Junkyard Gem: 2005 Honda Accord Hybrid Sedan

Honda was the first car manufacturer to sell a production hybrid-electric car in the United States, with the Insight beating the Prius to showrooms here by nearly a year. Few remembered that a couple of years later, once the Prius became a big sales success and even after Honda introduced the Civic Hybrid as a 2003 model. Honda upped its hybrid game for the 2005 model year, when the first Accord Hybrids appeared here. Here’s one of those cars, found in a Denver-area self-service car graveyard recently.

We’ve been taking a look at discarded examples of some of the original hybrid machines from the middle 2000s, including the Saturn Vue Green Line and the Nissan Altima Hybrid, and I’m keeping my eyes open for pure electric vehicles in the boneyards I frequent. After all, these articles are all about gems of automotive history.

The 2005-2007 Accord Hybrid had a powerful 3.0-liter V6 under its hood, rated at 255 horsepower and 232 pound-feet, supplemented by a 13.8 kW electric motor that added 16.1 horsepower and 100 pound-feet. A five-speed automatic was mandatory. The result was a respectably quick car that delivered 28 combined miles per gallon, beating the four-cylinder Accord with manual transmission by two mpg and the non-hybrid V6 Accord with automatic by six mpg.

Unfortunately for Honda, the 2005 Accord Hybrid’s $30,140 MSRP ($48,481 in 2024 dollars) was $3,290 more ($5,292 after inflation) than that of the non-hybrid Accord EX that year. Sales were poor as car shoppers did the math and decided the extra power and modest savings on gasoline costs weren’t worth it; perhaps they felt differently when fuel prices went crazy in 2007 and 2008.

Toyota began selling its Camry Hybrid in the United States as a 2007 model, the last year for this generation of Accord Hybrid. Honda revived the Accord Hybrid for the 2014 model year (one year after the introduction of the nearly-forgotten Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid).

First to offer three hybrid models (though the first-generation Insight was discontinued here after 2006).

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