2021 Honda Accord Changes Don’t Fix What Isn’t Broken

Liz Kim | Oct 12, 2020

It is often said that you don’t fix what isn’t broken, and that’s the advice Honda is following with its lightly refreshed 2021 Accord. Minor changes are in store for the new model year, including subtle styling updates and enhanced safety and infotainment content. Honda also adds a new Sport Special Edition model and improves the Accord Hybrid in a bid to make the car more satisfying to drive.

2021 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring Gray Front View

Visually, the Accord is unchanged aside from minor grille modifications to better disguise the radar unit for the car’s standard Honda Sensing suite of advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS). Honda also adds new aluminum wheel designs, a new Sonic Gray Pearl paint color, and full LED headlights for all versions of the car except for the base LX trim.

Inside, every 2021 Accord benefits from an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system that includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone projection. The EX-L and Touring trims get wireless versions of those technologies. Honda improves access to the front USB ports, and in all but the Accord LX, rear-seat passengers receive two standard 2.5-amp USB charging ports. Previously, these were a dealer-added option.

In terms of safety, all Accords get a new rear-seat reminder system providing visual and audible alerts to make sure a driver doesn’t forget precious cargo in the back seat. A new Low-Speed Braking Control system also debuts, a front and rear automatic braking system that prevents damage while parking the car debuts for the top Touring trim level. Honda also tweaked the Accord’s adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance for smoother, more accurate operation. 

Driving enthusiasts wept when Honda announced that the 2021 Accord Sport would no longer be available with a manual transmission. A new Sport Special Edition is of little consolation, offered only with the 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder and continuously variable transmission (CVT). The Accord Sport SE equips the car with a 12-way power driver’s seat, a 4-way power front passenger’s seat, heated front seats and side mirrors, remote engine starting, and leather upholstery. 

Honda also discontinues the Accord EX with the 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. Now, the EX trim is reserved for the Accord Hybrid lineup. Speaking of which, the Accord Hybrid gets upgrades to its drivetrain for more spirited acceleration and a more linear progression of power. For 2021, the top-level Accord Hybrid Touring gets new 19-inch aluminum wheels.

The 2021 Honda Accord goes on sale by mid-October with a starting price of $24,770 (not including the $995 destination charge. This represents a mere $500 increase over 2020 prices.

The information in this article is from Honda. It was accurate on October 12, 2020, but it may have changed since that date.

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