UPDATE: You can now read our full review of the 2018 Honda Accord

With the unveiling of the all-new 2018 Honda Accord in Detroit and at the company's headquarters in Torrance, California, Honda makes it clear it intends to keep its best-seller status. Lower, wider, with a longer wheelbase, but slightly shorter, the new Honda Accord's proportions are similar to what we've been getting accustomed to for the past couple years with the Civic. But the styling works better on the Accord, with none of the faux vents or extraneous surface excitement of the smaller car.

The sophistication continues inside, with a simple and elegantly styled interior that is the kind of thing Acura should be putting in its cars. Highlights include padded surfaces low on the dash, and a ton of legroom for rear seat passengers thanks to the additional wheelbase. There's a high-quality feel to the various switches and buttons. Honda is once again using knobs to control volume and tuning for the very cool new infotainment system. There are three knobs for the climate control as well, with the temperature controls highlighted by one of our new favorite features: turn the knob to a warmer temperature or cooler temperature, and the LED backlight behind the knob turns redder or bluer, respectively. Once you've made your choice, it fades back into a nice non-distracting white.

HondaSensing standard

Technology isn't limited to just clever use of LEDs. Every Accord model—LX, Sport, EX, EX-L, EX-L Navi and Touring—will come with HondaSensing as standard equipment, meaning you won't have to pay extra for adaptive cruise control with low-speed following, lane departure warning and mitigation, collision mitigation and braking, and new traffic sign recognition. The infotainment system includes 4GLTE and over-the-air updates, plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There's even Near Field Recognition for devices so equipped, making it a snap to pair your phone. To help keep the cabin quiet, EX models and above have a new three-microphone active noise cancelling system.

Also: See more new and redesigned cars of 2018

On the mechanical side, 2018 Accord buyers can choose from three powertrains, all driving the front wheels. The standard 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder puts out 192 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque, and is mated to either a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) or  6-speed manual in the Sport model. Sport, EX-L, EX-L Navi and Touring buyers can opt for a new 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder with 252 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque. This engine is equipped with a new 10-speed automatic transmission (a first for front-wheel drive sedans, Honda says) or a 6-speed manual on Sport models. The third powertrain is a third-generation Hybrid, featuring a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle 4-cylinder paired with a dual-motor electric drive. Available in all trim levels, the Hybrid places its battery and power management unit under the floor, meaning that all Accords get the same 16.7 cu-ft trunk and folding seatbacks.

New structure

Chassis improvements include new structural adhesives used in construction, extensive use of aluminum and high-strength steel, and the Accord's first use of adjustable dampers, which change their damping force every 1/500 of a second. That dovetails nicely with the new Sport models, but also the new drive mode selector on every next generation Accord that allows drivers to choose between Normal and Sport. There's also a separate ECON mode.

Prices were not announced, but we'd be surprised if they strayed far from the current Accord's price structure, and those of its competitors. The 2018 Honda Accord will go on sale this fall, and we've already highlighted our five favorite features.

 

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