The Honda Accord faces a much tougher competitive set for 2012 than it did just a year or two ago.
This past year, we see the Hyundai Sonata replacing the Toyota Camry as the Accord's most direct rival; the Sonata comes in an economical base model that's not only more powerful than the Accord but better in gas mileage.
Hyundai also does away with the V-6, going to either turbocharged models or a new hybrid.
And the same is the case with the Kia Optima, which is closely related to the Sonata.
The best-selling Toyota Camry is all-new for 2012; look for an updated look and feel, as well as improved refinement.
Perhaps the closest competitor to the Accord is the Altima, which provides a similar mix of sporty road manners and well-controlled ride quality, plus good styling inside and out.
The Ford Fusion competes with the sportier side of the Accord, and you can also get it with a manual transmission, though the Fusion isn't quite as enjoyable with the base engine.
And as with the Honda, you can get the Fusion with a manual transmission.
However, the Fusion is a bit smaller.
Another top rival is the Chevrolet Malibu, which has a beautiful interior and comfortable ride but doesn’t feel quite as nimble.
But the two-door Altima sacrifices more comfort and space and clearly goes for a more youthful crowd.
|2012 Honda Accord SedanGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Chevrolet MalibuGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Ford FusionGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Hyundai SonataGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Nissan AltimaGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Toyota CamryGet FREE Price Quote|
|20 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 33 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 36 MPG Hwy||22 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy||18 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy||21 MPG City / 35 MPG Hwy|
|Gas I4||Gas 4-Cyl||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4|
|Large||Midsize||Mid-Size Sedan||Large Cars||Midsize||Midsize Car|
|4dr I4 Man LX||4dr Sedan LS w/1LS||4dr Sedan S FWD||4dr Sedan 2.4L Man GLS||4dr Sedan I4 CVT 2.5||4dr Sedan I4 Auto L (Natl)|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|4 Door Sedan||4 Door Sedan||4 Door Sedan||4 Door Sedan||4 Door Sedan||4 Door Sedan|
|Manual||Automatic w/manual shift||Manual||Manual||Continuously Variable Ratio||Automatic w/Manual Shift|