2023 Honda Accord Gets A More Powerful Hybrid Option

The 2023 Honda Accord is the 11th-generation variant of the Japanese automaker's bestselling midsize sedan. Honda has shaken things up with the all-new Accord's extensive redesign, simplified trim variants, and generous heapings of new and updated features. In an unexpected turn of events, the new Accord Hybrid model will become the range-topping variant when it goes on sale in early 2023.

Moreover, Accord Hybrid has an all-new twin-motor hybrid powertrain that pumps out more torque than its predecessor. The brand anticipates more than 50% of new Accord buyers will choose the hybrid, a stellar choice if you ask us. The Accord Hybrid gets better gas mileage and has more usable power than a gas-only Accord, not to mention the slight price difference that separates the two.

"This is our best Accord ever, a true benchmark in its class, offering an unbeatable combination of style, efficiency, performance, and connectivity," said Mamadou Diallo, vice president of Auto Sales at American Honda Motor Co. "The all-new 11th-generation Accord is essential to our lineup as a critical driver of brand loyalty and a key part of Honda's electrification strategy."

Exterior makeover

Thankfully, Honda abandoned the Gundam-inspired styling of its vehicles and chose restraint for a change, and it started with the new Civic. Granted, the 11th-generation Civic has its fair share of fans and detractors in the styling aspect, but we'd choose it over the tenth-gen model's sharp creases and "crab claw" taillights. It's the same deal with the 2023 Accord, and we're giving Honda a two-thumbs up for making their flagship sedan more dignified than ever before.

The all-new Accord is 2.7-inches longer to give it more road presence. It has a longer hood and a smoother fastback roofline thanks to laser brazing technology that negates the need for awkward-looking roof moldings. The refreshed fa├žade includes updated front and rear bumpers, new headlights, and redesigned tail lamps with a horizontal LED light bar to emphasize its 0.4-inch wider track. Lower trim variants have a black mesh front grille, body-color wing mirrors, and 17-inch alloy wheels, while the Accord Sport and Sport-L add blacked-out elements like 19-inch rims, a rear spoiler, and a rear diffuser.

The 2023 Honda Accord will arrive in eight standard exterior colors at dealerships, including three new paint hues: Canyon River Blue Metallic, Meteorite Gray Metallic, and Urban Gray Pearl.

Powertrain upgrades

Under the hood of the Honda Accord LX and EX trims is a 1.5-liter turbocharged VTEC four-cylinder gasoline engine. It still pumps out the same 192 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque, but it now has a new continuously variable transmission offering smoother, more linear shift points. Engine improvements include a new direct injection system, a new cold-active catalytic converter, and a more rigid crankshaft to deliver a quieter operation.

Meanwhile, the 2023 Accord Hybrid in Sport, EX-L, Sport-L, and Touring trims receive Honda's fourth-generation two-motor hybrid-electric powertrain with side-by-side electric motors. It also gets a new 2.0-liter four-cylinder gas-fed Atkinson cycle engine with direct fuel injection. The gasoline-hybrid powertrain churns out a combined 204 horsepower, less than what you get from the outgoing Accord Hybrid's 212 horsepower.

Then again, it has 247 lb-ft of torque (15 more than before), and Honda tinkered with the car's Linear Shift Control system to make it more responsive and refined. Honda has yet to unveil the fuel economy ratings, but we expect the 2023 Accord Hybrid to resemble the outgoing model's EPA-estimated 47 mpg.

Redesigned interior

It's not surprising for the 2023 Accord to have a similar interior design as the eleventh-gen Civic; we're just used to seeing it the other way around. Nevertheless, all new Accords get a 10.2-inch digital instrument display. At the same time, the base LX and EX trims have a 7-inch infotainment touchscreen with physical volume and tuning knobs (good job, Honda) with Apple Car Play & Android Auto connectivity.

The Accord Hybrid Sport, EX-L, Sport-L, and Touring have a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen with a finger rest and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The range-topping Accord Hybrid Touring is the first production Honda vehicle to get Google built-in functions. It also gets a 6-inch heads-up display and a 12-speaker premium Bose audio system.

New safety features

The 2023 Honda Accord's rigid Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) architecture has been enhanced in critical areas to meet the new Side Impact Crashworthiness Evaluation (SICE 2.0) test of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). In addition, the new Accord has updated driver and passenger front airbags and standard knee and rear-passenger side impact airbags.

The brand's Honda Sensing driver assist technology has a new camera and wide-angle radar to deliver a 90-degree and 120-degree wider field of view, respectively. It has blind-spot warnings, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, traffic sign recognition, traffic jam assist, and more.

Pricing remains unannounced, but we're confident Honda will unveil more about the 11th-generation Accord before the projected January 2023 on-sale date. Expect pricing to start around $28,000 for the Accord LX and $29,500 for the hybrid.