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2014 Honda Accord Hybrid EPA-rated at 50 mpg city

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.



This could be one of the most frugal, highest performance, mass produced, affordable HEV in 2014.

Will retail price compare with Camry Hybrid. Fusion Hybrid, Sonata/Optima Hybrid etc?


my understanding was that there is no gearbox, only a clutch, the car starts on electric, then the clutch engage when the speed is high enough but the electric engine helps, for long ride a low speed the gas engine is only coupled to the generator and the wheels are powered only by the electric engine.

I am afraid the price will be higher than the Camry Hybrid, probably close to 30K unfortunately


Hopefully it will be priced competitive with the Volt at $27.5k and you can get one well equipped at $30k.



CVT = Continuously Variable Transmission.
They have no fixed gear ratio, but they do have a limited range of gear ratio. This allows optimally clean and efficient use of the gasoline engine's power along the torque curve.

The problem with CVT used to be that the belt (with no teeth) used to drive them would slip if there was too much torque or horse power, and the belts would wear down (imagine using a ruggedized fan belt to drive the wheels).

However, materials have gotten better and perhaps the electric motor is coupled in such a way that CVT is ideal for mating engine/motor power into one transmission.



A few comments about CVTs. Your first paragraph is entirely correct and CVTs will allow the engine to run at an optimal point. Mechanical CVTs have a traction drive component which is usually either a steel belt or steel wheels engaging toroidal surfaces. All traction drives slip in a controlled manner in which the slip is proportional to the drive force. The only time they are not slipping (and wearing and losing efficiency) is when they are not transmitting power. Examples of these drives are found in some of the Nissan and Toyota vehicles. My personal and professional opinion is that these transmissions concepts are outdated and will be replaced with automated dual clutch transmissions which only have slipping elements when they are shifting.

Having said that, the Honda has a "two-motor electric CVT" which is probably a planetary or epicylic gear train in which one motor drives the sun and the other motor probably drives the ring gear. By running the motors at different speeds, you can get effectively get continuously variable gear ratios. This how the later Toyota Prius drivetrains work. See

Roger Pham

The two-motor Accord Hybrid e-CVT is even simpler in that it does not even have epicyclic gear. In the serial hybrid mode, the generator produces electricity from the engine and the motor drive the car. In the parallel mode, the engine torque is directly linked to the drive train by a torque lockup clutch similar to that of a torque converter lockup clutch. This allows Honda to avoid patent infringement from Toyota's HSD patents, yet is more functional for a PHEV setup. In the HEV setup, the battery will be utilized more in the cruise mode in comparison to Toyota's HSD architecture, and that's why Toyota resorted to the HSD architechture to minimize battery usage and to prolong battery life. However, if newer Lithium batteries are more durable with respect to cycle life than NiMh batteries, then Honda's simpler 2-motor hybrid with a clutch will be more efficient and simpler.

I sure hope that Honda will be able to price the new Arrord Hybrid competitively with the Prius, and the Plug-in Accord with the Prius PHV.


@Roger Pham

I am not terribly surprised to hear that Honda does not have planetary or epicylic gears as they do not or at least did not use them in their automatic transmissions. Why? Who knows? Maybe their engineers just wanted to be different. Epicylic gear trains are not terrible complex. I have designed and built a number of epicylic gear trains.

Kit P

“This could be one of the most frugal …”

Hauling lots of batteries around have never been a frugal choice. The difference between theory and fact is evidence. Hybrids have been around a long time. I do not consider links to web sites with pretty pictures and marketing claims the same as facts.

Roger Pham

Why does Honda not use epicyclic gear in the new Accord Hybrid?
Number one: to avoid infringing Toyota's patents on HSD.
Number two: Simple gearless two-motor e-CVT is more functional in the PHEV version and is simpler.

Good point regarding hauling lots of batteries around is not a good thing. That's why I've been objecting to the Chevy Volt's larger battery pack. The good news is that battery is getting more power density as well as more energy density and costing less, so eventually, a PHEV will havae purchasing price no more than a conventional ICEV. Overall cost of ownership of a PHEV or a HEV is already below that of a comparable ICEV as this moment.

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