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Honda Accord Hybrid - worth the extra $$$?

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  • Hi folks...I'm new to this board, but thought I'd add to the discussion. I just purchased my Accord Hybrid w/Navi in taffeta white on Saturday and I LOVE it :) .

    I had been thinking of purchasing a hybrid for about a year and 1/2. Originally, I looked into the Prius. I loved all the tech gadgets and gizmos, but my hubby wasn't thrilled on the looks and lack of power. Of course, I would be the main driver, so I just wanted something fun and economical for my 40 mile round trip commute. So I was on the waiting list for a year, and when they called me in December to let me know that my car was in, I was hesitant. Hesitant because I still hadn't sold my old car (2002 MB C320), and also because now I was interested in the newest Hybrid contendor, the Accord Hybrid. So I had to decline the car...but boy am I glad I did.

    Since end of February, I had been trying to get the Accord Hybrid in Desert Mist w/Navi. That was my top choice. But for some reason, that color was extremely hard to get in So Ca. Considering the limited 4 colors, only 2 come in the tan leather/wood grain interior - the Desert Mist and the Taffeta White. I had my mind made up that I would wait for the Desert Mist, but then my car sold much quicker than I expected, and I needed a car sooner rather than later. So I decided to get the white, and I am loving it more every day. It looks very bold and elegant in the white, especially with the red taillights and tinted windows.

    I've read many of the posts regarding the justification for paying $3k more than the regular EX V6. I think that it is worth it. I am not a huge environmentalist myself I must say, I really bought it for the fuel economy and the unique features. And really, I don't think I got a bad price either. The MSRP on the regular EX V6 w/Navi is $28,850. I bought mind for only about $1250 more than that. I purchased mind from the fleet dept in a So Ca dealer, and they basically gave me the car for about $700 over invoice. No other dealers were offering a discount, but some did offer a price match. I figure considering that many people are even selling the cars for a markup over MSRP, I really got a good deal. They also had a great finance rate of 2.9% which expired a couple of days after I got the car.

    I love pretty much everything about the car. I've owned Hondas in the past and have no qualms about reliability. Of course, I did purchase the 7yr/100k warranty just to be on the safe side. The voice commands for the audio, navi, and climate control are great. It takes a bit of time to get the exact commands properly though, so I'll have to read up on the manual some more. The Navi even has a calender and calculator function. The XM radio is great too. You get a 3 month free trial, and most likely I will subscribe when that expires. And the cabin is REALLY roomy. I am 5'6", and my hubby is 6' and we both have plenty of room. Some negatives: No spare tire or split down of rear bench; no power seat adjustment for passenger; no auto headlamps; no sunroof; no key entry for doors except driver's; ugly plastic antenna (for XM radio?); no memory seats.

    Overall, I am really happy with my purchase, and look foward to playing around with all the features.
  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Posts: 1,978
    oneandonly1,

    Great informative post. Congratulations on your new car and welcome to the Edmund's Honda boards. I just recently purchased a new Honda also, but I opted for the Accord Coupe w/NAV with a 6-speed becuase I like to shift manually.

    crus'n in 6th,

    MidCow
  • "P.S.- Man troy you are amazing, I get tired just driving form Houston to Tulsa and that is only 500 miles and it takes me 8 hours. 1,000 miles is some 14-16 hours of driving I am inpressed. "

    =====================================================

    (shrug) From 6 a.m. (wake-up) to 9 pm (bedtime)... no big deal. Sitting in a car, listening to the radio/books-on-tape, and watching the beautiful scenery go by..... It's more interesting than my current "stuck in a cubicle" job!

    I used to do the 6 hour round-trip commute to New York's Suburbia. I liked the daily journey, listening to talk radio. But the one drawback was the shortened sleep time (only 8 hours) which is why I ultimately quit. I like to sleep longer.

    troy
  • That's my point. I don't think the civic would be as comfortable as the HAH and if I'm going to be in the car for that long every day I'd like to be comfortable.

    Another question, most of my drive is on the NJ turnpike. I cruise about 75-80 MPH for most of the way. Would I be running on all 6 cylinders or just 3 at that speed?

    Thanks to everyone for your input.
  • (shrug) I'd still choose the Civic. You want a good *stiff* seat that supports your body & your back for those 3 hours... not a soft plushy seat typical of luxury cars. A stiff seat is better for long rides. (Plus the Civic HX is ~$15,000 cheaper.)

    As for 3 cylinders, let me do some math:
    torque = ~200 ft-lb @ 2500 w/ 6 cylinders
    torque = ~100 ft-lb @ 2500 w/ 3 cylinders (guessing)

    That's not a lot, but I think you can sustain 75mph & 3 cylinders. (For comparison, my 3-cylinder insight generates 85 ft-lb at that speed.) Best way to find out.... go test-drive the hybrid (without the salesman) on the interstate and experiment with the eco mode, to see how it works.

    troy
  • nowakj66nowakj66 Posts: 709
    I called my dealer to explore the purchase of a Honda Accord hybrid. His best deal crept up $1000 in the last month. Still under MSRP but not the deal it was. I think the tax incentive and the start of summer driving season has driven the price up. Anyone else seeing this?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,710
    Not much of a mystery--seen the price of gas lately? The tax incentive hasn't changed since last year. Maybe the positive reviews the HAH has been garnering has something to do with it.
  • Hello,

    This is my first post in Edmunds, so please forgive me if this has been discussed before. We are also very interested in the Accord Hybrid. We test drove it last weekend and liked it very much.

    The one thing that is of concern to us is the loss of trunk space (approx.1/3 less than the regular Accord). Would anyone be able to tell me if the smaller trunk space is a significant inconvenience? I mean, can you still fit lugage, groceries, etc. You know, the normal family chores that you use your car for? What about tires? I'm thinking change-overs: how will we get four tires in the car for winter/summer (& vice versa) tires change overs.

    If anyone can give us a little insight or your views, that'll be most helpful in our decision in purchasing this car (or get a regular Accord. Although we really want to get the Hybrid after experiencing the extra torque).

    Thanks in advance.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,969
    how will we get four tires in the car for winter/summer (& vice versa) tires change overs.

    Welcome to the Forum,
    I would think that 4 tires would be tough to get in the trunk of a standard Accord. I would not want to put them in the back seat on that nice leather. best bet is throw them in the back of your PU truck and take them to the tire shop... dirty tires in a nice new trunk, yuck.
  • Thanks gagrice,

    Unfortunately, I don't have a PU, so that option is out for me. Guess I'll need to go back and check it out again. I was hoping someone that has the hybrid can share more information on the cargo capacity. I need to seriously consider this limitation before deciding on purchasing it since it'll be used as a family car.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,710
    Is this really a big deal? This is something you do twice a year. Get a couple of big plastic bags, slip two of the tires in them, and set them in the floor of the back seat. There are lots of cars that can't hold four full-sized tires in the trunk. It should not be a deal-killer if you really want the car.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,969
    Get a couple of big plastic bags, slip two of the tires in them, and set them in the floor of the back seat.

    Good idea, why didn't I think of that. I have had a truck for the last 30 years and never had to haul tires in a car.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    "The climate control system utilizes aunique hybrid compressor that is both highly efficient and effective.."

    http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drives/FirstDrives/articleId=103272

    Prius does something similar but not in the same way.....Honda's technology is two years newer....
  • tempusvntempusvn Posts: 119
    "The climate control system utilizes a unique hybrid compressor that is both highly efficient and effective.."

    That is a Marketing Blurb, not an Engineering Blurb, so they mean "Unique" in the Marketing sense. I'm sure it is uinque. It probably has a bolt hole in a different location.

    "Prius does something similar but not in the same way.....Honda's technology is two years newer...."

    I see nothing in what you've posted so far that supports either of those statements.

    As far as I know the ONLY Electronic Scroll Compressor for Hybrid Auto A/C systems is the DENSO unit that was jointly developed with Toyota. It was developed specifically for use in hybrids, and has a couple of unique features. It integrates the Electronic Inverter Unit into the Compressor Unit (This was apparently a cooling challenge), and uses very little Coolant relative to older systems.

    You can find a number of presentations floating around the web, but I'm not sure I can link to them from here. The linking rules here puzzle me.

    But, they are almost all done by Ken Matsunaga (Denso) or Kiwamu Inui (Toyota) , and involve analysis of the energy savings over regular belt driven compressors. Bottom line is the Electronic Compressors are about 40% more efficient than older ones.

    Honda is not nearly as rich as Toyota, and I seriously doubt they did anything like that in-house. If any other A/C company had anything comparable you can be sure they'd be presenting it and trumpeting it to high heaven, and that hasn't happened.

    Denso/Toyota won an EPA Climate Protection Award for the design.

    http://www.epa.gov/cppd/awards/winners_summaries4-20-04.doc

    I'd love to see info on the Honda Unit, but dollars to donuts it's the Denso Unit.

    It would be kind of funny if Honda was paying royalties to Toyota for the A/C.
  • Everyone has them (points to house). I don't see why it's such a big deal.

    troy
  • mlomlo Posts: 2
    So, do you think it would be worth it to buy a hybrid car for the 118 F Vegas weather? Or I would be better off with a regular Accord if I have to run my A/C most of the time?
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Extra $$ for HAH. Forget it! Not based on the news on the site below!

    http://www.autoweek.com/news.cms?newsId=102192

    When the Accord 2.2 l diesel(hopefully with a manaul tranny) becomes available in N. America(hope it will happen soon) and price slightly more than the Accord i4, I will be among the first on the waiting list.
  • The Accord's A/C won't add drag to the engine, because it's running off the battery. So you shouldn't see any MPG impact.

    Insight & Civic... yes, the A/C would increase engine drag & decrease mpg.

    troy
  • cohenfivecohenfive Posts: 85
    the hah doesn't have a moonroof? what's that all about--structural rigidity issues, weight?
  • nowakj66nowakj66 Posts: 709
    I would say weight and cost to Honda is what keeps the moon roof off the HAH. And to have something to add to the 2006 model besides refreshed tail lights.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    this reviews says it was the weight - Oh My Gosh those Sunroofs are SO HEAVY !! :)

    http://info.detnews.com/autosconsumer/autoreviews/index.cfm?id=16693

    THIS review says elminating the sunroof adds 5% more interior space:

    http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/reviews/healey/2004-09-23-accord-hybrid_x.htm
  • joonjoon Posts: 121
    I read comparisons between the PZEV and HAH. I have not seen one comparing the PZEV with regular Accords? I noticed that the prices are pretty similar (couple of hundred bucks apart). What are the downside (if any) of the PZEV? Thanks.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    I am still looking for Accord Hybrid PZEV specifics, but in the CIVIC HYBRIDS, the AT-PZEV rating makes a minor sacrifice of MPG to achieve greater exhaust cleanliness.

    "AT-PZEV model mileage range will be lower."
  • Weight = doubtful; it's ony 1/2% more weight.. trivial
    Interior space = no..... I've got a moonroof, and it doesn't subtract any interior space.

    How about "aerodynamics"? Having that bump on the roof might increase drag.

    troy
  • Where are you guys getting the "sulev/pzev" rating? Even in California, the Accord Hybrid is only a ULEV.

    .

    The reason the Civic Hybrid lost MPG when adjusted to Sulev/Pzev standards is due to the lean-burn. Lean-burn produces a lot of NOx... too much to pass... so the California CH had to limit lean-burn to near-zero usage... which of course impacted MPG.

    The Accord Hybrid doesn't use lean-burn, so Honda might be able to clean it up w/o impacting the MPG.

    troy
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,710
    According to Honda, adding the sunroof to the Accord sedan takes off five cubic feet from the interior room.

    http://automobiles.honda.com/models/specifications_full_specs.asp?ModelName=Accord+Sedan&C- ategory=2
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017
    backy:

    That seems reasonable. Two inches less headroom, multipied by the square footage area of the interior roof, could equate to the sunroof taking up about five cubic feet. That way, if they continue to sell the HAH without a sunroof, Honda could lower the entire roof by two inches, thus reducing air drag and the coefficient of friction. Just think of the exponential increase in fuel mileage with less frontal area.
  • I still don't understand? The sunroof in my old Dodge was flush-mounted. It didn't take up any interior space. Why can't Honda use the same design?

    troy
  • grove4grove4 Posts: 95
    It was only a weight issue that is all.They had to cut weight b/c they were adding weight with batteries,motor,generator,etc,etc.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,710
    Flush mounted as in the glass roof raises up over the car body as it opens? Exposing the glass roof to all sorts of flying debris, stress from wind shear etc.? I prefer the kind that retracts into the car body, as on the Accord--it takes headroom but seems more reliable over the long term.
This discussion has been closed.