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The big news for the mid-size Honda Accord is the debut of an all-new gas/electric-powered Accord Hybrid sedan. This is Honda's first six-cylinder vehicle to incorporate its hybrid Integrated Motor Assist system, and the company claims it delivers brisker acceleration than a typical V-6-powered sedan, but with fuel economy that's more miserly than a four-cylinder gasoline version. While Honda's system (versions of which are otherwise found in the Civic Hybrid and two-seat Insight) is not a "pure" a hybrid powertrain like Toyota's, which can run solely on electric power, the Accord Hybrid uses its gasoline engine as the dominant propulsion source. Here, the electric motor provides additional power as conditions warrant. Otherwise, the gas-powered coupe and sedan come powered by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder that develops 160 horsepower and can be equipped with a 240 horsepower 3.0-liter V-6. A five-speed-automatic transmission is standard on V-6 Accords, while the EX V-6 coupe may be fitted with a six-speed-manual gearbox. For 2005, side-curtain airbags are available on the base DX model, a new wheel cover design is included on LX and EX versions, sedans receive new taillamps, and illuminated steering controls are added across the line.
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2004 Honda Accord Coupe by Bengt Halvorson (9/29/2003)
A bourgeois bargain calling out to a more sophisticated audience: Anyone out there?