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Honda Accord VCM

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  • I just drove a brand new, (plastic wrap covering everything), coupe last night. I was unable to detect any of the reported problems. Yes the trans does slow down the car on hills, but we own an 07 Nissan Murano that does the same thing. I found no vibration when trying it at all speeds, cruise on and off. Is there anyone else out there that is not experiencing the problems? I am a pretty sensitive driver and usually bothered by the little things. I think we need to know when and where the cars were manufactured to see if it is limited to a production group. This was my 3rd test drive of the 08 V6.

    As a quick side note: They are going out of the dealerships as quick as they come in. This was the first coupe I was able to test drive. There were only 2 08 V6's on the lot, one blk on blk, with sold sign on it and the red 08 V6 Coupe I drove. There was a paper on the dash when I saw it in the lot that said it was being "swapped" to another dealer today. The salesperson said that they are going out as they come in and that they have no problem getting them and max wait has been 3 weeks but usually in a couple of days. If someone is not having problems please post so we can hear from you.
  • sunnfunsunnfun Posts: 168
    I have not heard or talked with anyone having VCM issues with the 2 Dr. It is the 4 Dr that is the problem - at least so far. Overall Accord sales were down 7% for Jan (compared to 2007) Feb #'s are not out yet.
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    The coupe with the manual trans does not have VCM.
  • I have a V6 Coupe AT.

    I have yet to feel the vibration like some of the others have here.

    On a 1hr all highway drive I made a couple nights ago, about 35mins in I could really feel the VCM kicking on and off. Now if you're used to feeling your Murano kind of jump, etc, and do the same general feeling then it probably won't bother you...

    Make no mistake about it... I LOVE this car. I wish that Honda didn't throw the words "seamless" and "will go unnoticed by drivers."
  • itochuitochu Posts: 107
    I test drove another V6 sedan the other night and made an observation about the VCM that may or may not be true of everyone or every car. The "harder" I drove the car, the less I noticed it. It was when I was babying it that I noticed all the surging and ECO light going on and off stuff. And no, duct tape over the ECO light is not the solution :sick: That suggests that the whole VCM issue is in people's minds, the power of suggestion from the ECO going on and off leading them to conclude something that is not really there. Wrong. But if babying it to get better gas mileage results in increased frequency of the changing of cylinder operation, and the accompanying annoying sensations, at least to some, doesn't that then defeat the purpose of VCM? To avoid the annoying shifting of modes, you drive it harder than you might a normal V6 and thus get worse mileage overall? Just a thought based on my personal observations and test driving experiences. :)
  • parvizparviz Posts: 484
    :...I for one wish MORE posters would post about their mileage in here, so people interested in VCM equipped Accords could get an idea of what to expect. ..."

    I usually put this info in the other thread but as you've said since it is also VCM related here we go....
    Drove the 08 V6 EXL w/ Navi another 400 miles within the past 24 hours, mostly freeway miles with some stop and go and some local streets. For those of you familiar with nor ca I drove on I-80 and SR 101 and SR 1 from Sacramento to Monterey and back. The total MPG for the entire 400+ miles was 27.4, I got 38 mpg on the trip computer when on long stretches of the freeway. To me that was great gas mileage and I contribute that to the VCM operation. I now have 3000 miles on this car and yet to notice any problems with the VCM. I wish i could tilt the head restrainer, though!
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    :...I for one wish MORE posters would post about their mileage in here, so people interested in VCM equipped Accords could get an idea of what to expect. ..."

    Pat, have you given any thought to dividing the VCM thread into "VCM issues" and "VCM mileage"? Kind of separating the Pro's from the Con's.
  • parvizparviz Posts: 484
    "....Kind of separating the Pro's from the Con's...."

    Why not have the pros and the cons in one place. I think that would be easier for the readers to asses. Also "issues" thread could also include pros as well and on the same token "gas mileage" may have its own concerns (cons) too!
  • itochuitochu Posts: 107
    I only know that my friend with the 2007 V6 Sedan says he gets 28-29 consistently on the hiighway at 75-80 MPH speeds. BUT his car weighs about 300 pounds less than the 2008 model, and has the 3.0 liter engine. Can anyone with a 6 speed MT coupe chime in? What kind of highway mileage do you get with a non-VCM V6? That is probably going to be the most telling comparison about how well the VCM works saving fuel - coupes with AT vs.MT.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Yes, actually, I have given a lot of thought to that very question. Right now, I think this one umbrella is where we need to be. I think it is appropriate for people to post their positive, negative and neutral experiences with the VCM in the 08 Accord all in one place.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Let's keep this to first-hand experiences with the VCM, please. Drivers of VCM Accords are welcome to report their mileage here, but if we're going to get into reports by non-VCM Accord drivers, we need to go to a more appropriate topic.
  • cstilescstiles Posts: 465
    So you are saying that you test drove another brand new VCM Accord, and that car also "surged" in an unacceptable or unsafe manner? What exactly do you mean when you say the car "surges"? Is it accelerating in an unsafe manner without your intent or input? "Surging" is a pretty strong word that implies that the car is accelerating itself without driver control. Are we talking about a legitimate safety issue, or when you say "surge" are we talking about an annoying sensation? Is it the transmission shifting and causing the surging sensation (ie: a phenomenon unrelated to VCM and cylinder behavior)?

    Rodiron says his glasses do a Linda Blair and fly off his head. That is also a very strong description that goes beyond just an annoyance or sensation. Yet in other posts he simply decries Honda's inaccurate description about VCM being seamless or imperceptible within their advertising.

    Could some of these terms about unintended "surging," heads being rattled, and glasses flying off be unreasonably strong descriptors that ultimately detract from a meaningful discussion about VCM? Or are we discussing and debating a range of annoyances and sensations only? Thanks for your clarification.
  • I have posted many experiences with the VCM operation. Your Linda Blair comment while humorous on the surface, denotes a level of sarcasm that leads one to introduce doubt, of which you are in no position to foster (as it relates to my car).

    Now, my V6 vibrates alot, not sort of, not at times, but all the time at highway speeds and A-LOT. The dealer road force balanced my tires like 4 times, changed out 6 of them and no fix. they have said its the VCM that is causing the vibration in 3cl mode and its not going away, Honda of America has said the same thing to us... in fact they (as i have said before) went so far as to say they "are aware of the problems (not concerns) but problems with the VCM and they are looking into it, however there is no fix" so they admit to the problem (at least to us). I believe others all have been told the same. The vibration has been and is being experience by many other owners and its ridiculous.. its noting like a Honda accord has ever been.

    As far as "surging, lurching" etc... the car constantly hunts for a mode.. it never remains stable,, others call it "maddening, annoying" I could not agree more. It is a sensation not an acceleration.. but the sensation is horrible and never calms down both in 40mpg ranges and 65-80mph. It can flat out make one nauseous on a long drive.

    I am exploring my exit strategy for this car now...I have given it its day and in the end my opinion is a strong one but after 20 years of Accord ownership, this is my last one.. Honda in an attempt to abandon their failing Hybrid model , compete with others and put a check in the ' green" category really missed the boat here. They took what was a smooth running, no brainer car choice and took a wrong turn or at a minimum didn't fully bake this design. Their marketing and advertising is misleading and down right false. Prospective owners need to be cautious and do their due diligence. The car is not enjoyable to drive on long trips, seats are hard as a rock, coupled with the vibration and surging and one is left with a very dissapointing purchase....

    Get the non VCM coupe, MT, 4cly or the TL ...you will thank me later.....
  • itochuitochu Posts: 107
    Sorry - thought it relevant to the conversation about VCM and its impact on fuel economy - that is why I suggested coupe owners with 6 speed MT report mileage - it is the only vehicle where all other things are equal except the engines.
  • itochuitochu Posts: 107
    I uses the word surge but that may have a different meaning to different people - what I have sensed with all the '08 V6 Accords I have driven is a sense of power on/power off, as if you are gently pressing on and then releasing the accelerator - but you are doing nothing - since this happens on level highways with the cruise control on - the only thing "happening" is the ECO light going on and off and the car going into and out of 6 to 4 or 3 cylinder operation. There is no transmission shifting. Do you honestly think those who do sense these "changes" would not know the difference between a transmission shifting and what they are sensing? That is at best condescending. But as I also said, it seems to happen most when you are trying to drive the car gently or at a steady speed. If you are in traffic, on the gas, etc. I personally did not notice the transitions as much, if at all. Hope that clarifies it! :) I will say the more I have tested these cars, the less it has bothered me - guess I have come to accept it as a quirk of this car's operation, and weighing all its pluses against this minus, must make a decision. Thankfully I have not experienced the apparently severe vibration that some others here have. Thet would certainly be a deal breaker.
  • sunnfunsunnfun Posts: 168
    I could not agree more with what you said (except the getting used to it part). I only have 400 miles on my car and at the urging of my wife, I am going to put some more miles on it before I trade it off on something else. Maybe things will get better, or maybe worse, but I don't think I am going to lose much trade in if I have a thousand ot two miles versus 400. Up until now, I have not had the vibration issues but if that shows up, I may drive it back to the dealer and park it.
  • chd1chd1 Posts: 8
    Having read a few criticisms of the VCM, I'll add my experience having test drove an EX-L V6 coupe yesterday for about 20 miles (I'll be buying tomorrow and can add a long-term opinion later).

    1) I was surprised at how often the "ECO" light came on while on the highway. I'd consider this a positive.

    2) I did notice a slight/subtle vibration when the vehicle would shift into "ECO," but not every time. Some times it would, others it wouldn't.

    Of course, these observations were made with the radio off, my eyes focused on the "ECO" light and my ears perked for any slight sound.

    In my opinion, under normal driving conditions, it wouldn't seem to be an issue, unless you can't shake it from your head, in which case I'd recommend hypnosis.
  • HI, you have explained the problem that many vcm drivers are having, i have the same problem ,balance of tires etc does not help.......one dealer said its the characteristic of the vechile.no problem found.....HMMMM !!!!!
  • Here is a copy of my interaction on the "Long term Honda Accord 2008 EX-LV6" Edmunds blog with one of the testers. The last reported mileage was 8,315 which I believe is significant. I have no reason to believe that these guys are not good drivers and probably (I am speculating) in tune with what is happening with their cars because they test a lot of cars. I think the one thing that this does prove is that this is probably not a VCM design problem OR that some cars weren't produced within the specifications of normal design. Hope this data point helps people on both sides. I really liked this car after I test drove it and I hope to buy it. My interaction now follows:

    Anyone know if this is the right place to ask the question of the Edmund's testers?

    I wonder if they have noticed any issues with VCM, transmission problems or otherwise? There is a small group on one of the Accord forums that seems to believe that VCM is causing a surging type issue in their cars while others love it and think it gives them great mileage and that the ones having the problem are perhaps too keen in looking for a problem because it is in their heads. Only interested in the opinions of the long time testers at Edmunds but as I indicated above, if there's a better way to reach them, I am all ears. Thanks.


    "home4sale2: Regarding you post about the VCM's handling of the transmission. We certainly haven't notice this problem yet. I'd say the transmission is exceptionally smooth and provides good fuel economy for a strong V6. Perhaps it's a condition that develops in higher mileage cars. We'll look for it and post about it if it occurs. "
  • yrmacyrmac Posts: 134
    At that mileage, if the VCM design is truly faulty and prevalent, the testers should at least notice some anomaly with this technology. "Transmission is exceptionally smooth and provides good fuel economy" is what most of us will probably describe our experience with the 2008 Accord V6.
  • yrmacyrmac Posts: 134
    I was perusing Temple of VTEC forum, when I noticed something eerily familiar: Check the link and pay attention to post #20:
    http://www.vtec.net/forums/one-message?message_id=738154
  • steevosteevo Posts: 332
    I finally asked a friend at work about his Accord Coupe V6 Automatic. He LOVES the car. I asked him about VCM and he told me how well it works and how great his mileage is. I then asked him if you can tell when it activates and he said ABSOLUTELY....There is a very noticeable vibration. However he does not feel it is something that would stop him from buying the car again and would never have thought to mention it if I hadn't brought it up.
    It is apparent to me that the VCM activation/deactivation is obvious to the driver. I do not think it is detrimental to the overall performance of the car and it will not deter me from considering the Accord V6 Coupe with an automatic.
    HONDA should have had a switch available on the auto Coupe, like a Sport/Economy switch that would disable VCM when in sport mode. Anyone that concerned about economy would shop for a 4 cylinder Sedan or hybrid anyway. Marketing missed the boat a bit on this one when you consider the target audience of a V6 Coupe.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    At that mileage, if the VCM design is truly faulty and prevalent, the testers should at least notice some anomaly with this technology. "Transmission is exceptionally smooth and provides good fuel economy" is what most of us will probably describe our experience with the 2008 Accord V6.

    I have no dog in this race, but it seems pretty clear from the postings here that the VCM is not operating equally for all owners. This car would not be the first first-year-redesign to experience such a phenomenon.

    I think we need to keep in mind that all 08 V6 automatic Accords are not necessarily created equally. :shades:
  • parvizparviz Posts: 484
    Thanks for the link. Except for a few "maddening" posts, the messages seemd favorable and positive.
  • I agree about the marketing comment and maintain as well that a manual override of the system would help ease concerns some have about the system. This is analogous to VSA. Why not make it a driver's car by giving someone an option to turn off "non life threatening or safety" features. The problem however for Honda now is how to retract some of these statements about how seamless this technology is and therefore somehow admitting that VCM causes a lack of performance (they have already by not offering it with a manual so its no new news). I'll close my ears and cover my eyes for a few days, go on change the brochures and web pages silently...

    I have bought two Hondas in my past life that were first year models and they were absolutely the best (ok reliable is a better word here) cars I have ever owned while four other first year models I bought have been absolutely horrible in their first couple years of ownership because of gremlins that needed to be sorted out, some never did. This VCM seems like a gremlin for some people so I "nth" the motion to test-drive to your heart's content before you purchase. I know I thank the guys who have brought this to my attention. On the other hand, based on the comments made by others who love this car, it would not deter me to buy it.
  • parvizparviz Posts: 484
    "they have already by not offering it with a manual so its no new news...."

    I know how VCM works in concept but not in very technical terms. I did not think VCM would be a good match with a manual tranny since the driver has the control not the computer (or maybe shared control?), Do you know how the MT would interact with VCM? I would be interested to know.
  • yrmacyrmac Posts: 134
    I have a dog in this race and by my post, I wasn't implying that 08 Accord is flawless in its operation. I wrote "most of us" and by that, I do acknowledge that there maybe some owners who legitimately are experiencing some problems with the VCM technology.

    Also, I am not sure if I'm reading your post right but I think my post was within the context of this thread and if you think otherwise, then, that is not my intent. Keep in mind that this is after all about the VCM operation, good or bad.

    If you check some of the postings, quite a few of them are mere opinions about Honda and have nothing to do with VCM. Here is an example: " am exploring my exit strategy for this car now...I have given it its day and in the end my opinion is a strong one but after 20 years of Accord ownership, this is my last one.. Honda in an attempt to abandon their failing Hybrid model , compete with others and put a check in the ' green" category really missed the boat here. They took what was a smooth running, no brainer car choice and took a wrong turn or at a minimum didn't fully bake this design. Their marketing and advertising is misleading and down right false. Prospective owners need to be cautious and do their due diligence. This has nothing to do with VCM at all.
  • First of all a big thank you to everyone who has contributed to this discussion - as a prospective buyer it is good to be armed with as much info as I can get - good and bad - before I make the purchase.

    Regarding Honda's next move I think they could easily add the VSA-type on/off switch, put a marketing spin on it like "it allows the driver to decide between economical driving and V6 fun" and most would be happy with that.

    From my own point of view, and given my usual nominal weekly mileage (10km a day back and forth to the train station), I don't see this being of much benefit to me either way, but the option to go all V6 all the time in an automatic would be great.

    Alan
  • jam1000jam1000 Posts: 182
    To be fair to the poster you are quoting, the whole rest of his long post that preceded this quote, and the reason he said he was exploring his exit strategy, was all about VCM.

    [If you check some of the postings, quite a few of them are mere opinions about Honda and have nothing to do with VCM. Here is an example: " am exploring my exit strategy for this car now...I have given it its day and in the end my opinion is a strong one but after 20 years of Accord ownership, this is my last one.. Honda in an attempt to abandon their failing Hybrid model , compete with others and put a check in the ' green" category really missed the boat here. They took what was a smooth running, no brainer car choice and took a wrong turn or at a minimum didn't fully bake this design. Their marketing and advertising is misleading and down right false. Prospective owners need to be cautious and do their due diligence. This has nothing to do with VCM at all.]
  • abeebabeeb Posts: 25
    Just as a clarification of what the "on-off" VCM button would actually accomplish, it would have nothing to do with disabling or enabling "V6 fun" as VCM does not change this experience like VSA does What it would do is turn on and off the annoying surging and vibration that some cars are exhibiting. I do agree that Honda wouldn't spin it this way though!

    If they were being honest, here's the way the description of the button would read:

    "The VCM switch allows the driver to choose between better fuel economy while quite possibly experiencing excessive vibrating and surging, depending on your car, or reduced fuel economy while experiencing Honda's trademark silky smooth engine."
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