In late May, Hyundai became the first automaker to officially support Android Auto with a software update to its 2015 (and newer) Sonata midsize sedans. At the time, Hyundai said that it would add support for Apple CarPlay at a later date. This week, however, Honda announced that is refreshed 2016 Honda Accord, a direct competition for the Sonata, is debuting with both Android Auto and CarPlay support fresh out of the box.
CarPlay requires iOS 7.1 or higher, while Android Auto requires Android 5.0 Lollipop or higher. Both allow you to mirror functions from your smartphone like texting, navigation, and streaming audio playback (that would otherwise take your eyes too far off the road) to your car’s central display (in the case of the Accord, it’s a 7-inch touch screen).
Given that Honda bills its new sedan as the “Highest Tech Accord Yet,” it makes sense that it was unveiled in Silicon Valley. "Where else to introduce the most technologically advanced midsize sedan, the 2016 Accord, than in Silicon Valley," said John Mendel, Executive VP for American Honda Motor Co. "Customers want their vehicles to be more intelligently integrated with their smartphone-powered lives, and we are committed to delivering that experience starting with Accord, retail car buyers' most popular vehicle the past two years."
In addition to Android Auto and CarPlay, all 2016 Accords can be equipped with Honda Sensing, which is a comprehensive suite of driver-assistance features aimed at making everyday driving safer. These technological aides include Collision Mitigating Braking, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Keeping Assist, Forward Collision Warning, and Adaptive Cruise Control. Honda Sensing is included as standard equipment on the Touring trim, and is available as an option on all other trims of the 2016 Accord.
The current generation Accord has always been a handsome and “safe” design meant to appeal to a wide audience. However, Honda has upped the style quotient just a bit with the 2016 model thanks to revised front and rear fascias, LED taillights, available LED fog lights, available LED headlights, and new 19-inch wheels on Sport and Touring trims (I’m still trying to wrap my head around an Accord coming bog stock with 19-inch wheels and tires).
The 2016 Honda Accord goes on sale next month and represents the first vehicle in Honda’s lineup to feature Android Auto and CarPlay. However, the company plans to extend availability to other vehicles for for the 2016 model year and beyond.