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Midsize Sedans Comparison Thread

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Comments

  • I guess Consumer Reports forgot to update their website?...

    http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/cars/best-in-class/family-friendly-vehicles/f- amilyfriendlyvehicles.htm

    Lists Accord as best in class for the family sedan category.
  • goodegggoodegg Posts: 905
    I agree the new Altima is a sweet car. But let's do this comparison again when the NEW Accord arrives in 7 months. You're comparing a new model to a 5-6 year old design.
  • I just wrote to Edmunds and asked them about the VSC when they do the slalom testing. My guess is that they leave it on for all cars that have it. The Mazda6 doesn't have it, not sure if there are any others.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    I am very curious to see how these systems adapt in snow and ice, in addition to a performance driving environment.
    your suspicions on what the stability control system actually does (eliminate oversteer conditions) by reducing power and applying the appropriate braking is right on the mark I suspect. How these systems interfere with 'performance driving' is already starting to be apparent with these limitations seen on the skidpad and in avoidance (lane change) tests. As far as snow and ice are concerned, I guess those effects are most apparent when you are attempting to maintain momentum, often at a ragged edge of control, but the car 'decides' it doesn't want to move by doing the same sort of thing, cutting throttle and slowing steering responses. And yes give me a true LSD as opposed to an electronic traction control which does nothing but cut power to the offending wheel[s].
  • andres3andres3 Southern CAPosts: 11,028
    Isn't the new Civic SI equipped with a "real" limited slip differential>?
    '16 Audi TTS quattro 2.0T, '15 Audi A4 quattro 2.0T, '19 VW Tiguan SEL 4-Motion AWD
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    the Mazda6 should logically have the highest speed capabilities in a test like this, a slightly smaller more nimble design with an appropriately tight suspension to match. The fact that it doesn't may also have something to do with the standard traction control which can also cut power during manuevers like this. Judging by those results, BTW, I agree with you, they must be leaving it on, on those cars so equipped.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    sounds like they haven't updated their own website and haven't yet included included that test of the new Altima in the 03-07 CR issue. The Altima 2.5 is ranked ahead of the 4th place Honda 4 banger (something that suprised me). And the Altima 3.5 is rated at the same 89 points as the Passat 3.6 and the Honda EX V6 - all tied for first. The actual ratings for a number of these cars appear in post 11195.
    Did get a chance to look at one the other day incidentally and the most apparent difference in the car (vs. my 03) besides the shiftless tranny is the quality and fit/finish of the interior. Could be an Accord! Evaluations of styling are certainly subjective and generally not worthy of debate, but IMO it is a good looking vehicle as well.
  • andres3andres3 Southern CAPosts: 11,028
    My prediciton is it will have 270 HP with 22/32 type gas mileage, and still be a 3.0 or 3.2 tops.
    '16 Audi TTS quattro 2.0T, '15 Audi A4 quattro 2.0T, '19 VW Tiguan SEL 4-Motion AWD
  • They tested a 2.5s which i think has no full size spare. Without the full size spare the altima has 17.9 cu ft. The full size spare is standard on the 3.5 which has 15.3 cu ft.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    I think your prediction is likely right on given that the Nissan and Camry already are at that number. To match the Toyota's FE, they may have to add some camshafts, some sophisticated intake and exhaust valve programming, as well as some transmission control modifications. Would require essentially a new engine design and if Honda does that, hold onto your hats!
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    Honda Accord as tops amongst midsize sedans and seldom get it right.

    How can you say they didn't get it right? Everyone picks the car they like the best. You, me, CR, Joe Blow. You may want a 4 door sports car, and the Altima would be a good choice for you. Joe Blow may be looking for the smoothest ride, and he would like a Camry, or Sonata. Do we all have to agree? I hope not. :confuse:
  • As I remember it, the CR rating of 89 for the V6 Passat, Accord, and Altima relates to driving performance only. The Accord is ranked first overall by CR because of other consumer factors (reliability, value, resale, etc.) that give it the edge over the other two. So, both C&D and CR agree on the V6 Accord's position in its class: #1 -- which is certainly not what the initial post indicated. And that's comparing a five year old model with a new 2007 Altima remodeling. Not bad for Honda, and watch out for 2008 when the new Accord hits the decks!

    FWIW, the exterior styling of the Altima leaves me cold. Never liked it, never will. Looks like a jelly bean that's trying too hard to be "hot". Everytime I see a Nissan sedan approach and I say, "Hey, that's not too bad!" I then find myself saying, "...oh, it's a Maxima." As for the Accord, what some people think is bland and boring, others think is dignified and balanced. Cars don't have to look "hot" to look good, let's get over that one please.
  • Yeah I agree, the lack of VSC on the Mazda must have held down its speed on the slalom. I drove one the other day and it is definitely more nimble than the Accord, but less so when you turn off the Accord's VSC. But I wouldn't buy a car without VSC and I couldn't appreciate the Mazda's relative lack of hp compared with my Accord (212 vs. 244). The Mazda felt restrained by its high torque vs. hp ratio. If I did a lot of twisty back road driving I'd prefer the Mazda, but with the mix of high speed highway driving I tend to do, I'll take the bigger ZOOM-ZOOM of the Accord.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I'd like to see them do a comparison of the 4 cylinder versions, since these would likely be better suited to a slalom.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    CR does not rank cars based on reliability, value, and resale. It ranks them based on its test results. Then it decides which cars to put its "recommended" tag on, based on predicted reliability from its member survey (main factor) and crash test results.

    So in fact the V6 Passat, Accord, and Altima are tied for first in CR's rankings. Still an excellent showing for the older Accord.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    The one thing that stood out in the Car & Drver test was exterior styling. They rated the Accord & Altima as even. Not in your wildest Honda dreams! The current Accord has one of the most boring designs in all of automobiledom.

    I'd pretty much agree with this rating. The Accord may be boring and I would say unattractive, but altima is unattractiver, imo.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    The current Accord has one of the most boring designs in all of automobiledom.

    The new (and old) Altima has that "Cheap Aftermarket" look. The big gaudy lights turn me off.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I concur. The Accord is stately, classy, and boring to me (I said it and I HAVE ONE). The Altima is trying WAY too hard with its lighting details. They look too "boy-racer" for me, and I'm 19! But, that's all personal opinion, and I am no more correct than you.

    I don't think anyone should be claiming one person's styling preference as stupid over another, in my opinion. After all, it is SUBJECTIVE!!!!!
  • I can see how you can think that the Accord is stately, classy, handsome, whatever--and still think it's unexciting. This will probably open a can of worms (and a barrel of monkeys--us! :) ) but I just can't think of a sedan under $35K (base) that I think is REALLY exciting and stylish that really gets my blood pumping when I see it. Until somebody comes up with a better suggestion, I'll have to go with the Lexus IS 250/350. Other takers?
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    OK, what is a better mid-sized car? I have driven the Aura base model, Altima, a 2006 G6 GT V6,the Sonatas, and the Accord SE V6 so far. Of those tested to date, I would say the Accord has the best feel, and engine. The car is quiet enough, corners on rails, and the engine and transmission work together well. It is simply smoother overall. It has stability control and side air bags, with a V6 for $24K retail price. So far it would be my pick. There are more to test drive of course. Consider the resale value, and overall build and handling quality, so far it looks like Accord is a best pick. And I do like the styling. Smooth style in both sedan and coupe should last a lifetime.
    -Loren
  • ontopontop Posts: 279
    I couldn't agree more.
  • I haven't driven all those cars so I can't say, but I'm prejudiced anyway since I bought a SE V6 Accord a couple of months ago. I did prefer it to the Mazda6, VW Jetta GLi & Passat, and the Legacy GT for what I got for my money. I spent $20.5K for the car and I wouldn't spend over $21K (including destination charge) if you decide to get one. So far I'm very happy with it inside and out, and I'm really looking forward to upgrading the stock Michelins to high performance summers and adding a thicker rear sway bar in a couple of months. (Final advice: Drive the Accord with the VSC turned off to get a better idea of how it can feel on the road when you want to go play a little! :D )
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Remember, that the SE-V6 should be available for MUCH less than sticker.

    And I do feel like the understated styling (is understated a word many of us can agree on?) of the Accord will stay looking fresh a lot longer than much more heavily styled vehicles will.

    Look at the 11 year old Accord and 11 year old Camry (both considered bland by many, I believe) vs. the 11 year old Taurus and 11 year old Skylark.

    image

    image

    image

    image

    To me, the "bland" cars of yesteryear are more desirable than the "edgy" cars of the same time-frame.
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    I don't see how the Lexus IS 250 or other Lexus cars are particularly better than most other cars. Do like the looks of the Accord (really like the Coupe), Altima is pretty cool, Mazda6 not bad, Camry OK except the nose is bit odd, Aura pretty attractive, New Malibu will look great, Mercury Milan one of the best looking cars, Sonata is trying - sort of non-offensive & decent looks, Acura has all good looking cars, Infinity G35 very good looking car, BMW3 is good, the CTS is bold and beautiful, Volvo has an interesting look, though it is getting on in years now, then there is the Mercedes C class, which is simply classy and sleek. Lexus IS 250 is alright looking, though the car seem small or small looking like more an econo car, perhaps a Corolla.
    -Loren
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    They (Edmunds's) are showing the SE V6 Accord as $22,745 in my area in the gray metallic color as the TMV price. Retail is $23,945. I have yet to try the 4 cylinder, though the V6 is sure an energy rush, I may hard to impress now. :surprise:

    As far as style. I kinda like the effort by Toyota, yet the front is a bit odd. The best of all Camry efforts came in '92 when front, side and back look like they ALL worked well together. Too many cars fail due to being designed by committee ! Well they look that way. Look at the strange Ion. What's up with that?
    -Loren
  • I'd suggest you try the Subaru Legacy GT. If you find the right high volume dealerships you can get a $30K MSRP car for around $25K (after rebate) and you will be hard pressed to find a more entertaining ride. I test drove a 6 speed Accord coupe last year and I'd say the Subie was more fun. It is even pretty entertaining with an auto and I really don't like them. I ended up buying a Civic Si Coupe thinking I'd drive it for 4 years and had off to my daughter when she gets her license and then I could go out and buy something closer to my last car a 99 Passat. Now I think the Si might be too much car for a teenager and I've gotten really used to the go cart like reflexes. I might have a hard time finding my way back into something more civilized.
  • Good post, and I agree. I'm particularly impressed with how good the Honda still looks. LET'S HEAR IT FOR THE UNDERSTATED! YEAH YEAH YEAH!!! ;)
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Once you've driven the V6, I imagine few people go back to the I4. I managed to do so though. The 4-cylinder Accord is arguably the best 4-cylinder on the mainstream market. I agree with that argument - it is a great car. I drove from Birmingham to Chattnooga today (a hilly drive) and back on 7 gallons of gas and 240 miles. Doing the math, that's about 35 miles to the gallon. All that, and I never had to downshift but a couple of times to pass on the hills, driving at 73 MPH.

    I'd suggest going with the EX 4-cyl before I'd go with the SE-V6 (pure preference - I wanted a sunroof and premium interior trim), but nobody will knock you for getting the V6. They're both just that good.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Actually, for we understated drivers we prefer to do a "golf clap" instead of boistrous cheering. Hehehe...

    Here are my too "understated" cars (read by some as "boring' :))

    I love my bland babies!

    image
  • Another car you might take a look at is the new Mitsu Lancer (though it might not be big enough). A quick road test in C&D sounded promising. Especially once the Ralliart and Evo versions come out.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Promising to me too, until I saw the EPA mileage numbers. They are the same in the compact, 152 hp Lancer as they are in the much larger and heavier Altima V6 with 270 horsepower! 21/29 is pitiful! My 166 hp Accord with a manual would have 26/34 MPG!

    Back to the midsizers!
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    I wish the local dealership stocked the Subaru Legacy sedans. All they have in stock are wagons - yuk!

    As for Mitsubishi, I see them as gone within a couple years, unless the dealerships can hold on, and hopefully grow in numbers. Not enough support. I enjoyed my Dodge Stealth / Mitsu. but did not expensive replacement parts and more problems in the car than expected for a Japan make. I would rate the car average for quality parts and excellent for fun and looks. That is sort of how I see Mitsubishi. We have but one sort of temporary looking dealer here now, with another one some 135 miles away. I think things are not well. Mitsu has some cool concept cars, so I hope they can make some sort of a comeback.
    -Loren
  • I have driven Honda's since my '83.5 prelude. Very fun and lots of leg room. The first kid came along in '89 so got the last year of the pop up light accord. Finally got rid on that in 2000 and bought a friends '96 civic. Once again decent legroom and headroom, I'm 6'3" so all sedans with sunroof pretty much are out. I really wanted a new civic when they came out but leg room was less then my old civic and the parking brake dug into my leg. So, next up was the accord with the new tail end, but bad leg and headroom. Honda's are like fridges, they just run. Style is very conservative in my opinion. I saw the new '07 altima and though i would give it a try. Plenty of leg and headroom and lots of get up and go with the 6 speed. Looking at both the accord and altima it was no comparison for me even though I love honda dynamics. I bought the altima, it may not be as bulletproof as the accord but I will find out over time. Based on honda's past the accord will be an updated more refined version of the present model. You can see the progression in the lines for each model change. I do not believe they will make major change like they did on the civic because of moders; toyota with scion and the small mitsu's. Honda will be honda and they have lost me unless the reliability on the nissan is bad and the car does not hold up over time in the small things.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Interesting, at 6'4", I've got plenty of room in both my dad's 2007 Civic Sedan and my 2006 Accord Sedan (moreso in the Accord of course) - both with sunroofs.

    Enjoy your new Altima, I'll bet its a hoot to drive!
  • I hope Mitsu rallies! Some of the specs on the Lancer GTS that C&D tested don't appear to be THAT different from the "much heavier" Altima. Wheelbase is 103.7 vs 109.3
    Length 179.9 vs 189.8, Width 69.3 vs 70.7, Height 58.7 vs 57.9, Curbweight 3050 vs 3268. 21/29 vs 21/27. I like the looks of the new Lancer but will withold judgement until I see them at the dealerships.

    The Leg GT sedans seem to be in short supply in my area as well. I think that might be because the dealerships are waiting for the revised body 2008's to start coming out?

    Lots of good options out there now and when the new Accord rolls out and the Altima Coupe I think there will be a lot of nice looking (and reliable) iron out on the market in the next year or so.
  • kyrptokyrpto Posts: 216
    Research the Subie's stability control options. CR was not impressed with Subaru's system
  • ggesqggesq Posts: 701
    Congrats on the new ride :)

    "Based on honda's past the accord will be an updated more refined version of the present model. You can see the progression in the lines for each model change. I do not believe they will make major change like they did on the civic because of moders; toyota with scion and the small mitsu's."

    Have you seen the concept coupe? The fact that this segment is so competitive alone will force Honda to bang the next Accord out of the park. I'm pretty confident they will.

    Enjoy the Altima :)
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I would have considered the accord, if it looked like that 11 year old model. Could not get past the looks of the current one...then there was the price, too. Got my 4 cyl Mazda6 (version comparable to Accord SE) for $16K...I think that would put me in Civic territory, rather than Accord.

    I actually like the even older, pre-1995 Taurus looks better than the one you posted.
  • If I did a lot of twisty back road driving I'd prefer the Mazda, but with the mix of high speed highway driving I tend to do, I'll take the bigger ZOOM-ZOOM of the Accord.

    I have to disagree. This is obviously all my opinion, but when I bought my Mazda6 in '04, I tested the Accord more than once, and despite the more grunt that the Accord had with the V6, I felt that the Mazda6 was much more balanced, not only in the twisties, but on the highway as well.

    My commute is about 20 miles one-way, on 70-75 MPH highways, and I tend to be the passer, rather than the passee, so to speak. The Mazda6 was always ready and willing to get up and pass at a moments notice. Drop a gear on the manual transmission, flick the steering wheel, and you've gone around slower traffic before they even realize that they're hogging the left lane (my BIGGEST pet peeve, BTW!) The road-hugging was excellent, the car felt sure-footed, and the ride was excellent. The Accord obviously had the go, but it felt uncomfortable at how it leaned too heavily during lane changes. The ride was smooth, but it felt too disconnected from the road. Not quite like a Buick, but not close to a BMW either.

    Power is nice, but I'd rather have more control with it as well, and that's what I thought the Mazda6 excelled in
  • Have you seen the concept coupe? The fact that this segment is so competitive alone will force Honda to bang the next Accord out of the park. I'm pretty confident they will.

    Simply put, they have to. I've read more than one interview with Honda executives, all saying that their biggest complaint from consumers is their styling. This goes for the whole line, not just the Accord. As a result, they are planning on doing a little more to step out of the crowd. The new CR-V is proof. Although I'm not a fan of the front end, the lines overall are striking, and not nearly as "vanilla" as the RAV-4.

    The coupe concept is a good start, but Honda should do a little more to differentiate itself, while staying classy and true to it's heritage. Styling is subjective, but IMO it's also a deal-breaker between two cars that are about the same in every other way, according to a consumers eyes.
  • When deciding which sedan was right for me, my search came down to the final two being the Mazda6 "Sport Value Edition" versus the Accord LX (both manual transmissions).

    From the start I favored the Mazda because I have previously owned a 1991 Mazda 626 DX manual and a 1998 Mazda 626 ES-V6 manual, excellent cars in every regard. I still miss them both.

    image

    image

    The Mazda6 (in my opinion) has a more eye-catching exterior, handles better at the limit, and has a lower initial cost.

    The Accord wasn't too far behind in the above. I also liked the interior better, and (in my opinion) the Accord rides better, accelerates stronger, and has a more refined powertrain (engine, manual transmission and overall noise/vibration/harshness).

    It was a tough call, but for me the deciding factors were reliability and resale value. There is a little too much Ford in the new Mazdas for me; CR rates Mazda6 reliability as only "Average." Too bad, as the older Mazdas lasted forever... Also, the projected resale value in 5 years is much higher for an Accord.
  • I have seen the new concept accord coupe. IF, honda actually does follow those lines and designs an eye catcher for the accord then i may take a second look. I like honda, fit/ finish and NVH are amongst the best. So are the ergonomics. The specs are the same for leg and head room but the altima just sits better for me. For some reason in the accord to get the headroom i need i had to tilt the seat back to far and the gas pedal just seemed to close. I like to sit with my legs pretty much straight with just a slight bend and like to sit straight up in the seat. Being less then an inch from the headliner just does not cut it and it makes it hard to see stoplights when you are first in line.

    Anyway picked up the altima, whooohooooo...the 4 banger is smooth and likes to go. Had to watch my speed on the way home. 80MPH at about 2800 rpm in 6th.

    As an aside the kids, mid to late teens, love the altima think it looks really cool but the wife thinks its ugly. Each to their own; at least she does not want to drive it. :P
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Altima is off my consideration list. One, some recalls in 2006 See => LINK and second, I am looking for an automatic this time, and not really looking for a CVT type. Test drove one and had mixed feeling about the CVT transmission feel. Not sure how expensive they will be to repair. Then I read about the recall for oil consumption. I had known about the suspension thing. After reading about the second issue, I have decided to drop it off the testing list.
    -Loren
  • I have read with much amusement about how the Accord's ultra conservative styling will still look good years from now. I couldn't disagree more. Honda is just too scared to go beyond the box on wheels concept, or I should say , refrigerator on wheels. True, Hondas are well engineered in every other respect and have the appliance reliability to match the appliance look.
    Nissan, on the other hand, has redefined the midsize sedan styling envelope, adding an air of elegance and distinction that did not exist before. That's why Altima sales have increased dramatically in the last five years, since the '02 redesign. For example, the frumpy '01 Altima was not even in the top 10 for car sales in the US. As of last year, the '06 Altima has climbed to #4 in domestic car sales. That's quite a jump by anyone's standards & is largely due to exterior styling & superior powertrains. I still think the '02 Altima body style looks much, much better than the '07 Accord be it in sedan or coupe form. I further agree that the '07 Altima did not change much in regards to exterior syle. Quite frankly, it didn't have to.

    Steve
  • jkr2106jkr2106 Posts: 235
    I further agree that the '07 Altima did not change much in regards to exterior syle. Quite frankly, it didn't have to.

    Very nice post. I was trying to keep my mouth shut on this topic because styling is very subjective, but I couldn't agree more. ;)
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    An Accord as a refrigerator? Hummm, pretty good aerodynamic on refrigerators in your neighborhood. :D Personally, I would say the Accord Coupe is as good, if not sleeker than the 350Z or G35. One of the best designs for the eye in a long time. If that is conservative, so be it. I guess conservatives just got sexier. The Altima has more impact than does the Accord sedan, though this doesn't necessarily make the Accord less appealing. Simple, smooth and tasteful, with some good lines to keep the look from being a bar of soap style, such as the '60 Falcons, which BTW don't really look all that bad, is how I would classify the sedans. I guess they could have added another couple feet of head and tail lamps, and hang a chandelier inside to get more impact, but nah, this is after all the king of class. No bling required. :shades: Just smooth lines, like that cool coupe. :shades:
    -Loren
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    Nissan, on the other hand, has redefined the midsize sedan styling envelope, adding an air of elegance and distinction that did not exist before. That's why Altima sales have increased dramatically in the last five years, since the '02 redesign.

    I would agree that the Altima has improved substantially in the last 6 years. But I would say it's more about "Flash" than "Elegance". Now the Altima has looks (at least to some) and performance. Before 02, it had nothing going for it. It's nice for Nissan, that the Altima can compete with a 5 year old Accord. Hope they enjoy their ONE year in the limelight.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    Honda is just too scared to go beyond the box on wheels concept...

    Have you seen the Civic? Or the Accord Coupe "concept" unveiled in Detroit? They don't look like "boxes on wheels" to me.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    Yeah I agree, the lack of VSC on the Mazda must have held down its speed on the slalom
    Huh? you completely misunderstood what I said which was - the Mazda should be a better handling car that the others it was tested against. I hinted that it might actually be the standard traction control that might be hindering its performance in the slalom test results you cited, a manuever that will weight and unweight the front drive wheels and in the process possibly cause the traction contol to disable throttle.
    VSC is NOT going to do anything but HURT performance in something like a slalom speed test. That's how it works, you pay a little in terms of ultimate vehicle capabilities, in exchange for some protection from your own 'dumbfootedness'.
  • OK, gotcha, not sure what I was thinking when I wrote that. Anyway, so the Mazda6 not having VSC and still coming in behind the Accord becomes even more mysterious. Everybody who drives the M6 (including me) considers it to have more road grip and be more tossable than the larger Accord.
This discussion has been closed.