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If you are considering a new vehicle and you're inclined to look ahead and reduce your exposure to the uncertainty of retail gasoline prices and their seasonal volatility, then the Honda Accord Hybrid might be a very good bet.

The 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid gets an estimated 49 mpg in city driving, according to American Honda Motor Co. And, Edmunds.com says the release of the fuel economy estimate signals a fight between the Honda Accord Hybrid and the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

The 2013 Toyota Camry Hybrid, the Accord Hybrid's chief rival, returns 43 mpg in city driving and 39 mpg on the highway, according to the EPA. Honda estimates that the 2014 Accord Hybrid will return 45 mpg on the highway. Interested? [End]

The EPA has not posted official fuel economy numbers of the 2014 Accord Hybrid on its Web site. In comparison, the 2014 Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid returns a combined 115 miles-per-gallon-equivalent, according to the EPA. The EPA has not posted 2014 Camry Hybrid numbers.

Honda released the first official photos of the U.S. version of the 2014 Accord Hybrid earlier this week. The Accord Hybrid goes on sale in October. U.S. pricing was not announced, but in Japan, the Honda Accord Hybrid debuted at a 20 percent higher price than the Toyota Camry. The Accord Hybrid costs the U.S. equivalent of $38,000 in Japan.

At that price, it may be a deal-breaker for many of us. But,
the fuel economy estimate on the Accord Hybrid is a critical part of the equation, since gasoline prices are central to the decision. You can do the math and figure out how many miles you drive annually, what you're spending on gasoline now... and how long you'd have to own the vehicle to recover your purchase price.

The 2014 Accord Hybrid will use Honda's new two-motor hybrid powertrain, much of which is shared with the Accord Plug-in Hybrid that went on sale in January.

The new Accord Hybrid will be the first Honda hybrid vehicle assembled in Ohio and the second built in the U.S., the automaker said.

Edmunds says: The key question is whether the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid will be priced higher than the Toyota Camry Hybrid. Let's wait and see.