How do the specs of both popular midsize sedans compare?
When two incredibly popular midsize sedans get redesigned in the same year, it’s a big deal no matter how many drivers are going for a crossover instead of a four-door car. Not too long after the 2018 Toyota Camry was revealed, the sheets have been lifted from the 2018 Honda Accord, too. Before we can get our hands on a 2018 Honda Accord to drive and, eventually, track-test, we’re taking a closer look at Camry and Accord specs to see how they compare. Often, the specs can take a back seat when you see or test-drive a car in person at a dealership, but keep reading if you want a basic idea of how these two long-time rivals stack up.
Base-Engine Power and Torque: More Than Before Yet From Different Types of Engines
It’s incredible how much quicker some base-engine midsize sedans are compared to their predecessors, and that trend is likely to continue with the 2018 Toyota Camry and 2018 Honda Accord. Both cars offer top-of-the-class horsepower ratings, though the real test will be when we can evaluate acceleration and handling on the track in the way only Motor Trend can. The 2018 Camry with a base engine is powered by a 2.5-liter naturally aspirated I-4 with 203 hp at 6,600 rpm in most trims or 206 hp at 6,600 rpm in XSE form. The base-engine 2018 Camry produces 184 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm in most trims and 186 lb-ft as an XSE model.
Producing over 200 hp in a base-engine model might prove to be an advantage to Toyota salespeople everywhere, but the 2018 Honda Accord is ahead of many competitors, too, with 192 hp at 5,500 rpm from its 1.5-liter turbocharged I-4. The turbocharged engine has a slight torque advantage compared to the Camry’s naturally aspirated engine, with the Accord making 192 lb-ft from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm. All of these are impressive numbers for base-engine midsize sedans, and we look forward to seeing how they compare in a future comparison test.
Advantage Accord: So Much Trunk Space!
When it comes to trunk space, sometimes the shape of the cargo area can be almost as important as how much space you have, as you’re trying to make room for one more suitcase or bag. Even so, the basic numbers are important, and the 2018 Honda Accord makes its debut with an impressive 16.7 cubic feet of space, above the Camry’s 15.1 cubic feet (or 14.1 cubic feet in base L trim).
What’s cool about both the 2018 Honda Accord Hybrid and the 2018 Toyota Camry Hybrid is that neither car loses a bit of cargo space to make room for any hybrid hardware—the hybridized Camry comes in at 15.1 cubic feet and the Accord at 16.7 cubic feet.
Similar Overall Dimensions
The new 2018 Accord and 2018 Camry might look completely different, but most of their basic dimensions are similar. The Accord’s wheelbase, at 111.4 inches, is 0.2 inch longer than that of the Camry. The two rivals’ overall length is exactly the same when comparing the Accord against the Camry L, LE, and XLE. (The SE and XSE are 0.6 inch longer.) The Accord is just 0.2 inch taller in height than the Camry, but the biggest difference here is in width: The Honda is nearly an inch longer than the Camry, at 73.2 inches compared to 72.4 inches.
So yes, they’ll both probably fit into your garage.
Plenty of Room to Stretch Out
The last-generation Accord and Camry didn’t have any major issues with rear-seat space, and the new models are no different. The 2018 Camry offers 42.1 inches of front and 38.0 inches of rear legroom. In our 2018 Camry First Drive review, we said that the car “still feels big, open, and airy with excellent outward visibility, thanks to the lowered beltline.”
Thanks to its longer wheelbase, the 2018 Accord has increased rear-seat space. The front seat is good for 42.3 inches of legroom, and the rear offers a full 40.4 inches of space. On paper, that’s a huge amount of space, and it’ll likely feel that way in person, too.
Advanced Safety Tech is Standard on Both Models
A package of active safety tech is standard on every 2018 Toyota Camry and 2018 Honda Accord. Some of the technologies aren’t for everyone, but these could be the types of features you don’t appreciate until they go to work for you. Both cars’ systems include an automatic braking system that can apply the brakes if it senses an obstacle ahead and the driver hasn’t applied the brakes, as well as a lane departure mitigation system that can nudge the car back into its lane. Neither car has been safety-tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, but we’d expect good results considering the last-generation 2017 models each achieved a five-star overall NHTSA rating (out of a possible five stars) and a Top Safety Pick+ designation from the IIHS.
Not a Luxury Sedan, But Check Out These Features…
No Toyota- or Honda-badged sedan will ever provide the same type of emotional connection and status some seek out with luxury-branded vehicles. However, both mainstream midsize sedans have upped their game when it comes to available premium features. Just some features on the 2018 Accord include LED headlights, heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, and a head-up display. The 2018 Camry also now offers a head-up display and LED headlights, not to mention a multicamera parking aid and panoramic roof.
What About the Transmissions?
Both cars include new transmissions in their midsize sedan lineups. With the 2018 Honda Accord, the coupe was discontinued, but manual transmissions survive in the 192-hp 1.5- and 252-hp 2.0-liter turbocharged engines. Most Accord 1.5 buyers will stick with the CVT, and the more powerful 2.0 model also gets a 10-speed automatic.
The 2018 Camry has eight-speed automatics for the 2.5-liter I-4 and the 3.5-liter V-6—yes, the Camry sticks with a V-6 powertrain, and it’s rated at 301 hp.
The midsize sedan class is full of other entries outside Honda and Toyota dealerships, from the much-improved Chevrolet Malibu to the updated-for-2018 Hyundai Sonata. There are also the attractive Ford Fusion, which offers a number of different powertrains, and the fun-to-drive Mazda6. Check back to MotorTrend.com for more on these midsize sedans in the upcoming months.