This is how you do voice-activated controls.
The all-new 2023 Honda Accord will arrive at dealerships next month, so the Japanese manufacturer saw it fit to tell us more about the first model with Google built-in.
As we already know, the new Accord will have the largest infotainment screen ever fitted to a production Honda. The top-spec Touring will ship standard with Google built-in, which allows customers access to apps like Google Assistant and Google Maps, and several more available via the Google Play store.
Research has shown that touchscreen interfaces distract drivers, but Google built-in allows you to operate things by talking to the car. While voice recognition has been around for ages, it's finicky at best. Even high-end systems like Mercedes-Benz's MBUX have trouble understanding some accents, which is likely why Honda partnered with Google in the first place.
"For Honda customers, vehicle connectivity is becoming essential, providing features and services that deliver intuitive, easy-to-use and access functions that make time spent in vehicles more fun and productive," said Jay Joseph, vice president of CASE & Energy for Honda USA. "Our longstanding in-vehicle tech collaboration with Google helped enable the seamless integration of Google built-in features in the all-new 2023 Honda Accord."
Google Assistant is the main feature, allowing the driver to send texts, set reminders, and adjust the temperature via voice command. The Assistant can also be used to control Google Maps, which is arguably the best navigation software. Once the destination is set, the Assistant will display the route on the 10.2-inch digital instrument cluster.
The Google Play function works exactly as it does on a smartphone. You can download several third-party apps that play music, audiobooks, or podcasts. And because it's Google software, everything is familiar and works precisely as you'd expect.
Honda's new Accord made its debut in November, sporting a new elegant design and a promise from Honda that it would be fun to drive. It's powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder producing 192 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque, while the hybrid adds two electric motors ramping the power output up to 204 hp and 247 lb-ft of torque.
The Touring, the only model to get Google built-in as standard, is also equipped with a 12-speaker Bose premium audio system.
Pricing is not available yet but will be announced next month when it arrives at dealers.