Wednesday, April 23, 2008

2008 Honda Accord Revealed In Malaysia!

Honda Malaysia launch it new Honda Accord today, this 8th generation is the biggest Honda Accord ever. It available with 2 locally assembled 2.0 liter and 2.4 liter variants, and a Thai-imported 3.5 liter V6 model. The price should be RM141,800.00, RM171,800.00 and RM249.800.00 respectively. Also Modulo accessories is available, the RM5,300 package including RM1,180 for the front lip, RM1,370 for the rear lip, RM2,180 for the side skirt and RM830 for the spoiler. There are also other Modulo parts which include a side step garnish for RM300, carbon fiber panelling for the interior for RM730, a trunk tray for RM450, door visors for RM450 and a Modulo single-bar design front grille which goes for RM920.







The Accord began life as the second international car model for Honda some 30 years ago. It was first introduced as a hatchback and then a sedan with the distinction of having front-wheel drive at a time when Japanese sedans in its class were mostly rear-wheel drive. Though still a relative newcomer to making cars even in the 1970s - although already the world leader in motorcycles - Honda had already gained respect for its engineering talent with the CVCC engine which could meet the tough emission control standards in the US without the use of a catalytic converter. Thus when this new model made its debut, the automobile community paid attention.
32 years and over 16 million units later, the launch of a new generation of the Accord for the eighth time still draws a lot of attention because Honda is well known for introducing practical innovations in its new models. This time, it's the Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) technology which was first used in the latest Legend launched two years ago. The concept is not exactly new and a few manufacturers tried it out in the 1970s but somehow never got it right. Honda has and it is unlikely that it will have to withdraw the technology due to flaws in the design because Honda almost never gets things wrong.



The eighth generation lays claim to be the biggest and most spacious Accord ever offered, along with the most powerful engine under the bonnet this model has ever had. The increase in size - notably 75 mm in overall length with 60 mm more wheelbase and a roofline 25 mm higher - was not prompted so much by the US market where the Accord has been the best-selling passenger car in some years past but by feedback from customers in Asia.
"We did extensive surveys around the world and we found that Asian customers, in particular, wanted more space inside the car along with more comfort," said Kenzo Suzuki, Executive Chief Engineer from Honda R&D who was present at the media preview today. "We also learnt that the time spent in the car on daily journeys was quite long and therefore providing more space would enhance comfort."
Indeed, the dimensions of the new Accord are a big difference from the first generation which is more comparable to the Civic of today. It's grown in size over the years but this time, Honda's designers made the big leap and in the process, they also elevated its status by adding luxury and sophistication in its appearance.



Emphasising the substantial change, Atsushi Fujimoto, CEO/MD of Honda Malaysia, said that the latest generation is no mere facelift or enhancement of the previous generation. ""The all-new Accord will evoke an all-new emotion that makes a refined and sophisticated statement with pure luxury and performance for the Accord owner, like never before. It represents an upscale shift to a significantly more refined, dynamic and sophisticated sedan," he said





There are two styling themes used for the new Accord, one for the US market and another for Europe. The one for the Asean market is based on the US variant (which is usually the case) but has cosmetic differences which reflect the Asian preference for a bit more ostentation. The front end is bold with a 'frame' around the grille and distinctive headlight units. Character lines give the car a sculpted look which strengthens its 'character' but at the same time, there's a lithe profile to the car which gives undertones of sportiness. Almost everyone who first sees the car tends to remark that there's 'a bit of the BMW 5-Series' in the rear roof pillar though!




The larger proportions of the exterior are fully exploited for the interior and from the highlighted areas where there are dimensional changes from the previous generation, it seems that the designers pushed the cabin perimeter outwards in all directions - including downwards. While the ceiling is 25 mm higher, the floor has also been set lower by 15 mm and with the 60 mm more wheelbase, rear occupants get more legroom. The interior width has also been increased so there's a more expansive ambience with the couple distance extended by 40 mm.


The dashboard design has a 'Honda signature' to it which means it scores high marks for functionality. A lot of ergonomic studies must have been done to optimise the layout of various elements and for the new Accord, all elements relating to providing the driver information have been positioned along the same level. This means the screen showing such information as the air-conditioner, radio and CD settings is at the same level as the instrument panel, so the driver only shifts his or her head left and right, without having to lower it as well. That also allows the eyes to maintain some peripheral view of the road ahead, contributing to driving safety.



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