Published on September 5th, 2020 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Honda Accord 1.5L Turbo Test Drive Review
Is The 1.5L Engine Good Enough For The Genting Hill Climb?
The Accord name was first introduced to Malaysian car buyers in 1976 and the Accord is the second-longest-running automotive nameplate in Honda’s history, after the Honda Civic.
The Accord has become a household name over nine generations and 44 years and since its introduction, middle class Malaysians and executives have never been disappointed with its model by model size increase and its drive dynamics.
2020 Accord Explained
This latest Honda Accord is the 10th generation of Honda’s best-selling executive family sedan. All new from the ground up, this new Accord is built on a new platform with a lower, wider stance, a lighter and more rigid unibody structure, a lighter and more sophisticated chassis and Honda Accord’s first-ever turbocharged engine. Yes, it uses a small capacity forced induction engine.
Accord Sized Up
This new Accord has a longer wheelbase (+2.16 inches), a lower overall height (-0.59 in.) and wider body (+0.39 in.), wider wheel tracks (+0.20 in. front, +0.79 in. rear), a shortened overall length (-0.39 in.) and a lower, sportier seating position (-1.0 in. front, -0.79 in. rear).
A sweeping greenhouse, positioned farther back on the body, completes the new stance and proportion of the next-generation Honda Accord. The combined effect of these changes is a more premium look, highlighted by shorter overhangs, a bold front fascia, a long and low hood, and a visual center of gravity moved closer to the rear wheels.
Viewed head-on, the new Accord’s greenhouse also angles in more sharply from the window sills to the roof, further emphasizing the wide lower body, while inside the cabin the seats have been moved slightly inward, which contributes to improved hip, shoulder and head room while enhancing occupants’ freedom of movement. Also, the longer wheelbase allowed designers to move the second-row seats substantially rearward, giving this Accord 1.9 inches of added rear legroom. Overall passenger volume is increased by 2.5 cubic feet and boot space, at 16.7 cubic feet.
This 10th generation Accord design strongly advances the emotional and aspirational appeal of Accord. Designed to distinguish itself as a “class above” its competitors, the new Accord has a wider stance, lower roofline and a dramatically longer, lower hood to achieve improved dynamics, a more comfortable interior and a more dramatic presence.
Using a slightly shorter overhang than before, the front-end design is characteristically Honda, with the chrome wing grille and streamlined wing-shaped headlights (LED high/low beams on the Touring trim), and aggressive air inlets presenting a strong image. Aggressive hood lines add an athletic look to the Accord front end, while thinner A-pillars moved rearward on the body (and relative to the driver’s seating position) improve outward visibility for the driver by 7.9 degrees compared to the previous Accord Sedan.
This Accord also boasts a larger, more premium and tech savvy interior that compliments its athletic and elegant body design, delivering a level of quality and premium feel that belies Accord’s sedan status.
Among the host of new features available in the All-New Accord are a Driver’s Seat Memory that allows drivers to set and quickly access their preferred seating position, Driver Attention Monitor that monitors and alerts driver when it detects a diversion of driver’s attention, Walk Away Auto Lock, as well as Remote Engine Start. The instrument panel and decoration panel of the model are enhanced with more premium and fresher look with 8-inch Advanced Display Audio at the center console and 7-inch Interactive Thin Film Transistor (TFT) Meter Cluster.
This new Accord has a 10-mm lower center of gravity. The adoption of a lighter-weight turbocharged engine and other body design changes reduce the vehicle’s moment of inertia, resulting in crisper turn-in and steering response.
The new 1.5-liter, 16-valve DOHC direct-injected turbo with dual Variable Timing Control (dual VTC) and VTEC produces a peak of 201PS and 260Nm and is driven via a CVT.
This All-New Accord comes with standard safety features comprising Six Airbags, Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), Hill Start Assist (HSA), front and rear parking sensors with Multi-angle Rearview Camera, and Rear Seat ISOFIX. It also features the full suite of Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive technologies as standard equipment.
Accord Test Drive
Here comes the best part. Over our test drive weekend with this new Accord we met up with some friends and even relatives and the only question asked by most was ‘can the 1.5L turbocharged engine push up to Genting Highlands with a full load’. My answer came in two parts. “how often do you go up to Genting?’ and ‘Yes, this 1.5L has more than enough power to take you and 4 hefty adults to the top of the hill resort, even after a hefty banana leaf lunch’.
It has enough power delivery that you will easily forget its compact engine size and if you want to pay for a speeding ticket, reaching 180km/h is not an issue. If you are cruising along the highway at 110km/h and you need to chase up to to 180km/h, it can be achieved quite effortlessly. Plus, with the 1.5L engine, this new Accord gets the Malaysian tax break Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV) status.
The cabin insulation has been done very well and there is negligible road noise seeping into the cabin on our drive over city and even highway roads. Seat comfort for the front passengers is very good for most sizes, even basketball players. The only issue is the lack of seat height adjustment for the front passenger seat and petite drivers will find the low slung nature of this new Accord a little troubling when using their Touch & Go card to reach out. Yes, this Accord is low and wide so, petite drivers like my ‘better half’ had issues reaching out for parking tickets and using the toll prepaid card.
So, is this the sedan for you? Well, if you are looking for an executive or family sedan that will be easy to drive, maintain and own with enough space for your luggage or golf bags, then take this new Accord for a test drive. If you are adamant on getting a SUV like many Malaysians today, remember this, a SUV costs more to run in the long run as it consumes more fuel than the average sedan, has a 4×4 drivetrain that is heavy and being carried daily by you whilst hardly being used and its tyre replacement costs are higher because their bigger in size and width.
The final decision is yours and we are quite sure most of you reading this move over to a SUV at the end of the day.
Honda Accord 1.5 VTEC Turbo Specifications
Engine: 1.5-litre DOHC VTEC Turbo
Power: 201PS @ 5500rpm
Torque: 260Nm @ 1600-5000rpm
Transmission: Torque Converter CVT (Paddle Shifters)
0-100km/h: 9.1 seconds
Top Speed: 190km/h
Fuel Consumption: 6.3 (L/100km) Average
Selling Price: RM185,900.00