2021 Honda Accord vs Toyota Camry
The Honda Accord and Toyota Camry are two of the most successful sedans to have ever been in the market. Year after year, they're on top of the leaderboards, and for good reason. They have comfortable and spacious cabins, they run on capable engines, and they've proven themselves to be reliable and safe. The 2021 versions of the Accord and Camry are equipped with advanced technology so that the driving experience can be even better than it has been in the past.
People shopping for sedans will likely want to take a close look at both of these cars. Because they come in many trims, they're able to have a broad appeal. This overview will highlight how the two cars may differ so that a potential customer will hopefully have an easier time choosing between the two.
There are multiple options for what components can power an Accord or Camry. Starting with the Honda Accord, there are two powertrains to choose from. The traditional one has a displacement of 1.5 liters and gets a boost from a turbocharger. This four-cylinder engine has 192 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque, which is pretty impressive. A hybrid Accord uses an electric motor and a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine, and together they make 212 horsepower and 232 pound-feet of torque.
With the traditional powertrain, most trims have a continuously variable transmission with Sport mode. Select trims have paddle shifters to make for a more dynamic driving experience. The exception is that the Touring version of the Accord. It has the same turbocharged engine as the others, but it has a ten-speed automatic transmission with shift-by-wire and paddle shifters. This is generally considered to be a higher quality than the other type. (Note that the Sport trim can either have the continuously variable transmission or the ten-speed.) The hybrids use electronic continuously variable transmissions, and they also have Sport mode.
Honda really focused on designing the Accord to be a car that people who love driving would enjoy. With this amount of power, the Accord offers some fun and excitement. Every trim is equipped with Hill Start Assist to prevent the car from rolling backwards after coign to a stop on slope. Select trims have a remote engine start function.
Additionally, the Accord has an Eco Assist feature that can be utilized whenever people want to conserve fuel. The available Idle-Stop program, which temporarily shuts off the engine when the vehicle is stopped, works to accomplish this same goal. Efficiency is a real strength of the Accord. The hybrids earn up to 48 miles per gallon whether driving on the highway or in the city. The non-hybrids still manage to do well. Exact mileage may vary according to the trim, but a non-hybrid Accord could achieve up to 38 miles per gallon on the highway and 30 miles per gallon in the city.
Like Honda has done, Toyota has given its customers many options to consider in regards to the Camry's powertrain. The standard version is a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine. It can generate 202 horsepower and 182 pound-feet of torque, so its capability is in the same ballpark as that of the Accord.
One thing that really sets the Camry apart from the Accord and many other sedans is that it's available with all-wheel drive. When Toyota decided to make all-wheel-drive Camrys, it was big news. This really gave the car the ability to appeal more to those who have to deal with wintry conditions.
There are two additional powertrain systems. One is a hybrid system. It, too, uses a 2.5-liter engine with four cylinders, and because it works with an electric motor, it's able to make 208 horsepower. As seen with the Accord, the hybrid version is more powerful than its counterpart, so this is great news for people who want to be more eco-friendly.
Finally, the XLE and XSE trims of the Camry are available with V6 engines, and the TRD trim comes with this type of engine as well. These larger engines have displacements of 3.5 liters, and they're able to churn out 301 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. Obviously, the Camry's V6 engine is much stronger than any of the other options offered by either Toyota or Honda. This point will help the Camry stick out to consumers who love the thrill of driving. At this point, the V6 is only available with front-wheel drive.
Toyota has matched the non-hybrid engines with Direct Shift-8AT electronically controlled automatic transmissions with eight speeds. They have sequential shift mode, which is essentially a manual shift mode that some people might enjoy using on occasion. The hybrid systems are matched with electronically controlled continuously variable transmissions with sequential shift mode.
There are three different drive modes with the Toyota Camry. Normal would be the default option, Sport would make the car a little more aggressive, and Eco would do exactly the opposite in order to consume less fuel.
The best that a non-hybrid Camry can do is to earn 39 miles per gallon on the highway and 28 miles per gallon in the city. This is close to the fuel efficiency numbers on a Honda Accord. The LE Hybrid version of the Camry can achieve 53 miles per gallon on the highway and 51 miles per gallon in the city, which is better than what the hybrid Accord can do. However, the other hybrid trims earn slightly less than this mark, having an estimated fuel economy of 47 miles per gallon on the highway and 44 miles per gallon in the city.
Like the Accord, the Camry has Hill Start Assist, and it has many trims that have remote start functions.
Either of these cars would be a true pleasure to drive. They have enough power to make them feel athletic and highly capable. The XSE and TRD trims of the Camry, as well as the Touring trim of the Accord, have been specifically designed with performance in mind. The Accord Touring has an Adaptive Damper System, the Camry TRD has Active Cornering Assist, and the Camry's XSE trims have sport-tuned shock absorbers and springs.
In terms of size, these sedans aren't too small, nor are they too large. Most customers would consider them to be just right in terms of length, trunk space, and leg room.
The Honda Accord has 42.3 inches of leg room in the first row and 40.4 inches of leg room in the back seat. Its trunk measures 16.7 cubic feet. This is slightly more space than what the Camry offers its passengers. In the Camry, there is 42.1 inches of first-row leg room and 38 inches of second-row leg room. The trunk has a volume of 15.1 cubic feet. This is still a good size, but those looking for a larger trunk will likely prefer the Accord.
These vehicles should be fairly easy to park. The Accord has a length of 192.2 inches, and this is a mere 0.1 inches longer than the Camry. Both models sit fairly close to the ground. The Honda's ground clearance is 5.5 inches, and the Camry sits 5.7 inches off the ground. This is pretty standard for this class of vehicles.
Technology is going to be a major factor as customers select their next vehicles. After comparing the technology packages of the two cars, many would likely say that the Toyota Camry has the more attractive package. That's because each of its trims has an infotainment system that comes with six speakers, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, Bluetooth, SiriusXM, and Wi-Fi capability. Plus, each trim has at least three USB ports and a seven-inch touchscreen.
In contrast, the lower trims of the Honda Accord only have four speakers and one USB port, and they don't have SiriusXM. For that matter, none of the Accord trims have Amazon Alexa. They do, though, have eight-inch touchscreens, along with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, and HondaLink. For some buyers, this would be more than enough technology to keep them happy.
Higher trims of the Honda Accord can have up to three total USB ports, eight or ten speakers, SiriusXM and HD Radio, and wireless charging. The top trims have Wi-Fi capability and integrated navigation. Likewise, the Toyota Camry's premium models can have navigation, wireless charging, and nine-speaker JBL sound systems. They can be enhanced with nine-inch touchscreens.
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This is another area in which modern consumers are really paying attention to. Cars that are being made today can do much more than just protect passengers in the event of an accident; they can actually be pro-active about keeping people safe. With driver-assist technology, the Accord and Camry can watch out for various issues. If they're detected, then these cars can alert their drivers and potentially help them avoid accidents.
All of the Honda Accords have the Honda Sensing suite of driver-assistive technologies. They have collision mitigation braking and forward collision warning to prevent people from hitting objects in front of them. They have lane keeping assist, road departure warning, and road departure mitigation to keep themselves in the proper positions in a lane. Plus, they have traffic sign recognition, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams.
Many, but not all, trims have blind spot monitoring. This system comes with rear cross-traffic alert and it can be very useful on a daily basis. The Touring trim is enhanced with a head-up display and low-speed braking control.
In a similar move, Toyota gave the Camry a number of standard driver-assist systems. The Camrys basically have the same systems that were just mentioned above. A difference is that they have something called pedestrian detection, and this allows them to sense the presence of not just vehicles in their path, but also people walking in the road.
For whatever reason, blind spot monitoring doesn't seem to be a standard component on many vehicles. Only select trims of the Toyota Camry have this feature. Like what is seen in the Accord, the Camry has a monitoring system that can account for vehicles in blind spots as well as vehicles that are crossing behind it while it's in reverse.
The most premium trims of the Toyota Camry have head-up displays, too. These displays can show drivers some important information as they're traveling, such as which turn to take next, what the speed limit is, and if any issues have been detected. On top of this, there's an available bird's-eye-view camera that the Camry can have. This would provide a useful top-down perspective of the car while it's getting in and out of parking spots or other tight spaces.
Which Has the Best Value?
After being competitors for decades, Honda and Toyota have a good sense for how to position themselves against other companies. These two brands are known for building reliable vehicles with excellent value, and the Accord and Camry are perfect examples of how this can be done. Interestingly, their base trims are priced at exactly the same amount - $24,970.
There are 12 total Camry trims, including the hybrid ones. There are five non-hybrid Accord trims and four hybrid versions, bringing the total to nine. While the ranges of prices for the Accord and Camry start at the same level, they don't end up in quite the same spot. The XSE V6 is the most expensive Camry, and it costs $35,545. The Hybrid Touring is the top-of-the-line trim for the Honda Accord, and it has a cost of $36,440.
This overview has already discussed differences in performance, safety, and technology, so now, it will touch on the exterior and interior features. Since there are so many trims, it might be easier to just compare the Camry XSE V6 versus the Accord Hybrid Touring to quickly highlight what's available.
On the XSE V6, here are LED headlights and taillights, and there are heated side mirrors with turn signals and blind spot warning indicators, along with 19-inch wheels and a panoramic glass roof. There are leather seats, with the front ones being heated. Heating is available for the second row, and ventilation is available for the front row of seats. The Accord Hybrid Touring also has the same type of side mirrors, but its mirrors can tilt down when the car is in reverse. It has leather upholstery and a moonroof, though not a panoramic one, and it has 19-inch wheels, LED headlights, and LED fog lights. A bonus is that it has heated and ventilated front seats as well as heated rear seats as standard components.
Which is Better?
These cars are so evenly matched that it can be hard to choose. It may ultimately come down to style, as the Camry is a bit sportier than the Accord is. The Accord feels a little more refined, and it has more interior space. Its top trim is more luxurious than that of the Camry. On the other hand, the Camry has more advanced technology and better engines. Importantly, the Camry is available with a V6 engine, and its standard engine is available with all-wheel drive. Performance-minded drivers may lean towards the Camry for these reasons.