The established Honda Accord takes on the relatively newer entrant into the Indian market, the Volkswagen Passat.
HONDA ACCORD 2.4 V.6
In lakh Rs (Ex-showroom, Mum) 20.25-21.05 27.36
ENGINE 2354cc, I-4, petrol 3471cc, V6, petrol
177.5 bhp@6500rpm 271bhp@6200rpm
TRANSMISSION 5-speed manual/auto 5-speed auto
DIMENSIONS in mm (L/W/H) 4950/1845/1475 4950/1845/1475
WHEELBASE 2800 mm 2800 mm
GROUND CLEARANCE 155 mm 155 mm
KERB WEIGHT 1525 kg 1635 kg
In lakh Rs (Ex-showroom, Mum) 21.33-26.31
ENGINE 1968cc, I-4, diesel
168 bhp@4200 rpm
35.4 kgm@1750-2500 rpm
TRANSMISSION 6-speed manual/DSG
DIMENSIONS in mm (L/W/H) 4769/1820/1470
WHEELBASE 2712 mm
GROUND CLEARANCE 150 mm
KERB WEIGHT 1591 kg
What are you going to tell your friends about this car?
Heck, it’s a Camry from Honda! It’s a Honda, so what you get is enviable reliability, smooth to run, fantastic leg room, great over smooth roads and it has a prestige halo around it at the company parking lot. The 2.4 is silky smooth. And there are hardly any cars that give you so much V6 power going to the front wheels.
You’ll never get this level of German engineering at this value. If it wanted, the Passat could wear an Audi logo and get away with it. As far as exec sedans go, the Passat is hard to beat – it’s comfortable for rear passengers when the roads get bad and when it gets good, it’s terrific behind the wheel.
What are your friends going to talk behind your back about this car?
Wonder where this guy’s money come from? How can he afford the Accord’s drinking habits, that too, it’s petrol! Getting a V6 is the ultimate act of sinning. And if he could afford the fuel costs, why didn’t he buy a proper Camry instead. And have you seen him cringing when the roads get bad?
He just shows his class; he doesn’t know that diesel is for truckers. The really smart guys know the value and the vibe-free petrol motors – pity he is not one of them. For the same price he could have got himself one of those brilliant corporate edition 3 Series BeeEms. But BMWs are for active people; he’s pretty boring actually.
Is it a car to drive or to be driven in?
Well, this company makes a large-ish soft-roader that is deceptive; because it is as good if not better than cars when it comes to driving pleasure. But with the Accord, the focus is more on the rear passenger. It is effortless to drive, though not as engaging as Hondas usually are. The V6 is mental.
This too is great for the rear passenger and unlike the Honda, it gets its marks for ride quality. But that apart, the Passat is a good car to drive due to its torquey motor and DSG – between the two, you can have a blast on weekends, when the driver is off-duty. If not for the motor, it would be a bland car to drive.
What will your neighbours think of you when you buy it ?
That you are nouveau riche. Suddenly, you have made money and you have to tell the world about it. That you appreciate flash value rather than discreet taste. Perhaps they think you are politically incorrect too, driving large, expensive, petrol sedans when there is a bloodbath in the oilfields out there.
That you have Wehrmacht memorabilia inside a cupboard in your bedroom. You want the world to think you are methodical and have an engineering bent of mind. But in secret, you wished for a Camry but decided on the Passat because you were getting German engineering at the same price.