The Euro-spec version of the Accord, which has just been around for two generations as opposed to the US-spec Accord’s 9 generations, will go out of production in 2015. In a decision, ostensibly led by cost rationalization and slow European sales, the Euro-spec Accord will be replaced in specific markets by the current, 9th generation US-spec Accord. Honda has been hinting at an Accord re-launch in India and the latest news about the Euro-spec Accord will have ramifications for the Indian market. India, which has seen two generations of the Euro-spec Accord, is likely to get the US-spec model through the relaunch.
While the car is expected to carry on with the completely knocked down (CKD) kit import approach in India, a more pressing question would be whether the US-spec model can accommodate turbo diesel engine options, which so far have been limited to the Euro-spec model. The answer to this question will be crucial to determine the viability of the Accord’s re-launch in India, considering the fact that Honda had withdrawn this car from the Indian market on account of poor sales. A petrol-only luxury sedan doesn’t stand a chance against diesel powered competition in India. Honda knows this very well now given the massive success it has experienced by means of the 1.5 liter i-DTEC turbo diesel motor on the likes of the Amaze, City and Mobilio cars.
Delving into the 9th generation, US-spec Accord, the car gets more compact in terms of its exterior dimensions when compared with the 8th-generation model, but gains space on the inside. In terms of engines, the 2.4 liter i-VTEC petrol motor gets direct injection that makes it more powerful and frugal. A 6 speed manual and CVT automatic handle transmission duties on the 2.4 liter petrol motor. A high performance 3.5 liter V6 petrol engine is also on offer, with 6 speed manual and automatic gearbox options. The Accord line up also plays host to a 2 liter petrol engine that powers the plug-in hybrid model, which gets a CVT automatic gearbox.
All said and done, the 2.2 liter i-DTEC turbo diesel engine, that was seen on the Euro-spec Accord is a must for the US-spec model for a market such as India, where luxury car buyers overwhelmingly prefer diesel powered models. The challenge for Honda therefore, would be adapting the 2.2 liter turbo diesel engine into the 9th Generation Accord sedan’s engine bay.