Like its Acura sibling, Honda is previewing one of its upcoming production models at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show with the presentation of the Accord Coupe Concept, which paves the way for the ninth-generation 2013 Accord series set to go on sale in North America this fall.
As you can see for yourself, the only conceptual parts of the Accord Coupe are the dramatically styled front and rear bumpers along with the side skirts and alloy wheel designs. Take out those and you have the next Accord Coupe, which truth to be said, doesn't really look all that new.
In fact, if Honda didn't tell us that it's the ninth generation model, we'd be inclined to think it's a facelift of the current series as the only changes to the design concern the fascia that gets new headlamps and a simpler, four-sided grille, a more sculptured beltline, pronounced rear wheel arches and newly shaped tail lamps.
The Japanese company tells us that while the Accord Coupe will remain similarly sized, the Accord Sedan will feature a more compact exterior footprint with a shortened length and reduced weight that should contribute to better handling and improved driving dynamics.
"Both the 2013 Accord Sedan and Accord Coupe will retain the current model's generous cabin space," said Honda.
There are more changes under the body as the 2013 Accord will be introduced with three all-new powertrains, including the first U.S. application of both a 2.4-liter direct-injected (DI) engine and a two-motor plug-in hybrid system.
According to Honda, the 2.4-liter DI gasoline engine produces more than 181 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque and will be paired to a 6-speed manual transmission or a new Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT).
The range-topping 3.5-liter i-VTEC V6 engine has also been re-engineered offering more power and increased torque over the current model though Honda did not announce performance numbers. The V6 will be matched to a new 6-speed automatic transmission or an available 6-speed manual transmission
The new Accord Plug-In Hybrid sedan combines a 2.0-liter i-VTEC inline four-cylinder, Atkinson cycle engine, with an electric Continuously Variable Transmission (E-CVT) and a 120kW (161HP) electric motor fed by a 6 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery.
Honda said is two-motor hybrid system moves continuously through three modes: all-electric, gasoline-electric and direct-drive, in order to maximize driving efficiency and fuel economy.
In all-electric mode, the 2013 Accord Plug-In Hybrid has a city driving range of approximately 10-15 miles (16-24 km) and a top speed of 62 mph (100km/h). The battery can be fully recharged in less than four hours using a 120-volt, outlet and less than 1.5 hours using a 240-volt charger.
The 2013 Accord also introduces several safety features such as Honda's first application of Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Forward Collision Warning (FCW) technology, both of which use a camera mounted behind the windshield, Bluetooth HandsFreeLink phone interface, a full-color Multi-Information Display (i-MID) and an SMS text messaging function.