Making its debut in Accord is Honda’s second-generation diesel engine – the i-DTEC – which builds on the outstanding qualities of the award-winning i-CTDi unit. Not only is the new diesel more powerful – offering 150 PS at 4,000 rpm – it also offers cleaner emissions and is smoother to drive.
Like its predecessor, the new i-DTEC engine is compact, lightweight, refined and quiet in operation. It employs the latest piezoelectric multi-stage fuel injection technology, more efficient exhaust gas recirculation and a particulate filter for significantly reduced emissions. Peak torque is now 350 Nm (258 lb.ft) at 2,000 rpm.
The 2.0-litre petrol i-VTEC offers 156 PS at 6,300 rpm, and improves on its class-leading fuel economy. Key technological changes include increased diameter intake valves, further optimised valve lift and timing and increased inlet and exhaust air flow volumes.
Meanwhile, the 2.4-litre i-VTEC engine is more powerful, delivering a respectable 200 PS at 7,000 rpm and peak torque of 233 Nm (187 lb.ft) at 4,500 rpm. Behind the figures are a compression ratio increased from 10.5 to 11.0:1, larger valves, revised valve timing, and reduced exhaust system pressures.
All three engines are matched to a 6-speed manual transmission, while both petrol engines have the option of a 5-speed automatic. An automatic gearbox for the i-DTEC engine will be launched in early 2009.
Manual models feature a Shift Indicator Light which appears in the centre of the rev counter. ‘UP’ or ‘DOWN’ graphics are displayed to advise the driver of the optimum point (in terms of best fuel economy) at which to change gear; Honda tests have demonstrated fuel savings of as much as five per cent by following these commands.