General Honda tourer 2003 / 2004 - 2.4 or 2.0 Petrol - any advice?

Discussion in '7th Generation (2003-2008) [Acura TSX]' started by Pedro1, Sunday 27th Apr, 2014.

  1. Pedro1 Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Hi All,

    After 10 years of VAG ownership (Polo, Audi TT and now an old A4 B5 saloon) I've decided to try something new. A growing family has necessitated a larger car, and after doing the usual auto trader / parkers review frenzy i think i have plumped for a Honda Tourer due to the massive boot and fairly old school boxy styling (don't really like those rounded boring identikit euro shapes). Also swayed by the great reviews and posts from owners on forums but still a bit indecisive about the engine size. My budget is about £3500 which should get me something from 2003 / 2004 with about 60 - 80K on the clock.

    I only do about 4-6K a year, mostly motorway miles. I looking for decentish economy and comfort / carrying capacity / rear legroom mainly (my misses will probably sit in back with the new squirt for the first 12 months). My current A4 is a 2.4 and eats petrol (27 MPG at best; about 21 when we lived in London) but does run well at 70/80 MPG with quite a bit of poke for motorway overtaking. Its averaging 28mpg at the mo because most trips are up the A23 / M23 / M25

    I was set on the 2L but saw a few posts on here and other forums saying that the 6th gear on the 2.4 ran at fairly low revs, and that the MPG between the two was fairly similar. Interested to know if people have driven either and found much difference in performance / power / handling / reliability / servicing costs etc. Also wondered about views on comfort and rear legroom compared to other similar sized estates.


  2. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    Hi @Pedro1 and welcome to HK :Hey:

    I drive a 2.2 I-CTDI diesel. Unless you really know the car's history, and it's been looked after, stay away.
    However, if you do know the history, they are great. After all, it's a Honda !

    Back to petrol.
    The 2.0 will delivery better MPG, slightly cheaper RFL and lower insurance.
    There are more of them around.
    However, the extra power reserve in the 2.4 is what delights those that have one.
    This could be relevant for 'family' motoring.
    There is not much difference in MPG. It really depends on your driving style.

    When the others log on later, they'll be able to give you their perspective.

    Either way, you will find that changing to Honda is one of the best decisions you've made. :Thumbup:
  3. Phil1978 Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Phil Salisbury
    After p/xing a VAG motor in against my Honda I can say it is a leap in quality for me, I have the 2.4 auto, my last fuel up I worked out 28mpg that was about 280 motorway miles and a week of urban commutes, It probably would have been higher but I hit VTEC a few times during overtakes, I'd assume the manual would return better MPG.
    SpeedyGee likes this.
  4. PeteMM Premium Member Club Supporter

    Northern Ireland Pete Belfast, UK
    2 litre will be more efficient

    2.4 will be more fun

    @Phil1978 - you would assume wrong, in my case anyway, mines a thirsty...... averaging 24-26 MPG now
  5. Phil1978 Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Phil Salisbury
    That does surprise me @PeteMM although the auto box does tend to change up earlier than I usually would, probably because my last car was turbo charged.
  6. tonygw Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    I Drive the 2.4 tourer and all I can say is what an engine....itsss smooooooooooooth! Very refined. Our other car is an Audi 1.8T and its had its fair share of what I would call design flaw issues, things like broken water pipe housings, dodgy coil packs, failed temp sensors, leaking rocker cover gaskets.
    The Honda drives really nicely, good amount of feedback through the steering wheel, good handling for such a big car, the 2.4 pulls like a train and is great when you hit the Vtech at 6KRPM. Its not massively fast but its good enough for spirited driving and overtaking with a big smile on your face. With a light right foot it returns good MPG but if you drive quickly it will drop. Overall though I am impressed by the MPG it returns and is a good trade of power and MPG compared to a chugging vibrating diesel (sorry not a fan)

    So far in one year the accord has been great in comparison. Its a huge load lugger, I have two kids and its perfect for them and the wife and can fit easily push chairs, small bikes, trikes in the oot with room to spare. There are some things to watch on the tourer though, the electric tailgate can give issues, mine did and had a replacement second hand motor fitted. The sat nav dvd drive can fail and is £140 to get refurbed. I had the rear anti roll bar bushes replaced due to knocking, but over all its a good design much better than other similar cars on the market and the 2.4's are coming right down in price now making them a reliable bargain if you ask me. Go for it.... you will not regrett it.
    PeteMM likes this.
  7. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    Tony, I am happy to accept all you say about your 2.4. It is a fabulous engine in a great car. :Smile:

    However, I must point out that my 2.2 I-CTDI is not a "chugging vibrating diesel" :telloff:
    It may be a little noisier than yours, but then diesels are. Even a Honda diesel. :Frown:

    Diesels from certain other brands, may do as you describe, but not a properly maintained Honda. :Smile:
  8. tonygw Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    Oops sorry I wasnt having a go at your car personally just my humble opinion. As long as you are happy with your car thats all that matters. I am a fan of hondas they just seem to make good cars. I have lost faith in the vw audi group though, nice cars built on the illusion of being well built, which they are not.... well not any more it seems.
    Nels likes this.
  9. Pedro1 Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    When I worked in the quality dept at ford of Europe, they used to call it 'perceived quality'. My TT looked nice but quite a few rattles, issues with boot catches and door catches, and the ECU that controlled the window one touch memory kept dropping them an inch when I drove over 70. Not mention some fairly dangerous under steer
    Nels likes this.
  10. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    No offence taken. :Drinks: I respect and support your right to express your opinion.
    I just wanted to make sure that the picture is balanced. :Hey:

    Some diesels need crushing. :Baseballbat:
    They shouldn't be on the road.

    Honda diesels are better than the rest.
    The I-DTEC is even better than my I-CTDI.
    I truly believe that the issues with Honda diesels are mainly down to poor maintenance / incorrect driving styles.
    The issues with other makes of diesel are exacerbated by poor engineering and poor build quality.

    Your 2.4 has one of, if not the best petrol engines available.
    Enjoy her, and take pleasure in the fact that she's a Honda :Thumbup:
  11. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    A very good and relevant point.
    Most marketing/advertising is to reinforce this perceived image.
    If you're constantly told it's good, that's what you remember.

    As for Audi, most people I know that had one, bought for image, and sold for repeated breakdowns/unreliability.
  12. Phil1978 Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Phil Salisbury
    Unfortunately if you want the most reliable VAG you have to buy the least desirable badge, a Skoda.
    DeviateDefiant likes this.
  13. Pedro1 Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    The Octavia estates seem to get pretty good reviews, but i just think they look a little boring and the average spec is also pretty basic. Why i thought the accord looked a good deal for the cash; looks pretty striking and decent spec. Theres a 2.4 on sale fairly near me, and I've got the week off, so will probably check it out (just a test drive at the mo until i get the cash together in a month or so). Thanks for advice all, and if anyone else has views would be keen to hear them
  14. Phil1978 Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Phil Salisbury
    The 1st Generation Octavia estate is what I came from, decent car but not really in the same league as my Accord and the 2nd Generation doesn't look as good IMHO and still won't match up to the Accord.
  15. foxleys Premium Member Club Supporter

    England Jersey
    I had a 2nd Generation Octavia with DSG Auto, it was the classic version & diesel.

    It took 10/12 mins before the heater got going - in the winter not nice & over here in Jersey 10 mins is a normal trip!

    What was worse was the DSG box which had BIG problems as it would hesitate intermittently at junctions and sometimes sit the doing nothing until it decided to go! This is/was a problem with all DSG cars by VAG, lots of info on this on the net.

    I also had radio/cd problem with it (the car was only just 3 years old at the time) and the car required a new cam belt every 4 years (£300/400) or at a certain mileage done.

    I got rid of the car after on 1.5 years, then bought a Jazz Sport which was blooming marvellous but to small for me!

    Then a my Accord Tourer came up (very limited availability over here) and I love it, it does everything I want and more!

    I am driving to Belgium next week in it & cannot wait!

    What ever Honda you get, you will not regret it as long as it has been properly serviced.......
  16. tonygw Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    I guess we are all a little biased towards honda but I do think its a true refelection of how good their cars really are compared to other makes. I'm on my thrid honda after going through many other brands, The second best in my opinion was the older nissans before they were bought by renault. I had an old Nissan Primera GTE, a real dirvers car. But I think Nissan have lost their edge these days. Honda seem to be consitant with their cars and the accord just fits the bill so well. I love the 2.4 engine, a friend at work had the same car in diesel and he was just as pleased. Go for it you won't regret it. In the Executive spec they cannot be beaten for value. make sure it has a good history though, don't worry about it not being main dealer as long as its had regular oil changes with decent oil. I do all my own servicing and wouldn't hesitate to buy a car that had been serviced by the owner rather than the garage. Us owners tend to take a bit more care and time than a garage who is under time constraints and profit. (Some garages are very good don't get me wrong)

    Incidently I've driven lots of diesel cars the best was the merc C lass ... the most refined fun and confortable, the worst by a coutry mile was the latest BMW 320d... That was one rough running, turbo laggin animal I now try to avoid driving... Although is was quite fast...
  17. kev600rr Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Kev Yorkshire
    If you look at the forums of other makes they are littered with issues some re-occurring time and time again. Then compare any Honda forums and there's a marked difference, far far less issues are raised with regard to any of the Honda range. This is what I noticed coming from a Vauxhall looking for something more reliable. I run a 2.0 saloon and it's awesome great economy and very smooth far smoother than the Audi A4's I've had which were both V6 2.4 and 2.6. There is times when I want just a little bit more from the power and think about the 2.4 but not sure if there would be a compromise with economy or not.

    That's my 10 penneth.

  18. Pedro1 Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Thanks all

    Looks like I'll have the cash in a couple of weeks so will be test driving soon. Had ruled out the deisel but recently saw an 06 plate with 80k miles on budget. Had 4 owners which I guess is a little high for age and type of car, but wondered if there were any known issues at that milage (DMF / EGR). Petrol appears to be bombproof so less worried about age / mileage with those
  19. syzsounds Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    I had a facelift car with a first gen diesel and hated it ... noisy horrible thing ...That squeal ! The rattles ... May have just been that car but i hated it.
    Bought a 2.4 petrol pre facelift and this lump is (IMO) far better. Smooth quieter and more refined ... I think it could do with making it a bit more grunty ... but then thats just me.
  20. ArcticFire Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Scotland Graham Scotland
    2.4 petrol definitely. I couldn't bare to part with mine because the engine was so good so I took the hit and kept it along with buying another car. When you turn the key you can feel a lovely deep tone for a few seconds revealing the extra power it has over the 2.0. Then it settles down to what is the quietest and most refined sounding engine I've known. It's economy is almost as good as the 2.0 but you've got more power on tap and it won't have to work as hard. Unlike many other petrol engines which sound laboured at high revs, the Honda ones actually sound better with a lovely note, especially when the VTEC kicks in.

    I found that 4,000rpm is the sweet spot to utilise maximum torque from the 2.4 but unlike other cars where the torque band starts to drop at higher revs, the VTEC engages at 6,000rpm keeping the torque band flat instead of dropping and allowing you to got right up to 7,200rpm. Lovely stuff :Smile:

    It's not just the engine though, the seats in the Accord are considered to be one of the best in the industry. I've searched countless times but can't find the article I came across which said something about how Honda invested millions of pounds into the research of their seats. The leather seats are sumptuous yet supportive - perfect for long distance driving.