Its battle of the big green boys and this time around it’s the Japanese in the fray. One the one hand we have the Honda Accord Hybrid, a modern version of what has been one of India’s longest running premium sedans. On the other hand, there is also the Camry Hybrid which is the only locally assembled hybrid vehicle in the country and one that gets major benefit from the FAME scheme. They are the breed of new green cars that are expected to populate our markets within the next few years and will set the standard for what to expect in the future. So in the fight between both the cars, how do they stack up? Read on to find out…
The Accord and Camry are both entry-level E segment sedans which means they are by nature quite large and luxurious. Delving into the numbers shows that Accord is larger in terms of length but matches the Camry on all other fronts. It also a similar choice in terms of external elements like alloy wheels, automatic headlamps, LED DRLs and obviously the hybrid badging which gives the owner bragging rights that they are doing their bit for Mother Nature. The appearance is then about personal choice which in this case is a choice between the sharp and straight cut lines of the Accord or the curvy and slightly quirky design which has dominated the Camry in this generation.
If you have been following the many (many) comparisons that we have done over the years, it should be obvious that when you go past a certain price range, things like a touchscreen infotainment system, climate control, rear AC vents, electrically adjustable seats and possibly leather upholstery are all standard fitment. Even the layout of most items becomes a standard because big money has been spent on researching ergonomics and when you have similar proportions, the ability for things to fall to hand will be quite similar irrespective of the vehicle.
It then is the little things that matter when you are paying for luxury. Let us start with the Camry which has the upper hand over the Accord as it gets a TPMS, electric lumbar adjustment, seat memory, rear blinds and a 3 years/1 lakh warranty. The Accord fights back with ESP, remote boot opener, two 12V charging points and an electrically retractable sunroof. Also with the Accord your warranty holds out 2 years/40000km.
The Camry Hybrid is powered by a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine producing 202bhp/213Nm with power going to the front wheels via an E-CVT gearbox. At speeds less than 40kmph the car runs on pure electric power but with a very limited range.
It’s a similar story with the Accord which is powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine producing 212bhp/315Nm with power going to the front wheels via a E-CVT. It too has a very puny pure electric range and it exists more for when the car is inching along in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
The Accord maybe the newer car with some extra tech compared to the Camry but it is kind of blown clean out of the water due to the Camry being locally assembled and thus costing Rs 8 lakh lesser. What’s more, since its locally assembled, the Camry also qualifies for the FAME concession.