Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Day 1:
Up for Review this week is Honda’s limited Accord Coupe V6 with a 6 Speed transmission! This is a rare beast of a car, with only approximately 500 made for Canada each year with the manual transmission. With 244hp and 210 lb ft/tq this car truely is a quick car, with a 0-100km/h of around 6.0 seconds.
Interestingly this tester came with the same brand and model of winter tire as my last tester the Blizzak WS-50, perfect chance to evaluate differences in road noise levels. A further coincidence occurred just 10 minutes after heading out with the vehicle, the White Stripes “Seven Nation Army” began to thump on the stereo, perfect! I have officially adopted this song as my “Test” for automobile audio systems.

First impressions listed below to get the juices flowing.

Likes:
Leather Seats feel thick and supportive
Large trunk for a coupe with 60/40 split seats
Tilt and telescopic wheel allows unlimited seating positions.
Audio and HVAC controls very easy to reach and very intuitive.
Sporty yet compliant ride, handling seems very sure footed.
Power everywhere!

Dislikes:
Power everywhere, easily exceeds speedlimit
Location of sunroof controls is hard to reach and not intuitive
Cover for sunroof feels light and cheap
Car feels large when maneuvering around parking lots and rear visibility is difficult

Honda Accord Coupe EX V6 6 Speed MSRP: $34,900

For more information on Honda and their models please visit Honda Canada

Updated February 14th 2006

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Day 2:
Today is Valentines Day and with such a momentous day upon us we should take a moment to talk about being “smooth.” Today is all about the Ladies, smooth curves up from the headlights and over curving back down the rear …. The Accord Coupe is very sleek and stylish; the engine is the essence of smooth right from the turn of the key.

Looks are always subjective, I would rather let you, the reader, decide if you like it or not. I think the coupe looks very sleek and I’ll leave it at that, back to smoothness.

The engine cranks over very quickly even on a cold winter morning and immediately settles down to a purr, without a tachometer you would be hard pressed to know it is running. Stab it into gear and head out on your way and you are treated to much of the same sounds, too quiet perhaps? The difference between 1000rpm and 7000rpm is barely audible; this has to be the smoothest revving engine I’ve ever experienced. City driving is a pleasure, pulling away from stops is very easy, or should I say smooth; the only gears needed are first, second and fifth around town.

Transmission….., the shift knob in the Accord is the same one Honda uses in many of its products, from the Acura TSX to the Honda S2000. The transmission feel is very familiar and slick, first and second gears are close ratio, hitting 3rd gear at full throttle, although fun, could get you in trouble in a hurry, it is no S2000 gear box but it is very smooth and mechanical feeling.

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Let’s move to the stereo. The EX V6 Coupe comes standard with a 6 speaker Premium Audio system with 6 disc CD changer in dash. The system is ready to play the smooth sounds of Luther Vandros to get you in the mood for Valentines Day if you wish. Or if something more hardcore is to your liking it will rock the Black Eyed Peas “Don’t Phunk with my Heart” just as well. The Bass is strong and enveloping and the tweeters in the upper dash fill the air. Controls for the Audio system are basic (Bass/Treble/Fade/Balance) but a desirable sound is easy to achieve with these controls. The system is very well balanced (no pun intended). The large knobs for the stereo controls on the dash make the steering wheel controls redundant as they are large and perfectly positioned.

Update February 15th 2006

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Day 3:
Today was an interesting day, we accumulated about 5cm of snow last night which had to be cleared from the car this morning when it was +2 Celsius …. odd. This reminded me how much I hate spoilers and how I was glad the Coupe did not have one, as they really hinder removing snow from the rear deck lid. Back to the car, I want to go over a few interesting tidbits.

A few things I noticed today regarding sight lines, the sleek lines of the coupe leads to a very raked windshield and in turn the A pillars impede into your view when approaching 4 way stops. I find myself looking around the pillars trying to find a clear view of the intersection.

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Moving onto the gauge cluster Honda has done a wonderful job of providing all of the information needed in the usual space yet the dials are very large and easy to read. The speedometer is especially large perhaps to keep your speed in check. The switch gear feels solid but some of the dash materials are a little firm, there is a little give to the main dash covering but the steering wheel horn area is very hard plastic. All that said, the dash layout is superb and flows towards the driver and passenger seats for easy access.

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

More about sight with the Accord, I am actually disappointed with the headlights on the Accord. They are Halogen bulbs but they do not seem much brighter than the headlights in my older Subaru. To contrast this the Outback had projector beam halogens and seemed much brighter on back country roads.
Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Updated February 16th 2006

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Day 4:
Another interesting day in the Capital, I drive to work on dry roads and then after I arrive at work there is a 5 to 10 cm dump of snow. This actually turned out to be perfect to test some of the handling capabilities of the Coupe. I’ve been assessing the handling over the past few days and today allowed me to get a final opinion on dry pavement and in the snow.

The steering in the Accord Coupe is very well weighted; it does not lighten up much at all during parking lot maneuvers which causes the Coupe to feel like a large car in a parking lot. It is also difficult to see the front end of the Coupe making small spots a chore to enter and exit.

Road manors on the other hand are exceptional, the Accord Coupe has very little lean in the corners and turn in is very sharp, I actually found myself apexing a little early when turning in. Powering out of corners the Accord feels sure footed, a little too much power will induce some traction control as the front wheels struggle for both cornering grip and forward momentum. Leaving the traction control on, named Vehicle Stability Assist or VSA by Honda reduces under steer and allows you to power out of corners with confidence.

Heading out onto the snow covered roads and parking lots to test out the VSA I was thoroughly impressed by how unobtrusive the system really is. Unless the system is working overtime on ice if there was no flashing light in the gauge cluster you would be hard pressed to tell if there was any electronic intervention at all.

Road manners in regular driving is excellent, the ride is quiet and smooth even with winter tires. The Accord Coupe can really take on 2 personalities, it can be a quiet luxury cruiser for those long rides on the highway or it can be boy racer fast and take corners with razor like precision. Eight Hours of highway travel tomorrow will help me prove this theory!

Updated February 18th 2006

Honda Accord EX Coupe V6
Click Image to Enlarge

Wow the weather is weird this year, and the trip from Ottawa to Toronto yesterday was an adventure. The trip started off with -2 degree weather, it slowly changed from freezing rain to rain, and the temperature increased during my journey to +8 degrees. As I continued on pasted Kingston along the 401 the weather started to change again, as the temperature dropped to below freezing once again, around Peterborough it changed again and I was no driving in near white out conditions what an adventure. I was glad to be driving a car as comfortable as the Accord.

I can say without hesitation that the Accord is a comfortable cruising / highway car, the seats were extremely comfortable for the 4 hour journey and I never felt fatigued or sore from the ride. Equipped with excellent winter tires it also feels very safe and sure footed even on snow covered roads. During my return trip from Toronto I ran into complete white-out conditions, the road was non existent just a vast expanse of snow, I had a GPS with me and was grateful as I was able to use it to determine if the road was straight or if there were curves ahead.

The more I drove the Accord the more I became convinced it was an excellent performer and a bargain a $34,900 for the V6 Coupe. If you are in the market for a large coupe or even a family sedan, the Accord better be on your list.
Rating out of 5:

2006 Accord Coupe Rating
Acceleration wheelwheelwheelwheelhalfwheel

Handling wheelwheelwheelwheel
Comfort wheelwheelwheelhalfwheel
Interior wheelwheelwheelhalfwheel
Audio System wheelwheelwheelwheel
Gas Mileage wheelwheelwheelhalfwheel

Likes:
Leather Seats feel thick and supportive, very comfortable on long trips!
Large trunk for a coupe with 60/40 split seats
Tilt and telescopic wheel allows unlimited seating positions.
Audio and HVAC controls very easy to reach and very intuitive.
Sporty yet compliant ride, handling seems very sure footed.
Excellent Stereo (Premium system)
Power everywhere!
Quiet Ride
Handles Exceptionally

Dislikes:
Power everywhere, easily exceeds speedlimit
Location of sunroof controls is hard to reach and not intuitive
Cover for sunroof feels light and cheap
Car feels large when maneuvering around parking lots and rear visibility is difficult

For more information on Honda and their models please visit Honda Canada

website stat

Connect with Autos.ca