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Honda Accord Plug-in is a high-tech hot mess (pictures)

With its modern but bland design, the Accord Plug-in attempts a high-tech coup, but merely catches up with previous efforts from Toyota and Ford.

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Wayne Cunningham
2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
1 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Honda adds a plug-in hybrid version of the Accord sedan for the 2014 model year.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
2 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The Accord Plug-in gets a few unique styling cues, such as a blue-tinted stripe below the front badge holder.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
3 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

As a midsize sedan, the Accord Plug-in offers a roomy cabin, comfortable for five.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
4 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Like the standard Accord, the Accord Plug-in is a front-wheel-drive car.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
5 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

LED headlights come standard on the Accord Plug-in.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
6 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Honda's Earth Dreams brand encompasses its new efficiency technologies, including a hybrid drivetrain and direct-injection engines.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
7 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

A lithium ion battery pack takes up extra room in the Accord Plug-in, limiting trunk space to 8.6 cubic feet.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
8 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

A charging cable adapter that can plug into a 110-volt wall outlet stows under the trunk floor.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
9 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Honda mounts the standard J1772 charging port on the left-front fender.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
10 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The soft seats help absorb some of the stiffness of the suspension.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
11 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Rear seats offer a comfortable amount of legroom.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
12 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The interior design of the Accord Plug-in is light and modern.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
13 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The cabin tech interface is confusing, with an LCD at the top of the stack, a smaller touch screen below, and switchgear below that.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
14 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

This dial-and-button set controls the LCD at the top of the stack.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
15 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Typical for hybrids, the instrument cluster lacks a tachometer, instead offering drivers information on power usage and regeneration.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
16 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The shifter controls an electronic continuously variable transmission.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
17 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Drivers can view a power flow animation on the top LCD.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
18 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

Honda's maps are bright and colorful, but the navigation system is prone to losing track of the car.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
19 of 21 Josh Miller/CNET

The stereo includes iOS integration for devices plugged into the USB port.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
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Pandora integration comes standard and requires that the Pandora app be running on a connected smartphone.

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2014 Honda Accord Plug-in
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The HondaLink app integrates Aha audio and location services.

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