Accord/8th Gen The things the 8th Honda Accord did not do right from day one.

Discussion in '8th Generation (2008-2015) [Acura TSX]' started by Ichiban, Saturday 18th Aug, 2012.

  1. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    We all know the 8th gen has never set the sale charts alight like the outgoing 7th gen, in its five years of production. In the later years of the 7th gen the Sport EX GT Diesel sold like hot cakes. Honda now see the Audi S Line and 3 Series customer within scope as these cars were being traded in for the new Accord. Honda now wants to break away from the dependable image and enter the premium car club.

    The new 8th Generation indented market is quickly adapted on one years sales of the previous model ?:Aghast:

    Honda marketing gives a new direction to launch of the car and pegs the Accord with German ethos and so called perigee.However I need to put into perspective the strong yen , recession and natural disasters and other global fluctuations has put the Accord on the back foot but these eight points were the initial mistakes which gave the 8th gen a poor start and stopped the car from emulating the 7th Generation success.
    First Mistake.

    Honda Accord in their history has never challenged the Germans with the Honda brand name. The Honda press releases and video gave the Accord the design kudos it was designed with the 3 series BMW as their benchmark. WHY??? Your founding father philosophy was "Think for yourself and don't follow in other people's footsteps." Honda marketing and PR team score an own goal losing focus of what Honda does well but follows this premium market path with no substance..

    My advice. Honda is a superb engineering firm please stick to what you do superbly. Stop marketing your cars with false pertinences, producing cars which impress your customers not peoples egos. The Honda three joys come to mind here.

    Second Mistake
    Amber headlight for the EU market, the outgoing 7th gen facelift model did not have them so why did you put them on the European car? JDM 8th gen Accord didn’t have them it could have been avoided easily. This was addressed in minor revision model with clear lights.

    My Advice Please never give amber headlights in Europe again they will NEVER be accepted.
    Third Mistake

    The front grill is hideous. It was ugly devoid of any aesthetic presence or any Honda styling cues from the previous Accords .In 2008 saw a host of other manufactures began supersizing their front ends and grills, but Honda grill on the Accord was the worst of the lot. This again was redesigned with larger slates on the minor revision model to give the car a pleasing and deflecting the wide grin.

    My Advise It should have been changed with the year of it launch it was plain ugly. Honda could have even given the non ADAS customers the sport grill an free upgrade. I have to go far and say it is the worst grill on a Honda Accord in its history!

    Fourth Mistake.
    Honda changes the entire model option list and go for a new line of ES,EX ,EX-GT, alienating Honda loyalist they are scratching their heads to why the line-up was changed. Was this to give the premium market feel ?

    My advice Why change something when the 6th gen and 7th gen model options worked, you have just confused your customers even further.

    Fifth mistake

    The Tourer rear suspension could have been designed better whilst retaining the independent suspension layout,all the 7th gen Tourer owners I know rejected the car on the load lugging capabilities. They refuse to test drive or even acknowledge the other massive improvements on the car. Honda had the right intention to improve the handling and ride but looked at the market survey too heavily which suggested the customer never utilised their 7th Generation boot to its full capacity .

    My advice Stop relying on your market surveys, have focus groups with actual customers not some random customer samples who have no passion for the car. Take advise from your repeat customer not from your new one. If you alienate your repeat customers well you won’t get new one in the near future.

    Sixth Mistake

    All tourer don’t get the power tailgate the 7th gen Accord has that across the board.

    My advise A bad move, seen as a downgrade from the 7th gen.

    Seventh Mistake

    Poor marketing and poor adversing for Europe and still present still to this date, yes credit goes to Honda to have the first live advert with skydivers but it was a poor effort to highlight the cars features. The slogan "Difficult Is Worth Doing," the follow up to explain to customers what was so difficult was never emphasised. The customer knew more than the dealers what the advancements were by just comparing the cars , your new customer never had a chance to know what they were.

    My advise Honda needs to stop on brand building focus on the car and it qualities, your brand name has been established decades ago we need to change the record now.

    Eight mistake
    Price of the car was an issue for Honda Accord loyalist.

    My advise The premium price tag may have pushed your customers to look at other cars.

    This may thread may paint a gloomy picture for Honda and the Honda Accord, but the 8th gen is fanatic irrespective of these shortcomings. The engineers have done a remarkable job these eight points should not overshadow a superb car .I would say the 8th Generation is far the best Honda Accord till date. but if Honda Accord customer cannot be critical of the mistake Honda made... then who will?

    Polite notice

    Please don't use this thread as free for all to slate Honda this is constructive criticism and the essence of this thread should not be lost on other tangents, irrelevant post will be removed. We need to capture valid and useful information for a conducive debate.
    bobbybliss likes this.
  2. I don't disagree with any of this, but I can see both sides.

    It's one thing to make them, and another thing to sell them.

    If you look at the top ten bestselling cars in the UK that tells you everything you need to know about how well the average punter recognises a quality car.

    With this in mind Honda can be forgiven a bit of Radio Ga-Ga marketing.

    Bottom line is I agree with you though. Play to your strengths. Don't make dumbed-down adverts aimed at idiots. Instead sell to grown-ups and hammer home unremittingly the message that Honda is year after year No 1 in the reliability charts. There are plenty out there who think the Golf is.
    Last edited by a moderator: Saturday 18th Aug, 2012
  3. bobbybliss Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Netherlands Rob Heerhugowaard
    Great post! Interesting points.

    I agree that Honda should always be doing their own thing. But for the 8th Generation this is more of marketing faillure than an engineering faillure. For me the car is near perfect. I never knew the three joys (Honda Worldwide | History), thanks.

    In my opinion the second joy (of sales) is lacking the most, which we see in your first and seventh mistake. Honda, in general, have lost their way a bit with the first joy as well, but with Earth Dreams Tech, the NSX 2.0 and Toshinobu Minami and Yoshinori Asahi in charge of new products they seem to be getting back on track. As for the third joy... well, there will always be fanboys...

    Back on topic...

    'Difficult is worth doing' appeals to me very much. But somehow they didn't see it through:
    - How difficult was it?
    - Why was it worth it?
    I would have loved for them to explain all the little details, the refinement and the amount of engineering that went into this car, but information is very scarce (example: I think DIWD was a great oppurtunity to differentiate, but what do I know? I'm no marketing expert and I went for the 8th Generation despite the lack of marketing.

    Due to a complete lack of marketing an entire generation doesn't have a clue about Honda. The older generation seemed to have lost their sympathy as well, probably because of Honda's arrogance (our cars are so good, they will sell themselves). Honda went for the premium approach and failed. But then again, everybody is going premium nowadays... Citroen appear to be the only ones who are successful with their DS-line. But then again PSA is not making any money in the process.

    What annoys me is that today specs sell products (not just cars):
    - 0-60 time
    - economy (ECE-15)
    - CO2
    - number of speakers
    - peak HP
    - peak torque
    - soft touch dash
    - load capacity
    - DRL
    - whatever...
    People compare numbers on the internet. And of course there's a lot of brand snobbery.
    Honda's traditional strong points (nice to drive, real world fuel economy, timeless design, long term reliability, etc.) are ignored in this discussion. This is why, in my opinion, Audi is so successful.

    Honda should take cues from Apple. I will take an iPhone over any droid because an iPhone simply works. Specs are not decisive here because Apple focuses entirely on the user experience. Interesting article: Technical Specifications Alone Do Not Sell Products

    If there is any car manufacturer who could pull off an Apple, it has to be Honda. After all, the company was founded by the automotive equivalent of Steve Jobs. It will be extremely difficult, but definitely worth it. ;-)
    Last edited by a moderator: Sunday 23rd Feb, 2014
    Ichiban likes this.
  4. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Even away from the shortcoming of Honda's marketing on the 8th Generation, they were very clever with an innovative advert campaign on the 7th gen "The Cog" which focused on the cars strengths and additionally elevated Honda's brilliance and captured the three joys perfectly. The campaign slogan "isn't it nice when things just... work" was pure genius.

    I have to agree it was a difficult task to recapture or emulate that same magic and even do it better than the last marketing campaign which won awards and praises from all. The only ONE fact which did made the headline for the 8th gen campaign was the week after the advert was aired live on television, one of the aircraft crashed….. Not ideal ! and that how I sum up the entire campaign crashed and burned. It was fundamentally flawed and not once since its inception in 2008 have they talked about their car.
    Honda made elaborate press brief which detailed the cars brilliance, you have the engineers and project leaders telling us what they did ,someone at Honda thought it was pointless tell the customers for the same.
    Accord Press Pack PDF
    Honda Accord press release 2011
    All previous Honda accord campaigns have had success and they worked within their SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses/Limitations, Opportunities, and Threats .As for the Germans they are the masters of marketing poorly engineered cars really well and are very successful at it. if Honda diverted their energies equally on all their cars and products and stop having favourites they will see a reversal of fortunes.

    We as 8th Generation owners know the car is massive improvement and the results have been very dramatic in terms of engineering and overall advancements over the 7th Generation. The best way to know this currently you have to be an owner to experience it ,this is where Honda needs to concentrate if they want to retain the Accord in Europe.

    Honda have to dig themselves out of their self made hole and restore faith for it customers and start listing and engaging with them, the lost the flagship model Legends , and they are talking of losing the Accord in Europe.

    At this rate the Jazz will be Honda's European flagship model. :Aghast:
  5. How much of a campaign is down to the manufacturer, and how much to the ad agency?
  6. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Ad agency do as they are told , even if they are given artist freedom to create a campaign it still has to be approved by a team at Honda.
  7. John Dickson Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    I couldn't agree more with all of the above. It's been a massive failure in the marketing of the car which is a shame as the car deserves to be vastly more successful than it is. It appears that Honda have spent a fortune developing this car only to try and hide it away as best they can. Look at the website. At first glance it appears this company makes three cars. Jazz, Civic, CR-V. Why is the Accord "hidden" away where only those who know it exists would find it by delving further into the website? They plug the Channel 4 sponsorship more than the Accord!

    Apart from the initial launch when a few billboard ads appeared and the TV campaign there has been little or no coverage of this car. A goodcar will sell itself somewhat to the repeat customer but you still need to get the message out there to attract new customers. I was only targeted by direct postal advertising after I'd just taken delivery of mine! The dealers try their best, the Accord takes pride of place right inside the door of my local dealer but you still need campaigns to get new customers through the door.

    In addition to the superb reliability and quality, there is a massive angle from the safety point of view to sell this car and I can personally vouch that it works in real life; Remember the Vauxhall Cavalier campaign in the early 90s when they plugged the car relentlessly on its safety alone? This must have sold hundreds if not thousands more directly because of this.

    I strongly believe this is not at all down to the car just marketing weaknesses. We all know this is a superb car and even now people ask me about mine because they think it looks great. Often however the question always comes back to "What is it?" I've even been asked if it's a new BMW or Audi so that proves that the attempts to move the car up market have been reasonably successful.

    Yes the Accord market share has tumbled but I still believe this can be rescued with some advertising. A Type-R version would also do a lot to redress the balance perhaps. Price it right and get towards near enough performance and I'm sure it could even encroach on some M3 and RS4 sales by being "cheaper enough " so that even a marginal performance deficit could be overlooked.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sunday 23rd Feb, 2014
    Ichiban likes this.
  8. Sadly this has been lacking for some time. The 7th Generation Euro R was only produced for the Japanese domestic market. There is no 8th Generation equivalent that I know of.
  9. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Just for the record here there is a lot of focus lately Swindon is going be the center stage for European manufacturing etc etc and their future is looking very rosy. When the first batch of I-CTDI engine for the Civic were produced they were self destructing, some were even consuming horrific level of engine oil. It was traced down to poor engine cleaning after the machining process, by this time we did have a 2 dozen I-CTDI blown up in all parts of the country.

    The I-CTDI main bearing shells are really hard and when these aluminium shards were getting ingrained into the main bearing they were chewing them down to the copper base. So Honda decided when the new I-DTEC engine was introduced will be made it will be made in a new factory in Japan not at the Swindon foundry. Does Honda Japan does not have faith in Swindon to produced the I-DTEC components and assemble it?

    Whilst we are on the subject of Swindon and it is against the policies of the community to say negative again Honda, but if I listed all the gaffs made by Swindon over the years their credibility will be damaged.

    Coming back to the subject of I-DTEC engines they are made at Ogawa ,the manufacturing facility in Japan

    There is debate where the majority are ex-Honda accord forum where this is being debated.. without the correct information or a clue.So for the Plumber and other chap don't give your day jobs lads, you may want to join here where the information is... perhaps not. :GoodJob:

    Ogawa manufacturing facility

    i-DTEC_Ogawa_Plant (1). i-DTEC_Ogawa_Plant (2).
  10. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds

    Can we do a small survey can a selection of members here just go into their local Honda dealership and enquire about purchasing a 8th Generation Honda Accord.

    I just want to gauge the level of anti Accord sentiment among the dealers or attempts to dismiss there is an issue. I will be nipping into the one at Leeds for snapshot of things on the ground.:Wink:
  11. I asked in mine about the 8th Generation Accord...availability no problem but when I said I wanted a petrol it was "Oh no, you don't want to do that"...this was a while back now though.
  12. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Did you not query this why?