On top of revisions to the exterior styling and interior layout, Honda is promising improvements to fuel economy and emissions, ride and handling quality and NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) levels.
Honda Australia’s Mark Higgins confirmed the updated Accord Euro would arrive in the second half of the year. He said the styling updates would be similar to those seen on European models shown at Geneva.
Included in the updates to the European range are revisions to the 2.2-litre diesel engine, which is not offered in Australia. Mr Higgins said the diesel was under consideration for Australia, but not expected to become available in the short term.
“The diesel has been under consideration for quiet a while,” he said.
Mr Higgins said the European market took priority in terms of diesel production and at the moment the vehicle was selling at close to capacity. He said another issue was putting a business case together that ensured the diesel would be both profitable for Honda Australia and affordable for customers.
“There are a number of factors, but we’re certainly not discounting it completely,” he said.
Also included in the European updates are changes to the Accord Euro wagon and sporty Type S model, although Mr Higgins admitted neither of these vehicles were under serious consideration for Australia in the short term, as they are targeted more directly at the European and US markets.
Visual changes expected to feature on the Australian specification model include clear indicators in the headlights, and subtle changes to the headlights, tail lights, front and rear bumpers and the grille design. Three new exterior colours will also be added in Europe. Inside, there is expected to be only slight changes to seat materials, door linings and some other surfaces.
Honda’s engineers have focused on reducing frictional losses, with efficiency gains achieved through the use of reduced rolling resistance tyres and improvements to the automatic transmission.
The cabin also promises to be quieter thanks to higher density foam in the under-bonnet and dashboard, additional sound-deadening shields under the floor and a rear windscreen 0.9mm thicker than the previous model.
The Honda Accord Euro (simply called Accord in Europe) will go on sale in April following its March unveiling at Geneva, a few months ahead of the vehicle’s launch in Australia.