Read the complete 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Review at AutoGuide.comMeet Honda's first real hybrid
by Mike Schlee
In 1999, the first Honda hybrid, the Insight, rolled onto showroom floors. Since then, the brand offered several other hybrids including the second-generation Insight, Civic Hybrid, Accord V6 Hybrid, CR-Z and Acura ILX Hybrid. So why are we referring to the 2014 Accord Hybrid as Honda’s first real hybrid? Simply put, these earlier models used the Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) technology, which is a mild-hybrid setup at best.
IMA is basically a small electric motor wedged between the gasoline engine and transmission. The electric motor can assist the gasoline engine, but, unlike the systems found in most other manufacturer’s hybrids, the little motor isn’t powerful enough to propel the car independently.
A PROPER HYBRID
That all changes for 2014 because Honda is finally marketing a proper, two-stage hybrid drivetrain for the Accord. To make up for its tardiness, the sedan is poised to one-up its competition by boasting class-leading fuel efficiency with officially ratings pegged at 50 MPG city, 45 MPG highway and 47 MPG combined.
For those keeping score at home, this is the second mid-size sedan to be introduced with a claimed 47 mpg fuel economy average – the other being the Fusion Hybrid. That car never lived up to those numbers; will this one?
The powertrain for the Accord Hybrid is essentially the same as found in the Accord Plug-In released earlier this year. That means the new 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine producing 141 hp and 122 lb-ft of torque is paired up to a 124 kW electric motor generating 166 hp and 226 lb-ft of torque. Combined, the two power plants create a total output of 196 hp.