|2014 Accord plug-in hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Set to go on sale in early 2013, Honda’s 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) Sedan (earlier post) will offer the ability to run in an all-electric mode for 10 to 15 miles and a calculated total driving range of more than 500 miles. (EPA fuel economy ratings and gas-electric range rating determined by Honda.)
The 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid Sedan features one of four new powertrains for the all-new Accord. The Accord Plug-in Hybrid will also serve as the basis for a conventional hybrid version of the Accord Sedan, which will join the Honda Accord lineup in the summer of 2013.
The 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid is powered by Honda’s first two-motor hybrid system, and uses a new Earth Dreams i-VTEC 2.0-liter 4-cylinder Atkinson-cycle gasoline engine producing 137 hp (102 kW) at 6200 rpm, teamed with a 124 kW electric motor. Electric driving is supported by a 6.7 kilowatt-hour (kWh) lithium-ion battery pack, and total system output is 196 hp (146 kW). The total system output surpasses that of the Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid (134 hp), Chevrolet Volt (149 hp) and projected output of the Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid.
To maximize driving efficiency, the two-motor hybrid system allows the Accord PHEV powertrain to move between all-electric EV Drive, gasoline-electric Hybrid Drive; and direct Engine Drive. Honda expects the fuel economy for the 2014 Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid to exceed 100 MPG-e, and also expects it to receive an Enhanced AT-PZEV rating from the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
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.
Beyond its function as a full-electric vehicle, owners of the 2014 Accord PHEV 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 “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.
The 2014 Accord Plug-In Hybrid Sedan will feature an electric servo braking system similar to the setup on the Honda Fit EV, which allows for natural brake pedal feel, while extending the range over which the regenerative braking can take place. The plug-in Accord can be fully charged from a low-charge indication point in less than three hours using a standard 120-volt household electrical outlet, and in less than one hour using a 240-volt Level-2 charger. The free HondaLink EV smartphone application will allow owners to monitor the charging state of the Accord PHEV.
The Accord body 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)
Aerodynamic advancements include:
- Powertrain undercover
- Cabin floor undercovers
- Rear decklid spoiler
- Aerodynamic wheel covers
Reductions in rolling resistance include:
- Low rolling-resistance tires
- Low-friction wheel bearings
The Accord PHEV chassis begins with the core engineering of the Accord Sedan, but then adds an all-aluminum front subframe (replacing the steel and aluminum version on the gasoline-engine Accord). The Accord PHEV uses proprietary 17-inch forged-aluminum wheels with a special low-aero drag design, fitted with 225/50-17 tires.
As with the gasoline-engine Accord models, the Accord PHEV uses an electric power steering (EPS) system that automatically adjusts the amount of steering assist for conditions. The EPS system is more efficient than a traditional hydraulic system, and it operates consistently whether the vehicle is using electricity, gasoline, or both.
The Accord PHEV features a braking system similar to the system in the Honda Fit EV, which provides fully electronic control of the hydraulic brake system. This system results in an improvement in regenerative braking efficiency compared to a hydraulic booster system used in other hybrids.
The Accord PHEV is available in a single highly equipped trim level, based on the standard features of the premium Accord Touring model. Among the standard Accord PHEV features are:
- Honda LaneWatch
- Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System with Voice Recognition
- Multi-view rearview camera
- HondaLink EV telematics system
- Intelligent Multi-Information Display (i-MID)
- Audio with touchscreen interface
- Forward Collision Warning (FCW)
- Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
- Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC)
- Bio-Fabric seating surfaces
- LED mirror-mounted turn signals, Daytime Running Lights (DRL) and headlights
The 2014 Accord Plug-in Hybrid Sedan will be built in Sayama, Japan.