Honda Automobiles: 2013 Honda Accord: Chassis

Befitting the 2013 Accord’s mission to advance every aspect of the driving experience, literally every aspect of the chassis engineering and componentry was reviewed, revisited and redesigned as needed to create the strongest possible dynamic driving experience. Now its highly rigid unit-body, refined suspension technology, and a host of electronic advancements quite simply define the 2013 Accord chassis as the most capable in Accord model history. The result is a car that is quieter and more responsive on city streets, quieter and smoother riding the highway, and even more faithful to the driver’s wishes on winding roads.

All-new chassis features include a MacPherson strut front suspension, a new steel and aluminum front subframe, and new electric power steering (EPS). Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) are also included, counteracting engine noise and helping to create a more linear and sophisticated high-rpm engine note.

The advanced new MacPherson strut front suspension system is lighter than the double-wishbone system it replaces, and provides superior ride and handling qualities while also reducing interior noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). The 2013 Accord also uses a new aluminum and steel front subframe that reduces weight and, in conjunction with new rear compliance bushings and independent multi-link rear suspension, also measurably reduces NVH. Additional noise reductions are derived from careful tailoring of the underbody and suspension systems.

The EPS uses an electric motor to assist the rack-and-pinion steering rather than the hydraulic assist of the previous Accord. The result is reduced steering effort, improved precision, feel and stability, and less power consumption.

Alloy wheels are now standard on every Accord Sedan and Coupe, and range in size from 16 inches to 18 inches depending on model. Four-wheel disc brakes are also standard across the model range, along with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) with Brake Assist, a 4-channel Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with Traction Control, and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Hill start assist is also standard, helping the driver accelerate smoothly from a stop while on an incline.

Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) are standard across the Accord model range. Using microphones, a signal processor and the Accord’s audio speakers, ANC counteracts engine noise, while ASC helps create a more linear and sophisticated high-rpm engine note. Additional noise reductions are derived from careful tailoring of the underbody and suspension systems.

Standard chassis features

  • MacPherson strut front suspension
  • Aluminum and steel front subframe
  • Independent multi-link rear suspension
  • Electric power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering (EPS)
  • Aluminum alloy wheels
  • All-season tires
  • 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS
  • Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist
  • Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with Traction Control
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • Hill start assist
  • Active Noise Control (ANC)
  • Active Sound Control (ASC)

MacPherson Strut Front Suspension
An all-new MacPherson strut front suspension gives the 2013 Accord an exceptionally smooth and quiet ride, stable and responsive handling and flatter cornering. This advanced new suspension takes the place of the previous-generation Accord’s double-wishbone system. The highly evolved new front suspension is significantly lighter with higher dynamic performance including improved responsiveness, ride comfort and stability, significantly reduced noise and increased driving enjoyment. The Accord’s turning diameter is 38.1 ft. for the Sedan and 37.6 ft. for the Coupe.

Hydro-compliance bushings mount the front lower suspension arms. These bushings help reduce steering shimmy at all speeds, improve NVH characteristics and promote more accurate suspension geometry. The result is an ideal blend of ride quality, responsive steering and precise handling.

Enhanced structural rigidity plays a part in the Accord’s new suspension performance, with highly rigid attachment points for the struts, as well as for the front subframe. This new structure is an integral part of the Accord’s ACE body structure, which helps crash performance in a frontal collision. And finally, the repackaging of the front suspension allows a shorter front overhang to be incorporated, improving vehicle styling.

The struts are specially tuned for the ideal blend of comfort and handling. Innovative features include new hydraulic valves and seals, a low-friction Teflon® internal bushing, new oil specifications, and a special rebound damper spring that dramatically reduces body roll while turning. The Accord Sport, EX, EX-L and Touring Sedan, and the EX and EX-L Coupe all feature a front strut-tower connecting bar that further improves handling response.

Lightweight Front Subframe
A new front subframe, which cradles the engine, transmission and lower suspension mounts, utilizes unique aluminum and steel construction. Using a process developed by Honda, the subframe joins aluminum and steel components with a type of friction-stir-welding to form a single high-strength, lightweight unit that provides ideal ride and handling properties along with lower weight. The weight savings directly improves both fuel efficiency and overall dynamic performance.

Independent Multi-Link Rear Suspension
The Accord’s compact, multi-link rear suspension offers supple ride comfort and excellent overall handling. This system features high-strength stamped-steel upper A-arms with aluminum knuckles and precise geometry that reduces lift during hard braking. The lower links connect to a rigid rear subframe, which is isolated from the body by rubber mounts that reduce drumming and low-frequency sound.

Electric Power-Assisted Rack-and-Pinion Steering (EPS)
The 2013 Accord’s new electric power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering (EPS) replaces the conventional hydraulically assisted power-steering system used on the previous-generation Accord. The new system uses a rack-and-pinion steering assembly with an electric motor assist that reduces steering effort, improves feel and enhances precision and stability. It also uses less power than the previous Accord’s system, contributing to the new Accord’s increased fuel efficiency. For ideal component packaging, on 4-cylinder Accords the steering pinion is electrically assisted, and on V-6 Accords the steering rack is electrically assisted.

Other EPS benefits include a more sophisticated, linear, solid and accurate steering feel, more nimble handling and improved highway stability. Additionally, the steering column diameter has increased 27-percent over the previous-generation Accord, resulting in greater vibration damping and increased vertical stiffness.

Aluminum Alloy Wheels
For first time in Accord model history, all 2013 Accords have alloy wheels. The wheel sizes range from 16- to 18-inches in diameter, depending on model and trim level. Sedan models have 16-, 17- or 18-inch wheels, while Coupe models have 17- or 18-inch wheels.

All-Season Tires
Reducing the aerodynamic drag and rolling resistance of tires is an essential part of attaining better fuel efficiency for any vehicle. So the 2013 Accords use a range of tire widths from 205mm to 235mm that offer the best balance between all-season grip, low drag and low rolling resistance. As always, the tires also excel at providing accurate steering feel, a quiet, comfortable ride and long wear. They are also M+S rated for all-season drivability. The Accord comes with a T125/80-D16 97M temporary spare tire mounted on a steel wheel.

Accord Sedan Wheels and Tires

Accord Coupe Wheels and Tires

4-Wheel Disc Brakes with ABS
All Accord models are equipped with 4-wheel disc brakes with a 4-channel anti-lock braking system (ABS) for confident stops. The front discs measure 11.5 inches in diameter (LX: 11.1), while the rear discs measure 11.1 inches in diameter. A power brake booster offers a solid pedal feel and an optimized pedal stoke.

ABS independently modulates braking power at each wheel to help the driver retain steering control during heavy braking, while Brake Assist recognizes emergency braking situations and almost instantly applies full braking force when appropriate. (See Safety section for more information). Brake-system upgrades for 2013 include new brake pads on the Accord LX and Sport models, and new brake discs, pads and calipers on EX, EX-L and Touring models. These changes, along with an optimized hydraulic-system ratio, improve pedal feel and modulation.

Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD)
Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) is standard on all Accord models. EBD adjusts front-to-rear brake pressure according to vehicle load distribution for optimum brake balance at all times. Sensors at each wheel send signals to the brake-control module, which can modulate braking pressure based on individual wheel speed, optimizing brake pressure balance on all four wheels, while providing a linear pedal feel.

Brake Assist
The Accord’s electronically controlled Brake Assist is designed to help drivers apply full braking force in a collision-avoidance situation. If the driver suddenly brakes harder than normal in an emergency, the system fully activates the brakes. However Brake Assist does not take over braking – it only assists the driver in obtaining full braking performance in an emergency. Brake Assist deactivates when the driver releases pressure on the pedal.

Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with Traction Control
Standard on all Accord models, VSA works with ABS and the Drive-by-Wire throttle system to enhance vehicle stability when cornering. If vehicle understeer or oversteer is detected, the system selectively reduces power and/or brakes individual wheels to help correct the condition and stabilize the vehicle.

Traction control monitors front-wheel slippage, such as when starting on slick surfaces or patches of ice. If it is detected, traction control activates one or more brake calipers and reduces engine torque to slow the spinning wheel so it can regain traction. (See Safety section for more information.)

Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
The Accord’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) helps the driver maintain proper air pressure to improve driving safety, as well as reduce wear and tear on the vehicle’s tires. Located in the instrument panel, a TPMS icon illuminates to alert the driver whenever any of the tires has a significantly low pressure reading that requires the driver’s attention.

Hill Start Assist
All 2013 Accord models have hill start assist, a feature that debuted on the 2009 Honda Pilot. Hill start assist holds brake pressure when stopped on an incline or descent for a brief period of time, allowing the driver’s foot to move from the brake pedal to accelerator without the vehicle moving.

Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC)
For the first time in Accord history, Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) work together as a system to reduce noise in the cabin, while simultaneously improving the sound quality during strong acceleration. The combined effect helps make the Accord cabin a more pleasant and relaxing place to spend time.

Included in all 2013 Accord models, Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) use two microphones, a processing unit and four speakers (integral to the Accord’s audio system) to collect and interpret sound entering the cabin and then deliver an out-of-phase audio signal to cancel unwanted background noise – and better define desirable noise such as the engine note during acceleration.

Active Noise Control (ANC) counteracts engine noise, for instance when the 4-cylinder Accord is idling with the air-conditioning on, or when the V-6 engine’s Variable Cylinder Management™ (VCM®) function is cycling on and off. For its part, Active Sound Control (ASC) helps create more linear and sophisticated high-rpm engine sounds, for instance when the Accord is accelerating up a freeway on-ramp or passing slower traffic. (See Interior section for more information.)

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