While its upmarket Acura division will be stealing most of the limelight at next month’s 2012 Detroit Auto Show with its three different concepts, Honda will still have a major presence thanks to its preview of the next-generation Accord.

The automaker confirmed today that a concept vehicle revealing the styling direction of the new Honda Accord, the ninth-generation of the top selling sedan, will be appearing in Detroit, though the concept will be a preview of the new Accord Coupe rather than the regular sedan.

Honda also confirmed today that the new Accord will go on sale next fall as a 2013 model.

A leader in performance, safety, efficiency and value since the introduction of the first generation model in 1976, the Accord remains one of the top-selling cars in America. The current 2012 Accord was ranked as having the highest initial quality in its segment in the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 Initial Quality Study (IQS), and the new 2013 model is expected to continue that reputation.

Additionally, the 2013 Honda Accord is also expected to feature a plug-in hybrid option. Honda’s plug-in hybrid system is designed to be compatible with daily driving habits, allowing for short, frequent trips in electric-only mode (up to 15 miles on a single charge), while providing long-distance driving capability when needed.

The two-motor system continuously moves through three different modes to maximize driving efficiency: electric-only, gasoline-electric and a unique, engine direct-drive mode. The system also uses regenerative braking to charge the battery. Pictured below is a prototype of the current model fitted with the system.

On a final note, the introduction of the ninth-generation Accord will mark 30 years of U.S. production of the model at Honda’s plant in Marysville, Ohio, the first Japanese car assembly plant in the U.S.

Stay tuned for our coverage of the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, press days for which commence on January 9. In the meantime access our ongoing coverage via our dedicated show page.

Honda launches Fit EV electric car and Accord plug-in hybrid test program in Torrance, CA, Dec 2010

Honda launches Fit EV electric car and Accord plug-in hybrid test program in Torrance, CA, Dec 2010