QUICK DRIVE: Honda Accord V6

For a full Road Test of the Honda Accord 2.4 click here.

It is almost like Honda started with the V6 version of the new Accord, then started pulling stuff off it to create the four-cylinder version.

“Two cylinders? Yep, get rid of those.”

“That extra ratio in the transmission? Lose it.”

“Those sexy twin exhausts? One’ll do.”

“Any sense of excitement? Nah, we don’t need that…”

And that is how you create a slightly disappointing four-cylinder Accord from a really rather good V6 one.

While the four did have some very good points about it, the overwhelming sense of longing for what could have been if Honda hadn’t saddled it with a dull-witted five-speed auto transmission and an engine that was flat in exactly the wrong place tended to overshadow them.

But in the V6 you have a strong, flexible powerplant and a slick, decisive six-speed auto that transforms the four’s sense of “meh” into “mmm… yeah…”

That is not to say that the Accord V6 is a car for mounting maximum attack on any given road, as the extra weight of the V6 actually works against the four’s single biggest redeeming feature – it’s beautiful balance – and makes the V6 slightly nose heavy and prone to slight understeer in severe (or wet) cornering.

However, the V6 makes a wonderful high-speed cruiser. Relaxed and powerful, the V6 Accord works best when set up for the corner well in advance, let it float its way through then use the V6’s wonderfully elastic nature to power out the other side.

Ride quality is impressive and adds to the atmosphere of fast, relaxed transportation. Inside, the V6 is as impressive and comfortable as the four-cylinder version, but with the added attraction of a nice V6 growl permeating it under full throttle…

Of course, the V6 Accord also boasts all the brilliant electronic safety cleverness of the smaller-engined model, and it is just as impressive when partnered up to the larger engine.

Better than the ‘what might have been’ four-cylinder Accord, the V6 can’t quite match the smaller-engined car for agility and dynamics. Still, like the four, it is one of the best things the company has done for ages.

Price: $60,000

Engine: 3.5-litre V6 petrol

Power/torque: 206kW/339Nm

Transmission: Six-speed automatic

0-100km/h: n/a

Fuel consumption: 9.2L/100km

CO2 emissions: 217g/km

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