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2021 Honda Accord vs 2021 Kia K5

  • 2021 Honda Accord

    A grey 2021 Honda Accord LX is angled left.

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    2021 Kia K5

    A red 2021 Kia K5 is angled right.

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    192Base Horsepower (HP)180
    YesHybrid OptionNo
    482Combined Fuel Economy (city/highway)32

    Honda has a reputation for building reliable vehicles that are capable of logging thousands upon thousands of miles without sacrificing performance and comfort. That's part of what makes the Honda Accord a favorite among drivers looking for a reliable, comfortable, and spacious sedan. But does Honda still have the corner on the market, or is Kia inching its way into the race with sedans like the K5? That's the question in this comparison of the 2021 Honda Accord vs 2021 Kia K5.

    While the slightly lower price of the Kia K5 may appear attractive, the Honda Accord is a robust design that has been on the market for 45 years. In contrast, the brand-new K5 has nothing to compare. While the Kia Optima had been beginning to build a reputation for itself, the K5 is a clean-sheet design, and it remains open to question whether it will stand the test of time in the way that the Accord has.

    The Accord is also an overall more practical choice - it offers a significantly more spacious rear seat and a larger truck that make it a more than serviceable family vehicle. The Accord also gets better gas mileage than the K5 and even has a hybrid version available if you really want to save money at the pump. While the Kia K5 may eventually evolve into a capable midsize sedan, today, the Honda Accord is the clear winner.

  • Performance

    A black 2021 Honda Accord Hybrid is driving on a city street after winning the 2021 Honda Accord vs 2021 Kia K5 comparison.

    The first category in which the 2021 Honda Accord truly shines is in performance and powertrain. The 2021 Accord offers three powertrains. The Accord comes standard with a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine that delivers 192 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque. On the higher-level trim options, the engine can be upgraded to a beefier 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that delivers an impressive 252 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque through a ten-speed automatic transmission. The third engine option is available on the Accord Hybrid and features an innovative two-motor hybrid powertrain that delivers 212 hp and 232 lb-ft of torque.

    Kia Engines

    Kia doesn't give drivers as many powertrain options as Honda. The K5 comes standard with a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine and an 8-speed automatic transmission that delivers 180 hp and a torque rating of 195 lb-ft of torque. The only other engine option is available on the GT trim and is a 2.5-liter turbocharged engine that produces 290 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. This power, of course, comes at the cost of dramatically lower fuel efficiency.


    One of the most notable differences in powertrain options between the Honda Accord and the Kia K5 is the Accord Hybrid. Honda once again advances its prowess in the automotive industry by debuting a powerful performer with a hybrid option that is set to attract environmentally-conscious drivers and those looking for an exceptional estimated fuel economy of 48 MPG combined.2 However, rated at 33 MPG combined, even the standard gasoline powertrain in the Accord is already more efficient than the 32 MPG of the Kia K5.

  • Technology

    The dashboard and infotainment screen in a 2021 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring are shown.

    The 2021 Honda Accord comes with an impressive technology suite that's housed on the standard touchscreen display. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration allow drivers to sync their smartphones with the Accord to gain access to apps, music, navigation, and more at the touch of a button. The touchscreen is also home to the multiangle rearview camera that provides a comprehensive view of the vehicle's rear once the Accord is shifted into reverse.

    Honda Technology

    The Accord's technology and convenience features also include a Bluetooth HandsFreeLink and Bluetooth Streaming Audio as well as a USB audio interface that takes connectivity one step further on the Accord. The sedan is also capable of becoming a Wi-Fi hotspot depending on the driver's data plan. Beyond these connectivity features, the Accord also offers push-button start, LED daytime running lights, automatic LED high-beam and low-beam headlights, and the advanced Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System that features 3D maps. 

    The HondaLink app is another remarkable feature and gives drivers control of the Accord at the touch of a button. Drivers can sync the Accord with the HondaLink app and gain access to the vehicle. The app enables drivers to lock and unlock the doors, check the fuel status, monitor the vehicle's security alarm, and remote start the vehicle with the heater or air conditioner running. The app can also provide feedback on the driver's driving style, which is designed to encourage better driving habits.

    Kia Technology

    Technology on the K5 falls under the UVO Link suite, which is similar to the HondaLink app by giving drivers access to various services and details about the sedan through the app. Also like the Honda, the K5 includes a standard 8-in touchscreen display with a rearview camera as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. The K5's convenience features include remote engine start, push-button start, dual temperature control, automatic windows, and USB charging ports.

  • Safety

    A red 2021 Honda Accord 2.0T Touring is driving on a city street, shown from the rear.

    If powertrain and technology didn't set the 2021 Honda Accord apart from the 2021 Kia K5, then the safety features certainly will. The entire Accord fleet comes standard with the impressive Honda Sensing safety suite. This suite offers an outstanding variety of safety and driver-assist features that are designed to give drivers more control and greater confidence from behind the wheel.

    Honda Sensing

    The suite includes the innovative Collision Mitigation Braking System that detects unavoidable frontal collisions and automatically applies brake pressure to help prevent the crash. The Road Departure Mitigation System is another part of the suite that alerts drivers if they've changed lanes or drifted between lanes without using a turn signal. The technology takes safety a step further by providing steering assistance to help keep the Accord on the road.

    Lane Keeping Assist is similar to the Road Departure Mitigation System since it's designed to keep the Accord safely in its lane. When activated, this system helps the driver keep the vehicle in its lane by subtly adjusting the steering as needed. This is especially helpful on long highway stretches and works exceptionally well with Adaptive Cruise Control, which monitors the traffic ahead and helps maintain a safe distance and speed. The last feature is one of the most innovative and is Traffic Sign Recognition, which utilizes the car's cameras to display traffic sign information on the Driver Information Interface or the available Head-Up Display.

    Kia Drive Wise

    Kia's safety suite is known as Drive Wise and offers similar driver-assist technology. Smart Cruise Control with Highway Driving Assist works much like Honda's Adaptive Cruise Control. The same is true for Kia's other advanced safety technologies. However, while every trim of the Accord comes standard with Adaptive Cruise Control, the same cannot be said of the K5 and its Smart Cruise Control. In fact, not a single trim of the K5 comes standard with this valuable system, and it isn't even an option on the lowest trims.

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