The California Air Resources Board (CARB) says it has approved the 2014 Honda Plug-In Hybrid Accord as the first car for sale in California that meets the board's SULEV20 standard, which is one-third cleaner (in terms of smog-forming pollution) than the previous lowest state standard.
According to CARB, the 2014 Honda Plug-In Hybrid Accord produces 20 mg of combined smog-forming emissions per mile, and the model has lower greenhouse gas emissions than the fleet average standard required by all cars in 2025, the equivalent of a 50% reduction from current required levels. In addition, CARB says the full-size sedan model achieves 124 mpge city / 105 mpge highway in hybrid mode, and 47 mpg city / 46 mpg highway in standard (gas-only) mode.
The Executive Order allowing Honda to sell the newly certified cars in California was signed on Dec. 21, following a detailed examination of emissions and performance test results. Honda began production of the car that same day.
The low emissions standards that this Honda model meets are part of the state's Advanced Clean Cars package of regulations, adopted in January 2012. When fully in force in 2025, the new set of standards will aim to reduce smog-causing pollutants from low-emission vehicles 75% from current levels, and greenhouse gases by 34%, according to CARB.