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Hybrid Honda Accord

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  • I just got my fifth tank of gas (I'm around 1100 miles), and finally saw some of the mileage numbers I was expecting. I don't know if it is because I am past the 'break-in' period, or if it's because Chicago finally saw some relatively 'balmy' weather here yesterday (about 38 degrees).

     

    I had to drive into work, and since it was Sunday, made most of the lights. City driving at 35-40 mph, I try to keep the tach at or below 1500 rpm (on my HAH this is around 28-30 mph, or in the next gear up, around 40-42). Computer readout was about 27 mpg.

     

    Next I had some highway driving, and I had about 34 mpg, going between 65-70 mph (hard to do in the Chicago area!), but the power is there in excess if I need to pull away from someone.

     

    I have been using cruise control almost exclusively, even in city driving, because I find the car stays in the ECO zone on its own better than I can do it. Should I worry about engine wear doing this in city driving?

     

    I do not have NAV, and I have not had any problems with static on either FM or XM radio. With FM I listen almost exclusively to public radio, which is 91.5. I've actually had more trouble with the XM, since it is blocked within parking structures (no more can I sit in the car to hear the end of a story or song), and weird dead zones.

     

    So, now that I feel that I will eventually achieve EPA mileage 8-9 months of the year (and in the winter take my non-hybrid mileage beating) I think that this is the best car I've ever had. Of course, I'm comparing this to: a beat-up 70's VW Karmen-Ghia manual, an 80's Dodge Colt manual, a '91 Toyota Camry V6 automatic (very nice car), a '98 Toyota Corolla manual. I've also had the opportunity to drive a variety of Lexus and Mercedes, as well as a '93 Mazda 626 (whatever it was called at the time) and a 2000 Mazda MPV.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    I don't know about engine wear, but personally I don't use cruise control in the city because of the need to be able to react quickly to traffic, pedestrians, people on bikes and in motorized wheelchairs (!) etc.--so I like having my foot on the gas in the city.

     

    Quite a step up from a Dodge Colt, eh? :-)
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Cruising at a constant speed or being abrupt with gas (and brake) pedal is not advised during break-in period.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    How long is the break-in on the HAH? It is beyond 1200 miles?
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Absolutely nothing interfered with FM, AM, XM channels and CD system in my HAH. The HAH's stereo system plays fabulously with style. Really love it very much. It really soothes me off after many hours of working with hair-beard-and moustache-splitting-and-crunching work.

     

    The HAH itself is truely a nicely integrated piece of fine art and highly sophisticated engineering. Its MPG, acceleration and the powerful HP is worth the premium over the regular Accord V6. Not to mention about the electronically/ electrically assisted steering and the VCM, etc...I constantly get about 29.9 - 30 MPG in cities while my 16 year old son gets about 18 MPG on my other new Accord V6. He must have "a young but very big, heavy and gas-sucking right foot".
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Hi Backy,

     

    Honda requires only 600 miles for the break-in with engine and 200 miles for brakes.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Hi guys and gals, the highly educated scholars in automotive/ hybrid technology,

     

    I must shamefully admit that in my first few Honda I read and almost learned by heart all my Honda's user manuals. Now, I do not have much (stupid?) time for those manuals but I did read "fast" all my HAH's user manuals and "study" them again whenever I need it. The engine break-in is only 600 miles but I "lied" to my 18 year old son that the engine break-in is about 2,000 + miles when I gave him a brand new Accord V6 Coupe. But I am sure he probably ignored my advice. Kids learn very quickly with their friends about cars.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Hi Ankh126,

     

    100% D'Accord. I did not care to test drive my HAH before I took it delivery. It turned out it was my flawless and shiny Xmas present. After a few rains lately in the local areas my HAH now has been covered with dirt. It looks really like Charles Bronson who was "ready in actions".
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    "I think that this is the best car I've ever had. Of course, I'm comparing this to: a beat-up 70's VW Karmen-Ghia manual, an 80's Dodge Colt manual, a '91 Toyota Camry V6 automatic (very nice car), a '98 Toyota Corolla manual. I've also had the opportunity to drive a variety of Lexus and Mercedes, as well as a '93 Mazda 626 (whatever it was called at the time) and a 2000 Mazda MPV".

     

    The fact that I ignored Mercedes Benz C class and BMW 325i to buy a HAH has strongly demonstrated that the HAH must contain some unique and outstanding specifications that's very hard for me not to buy one.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Break-in, as defined, is usually over in less than 1000 miles. However, from my personal experience (three cars so far), Honda drive trains tend to settle down in terms of smoothness, decisiveness and fuel economy around 7000-8000 miles.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    My HAH now has only about 800+ miles but it accelerates and runs super fast as a 400 HP Corvette or a 300+ HP Mustang. Its MPG in cities is around 29.9 - 30 MPG, exactly as Honda claims it. I expect the MPG will surely meet its specified MPG or better after the engine break-in. I only need to drive at 2000 RPM or less to achieve 60+ MPH. At this level of RPM I surely can save a lot of gas. I enjoy my HAH very much. It runs so beautifully. I may consider buying another one when my son "claims" it in about 18 months after he gets accepted in a good college. Otherwise I will have to "run super marathon" again to work everyday.

     

    I am very practical and do not need to show off my "artificial social status" by driving an Bimmer or a Mercedes Benz and spending too much on preventive maintenance. I have been very excited to keep my close eyes on the "super intelligence" of the VCM and the Auto-Stop features. It appears that it is getting more "decisive and smarter" as Robertxm mentioned when it is approaching the break-in. The audio/ Navi. work very accurately and sensitively when the weather is getting clearer and less cold.
  • falcononefalconone Posts: 1,726
    I'd save the money and drive the regular V6 Accord. Just as snappy with the acceleration (5 speed even better). Put the savings in the bank and have fun. Better yet.... spend the same money on the Acura TL. Almost the same price...more features... mileage difference negligible.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    But regular Accord V6 doesn't have the low-mid range punch that some may want to have, besides the other things that hybrid offers. People want different things in a car, hence there are several one-up trims for a model. Not everybody wants to drive DX, there comes LX there comes EX there comes EX-L there comes LXV6 there comes EXV6, and now comes hybrid.
  • I have a 2004 Accord EXL 5-speed MANUAL that averages a little over 32Mpg in Houston traffic (stop & go to 75Mph cruise) with an 85 mile work round trip. My wife has a 2003 TLS that averages 25-26Mpg when I drive it to work with a heavy foot. The TLS pulled down a little over 30Mpg last week on a drive to Dallas and back, about 475 miles cruising at 75-79Mph with some around town driving mixed in. Frankly, I was very surprised that the TLS could manage 30+Mpg even though I have read of seven generation Accord V6 owners pulling down similar Mpg.

     

    Now looking at the numbers that the HAHs are pulling down when driven with a light foot like I drive my Accord, the mileage is almost the same (Actually my EXL seems to be getting a little better mileage) and my ELX cost about 10K LESS than a HAH! The 2.4L 5-speed MANUAL Accord has plenty of power (16.1 in the ¼ mile per Car & Driver) with all the safety features of the HAH plus a sunroof.

     

    I check my mileage at every tank using the tried and true miles driven/gallons method and keep a log book on all my cars. As much I think the HAH is a pretty cool car, if you’re going to drive it for fuel economy you are going to have to own that car for a loooong time before you payback the initial investment of the technology. And if you drive it to take advantage of the extra power, well what’s the point?

     

    I actually enjoy driving my Accord more than I enjoy driving the TLS. Part of that is I still enjoy being involved with the driving and the MANUAL transmission is a pleasure to shift. The Accord is also quieter, rides better, has a better sound system and XM radio. The only thing it lacks that would make it a perfect sedan is:

     

    1) The new direct injection 2.4 that increases fuel mileage 20%? That would give me 38Mpg average and be faster!

    2) Self tinting and heated mirrors with tilt (Like the TLS)

    3) Memory function for the seats, mirrors and sound system (Like the TLS)

    4) Heated rear seats

     

    Again, I’m not knocking the HAH. I think Honda is testing the waters with this car. Imagine a HAH direct injection 2.4 Accord? Probably the same power of the current HAH with fuel mileage in the middle 40’s! Honda has the technology and capability to pull this off in the next generation Accord. Simply amazing stuff.

     

    Just my two cents.
  • azhahazhah Posts: 82
    That's great for you!

     

    I suspect that the EPA ratings will have proved to be a little low. Though my city mileage is pretty close if not 1 or 2 MPG above (29.5 overall avg), my higway mileage may be much better then predicted. Bear in mind that I still have less than 1500 miles on the car. I have seen consistent mileage in the 50 MPG range at speed on the freeway. This doesn't take into account some traffic as well as up and down slight grades, on-off ramps etc. I believe that on a long highway trip I may be able to average well above 45 MPG under normal driving conditions. I am planning a trip to Tucson in two weeks for my anniversary (20 years! wahoo!!!) I will post the mileage for both directions. I expect a little better going down then coming back. I guess time will tell.

     

    Just for the record. I didn't purchase this car with the idea of saving money in the long run though that would be nice. I did it for two main reasons. 1) I truly loved this car from the first test-drive. 2) I wanted to support tne Hybrid industry in general. I feel that this purchase will send a small message to the auto makers that I like the direction they are going! I realise not everyone is in a position to do this, but since I am...I did...
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    My city MPG completely matches with AZHAH's MPG (29.5 - 29.999999). I have not driven my "monster HAH" much on highways but it always likes to "fly" on the roads as a very quiet street rocket wherever it runs. My feeling is it runs on the roads like a very light feather. All I can say is it is super fast, responsive and it best utilizes fuel to the last drop. It is Honda's frugal philosophy on gas consumption but it is very fast and achieves best performance compared to other cars in same class. That's why I love Honda and have been loyal to Honda for so many years. Immediately after I bought my HAH, Honda Inc. sent me a flyer to solicit for a purchase of a newly introduced Honda truck (Ridgeline). I wish I could become an honorable blue collar man to buy a Ridgline truck for my business. However, I still get good chances to become a real muscular man to mend my tire if my HAH gets a flat tire or a tire blow up at night.

     

    I love my HAH for several reasons: (1) Super HP, (2) Great MPG, (3) Honda's excellent performance, durability and reliability records as I have owned about 10+ Honda in total, (4) Honda's proven applied hybrid science/ technology through Insight and Civic Hybrid, etc.

     

    I agreed with AZHAH that the HAH's highway MPG will be great as all my Accord's highway MPG are always above the EPA's ratings. The integrated Navi. system and the audio (XM, FM, AM radios) are superb.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Here's a pretty decent and recent review for those contemplating buying the HAH:

     

    http://www.freep.com/cgi-bin/forms/printerfriendly.pl
  • russ5russ5 Posts: 9
    I tried your link to free press and it did not work. Try http://www.freep.com/money/autoreviews/accord3e_20050203.htm
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    OK, sorry about the last broken link, the one you posted DOES work....

     
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

     

          I was corresponding with a new AH owner that lives not 10 minutes from me. He picked his up for $1K less then MSRP if that helps. Rosen Honda in Gurnee, Illinois. There is hope for future AH owners after all …

     

          Good Luck

     

          Wayne R. Gerdes
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    I found out today when I carried a big jar of distilled water in the front that the passenger front seat is manually operated, no power as the driver seat. Does anybody know the reason why Honda makes it that way such as saving battery power, etc?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    More like saving money, and possibly weight also.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    The HAH's MPG of 29.99 - 37 plus is pretty much same as a regular Civic LX 's MPG.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Hybrid car owners' comments: observations from user experience:

     

    1- Insight owner # about 4000

     

    My wife, son and I all have been driving Honda Insights since 2000. We have a combined 170,000+ miles. In the beginning, wow! Silent, fast, comfortable, super handling (stop, turn, high speed (95mph)-no wind, electric ABS good in snow), trips with 60, 70, 80 MPG, one 740 mile fill up. Now we're so used to it that a Honda Accord seems like a big boat.

     

    And we've developed a new respect for the cars because they have been very trouble free for a long time. We are beginning to understand, other than getting 60MPG, cost wise these are normal cars. Quality Hondas. We rarely calculate the gas savings although we are proud of having bought over 2,800 less gallons of gas in a time which Oil has caused so much trouble for so many people.

     

    Hybrid technology in the Insight saves gas not by the little 6hp engine alone. It's only 11% of the 65hp total, how could it? It's the engine tuning the electric motor allows. The cylinders can be optimized for the higher gears while the electric motor takes over the instant demand. Also the cars are very light, the engines shut off/restart automatically at stops, are super aerodynamic and have long rolling tires.

     

    Using these KNOWN technologies car companies could cut world fuel use in half, TODAY.So my real point isn't that our experience has been great, it's the more existential "what if everyone did it?"

     

    2- Fran Kosloski, Wernersville, Pa

     

    I have bought a 2004 civic hybrid. My current life time gas milage is 47.5 mpg for a distance of 3500 miles. Much of that is with air conditioning on. I live in a mountainous part of Eastern Pennsylvania. I have a 150 mile round trip daily commute. The highway portion I get 51 or greater mpg, When I do the last 10 miles up the hills of our community it pulls the lifetime mpg down. The electronic display indicating mpg , at least on our car is always around 1.5 mpg less than my computation I do at the gas pump dividing trip odometer by gallons pumped at station. At this stage I am quite happy with our Honda civic. Current trending seems to indicate the mpg is getting better with age.

      

    3- Phil in Missouri

     

    We've had our 2005 Honda Accord hybrid a short while and still operating on the first tank of gasoline. We have growing concern about the gas mileage we're seeing. The EPA ratings for this hybrid are 29 city and 37 highway, however so far we're observing about 17 to 19 mpg in city driving. Is this kind of difference to be expected during the earliest stage of the 'break-in' period? Also, the winter temperatures demand more of systems that draw power from the battery array and in turn appear to affect the extent/proportion of operation time that actually is assisted by the electric motor. Any comment from other owners or 'experts' on this concern would be appreciated. Thanks!
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    At 70MPH:

     

    95 Accord EX I4 (145 HP): 3000 RPM.

     

    02 Accord EX V6 (200 HP): 2100 - 2300 RPM.

     

    05 Accord Hybrid (255 HP): 2000 RPM.
  • vietviet Posts: 847
    Also,

     

    In 1992, my Civic 1986 1.5 liter 93 HP had to crawl up the 4,000 feet hilly highways like a poor little snail . Otherwise, at 120K miles, it ran beautifully like new. At 70 MPH, it had to spin its engine more than 3000 RPM for sure. That's why I was not interested in the Civic Hybrid of 93 HP and waited until Honda introduced the Accord hybrid.
  • Saturday paper Houston, Honda Accord Hybrid advertised $2,000 under MSRP ~= $28K 4 available.

     

    WHAT HAPPENED ?

     

    Also HCH CVT $2,000 under MSRP
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    What happened? Reason. As in, why pay thousands more for a hybridized Accord or Civic when it's unlikely the difference will be made up in fuel costs. Also, Texas is not California, and Texans are not hybrid-crazed as many Californians seem to be.
  • WHAT HAPPENED ?

     

    Economics 101 happened. Supply caught up with demand.

     

    I purchased my 2005 HCH for $500 over invoice back in November for the same reason -- the fleet dealer had a few in stock and wanted to sell them.

     

    Why hasn't this happened with the Prius? Because supply has not yet caught up with demand.
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