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Honda Legend 2007 Review

It became far too expensive for a while as the price crept up towards $90,000, but a new model and solid pricing has returned it to the top of the Honda Australia line-up.

The Legend now hits the road at $74,500 with everything you could want and more, delivering the sort of luxury and relaxed driving that hits the spot with a lot of people.

It is a formula that has always worked for the Legend, which had a safe but secure spot in Australia until the dollar dived and prices went badly the wrong way.

It will never win a car-of-the-year contest and we struggle to see the benefit of Honda's new super handling all-wheel-drive system.

But the basics are good, the car is comfy and you get a lot of equipment for the money.

It also makes a safe and sensible case against a lot of Euro cars that cost the same and deliver less, or cost a lot more for a similar deal.

The Legend is genuinely new and Honda said it even overpowers its NSX sportscar, which was set against Ferrari in a Japan-against-Italy supercar contest in the late 1980s, with a 3.5-litre V6 that punches out 217kW and 351Nm.

The Legend is much heavier than an NSX, of course, so it does not run as hard. But the engine is hi-tech and efficient.

It's the same in all sorts of areas, from the use of aluminium in the body structure to active noise cancellation to make the cabin quieter and solar sensing, automatic airconditioning.

Honda has always gone its own way with technology and the Legend is its new showcase, with everything from a drive-by-wire throttle, to a five-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shift levers.

Then there is the AWD, basically a safety system that detects low-grip situations to kick in the rear wheels and also splits torque front-to-rear and side-to-side in the rear axle.

“This new Legend is vastly superior to our previous model,” Honda Australia senior director Lindsay Smalley said.

“The European brands have a strong image and make great motor cars. But if you look past the badge, is the engineering any better?"

The equipment in the Legend also rings all the bells, from leather seats and a sunroof to side and rear sunshades, electric front seats, electric adjustment on the steering column and an auto-dimmer rear-view mirror.

It also has lights that turn corners to follow the steering and a rear-view camera.

On the safety front, it has everything from anti-skid brakes and traction control to brake assist and front-side-curtain airbags.

Based on its body, the Legend qualifies as a mid-sized prestige car and that means it lines up against everything from the Audi A6 and BMW 5-Series to the Saab 9-5.

It also lines up against the latest WM Statesman, though the target customers are very different.

But Honda is only looking for about 50 sales a month, despite all the improvements and value in the new car.


Inside view

Honda Legend

Price: $74,500

Engine: 3.5L V6 with single-overhead camshafts, variable valve timing

Power: 217kW at 6200 revs

Torque: 351Nm at 5000 revs

Transmission: Five-speed automatic, active all-wheel-drive

Body: Four-door sedan

Fuel tank: 73L

Fuel type: Premium

Fuel consumption: Average on test 9.7L/100km

Safety gear: Anti-skid brakes, electronic stability program, traction control, front-side-curtain airbags

Warranty: Three years/100,000km


How it compares

Audi A6: 76/100

Citroen C6: 73/100

BMW 5 Series: 78/100

SAAB 9-5: 58/100 decrease

Pricing guides

Based on third party pricing data
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Range and Specs

(base) 3.5L, PULP, 5 SP SEQ AUTO $8,400 – 12,980 2007 Honda Legend 2007 (base) Pricing and Specs