All-new Accord both inside and out with some electronics thrown in to make an ultra efficient PHEV.
Wayne Gerdes - CleanMPG
- Sept. 5, 2012
2014 Honda Accord PHEV 13 – Pricing TBA and the vehicle will not be available until early next year.
What could make this a sales success or flop depends on price. If it is priced up near the Volt, it will sink faster than an ocean going luxury liner running into an iceberg and become a footnote in time. If it is priced down near the Prius PHEV, it will swim faster than Michael Phelps winning his 18 Gold’s
Somewhere in between and it is probably a pickem?
The 2014 Honda Accord PHEV is of course based off the all-new 2013 Accord platform and is powered by Honda's first two-motor hybrid system mated to a heavily atkinsonized 137 HP 2.0L i-VTEC I4 mated with a 124-kilowatt (kW) electric motor. The Li-Ion pack is spec’ed at a healthy 6.7 kWh with possibly 3.3 kWh of that useable (see below) ensuing at least 15 miles? Combined, the total system output is said to be 196 HP with most of the Ommpphhh available at lower RPMs.
The two-motor hybrid system allows the Accord PHEV powertrain to run all-electric EV Drive, gasoline-electric Hybrid Drive; and in direct Engine Drive mode. Fuel efficiency for the 2014 Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid is expected to exceed 100 MPG-e and with an Enhanced AT-PZEV rating from the California Air Resources Board (CARB), will be HOV lane capable.
According to the release, 2014 Accord PHEV owners will be able to choose two additional driving modes to manage battery capacity and tailor the capabilities of the plug-in Accord to their own commute. In its default upon start-up, the Accord PHEV acts as a pure electric vehicle and will continue on in full-electric mode until battery capacity necessitates the automatic switch to gas/electric hybrid operation. At higher speeds or under high demand for acceleration, the gasoline engine can kick in to provide additional power.
In "HV" mode, the plug-in Accord acts as a conventional hybrid, blending motor power between gasoline and electric to maximize fuel efficiency while maintaining the battery charge level. In "HV Charge" mode, the Accord PHEV blends gasoline and electric power while also augmenting the battery charge level for later more city oriented driving cycle uses.
The 2014 Accord PHEV will feature an electric servo braking system similar to the setup on the Honda Fit EV, which allows for a natural brake pedal feel while extending the range over which the regenerative braking can take place.
The Accord PHEV can be charged from a low to full SoC charge in less than three hours using a standard 120-volt household electrical outlet, and in less than one hour using a 240V "Level-2" charger. The free HondaLink EV smartphone application will allow owners to easily monitor the charging state of the Accord PHEV.
Saying that, a 120V charge of < 3-hours means approximately 3.3 kWh (1.1 kW over 3 hours) of the total 6.7 kWh of pack is actually useable.
Unique Accord PHEV trim features
Based on the Touring trim level of standard Accord Sedan, the 2014 Honda Accord PHEV will feature three exterior color choices, including two standard Accord shades (White Orchid Pearl, Crystal Black Pearl) plus a model-exclusive Burnished Silver Metallic exterior color choice. The Accord PHEV will also feature a weight-saving aluminum hood, 17-inch forged alloy wheels, a unique front bumper along with enhanced underbody aerodynamic treatments.
Just like the regular 2013 Accord, a host of visibility technologies are standard on the 2014 Accord PHEV, including a rearview camera, an expanded-view driver's mirror, Honda's new LaneWatch blind-spot display, LED headlights, LED daytime running lights (DRL), and LED mirror-mounted turn indicators.
Not bad but the nose could use some work. What do you think?
The Accord PHEV is available in a single highly equipped trim level, based on the standard features of the premium Accord Touring model. Standard features not already discussed in some form or fashion in the 2013 Accord release form earlier today (2013 Accord – 39 or 40_mpg Highway Is Out But 36 “Aint Bad”
) include the following:
- HondaLink EV telematics system
- Heated front seats
- Proximity Key with Push Button Start
- Auto-dimming rearview mirror
- Leather-wrapped steering wheel
- Driver's 10-way power seat with 2-position memory
- Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC)
- Bio-Fabric seating surfaces
- Decklid spoiler
The Earth Dreams technology used on the Accord PHEV includes a deeply Atkinsonized 137 HP capable 2.0L I4 coupled with a two-motor hybrid drive system. The hybrid system features a 124-kW electric motor powered by a 6.7-kWh Li-Ion battery pack.
And where it gets good is the 124 kW motor is sized such that it can provide more spirited driving than what would normally be thought possible form anything similar other than from a Volt. Of course the Volt and Prius PHEV are the only two competitors really available right now. The key here is that the Prius PHEV’s smallish 60 kW output capable motor (only ~ ฝ of that is useable given the pack maximums) is not big enough to provide all-electric driving in most harder acceleration based circumstances whereas the new Accord PHEV will be.
When in gasoline-only mode, the PHEV is expected to return one of the top EPA fuel economy ratings among mid-size sedans, and is also expected to earn an Enhanced AT-PZEV rating from the California Air Resources Board (CARB). This possibly means it will be targeting the 47 mpgUS combined rating of the new Fusion Hybrid although that is complete speculation on my part.
Other PHEV Enhancements
The Accord PHEV received further improvements in weight reduction, aerodynamic efficiency and rolling resistance in its transformation to Accord PHEV. All are designed to help Accord PHEV drivers maximize their driving range from every watt of electrical energy and every gallon of gasoline. Weight reduction features include:
- All-aluminum front subframe
- 17-inch forged aluminum wheels
- Aluminum brake pedal
- Aluminum hood
- Aluminum rear bumper beam
- Puncture repair kit (in place of gasoline-engine Accord's spare wheel and tire)
- Aero-tabbed corners both front and rear
- Powertrain undercover
- Cabin floor undercovers
- Rear decklid spoiler
- Aerodynamic wheel covers
- Low rolling-resistance tires
- Low-friction wheel bearings
The Accord PHEV uses proprietary 17-inch forged-aluminum wheels with a special low-aero drag design, fitted with 225/50-17 tires.
The Accord PHEV is said to feature a next-gen Honda Bio Fabric seat material, a new fabric that offers conventional softness and durability, but with reduced manufacturing environmental impact. The interior features several brighter trim accents and is available in gray to compliment the choice of three exterior colors.
With the Accord PHEV's free and convenient HondaLink EV smartphone app, owners can remotely schedule charging of the Li-Ion battery pack (taking advantage of "off-peak" electricity rates), monitor the state of charge, and even pre-warm or pre-cool the vehicle's interior while charging before they drive. This suite of capabilities is similar to those offered on the new 2013 Fit EV.
There is that odd radio/HVAC knob again?
While the embargo does not lift until next Monday, at least we have something to chew on for the next few days.
I may be in the Los Angeles area in two weeks and I will see if I cannot catch a short ride in one while I am there.