2004 Accord New Car Test Drive
The 2004 Honda Accord is arguably the best midsize car sold in America today. It's certainly one of the best-selling cars and has been for the past decade. Honda redesigned and re-engineered the Accord last year, and the results are dazzling.
The Accord sedans combine high technology and high quality with everyday economy of operation and keen attention to detail. The popular LX and EX models are terrific cars with comfort and convenience features that make for great daily drivers. Order the leather interior, and the EX becomes an affordable luxury sedan. The four-cylinder VTEC engine is powerful and responsive, delivering strong acceleration performance for passing. The Accord is also available with a powerful V6 engine, which adds another level of sports appeal.
A gorgeous coupe is available, featuring sporty styling that's unique from the sedan. The LX Coupe starts below $20,000 and makes for a quick, no-hassle, high-quality, sporty, two-door coupe that's great for commuting. Add the V6 and leather and it's an executive expressmobile for fast trackers, an affordable alternative to a BMW 330i. For enthusiast drivers, there's the Accord Coupe EX V-6 MT, equipped with the V6 and a close-ratio six-speed manual gearbox that will blow your preconceived notions about the Accord right off the road. If that isn't enough, a new Factory Performance Package has been developed for the V6 Coupe.
Model year 2004 brings a few new features to the line. XM Satellite Radio comes standard on EX-L and EX V-6 models. Side curtain airbags are available on EX models for improved head protection. A new intelligent climate-control system is available. The Accord offers high fuel economy and low emissions; 2004 brings partial-zero-emissions (PZEV) versions of the Accord to four Northeastern states as well as California.
The Accord regularly competes with the Toyota Camry for the title of best-selling car in America. Honda sold more than 414,000 Accords in 2002 and sales in 2003 were up as of the third quarter.
The 2004 Honda Accord comes in nearly two dozen different combinations when all the engines, body styles, transmissions and trim levels are taken into account. Choosing one is easier than that makes it sound, however. The first choice is to decide whether you want a two-door coupe or four-door sedan. The second choice is whether you want a V6 or four-cylinder engine and whether you want a manual or automatic transmission. The third choice is whether you want cloth or leather upholstery.
Sedans are available in DX, LX, and EX trim. The DX ($15,900) comes with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that was introduced last year. Buyers can choose a five-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission ($800). The LX ($19,300) and EX ($21,700) sedans add a higher level of standard equipment. The EX offers leather upholstery and a DVD navigation system as options. The LX V-6 ($23,300) and EX V-6 ($26,400) sedans come standard with the V6, automatic and more luxury equipment. Leather is standard on the EX V6.
Coupes are available in LX ($19,400) and EX ($21,800) trim and come standard with the four-cylinder engine and five-speed manual transmission. The automatic transmission ($800) is optional. The LX V6 coupe ($23,400) comes with the V6 and automatic. The EX V6 coupe ($26,500) is a performance-oriented model, and comes with either the five-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission as a no-cost option. Six-speed coupes also come with a cross-brace between the front shock towers. The new Factory Performance Package for the EX Coupe V6 combines a lowered suspension with an aero body kit and a chrome exhaust extension, all dealer-installed. For automatic models, the package includes the same 17-inch wheels and tires that are standard with the six-speed manual.
Safety: Anti-lock brakes are standard on all Accord models. EX V6 models come with traction control. Side-impact airbags ($250) are optional on the four-cylinder LX, and standard on the LX V6 and EX. Side-curtain airbags ($300) are optional on the four-cylinder EX, standard on the EX-L, LX V-6, and EX V-6.
For 2004, Accord models with leather also have XM Satellite Radio. Dealers can add an MP3/Windows Media Player, a DVD rear-seat entertainment system, and a hands-free cell phone.