safety features, like stability and traction control, front/side/curtain airbags with rollover sensors, anti-lock brakes, and a multi-view rearview camera with dynamic guidelines. These features have allowed both the 2017 Gas-Powered Accord and the 2017 Hybrid Accord to earn 5-star safety ratings. The EX model of the Accord adds LED fog lights, hill start assist, and Lane Watch, which keeps you where you should be going.
The Hybrid offers all those features along with quite a few extras, the bells and whistles that drivers normally get with the top trim options. You’ll have the entire Honda Sensing package, which includes collision mitigation braking, road departure mitigation (which means the car will help you get back to where you should be), as well as adaptive cruise control. The additions are impressive, and add some of the government’s highly recommended options to provide additional layers of protection.
The standard Accord and the Accord Hybrid both have upgraded features from any base model sedan, which will likely appeal to drivers looking for a few extras. Both models feature active noise cancellation and active sound control, a security system, remote keyless entry and trunk release, smart entry, power windows and doors, a push-button start, steering wheel-mounted controls for both cruise control and entertainment system, two 12-volt power plugs, and HomeLink, which allows you to open garage doors without a separate remote. The only extra that the EX gas-powered model has is a moonroof. The features are comparable, so the differences here are not likely to sway any buyer one way or the other-though a moonroof is a nice upgrade.
But when you look at the sticker price, the gas-powered Accord wins big. The EX, one of the higher trims, is base-priced at $26,000, compared to the hybrid’s base price of $30,000. While you’ll certainly notice the difference in your wallet at the pump with the hybrid’s fuel economy, anyone considering these models needs to decide if those savings are worth an extra initial expense.
If you’re even considering a hybrid, fuel economy and emissions are high on your list of considerations. The most pragmatic of buyers will likely look at the fuel savings that a hybrid might offer them on a week to week basis, and the idealistic might translate that into how much they are reducing their consumption of fossil fuels. Either way, the Accord Hybrid wins big. The hybrid gets nearly 20 mpg more than the standard Accord, performing better in city driving than on the highway. And that’s where the hybrid is a better option for drivers-when their primary transportation happens in town and where they might normally get the short end of the fuel economy stick. Because of the unique way that hybrids perform, those trips work to your advantage at the pump, saving you nearly $2000 over five years in fuel costs alone. Beyond that, it’s awfully nice to get nearly 800 miles to each gallon. That’s a trip every 3 weeks to the pump, if you drive an average of 12,000 miles a year-and that’s another level of convenience.
But when you look at the sticker price, the gas-powered Accord wins big. The EX, one of the higher trims, is base priced at $26,000, compared to the hybrid’s base price of $30,000. While you’ll certainly notice the difference in your wallet at the pump with the hybrid’s fuel economy, anyone considering these models need to decide if those savings are worth an extra initial expense.
Ultimately, you can’t go wrong with either of the Honda Accord models. It’s a solid vehicle, with an incredible reputation and longevity. The higher trims, like the EX, offer several stellar features for a relatively budget-friendly price tag. However, if you’re willing to pay a little more initially or can find a good deal on the Hybrid, you’ll notice residual savings throughout the life of the vehicle. For in-town trips, where quick acceleration isn’t important but good gas mileage is, a Hybrid is an interesting option worth serious consideration.
*Any MPG listed is based on model year EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your actual mileage will vary, depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, battery-pack age/condition (hybrid only), and other factors. For additional information about EPA ratings, visit https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/label/learn-more-PHEV-label.shtml.
** Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA’s) New Car Assessment Program. Model tested with standard side airbags (SABs). For additional information on the 5-Star Safety Rating program, please visit www.nhtsa.gov.