2021 Honda Accord Revealed: Honda's Mid-Size Bestseller Gets a Facelift
The value-oriented Sport Special Edition trim also makes a reappearance for 2021.
It's not very often that the two top-selling midsize sedans in North America, the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry, get redesigned in the same year, but for 2018, both brands introduced all-new versions of their midsize sedans, and for 2021, it looks like both cars will be getting refreshed. Toyota unveiled the newly-refreshed 2021 Camry a few months ago, and Honda has unveiled the refreshed version of its bestselling Accord for the 2021 model year. Read on to find out what's new with the refreshed 2021 Honda Accord (as well as the Honda Accord Hybrid). NOTE: Any any all pricing discussed in this article includes a mandatory destination fee, but does NOT include any applicable taxes, or other fees.
First, let's start with the design changes for the 2021 Honda Accord. Honda won the North American Car of the Year (NACOTY) Award for the 2018 Accord, so the Brand knows that it can't mess with perfection for the Accord's midcycle refresh. Thus, you may have to study the new 2021 Honda Accord very carefully to spot the changes Honda has made for the new model year. You'll notice that the lower portion of the front grille receives chrome bars in place of the 2020 model's black bars on certain trim levels, while the rest of the 2021 Accord's front end remains almost identical to the 2020 model it replaces. Looking at the rear of the 2021 Honda Accord, you'll notice that again, not much has changed, except for a new rear lower diffuser. Inside the 2021 Accord, there aren't too many changes, as the 2020 model featured an excellent interior design. About the only change you'll find on the interior (at least designwise) are new interior trim configurations.
For 2021, Honda adds another trim level to the Accord lineup for 2021. Reappearing for the first time since 2017, the Sport Special Edition (or "Sport SE", for short) trim is based on the mid-level Sport trim, and while it features a similar appearance to that of the standard Sport trim, the Sport SE adds some value-oriented features to the Sport, such as a remote vehicle starter system, dual power-adjustable and heated exterior side mirrors, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with a paid trial subscription and HD Radio (both features not offered on the previous-generation Sport SE trim), smart entry (Honda's version of keyless access and push-button start), luxury leather-trimmed seating surfaces with unique stitching throughout the interior, dual heated front bucket seats, and a four-way, power-adjustable front passenger bucket seat. The Sport SE will replace the previous EX trim level for 2021.
The 2021 Honda Accord Sport SE isn't the only change to the Accord lineup this year, as Honda introduces other changes throughout the Accord lineup as well. As mentioned, the previous EX trim is discontinued for 2021, replaced by the new Sport Special Edition (Sport SE) trim. The base LX trim now receives an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system in place of its previous seven-inch, NON-touchscreen unit, also adding wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration as a standard feature as well. Upper trim levels (EX-L, Sport 2.0T, and Touring) will also receive segment-first wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration in addition to their wired equivalents. Due to the addition of those features, the EX-L, Sport 2.0T, and Touring trims also receive standard Qi-compatible wireless smartphone charging for 2021 (a feature that was previously only available as a factory option on the range-topping Touring trim, and otherwise available as a dealer-installed accessory). The HondaLink telematics system is also now available only on the range-topping Touring trim. The Accord Hybrid lineup receives few changes for 2021 (aside from the aforementioned infotainment system upgrade on the base Hybrid LX trim), and the lineup remains LX, EX, EX-L, and Touring.
In the powertrain department, things also remain the same for the 2021 Honda Accord. Powering base (LX, Sport, Sport Special Edition (Sport SE), and EX-L) trims is still the 1.5L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) gasoline engine, producing 192 horsepower, and 192 lb. ft. of torque. For 2021, only the Sport 2.0T and Touring trims are available with the "up-level" 2.0L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) gasoline engine that produces 252 horsepower and 273 lb. ft. of torque (the 2.0T engine has been discontinued from the EX-L trim for 2021). All Accord Hybrid models remain powered by a naturally-aspirated, 2.0L Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) gasoline engine mated to Honda's Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) System (the Brand's version of a hybrid electric motor system), producing a combined system output of 212 horsepower and 232 lb. ft. of torque. Accord 1.5T and Accord Hybrid models receive a Continuously-Variable Automatic (CVT) transmission, while only Accord 2.0T models receive a traditional eight-speed automatic transmission (all Accord transmissions are pushbutton-controlled via buttons in the center console). One thing that you won't see on the 2021 Honda Accord is an option for the previously-available six-speed manual transmission on the Sport 2.0T model, as the manual transmission had a very low take rate, and Honda has discontinued that option for 2021 (the Honda Accord was the very last midsize sedan available with a manual transmission). Of course, all Accords are also only available with Front Wheel Drive (FWD).
Honda builds the Accord at its Marysville, Ohio assembly plant. Pricing for the 2021 Honda Accord ranges from $25,725 for a base LX model powered by a 1.5L Turbocharged Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) gasoline engine and a Continuously-Variable Automatic (CVT) transmission, to $37,195 for a range-topping Hybrid Touring model powered by the 2.0L Hybrid Gasoline/Electric Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) engine and a Continuously-Variable Automatic (CVT) transmission. The 2021 Honda Accord lineup is on sale at Honda dealerships nationwide beginning this month (October 2020). What do you think of all of the changes that have been made to the 2021 Honda Accord? Let us know in the comments down below, and stay tuned right here for more information as it becomes available!