How Do Honda Hybrid Cars Work?

Unique System

The new Accord Hybrid employs an updated version of Honda’s two-motor hybrid system, which is the first of its kind in the automotive industry.

The Accord Hybrid’s two-motor system employs one motor to accelerate the car from a stopped position, and a second motor to start the engine and charge the first motor. This pioneering hybrid system is teamed up with a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine that utilizes the Atkinson cycle combustion sequence to achieve maximum output with the least possible fuel consumption. A noteworthy feature of the Accord Hybrid’s powertrain is that it utilizes a gasoline engine to deliver power to the wheels in certain circumstances, but it does so without a transmission.

As with previous Accord Hybrid models, various driving modes are offered:

  • EV Drive uses only electric power to operate the front wheels, doing so as long as the lithium-ion battery pack is sufficiently charged.
  • Hybrid Drive enables electric-only operation through use of the propulsion motor; meanwhile, the gas engine recharges the battery pack and uses the second motor as a generator.
  • Engine Drive uses the gasoline engine to provide direct power to the front wheels and is the only mode that does so.
  • Sport Mode lets drivers utilize both motors for enhanced acceleration and a peppy driving experience.

New Technologies

In developing the Honda Accord Hybrid, Honda designers had to bring some fresh technologies to the table in order to accomplish their aims of excellence:

Honda Accord Hybrid Engine
  • Atkinson cycle engine: With an Atkinson cycle engine, during the compression stroke the intake valves remain open briefly. This pushes some of the air out of the cylinders and into the intake manifold, thereby lowering the compression ratio and enabling quick, smooth starts that are ideal for hybrid vehicles.
  • VTEC: A drawback of Atkinson cycle engines is reduced power. To remedy this, Honda installed VTEC, which is a system designed to electronically control valve timing with camshafts that have two sets of lobes. One lobe set is for the Atkinson cycle, and one is for ordinary combustion. The engine’s computer transitions between these two sets of lobes in accordance with engine speed and load.
  • Regenerative brakes: The regenerative brakes found onboard the Accord Hybrid are designed to send electricity to the car’s battery. As soon as the driver’s foot leaves the accelerator, regeneration commences—not just when the brake pedal is pressed, as with other hybrid models.
  • Compact battery pack: The Accord Hybrid’s air-cooled lithium-ion battery pack is designed to fit in a compact case situated between the rear seat of the car and its trunk, giving the car a much roomier trunk than it would have with a conventional, larger battery pack. In all, the 2017 Accord Hybrid serves up 13.7 cubic feet of trunk space.

Impressive Efficiency

When drivers get behind the wheel of a hybrid car, outstanding fuel economy is expected. After all, that’s why most consumers purchase a hybrid vehicle to begin with. The Honda Accord Hybrid certainly answers the call for fuel efficiency in an impressive way!

For 2017, the Accord Hybrid serves up an EPA-estimated 49 mpg in the city, 47 mpg on the highway, and 48 combined mpg.* This outstanding fuel economy delivery most certainly meets consumers’ high expectations for just how a hybrid vehicle should perform—and then some!

Experience the Honda Hybrid Difference

If you’re ready to experience for yourself just how outstanding Honda’s hybrid technology is, the crew at any New England Honda Dealers location is ready to help! Come by and see us or contact us today to learn more about the 2017 Honda Accord Hybrid and other eco-friendly vehicles offered by Honda. Our friendly, knowledgeable team members are standing by to answer all of your questions and even help you secure financing for your next vehicle purchase. Come in today to get a fantastic deal on an exceptional vehicle!

*Based on 2017 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on driving conditions, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, battery-pack age/condition, and other factors.

New England Honda Dealers


Phone: (877) 770-8091

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New England Honda Dealers
New England Honda Dealers
, , United States
(877) 770-8091
New England Honda Dealers , .