The Honda Accord is priced higher the models you’d naturally consider to be its rivals. The entry-level 154bhp 2.0 petrol is almost £3000 more than the 158bhp 1.6 Ecoboost petrol Mondeo. That price will only get you an Accord in the base trim, though standard kit does include climate control and 17-inch alloy wheels.

But for the same money as the 2.0 ES Accord, you’re less than £1000 away from an entry-level BMW 3-Series. Head up the trim level range and the lavishly equipped EX is pitched right into the heart of 3-Series territory. That’s tough talking, but Honda not only says the pricing is justified but also produces convincing evidence to show that it has the residual value of a BMW. Only time will tell whether Honda is right.

Collision Mitigation Braking System will tighten the seatbelt around you to prepare for impact and to jolt you from your reverie. If this doesn’t work, it will even slam on the brakes

On the road, the 148bhp diesel Accord is as frugal as you’d expect of a shape as aerodynamic as this, powered by a small-capacity diesel engine. Although Honda claims a combined consumption figure of more than 50mpg, in reality most owners are likely to achieve something between that and the 38.8mpg we managed during testing.

Still, it comes with impressively low CO2 emissions (138g/km, enough for it to sit in VED band E).

The recent changes to the Accord range also did wonders for the CO2 emissions for the rest of the model line-up. Aerodynamic revisions and improvements to the 2.0 i-VTEC petrol in the manual saloon helped it achieve a CO2 figure of 159g/km, down 9g/km from before. These changes drop it below the important 160g/km Write Down Allowance threshold for the first time.

Should you desire the extra performance of the 177bhp diesel, there is an inevitable price to pay in terms of efficiency, albeit small. Honda's official figures are 50.4mpg and 147g/km. However, the more powerful diesel option is only available as a Type S, meaning a list price of more than £30k. For this money, the Accord finds itself in competition with some very talented rivals.


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