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Deciding between the 2021 Toyota Camry and the 2021 Honda Accord doesn’t have to be an impossible task. While both midsize sedans are revered year after year, each one suits a particular type of driver.

Do you prefer a model that displays some stylish flair and delivers a sporty drive? If so, then we can quickly narrow down your choice to the car that’ll suit you the best. Plus, we’ll guide you toward the perfect Camry and Accord configurations that’ll help you make the most out of every drive.

The 2021 Toyota Camry is more athletic than you’d expect

A red 2020-2021 Toyota Camry TRD parked on a racetrack
The 2020 Toyota Camry TRD looks at home at a race track | Toyota

Gone are the days of Toyota’s midsize sedan being a boring commuter car known for its reliability. The current-generation Camry maintains its best qualities while being sportier than ever before. And we’d go as far as to say that some trim levels are downright joy rides.

The 2021 Toyota Camry features an aggressive design, highlighted by a stately grille and sleek silhouette. Even low-level trims have more of a ‘wow’ factor than pricier 2021 Honda Accord models. Plus, Toyota offers plenty of stylish upgrades that enhance its look – and performance – even further.

For example, the Camry XSE adds a dual exhaust with quad chrome tips, a rear spoiler, and 19-inch wheels. But you can take its sporty styling to the next level by choosing the TRD trim. This race-inspired model features black exterior touches, TRD badging, a track-tuned suspension, and a performance-focused cabin.

Additionally, the 2021 Toyota Camry TRD swaps out the car’s four-cylinder engine for a more potent V6. This powerplant kicks out 301 hp – nearly 100 more than the standard engine. Notably, Toyota also makes the V6 available on the XLE and XSE trims, but those versions are more expensive.

The 2021 Honda Accord is an attractive, sensible alternative

A grey 2021 Honda Accord Touring 2.0T driving down a city street
The 2021 Honda Accord Touring 2.0T in action | Honda

Not everyone is looking for a thrill ride, especially while shopping in the midsize sedan segment. Those who prefer to drive a more practical model will feel more at home inside an Accord.

By no means does that mean the 2021 Honda Accord is boring; it’s quite the opposite. While higher trim 2021 Toyota Camry models focus on sportiness, the premium Accord trims prioritize luxury. In fact, the 2021 Accord is so upscale that the U.S. News & World Report ranked it the best vehicle in its class.

For example, the Accord Touring 2.0T comes standard with ventilated front seats and heating functionality in both rows. Meanwhile, you’d have to pay for an additional package to add a cooling feature to the front seats of the range-topping Camry XSE V6. Plus, Toyota doesn’t offer heated rear seats on any Camry models.

The 2021 Honda Accord’s standard 192-hp four-cylinder is relatively tame. But, this fuel-sipper makes a tank of gas go further than the 2021 Toyota Camry. At its most efficient, the Accord’s base engine achieves an EPA-estimated 33 MPG city/highway combined. Meanwhile, the Camry maxes out at 32 MPG combined.

Upgrading to the Accord’s available turbocharged engine enhances the driving experience quite a bit. This powerplant doesn’t impress on paper, only making 252 hp. However, it’s deceivingly quick and might make you think twice before buying a Camry TRD.

Which sedan should you buy?

Both the 2021 Toyota Camry and the 2021 Honda Accord are excellent choices. However, you can make a mistake while shopping for one of these models.

Before you take a test drive, research which models resonate most with you. Those looking to enjoy driving thrill will want to pit the Camry TRD, XLE V6, and XSE V6 against the Accord Touring 2.0T. 

Meanwhile, you’ll want to explore the Accord EX-L and Touring 2.0T if you want a cushy ride. The Camry’s XSE trim paired with a four-cylinder engine is a more affordable upscale alternative. However, this model may leave you wanting more.

Finally, you may want to lean toward the 2021 Toyota Camry if you live in a snowy or rainy climate. Toyota makes an all-wheel-drive system available on four-cylinder models, giving you the benefit of extra traction on slippery surfaces.


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