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Honda's Accord Hybrid is a value-packed sedan

A low-cost, high-quality entry into the world of sedan hybrids.
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Honda has a well-deserved reputation as an automaker that produces well-engineered, long-lasting vehicles. So it should be no surprise that the 2020 Accord Hybrid is those things and more. Will it impress your car-nerd friends? Probably not. Will it impress your bank account and family? Yes, yes it will.

Gallery: 2020 Honda Accord first drive | 10 Photos

Starting at $25,470 the 2020 Accord Hybrid continues the automaker's tradition of well priced, solid vehicles. During a drive in Austin, Texas I was immediately impressed with the build quality of the car. It's on par with luxury vehicles from Germany and of course Toyota (another company known for high build quality). That's sort of insane for a vehicle that starts at under $30,000.

The interior isn't as plush or luxurious as the German brands, but it's satisfying at this price range. The seats are comfortable both in the front and the back and surprisingly, even with the front seat all the way back, I was able to fit my tall frame into the back without my knees being crammed against my body.

If you have a tall family and you're looking for a sedan, shove them all in the Accord at the dealership. You know, for science.

Behind the wheel, the heft of the battery pack is noticeable, but it's not a deal-breaker for cornering or acceleration. The steering is solid without feeling twitchy and I didn't notice any sloppy feedback from the road. While high-speed cornering is best left to the Civic Type R, the Accord Hybrid does its best to keep its tires from squealing when its pushed. But it is after all, a large sedan.

2020 Honda Accord first drive

Acceleration was impressive but nothing to get excited about. It'll hold it's own while getting on the freeway but that's about it. But, when the gas engine roars to life it's louder than anticipated and its noise is really not in line with what the Accord is doing. It's full of bluster, while the vehicle continues to accelerate at a steady pace. It's a hybrid thing and it takes a while to get used too.

On the technology front, the Accord's infotainment system is far better than Honda's old system which resembled a Windows' BIOs screen. It's not awesome, but it's better. While I didn't encounter any latency issues, I was unable to test the navigation. The car's system had been rebooted that morning and the map was still loading. I was, however, able to use CarPlay which is standard on the higher trim levels of the vehicle.

What's standard on all levels is Honda Sensing, the company's suite of safety features and driver assistance technologies. The Accord ships with pedestrian detection, automatic braking, and driver attention monitoring. The adaptive cruise control worked well in my tests and accelerated and slowed down smoothly with the flow of traffic and when it encountered a cut in from another vehicle.

When I was caught in gridlock, the low-speed follow made the traffic less maddening. That should make commuters happy.

2020 Honda Accord first drive

The lane-keep assist was very low key. It does the job, but it's not aggressive about it. That's a good thing, but it's also a reminder that you should keep your hands on the wheel and that these systems are more like low-level driving companions.

The Accord Hybrid is exactly what you would expect from Honda with some extra features thrown in for good measure. It's comfortable and roomy. It has an impressive amount of tech for the price and it gets a combined rating of 48 miles per gallon. For some that are looking for a vehicle where passengers aren't crammed together but would rather not jump on the SUV bandwagon, the Accord Hybrid is something to look into. Plus, it's great for the tall people of the world.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
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