2019 Honda Accord vs. 2019 Lexus ES Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

To help make backing safer, the Accord Sport 2.0T/EX/EX-L/Touring’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The ES Series doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The Accord’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The ES Series doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Accord and the ES Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems and rear parking sensors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Accord the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 85 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The ES Series has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

There are over 4 times as many Honda dealers as there are Lexus dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Accord’s warranty.

Engine

The Accord’s optional 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 6 lbs.-ft. more torque (273 vs. 267) than the ES 350’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Accord gets better fuel mileage than the ES 350:

 

 

Accord

ES Series

 

 

Sport 1.5 turbo 4 cyl./Manual

26 city/35 hwy

n/a

 

 

Sport 2.0 turbo 4 cyl./Manual

22 city/32 hwy

n/a

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

30 city/38 hwy

n/a

 

 

Sport/Touring 1.5 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

29 city/35 hwy

n/a

 

 

2.0 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

23 city/34 hwy

22 city/33 hwy

V6/Auto

 

Sport/Touring 2.0 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

22 city/32 hwy

22 city/31 hwy

V6/Auto F Sport

The Accord has 1.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the ES Series Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (14.8 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Accord has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The ES Series doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The Accord offers a manual transmission for better acceleration, control and fuel economy. The ES Series doesn’t offer a manual transmission.

A 10-speed automatic is standard on the Honda Accord 2.0 turbo 4 cyl., for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the ES Series.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Accord 2.0T/Sport/Touring’s brake rotors are larger than those on the ES Series:

 

Accord

ES Series

Front Rotors

12.3 inches

12 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Accord has larger standard tires than the ES Series (225/50R17 vs. 215/55R17).

The Accord’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the ES Series’ standard 55 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

The Accord’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The ES Series doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

Chassis

The Honda Accord may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 500 pounds less than the Lexus ES Series.

The Accord is 3.7 inches shorter than the ES Series, making the Accord easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The front grille of the Accord EX 1.5T/EX-L 1.5T uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The ES Series doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Accord a Large car, while the ES Series is rated a Mid-size.

The Accord has 5.7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the ES Series (105.6 vs. 99.9).

The Accord has 2 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front hip room, 2.4 inches more front shoulder room, 1.2 inches more rear legroom, .7 inches more rear hip room and 2.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the ES Series.

Cargo Capacity

The Accord’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The ES Series doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

Servicing Ease

A Maintenance Minder is standard on the Accord to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Lexus doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the ES Series.

Ergonomics

The Accord Sport 2.0T Auto/EX/EX-L/Touring has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The ES Series doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Accord Touring has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The ES Series doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Accord’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The ES Series’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Both the Accord and the ES Series offer available heated front seats. The Accord Touring also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the ES Series.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Honda Accord, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Accord was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 22 of the last 24 years. The ES Series has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The Accord 2.0T Sport was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2018. The ES Series has never been an “All Star.”

A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the Accord as the 2018 North American Car of the Year. The ES Series has never been chosen.

The Honda Accord outsold the Lexus ES Series by over six to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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