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May 20, 2011 (9:55 am)
Based on the reviews in this forum and from the reviews at tirerack.com, I changed my 2004 Honda Accord EX tires back in early September 2010 with Michelin Primacy MXV4 via tirerack.com and installed them through a recommended local installer.
My Accord came originally with Michelin tires and they lasted me well into the 70k mile range, but occasionally I noticed that sometimes when I accelerate from a stop in rain, I could lose traction (which can be kind of scary and have to hold tight on the steering wheel).
The Michelin Primacy MXV4 I currently have performs similarly to the original Michelin's but it doesn't have that traction problem. I live in the Los Angeles area so I have never driven in snow. Also, with my original Michelins it would squeak when I turn right or left too fast, with the new Primacy MXV4's they don't do that.
Overall, I am quite satisfied with the Primacy MXV4s. My mom's 2007 Camry OEM Bridgestone Turanza tires lasted only about 40k miles before needing to be replaced (because they have a lower thread life rating than the Michelins).
May 20, 2011 (6:03 pm)
My 1993 Accord had MXV4s when I inherited it. Those lasted about 40k and were replaced by Kumho Ecsta ASXs that really seemed to wake up the handling of the car.
The treadwear rating is kind of a joke. Its an index number based on each tire manufacturer's own testing against a "standard" tire. It basically means treadware ratings are only comparable with in a brand, not really between tires or brands.
Its also slightly harder to tell when someone feels a tire handles better or corners better than another tire because the tire's performance changes as it wears and its hard to get a baseline.
The nice thing is, most drivers don't care. They want something that will provide a cushy ride and last a long time, and maybe good fuel economy. Unfortunately, I want a tire that feels responsive, offers good turn in, good lateral grip, and good performance in wet conditions. I am willing to trade off some treadware and even some fuel economy for that. I am not willing to accept error states like tramlining or rubbing.
#5630 of 5901 Ugh Sway Bar End Links Grrrr
May 21, 2011 (3:47 pm)
So the transmission fluid change went fine once I realized the car had to be level (the front end was jacked up to provide access, but the rear was on the ground) to be able to fill the trans completely. I jacked up the back and things filled fine.
I also drained the coolant and refilled it with Honda blessed coolant for the 2nd time (1st at 30k, this time at 60k).
Since the back was in the air anyway, I started to install the Acura TL rear sway bar. The end links are the worst part. I tried the allen key in the back of the bolt while trying to unscrew the nut and it didn't really get me anywhere (I think it was a 5mm allen key that fit). Anyone else have any luck with that? Everything else was easy as pie. Right now, I think i am just going to get the old ones out by any means necessary and get new ones ($60/pr). Any thoughts?
#5631 of 5901 2005 vs 2006 -- which to pick?
Jun 02, 2011 (1:22 pm)
Hi all: I'm interested in a used Honda Accord EX sedan, manual transmisssion, 4 cylinder, and am wondering how significant the differences are between the 2005 and 2006 versions. I am ruling out 2003 and 2004 because--from what I can tell--they didn't have side curtain airbags, not even as an option.
I know that in going from 2005 to 2006, Honda slightly changed the engine and reworked the suspension a bit, plus the nicer tail lights (gauges, too, right?) Looking at Edmunds pricing, there seems to be about an $1,800 gap between the two. I'd be inclined to go with the 2006, but it seems very hard to find this particular combination of EX, manual, 4 cyl, 4 doors. So if I came across a 2005 priced right, it might be tempting. Are there any mechanical issues that I should be aware of that would affect my decision? Most likely I would hold onto the car for several years. No other really distinguishing driving needs.
#5632 of 5901 Re: 2005 vs 2006 -- which to pick? [mr_gone]
Jun 02, 2011 (1:39 pm)
In 03, the side curtain air bags were standard equipment in the EX-V6 (according to the sales literature I have)
My 04 EXL I4 has side curtain air bags, I just don't know about the DX/LX models since I don't have the sales literature for 04.
#5633 of 5901 Re: 2005 vs 2006 -- which to pick? [mr_gone]
Jun 03, 2011 (2:41 pm)
As you have already discovered, '05-'06 Accord EX sedans with 5-speed manual are not easy to find. My cousin is General Manager of a large Honda dealership here in Georgia and he recently gave me some insight into why they are so scarce on the used car market. According to his Service Manager, owners of the 2003-2007 Accord EX with the 5-speed manual keep their cars much longer than average. The vast majority of manual-shift Accord owners plan to continue driving them for years to come- so they rarely show up in used car listings! =(
Comparing 2005 and 2006 models, quite a few improvements were made to the 2.4L I-4 for the 2006 model year. Drive-by-wire (DBW) replaced the previous 'throttle cable' setup, which results in smoother operation and enhanced throttle response. The 2006 version gained a minor power boost (6hp) and both hp and torque peak at lower revs.
The minor design 'refresh' in 2006 made an already attractive sedan look even better, IMO. The 2003-2005 tail lights look a bit droopy and dull, while the 2006 was fresh and sporty looking. If I was in the market right now, a 2006-2007 Accord would be at the top of my short list!
I may have one suggestion that could help to broaden your search a bit. If you can live without the EX's power moonroof, there were two EX-look-alike models sold in 2006 and 2007. I have always referred to both model years as the SE, but the 2006 model in particular is often called the LX Special Edition, Special Edition or LX-SE. By 2007, SE seemed to stick.
The 2006 SE adds the following features to the LX sedan-
16" alloy wheels (identical to EX 4-cyl)
4-wheel disc brakes w/ Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
6-CD in-dash changer
Steering wheel audio controls
Body-color side sill
Carbon-fiber interior accents
A 5-speed manual was standard on the SE both years, so there are some manual transmission examples out there. From the either side, they are a dead-ringer for the EX thanks to the sharp-looking alloy wheels fournd on both trim levels! =)
A 2006 SE stickered for $1725 less than an EX sedan and the power moonroof standard on the EX was the most significant difference. The EX also added heated side mirrors, security system, Aluminum interior accents (vs. carbon fiber), illuminated power window switches and ambient console lighting. The EX driver's seat also has a manual lumbar adjustment and the height adjustment becomes power (vs. manual on LX and SE). EX and SE both have side-impact and head-curtain airbags standard!
So an SE 5-speed manual might be worth considering if you don't manage to find an EX that works for you....
If you totally strike out at finding an Accord 4cyl 5-speed, you should take a look at the 2004-2005 Acura TSX as an alternative. The '03-'07 Accord sold here was designed specifically for the North American market. The rest of the world had a slightly smaller, more athletic Accord instead...and that verison of the Accord was sold here as the Acura TSX! =) 200hp, 6-speed, rock-solid reliability, great styling,
#5634 of 5901 Re: 2005 vs 2006 -- which to pick? [igozoomzoom]
Jun 03, 2011 (7:42 pm)
Thank you for the very detailed response! I am afraid that based on the shortages of new Hondas now due to the tsunami's destruction that used Accords are going to be even more of a scarcity. But your description of the advantages of the 2006 do make it seem worth holding out for. I totally agree about the tail lights looking better, although I think the car overall doesn't look as good as the 1999-2002 version. And the 2008+ are best viewed from the interior of the car.
The LX-SE is a nice idea, although I really do want the EX's sunroof if I can get it. I live in Minnesota, so summers are short and you want to make the most of them. In the winter, the heated side mirrors would be well-used.
As for the TSX, yes, I'm familiar with it and enjoyed driving one, but the engine seemed to rev a bit high in 6th gear and the car really reminded you of how bad our roads are. Gas mileage isn't as good as the 5-speed Accord, it requires premium gas, and a comparable year would be significantly more expensive.
The 2006 Accord 5-spd 4 cyl really hits a sweet spot as a used car -- safe, fuel-efficient, relatively fun to drive, reliable. That's why nobody wants to give them up!
#5635 of 5901 Re: 2005 vs 2006 -- which to pick? [mr_gone]
Jun 04, 2011 (7:00 am)
I have no problem finding a 2005 EX-L 5 speed, but that is because it is in the garage.
and I have a neighbor with a 2006 or 7 5 speed Accord (can't recall which model though, but sure it is a stick). Other than that, not something I see very often.
Other than an annoying CEL that just came on, no problems with it, and I most likely will keep it for a long time yet, probably passing it down to my daughter at some point to use in school.
one of the best things about it? No crappy Honda AT to fail prematurely! So no real worry keeping it well past 100K. Though I only have 62K on mine now.
I did not realize they made so many mechanical tweaks for 2006, but honestly, i doubt you would really notice them or miss them if you got a 2005. The taillights on the 05 also IMO were the best looking, since they got rid of the white band for the back up light. I never though the 2006 rear matched the front on that car.
Jun 04, 2011 (7:01 am)
also, try hard for an EX. I consider the moonroof to be essential, but almost as important is getting the power seat.
I believe the EX has partial power (height only, and 6 way?). The EX-L has full 8 way power. much nicer.
#5637 of 5901 Re: model [stickguy]
Jun 06, 2011 (2:20 pm)
The 06 EX has just the power height adjustment. The EX-L does indeed have the 8-way power seat for the driver (heated too). The passenger seat is manual.