2021 Honda Accord vs. 2021 Kia K5

2021 Honda Accord vs Kia K5

The Honda Accord has long been a top choice for consumers seeking a contemporary four-door sedan that checks all the boxes: sophisticated styling, advanced technology, great safety features, fuel-efficiency, performance, and overall value. Indeed, the award-winning Accord has reigned supreme on America’s highways and in America’s driveways for many years.

But in the increasingly crowded midsize car segment, there’s always a new contender hoping to knock the Accord off its lofty pedestal of unrivaled success. One such adversary is the newly minted 2021 Kia K5, which replaces the aging Kia Optima for the 2021 model year. Let’s see how the 2021 Honda Accord compares with the comparably equipped 2021 Kia K5 model.

2021 Accord - Performance


Accord Puts More Power to the Pavement

Right off the bat, the 2021 Accord knocks it out of the park, delivering more horsepower from its 1.5-liter, four-cylinder, i-VTEC turbocharged engine, mated to a fuel-efficient Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), than the K5’s slightly larger, 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder powerplant and 8-speed automatic transmission. Specifically, the Accord churns out 192 hp at 5500 rpm* compared to the K5’s 180 hp. Those extra ponies mean more power pounding on the pavement when you need to get out in front of the pack.

Honda Fuel Efficiency Takes You Farther

When it comes to fuel efficiency, the Honda brand has proudly led the automotive industry with some of the most innovative fuel-efficient technologies in the industry. In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently ranked Honda as the “most fuel-efficient automaker in America.” Of course, that’s why the Accord LX’s stellar fuel efficiency numbers best the K5’s less-efficient mileage ratings.

The Accord gets and EPA-estimated 30 mpg city/38 mpg highway* for a combined 33 mpg. The K5 comes in with an EPA-estimated 29 mpg city/38 mpg highway, for a combined 32 mpg. Honda also offers the Accord Hybrid, with outstanding EPA-estimated 48 mpg city/48 mpg highway* fuel-efficiency ratings. Unfortunately, the Kia K5 currently does not have any hybrid models in its lineup.

2021 Accord LX 2021 Kia K5
Performance - HP 192 hp @ 5500 rpm* 180 hp @ 5500 rpm
Fuel Economy 30 mpg city/38 mpg highway* 29 mpg city/38 mpg highway
2021 Honda Accord - Passenger Comfort

Features & Passenger Comfort

Convenient Features Put the Accord Ahead

The 2021 Accord’s spacious, tech-savvy, and modern interior continues to outperform the competition with an appealing combination of quality, style, convenience, and comfort.

With 16.7 cubic feet of space, the Accord’s accommodating trunk is larger than the K5’s. You can expand the Accord’s cargo versatility even further with its standard 60/40 split folding rear seats. Surprisingly, the K5 LX model doesn’t offer a similar folding rear seat, nor does it have adjustable rear headrests like those of the ACcord. You’ll have to step up to a pricier trim level to get even these basic features on the K5.

2021 Accord LX 2021 Kia K5
Cargo Space 16.7 cubic feet 16.0 cubic feet
60/40 Split Fold-Down Rear Seat Standard Not Available

Accord Steps Ahead in Safety

Since its inception, Honda has always put safety first. For this reason, Honda has continually offered comprehensive and innovative safety technologies that bring you peace of mind, whether on a cross-country trip or across town.

The Honda Accord LX, along with the entire Accord lineup, features Honda’s advanced Honda Sensing® suite of integrated active safety technologies as standard equipment. These include Collision Mitigation Braking, Road Departure Mitigation, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow, Lane-Keeping Assist, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, and Traffic Sign Recognition.

By comparison, the Kia K5 offers many of the same features, but it doesn’t offer Adaptive Cruise Control or Traffic Sign Recognition on the LX trim level.

Another important safety benefit exclusive to Honda is its Advance Compatibility Engineering (ACE™) Body Structure. It’s specifically engineered to absorb the impact of a frontal collision for an added layer of passenger protection.

2021 Accord LX 2021 Kia K5 LX
Adaptive Cruise Control Standard Not Available
ACE™ Body Structure Standard Not Available
Traffic Sign Recognition Standard Not Available
2021 Accord - Timeless Styling


Timeless Styling vs Edgy Drama

The Honda Accord’s timeless design continues to exude sophistication and sporty style. Enhanced by a string of dazzling LED headlights, a bold front grille with the signature Honda “H” logo, a gracefully arcing roofline, brilliant new taillights, and an aerodynamic silhouette, the handsome Accord always has you arriving in first-class style.

Kia’s new K5, however, takes on an edgy look that emphasizes a busy combination of sharp lines, jagged creases, and a hawk-like front end. The K5 tries to create a dramatic entrance with a convoluted shape that doesn’t quite measure up to its sporty expectations.

Accord Takes the Prize

Whether its performance, features, styling, safety, or fuel economy, the 2021 Honda Accord leaves the 2021 Kia K5 playing catch up in just about every category. Time will tell whether the K5 will gain traction with midsize car buyers compared to the perennial best-selling Accord. But we wouldn’t bet against Honda’s best-seller.


192 hp @ 5500 rpm (SAE net)

180 hp @ 5500 rpm (SAE net)

30 city/38 highway/33 combined mpg rating for LX and EX-L trims. 29 city/35 highway/32 combined mpg rating for Sport and Special Edition 1.5T trims. 22 city/32 highway/26 combined mpg rating for Sport and Touring 2.0T trims. 48 city/48 highway/48 combined mpg rating for Hybrid, Hybrid EX and Hybrid EX-L trims. 44 city/41 highway/43 combined mpg rating for the Hybrid Touring trim. Based on 2021 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, battery-package/condition (hybrid trims) and other factors.