Newspaper article Coffs Coast Advocate (Coffs Harbour, Australia)

Premium Road Experience without Hurting the Budget

Newspaper article Coffs Coast Advocate (Coffs Harbour, Australia)

Premium Road Experience without Hurting the Budget

Article excerpt

THERE'S no aphrodisiac like loneliness. Those words penned by The Whitlams could provide an injection of love for Honda.

If times weren't tough enough in our current economic climate, they are even tougher for the Japanese car maker.

Thailand floods swamped the Rojunga factory which supplies the majority of Australia's cars a including the Civic sedan, Accord, City, Jazz and the CR-V. Not only was production stopped, but the holding yards were also inundated.

Limited supply makes the current crop of Hondas hot property.

And the Honda Accord Euro remains one of the best offerings in the company's stable. Back in 2008 the Accord Euro picked up some pretty big gongs, primarily from Drive and Wheels, and it was updated recently to provide some much-needed extra kit.

Things are a whole lot more competitive in the mid-size sedan genre since three years ago, but is a slightly classier look and fuel consumption gains enough to entice buyers away from the likes of Mazda, Ford and Toyota?

Comfort

Satin finishes across the door handles, console and steering wheel have added some modern touches to a cabin which has changed little in four years.

Not there was much wrong with the Accord Euro's cabin originally.

Big and comfy leather seats with support in the right places and heating function (the driver and passenger have eight-way electronic adjustment), two bottle holders in the centre console and telescopic steering wheel reach help make long distance travels a cinch.

Mostly soft-touch materials are used in a cabin where black is the primary choice from the colour palette. Even the hard plastics have a good looking finish.

The various dials, gauges and buttons are simple to read and require little analysis before you have your head around all the operations. Cruise control, Bluetooth, trip computer and audio controls are at your fingertips via the sports steering wheel.

Depending on the height of those in the front, rear legroom can be limited, and squeezing three adults across the back bench seat may stretch friendships.

On the road

Honda calls its four-cylinder donk alivelya, we prefer ahonesta.

Generating 148kW, the powerplant is mated to a fix-speed auto and behaves well in the majority of driving conditions.

It cruises on the highway quietly and without fuss, while in traffic the Euro trims through the gears nicely.

Various mechanical changes have resulted in fuel efficiency gains in the realm of 4% for the automatic transmission.

Yet the Euro falls short of providing a sporting experience like some of its competitors, primarily due to the steering which can feel vague and the four-cylinder lacking some kick high in the rev range.

Those wanting a slightly more rewarding drive should probably go for the six-speed manual.

What do you get? …

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