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Re: are hondas really that bad?
I can't speak for Euro-spec Accords or even late model US Accords, but we
(she) have an '89 Accord, and prior to that, she had an '87 (don' ask why
only 2 years on that one but 6 on this).
The engine IS much quieter and smoother than you'd expect from a
non-balance-shaft four. At idle, the car/engine is so quiet it is quite easy
to kill the car on take off, or to grind the starter trying to start a
running engine! These cars are light (2400# for the LXi or SEi), so
performance is not suprising-- power:weight ratio is similar to the 5ktq,
much better than my 4kcsq.
I find the ride a bit soft--"American" style, but I disagree with you on the
handling. I feel the Accord has a much more sophistocated suspension than
the quattros. While absolute limits may not be as good, composure through
the bumpy corners would leave the 4000csq way behind (both cars with stock
suspension). The Honda's "dual wishbone" F&R suspension handles bumps,
potholes, etc in mid-corner much better than the simple struts on the Audi.
Now let's talk reliability. On the other hand, let's not--except for brakes
(thin rotors, warp easily if you live on the top of a long hill/hit puddles
of water at the bottom like we see in Seattle, gotta check the wheel bolts
for torque...), NOTHING HAS EVER BROKEN (by itself) on the car
On the other hand, the seats leave much to be desired--I can drive from
Seattle to San Francisco without fatigue in my 200 Q, but have a very sore
back and bottom after doing the same in the Accord. And because they sold so
many of them, they do become targets for joy-riders, chop-shop acquisition,
etc (no, that's not what happened to the '87) and you keep seeing yourself
coming and going.