Staffers are just beginning to get acquainted with our 2014 Honda Accord, which is something of an iconoclast in the Accord universe, by virtue of its two doors, V-6 engine, and manual transmission.
"Yes, it would have been more sensible to order the sedan, with the four-cylinder and the CVT, as that's what most people will buy," acknowledged associate web editor Jake Holmes. But the V-6 coupe is more sporty and cool, "yet it's still understated enough that it flies under the radar -- neither your wife nor your mom would think you had bought a car with 278 hp."
Associate editor David Zenlea contends that the V-6 coupe makes its own kind of sense. "This Honda is unambiguously an enthusiast's car," he argues, "and the engine lives up to that billing."
With the hegemony of the four-cylinder, and even the turbo four-cylinder, in midsize applications, a naturally aspirated V-6 begins to seem like something special. But does this engine live up to that billing? Its aforementioned 278 ponies is certainly a hearty output, and 252 pound-feet of torque is not bad either. But what about its more subjective qualities?
"I'm not in love with the engine note," says road test editor Chris Nelson. "It's loud without being sporty." "Funny that Chris doesn't like the engine note'" countered Zenlea. "I was just thinking how much I liked it. It's growly and mechanical yet not raspy -- very Honda. I love the instantaneous power, too."
Lots more staffers still have yet to weigh in on the V-6's character, and whether this coupe's configuration makes a case for itself. It's looking like this Accord's outside-the-mainstream spec will give us plenty to talk about over the coming year.
In the meantime, associate editor Greg Migliore suggests that we sit back and enjoy the ride, calling the Accord coupe "a nice change of pace from our usual diet of sedans and crossovers."