|2014 Honda Accord Hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Honda has begun US production of the 2014 Accord Hybrid (earlier post), which will carry an EPA fuel economy rating of 50 mpg (4.7 l/100 km) in city driving. The EPA rating is 1 mpg higher than Honda had originally anticipated for the hybrid (49 mpg). The new Accord Hybrid also carries an EPA-rated highway fuel economy of 45 mpg (5.2 l/100 km) and combined cycle fuel economy of 47 mpg (5.0 l/100 km) as the company had earlier projected.
Set to go on sale in the US in October, the 2014 Accord Hybrid’s city fuel-economy rating is 3 mpg higher than the closest segment competitor (Ford Fusion Hybrid) and its calculated driving range of 673 miles is more than 46 miles farther than any vehicle in its segment, according to Honda’s analysis. (The Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid holds the top highway fuel economy rating at 48 mpg (4.9 l/100 km).)
The fuel economy of the new Accord Hybrid betters that of the smaller 2013 Honda Civic Hybrid, which carries EPA ratings of 44 mpg (5.3 l/100km) city, highway and combined.
The Honda Accord Hybrid’s two-motor Sport Hybrid Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive (i-MMD) hybrid powertrain maximizes performance and efficiency with three driving modes that optimize the new 2.0-liter, DOHC i-VTEC 4-cylinder Atkinson cycle engine coupled with a two-motor electric CVT and a lock-up clutch.
In “EV Drive”, the Accord Hybrid uses the lithium-ion battery to run in electric-only mode at lower speeds and in medium- to high-speed cruising.
“Engine Drive” sends the engine power directly to the front wheels; the clutch in the transmission directly links the output axis of the gasoline engine with the drive axis of the vehicle. This mechanism makes possible high-speed cruising at the optimal gear ratio and highly efficient operation of the Atkinson cycle engine.
In “Hybrid Drive”, the 124 kW electric motor and the engine blend together for powerful acceleration while allowing for efficient driving in stop-and-go traffic situations.
Honda developed the 2.0L gasoline engine for hybrid applications. (Earlier post.) The new engine offers a 10% improvement in fuel consumption compared to the earlier 2.0L engine, and delivers maximum power of 105 kW at 6200 rpm and maximum torque of 165 N·m (122 lb-ft).The two-motor Sport Hybrid Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive is also featured in the Accord plug-in hybrid The Accord Hybrid joins a lineup that includes the EPA-rated 36 mpg (6.5 l/100 km) highway 4-cylinder Accord Sedan and the Accord Plug-in Hybrid, EPA-rated at 115 MPGe (2.0 l/100 km) combined in electric-only mode.
The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid is the first Honda hybrid vehicle produced in Ohio, at the company’s Marysville Auto Plant, and joins the Greensburg, Indiana-built Civic Hybrid as the second Honda hybrid model built in the US. Honda invested $18.8 million in a 94,000-square-foot expansion of the Marysville Auto Plant, along with the addition of 50 new full-time jobs to handle the special processes specific to the production of this hybrid model.