The Honda Accord and Civic have been staples in the U.S. market since the mid-1970s, and neither is showing signs of slowing down. The Civic checks in as Honda's resident compact car that is available in both coupe and sedan versions, and the Accord is the automaker's midsize model, also available in two- and four-door configurations.
Both cars have their pluses and minuses, but which of these Japanese icons is the best buy within Honda's lineup?
The Civic immediately gets the advantage over the Accord in terms of pricing, as it bases out at $17,965 to the Accord's $21,955. But as the old saying goes, you get what you pay for.
The Accord checks in with a standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 185 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque to the Civic's 1.8-liter with 140 horsepower and 128 pound-feet. The Accord also receives a more modern six-speed manual as standard, while the Civic's manual transmission has only five speeds. The smaller Civic does, however, pull out a small victory by beating the Accord in fuel economy with ratings of 28 mpg city and 36 mpg highway to the Accord's 24 mpg city and 34 mpg highway.
Where the Accord really pulls away is in standard features, as it comes standard with top-line items like dual-zone automatic climate control, an illuminated vanity mirror, two power outlets, an overhead console, and 16-inch alloy wheels. On top of all of the additional features, the Accord is far roomier than the Civic, with 0.5 inches more front legroom, 2.3 inches more rear legroom, and an extra 3.5 cubic feet of cargo space.
Our Verdict: Honda Accord
If you have to remain under $20,000 for your next new car, the Civic is a fine choice, but if your budget is a little more flexible, the Accord is certainly the better value.