By on June 3, 2013

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The Acura TSX’s future has been in doubt ever since the debut of the smaller ILX, but more than ever, the rebadged European Accord appears to be living on borrowed time.

Automotive News reports that a few factors are conspiring to bring about the demise of the TSX. One is that the European Accord that the TSX is based on is a very poor seller in Europe, and the car sales crisis happening on the continent isn’t helping matters. Mid-size cars have really taken a beating, and the slow-selling Accord has been hit especially hard. Because of the slow sales, Honda is killing off the car rather than developing a whole new generation. That means no future platform for the TSX to ride on.

Furthermore, the next generation TL is going to be downsized to fit better below the upcoming Acura RLX. The TL and the new American market Accord actually use a global platform that can be scaled up or down, which is far more efficient rather than using regional platforms. The new, scaled-down TL is reportedly slightly larger than the TSX, meaning cannibalization would be inevitable.

Acura says that the TSX will remain in the lineup ”for the foreseeable future.” After all, why kill a good thing. The ILX isn’t exactly setting the sales charts a blaze – it can barely pull away from the TSX.

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89 Comments on “Future Looking Bleak For The Acura TSX...”


  • avatar
    Charles T

    The future’s been looking beak for all Acura products for a while now.

    • 0 avatar
      Domestic Hearse

      I see what you did there.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I wanted to do that one!

    • 0 avatar
      fredtal

      I know I have no idea what they are trying to be. Right now all I see are more expensive Hondas with little to show for it.

      • 0 avatar
        thegamper

        They are trying to be new Lincoln. Someone has to take up the torch of the poorly exectuted also-ran chrome edition of mass market donor car if Lincoln actually gets a few decent models and starts selling cars again. I have seen a few MKZs running around and with proper colors and exterior features, they are quite the head turner. Acuras are more like an eye burner.

        Just bring back the Legend with updated tech and powertrain. Problem solved! Man I loved that car, they still look pretty good when you see the rare and well maintained example still rolling around.

        • 0 avatar
          Tosh

          “I have seen a few MKZs running around and with proper colors and exterior features, they are quite the head turner. Acuras are more like an eye burner.”

          Alternate correct phrase: “stomach turner”

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I loved the circa-late 90s and early 2000s Acuras. They were built with a precision and of a solidity, both inside & out, that is no longer the case.

            They had better styling than their progeny, and the materials used and design of their dashboards, gauge clusters and other various elements easily put the Germans at twice (and often thrice) the price to shame.

            And then Acura fell down a flight of stairs beginning sometime around 2005ish.

            With that said, and as much as I now loathe Acura as a brand and appliance, they hold the following critical advantages versus Lincoln Horseless Carriages & Motorcars:

            1) Acuras are massively more reliable than Lincolns.

            2) Acuras retain their resale value far better.

            3) Acuras aren’t recalled to fix design and fabrication defects on a semi-weekly basis, as Lincolns are to be.

            4) Acuras aren’t fabricated by monkeys with lathes, as Lincolns seem to be.

            5) Did I mention that Acuras are massively more reliable?

    • 0 avatar

      that was exactly what I thought when I read this headline.

      • 0 avatar
        Shawnski

        Better made yes, massively more reliable BS. Town Car’s run forever and massively less expensive to repair than an Acura. Lincoln LS V8, Acura has nothing to like it, and again chintzy trim yes, Smooth V8 and precise handling, in spades, oh and yes dependable. This from one who has has Honda’s too.

  • avatar

    When I went shopping with my former-girlfriend for a TL, I perused the Acura line and for the life of me couldn’t understand what anyone saw in them. She had it in her mind she wanted a TL, while her brother already had a TSX (which was in the shop due to a suspension failure). All of these cars looked roughly the same inside with the exception of the interior space. All of them had BORING engines and either FWD or SH-AWD, but their tech packages were so ridiculously expensive that I just shook my head at her. She was going to buy a 2 year old RL, but ended up going for a TL instead – like it was a status symbol or something.

    During the time she was searching for a car, I did the ground work for her. The ILX was just released and they wanted to lease the TSX for $299. The TSX seemed like a good, sporty-looking deal while the TL seemed uglier to me. The ILX was a neat little car, but it was too small and they wanted way too much money.

    Recently I visited the Acura she bought the TL and tested the RLX. They want like $57,000 for that thing and there is literally NOTHING inside that I found attractive. For that money, I’d take an XTS or a Lexus GS.

    I see lots and lots of used Acuras on the road. These things are to expensive for what you’re getting: a guzzied up Honda”. I’m actually glad they are so underpowered because I literally eat them up on the road. I feel so bad for the guys who got one and think they are fast and try to drag race me. Even without the Vortec, I’d still be kicking up rocks and dust in their windshield.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    The Acura slide continues.

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    A brand killed by alphabet soup names (tossing out solid monikers like Legend and Vigor – and wasting millions in brand equity) and chrome beaks. (Must have corporate face! Even if ugly!)

    Some would also include lack of a V8 in their flagship.

    In the end, the leading Japanese prestige import was mismanaged into consumer irrelevancy. No longer even on most consumer’s first draft shopping lists. It’s the mean-nothing names and ugly faces, Honda execs. Fix these.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Honda had time to make a V8 and just refused. If the 3.5RL had been the 4.5RL, going head to head with the Q45 and LS (with RWD) it would be a different story for Acura today.

    • 0 avatar

      Cadillac is proof that alphabet soup names work if your product is exciting enough to remember.

      And yes: if the car doesn’t offer a V8 option, I don’t consider it a “flagship” no matter how expensive you make it.

      At least SRT know what they’re doing.

      Cadillac’s flagship is truly the ESCALADE.
      Lincoln’s is the NAVIGATOR.

      The Infiniti M37 is an exception to the rule because somehow they came up with a V6 that actually feels quite fast – faster than the MKS Ecoboost. Of course, they do have the optional M56.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        How do you figure? Given the five or so recent Cadillac owners I have encountered in the past year, only one answered “I drive a CTS”, the others all answered “I have/bought/drive a Cadillac”. In a world where all cars had names a “325″ or “560SEL” may have meant something to some people, but when everybody is alphabet soup “SRX” and “CTS” are just as meaningless as “TSX”, “MKS”, or “ATS”. Even to a car guy like me they sound like trim packages and not model names, heck they could be Lincoln Continental MKS, Acura Vigor TSX, or Cadillac Alpha ATS.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      I dont think a V8 would save Acura. If the RL had a V8 and still looked the same it would still be an RL. A $60K RL V8 still wouldn’t make a case against a $35K Genesis V6. Plus a lot of manufacturers are downsizing. There’s a 6 banger S, 7, XJ and even A8 if I’m not mistaken. The midsizers all have 4s. So the market isn’t looking for more cylinders.

      I think where Acura is really failing is in design. The cars are not distinctive at all. Other than that they are solid. An Accord is a pretty refined and luxurious vehicle. All they really need to do is make it look good, make everything you touch feel exquisite and load it with bewildering tech. I would love a RWD Acura platform but I am not really the market they are going for. Their market couldn’t care less.

      • 0 avatar
        Tosh

        Actually, Acuras since 2009 are TOO distinctive, but in an overly fussy, awkward, faddish, and ugly way, inside and out. Bring back timeless competent styling (2004 TSX, 1991 Legend, or even 2004 TL), and they will sell again.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          The 2004 RL was very nice looking, finely honed in design, and very solid. It was just too vanilla to look at. (Note: No positive comments apply to editions which had green finished wood inside, because bleh.)

    • 0 avatar
      snakebit

      It makes sense that Acura would phase out the TSX, it’s the only model I would buy if I were in the market this year.

      Folks should read the NY Times evaluation in last Sundays Auto section on the new RLX. A front wheel drive $60,000 luxury car with no available V8. Did Acura learn nothing from the last RL? Have they checked to see what their competition offers in that class, AND ACTUALLY HAS SALES TO PROVE IT? Acura, just look at the E-Class, the 5 Series, the A6, the XF.
      What about the Hyundai Genesis(a humble Hyundai, for crying out loud), which has rear drive and a V8.

      I know. Maybe we’ve got it all wrong, Acura really feels that their strongest RLX competitor is the newest Toyota Avalon. Seems to be.

      Maybe, if they’re lucky, sales of RDX and MDX will partially make up for the losses that the RLX will certainly incur.

  • avatar
    KixStart

    Until they put the chrome beak on it, I liked the looks and idea of the TSX. I recently needed a car but decided I just couldn’t part with as much cash as needed to get one of the last pre-beak models with the condition and mileage I wanted.

  • avatar
    Astigmatism

    A lot of hate for Acura in the comments. I’m partisan, as the happy owner of a 3rd-generation (2008) TL. Many people consider that car to be the last good car that Acura made, and certainly the last attractive one. I don’t disagree that the current TL and TSX are overdesigned and not particularly attractive with the chrome beak, but (a) they’ve toned the beak down, and (b) they’re a he!! of a value for the street price.

    Forget about the segments they’re supposedly targeted at: the TSX can be had for about the price of an optioned-out midsize sedan these days, the TL for a few grand more. At those prices, you’re getting a supremely comfy, leather-lined, pretty-fun-to-drive, roomy commuter sedan with bulletproof reliability and excellent dealer service. It’s not a 328i, but at (effectively) 15 grand less, who’s counting?

    • 0 avatar
      tonycd

      It is trendy to dump on Acura lately. (Full disclosure: my Acura serves me awesomely.)

      I do think, though, it’s fair to say Acura’s marketing has screwed the pooch the last several years. Not just “marketing” in the narrow sense of the commercials, but product planning intended to identify groups of customers and serve them with suitable product.

      Acura continues to sell in substantial numbers because of residual trust and goodwill from people like you and me who like their Honda mechanical virtue and therefore see the value. But you can’t make cars with a lack of distinctive style or features, an ugly beak, a nonsensical set of alphabet soup names that renounces a successful history of hit cars like the Legend and Integra, and then expect to grow your business.

      I get the impression there’s some very high-up individual at Honda who put his credibility on the line for these stupid decisions, and/or the Japanese consensual management style that created a whole roomful of them, and there’s simply no power on heaven and earth sufficient to make them say, “We were wrong.” And just to protect these few fallible humans from having to admit their fallibility, a whole giant enterprise built over decades is being allowed to shrivel and die.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I drove a 2010 TSX a couple times, and hated the bumpy ride quality, and the too-heavy steering. It was also loud inside. The steering wheel yanked itself out of my hands after every turn. The interior was just alright, nothing any early 2000′s German couldn’t beat handily.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      Road noise in Honda’s has been a weak spot for a while. Most Honda/Acura reviews in recent years have emphasized this. From the sound of it the company is finally starting to listen, even if it took half a decade.

      If they’re going to lux up Hondas, they should have made a fancy-pants AWD Accord coupe to compete with the G37. No matter what, it would have sold better than the abomination that was the ZDX.

      Slow learners.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Funny, at my place of work there are TWO people who have ZDX’s. One black and one white. I just saw the white one today. I was like EWWWW as I rolled past in the garage.

        But that TSX was definitely just as loud inside as a 94 Civic coupe I had driven years earlier, and that’s just unacceptable.

  • avatar
    SqueakyVue

    The misnaming of cars and mismanagement barley scratches the surface here. I can’t believe they never and still don’t offer a V8 despite they want $60k+ for their top end vehicles. As much as I used to choose Honda over Toyota I truly believe Lexus offers way more for the money than Acura. Their flagship motor in 2004 was a 3.5 V6 offered in everything from the Odyssey, the RL, the TL-S and my personal favorite, the 2004 Saturn Vue sitting in my neighbors driveway. Look it up

    • 0 avatar
      Dubbed

      I honestly can’t say the lack of a V8 isn’t that much of an issue outside of commentators on the internet. Most vehicles in this segment don’t sell with V8s.

      Actually with the exception of trucks and a few others, most cars aren’t sold with the engine with the most cylinders or power.

      And Honda just doesn’t do V8s. They could have taken the steps to engineer a forced induction setup but apparently they saw that sales wouldn’t justify it.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Depends on the segment, if your referring to FWD luxo barges then yes. If you’re referring to luxury brand flagships then no RLX is in the minority with a V6 only… Mercedes, BMW, Audi, VW, Bentley, Rolls Royce, Jaguar, Infiniti and Cadillac can all be had with a V8 or V12, only Acura and Lincoln stand out (unless you consider Navigator the Lincoln flagship instead of MKS).

        • 0 avatar
          Jacob

          The Acura RL was never really in the same class with say S-Class or Lexus LS. The RL to begin with was smaller. A fairer comparison is vs E-Class or 5-series. While Germans offer V8 in this category, the take rate is small. Most cars I see on the road have V6. I also heard, the next generation E-class will not have V8 option on non-AMG models any more. Everyone is downsizing. I don’t think the lack of V8 is the biggest thing that hurt the RL. One problem was that it was too close to the cheaper TL in terms everything, size and drive train. For the most part, the TL was a better buy. And overall, the RL was just too anonymous. It looked like a nice upscale Japanese import, but not a true luxury car. More like something like the Maxima, but for much higher price.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            You make some excellent points. If its true RL/RLX really don’t compete at the flagship level then the model is truly irrelevant in the wake of TL which should/does compete in the luxury midsize segment.

      • 0 avatar
        kvndoom

        Halo cars don’t sell in volume, but they have the BIG NUMBERS (HP, 0-60 time), on paper that get people to brag on the internet, and that get people into dealerships where they buy more affordable models.

        • 0 avatar
          fredtal

          …and that is what the new NSX is going to be.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            And it will be castigated for not having enough cylinders, just like the last NSX was.

            I have no use for V8s in passenger cars, but if I am spending serious coin on an exotic, I want something actually EXOTIC under the hood. At least a snarling flat-plane crank V8, if not a V10 or V12. Not a hopped up version of the engine out of a sedan. Well, unless the sedan in a VW Phaeton – a W12 would work just fine. :-)

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      “Their flagship motor in 2004 was a 3.5 V6 offered in everything from the Odyssey, the RL, the TL-S and my personal favorite, the 2004 Saturn Vue sitting in my neighbors driveway. Look it up”

      I did, and I discovered that the 2004 Acura RL had a C35 Honda 3.5 V6, whereas the Vue and the others had the J35 Honda 3.5V6, albeit different versions in 2004. The RL later got a J-Series engine, although a slightly different one from the Vue.

      In fact, the Vue’s J35A3 was different from all other J35A3 engines that Honda used because it had a cast iron crankshaft instead of forged steel:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honda_J_engine#J35A

      I’m not sure why it would be surprising that Honda would use slightly differently tuned versions of the same engine for many of their cars. The J35A8 used in the RL looks like it was at the highest HP/torque combo, and Ward’s liked it a lot, so Honda was probably doing something right.

      I like V8s as much as the next guy and have owned more than one and own one currently, but, for many cars that offer them, more people tend to opt for the lower cost engine. Manufacturers trying to simplify their product lines take note of this.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Since Acura is pretty much a North America only marketing experiment they don’t have much of an R&D budget and totally rely on platforms and technology from their parent company. The problem is that the so called luxury brand gets the latest tech after Honda has already rolled it out.

    For example – the 4 cyl Earthdreams powertrain in the new Accord is great technology but both the TSX and ILX both are saddled with old engines and slow 5 speed auto transmissions.

    If Honda is serious about Acura then they either need more R&D and exclusive content for their premium division or at least give it preference when it comes to new Honda technologies.

    • 0 avatar
      Dubbed

      +1

    • 0 avatar
      Jacob

      Yes this has been Acura’s strategy. Honda has always been giving preference to Acura when it take to new technology. Acura got the first V6 engine, the first AWD, the first 6-speed transmission, and you can have say a surround sound audio system only on Acuras. If they take this too far, it can hurt actually Honda in this world where a mainstream brand like Ford can offer a Ford Fusion that feels like a “FWD BMW 3-series for 15K less”.

      Despite the lackluster sales, Acura can still survive since as you say the R&D cost is kind of low. Most of Acuras are rebadged foreign market or domestic market Hondas.

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    Honda entered the auto business in 1963 with models that had catchy names like S500 and T360. Over the next decade, they fleshed out their line with evocative monikers like N600, 1300, 77, 99, 145, and 9. Success came fast, and it started in 1974 with the Civic, their first car affiliated with a word. There was more to set a Civic apart from a Z600 than just having a name, but the name didn’t seem to hurt. Two years later Honda added the Accord, and the two nameplates took them from being a motorcycle manufacturer that also sold microcars to being a major player in the US retail market. With this background, it is obvious why they had to kill off the Legend and Integra, which were threatening Acura’s success with their strong sales and name recognition.

  • avatar
    NormSV650

    Turbo-4! Turbo-4! Turbo-4!

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    In terms of size, the TSX, TL and RL have been on top of each other. With the introduction of the ILX, the TSX becomes the odd man out.

    Once Acura fixes the ILX (i.e., allows consumers to buy the upmarket engine, an advanced automatic transmission and navigation together for under $30K) then it will start to gain real momentum.

    I am excited to see the new TL. The ’13 Accord is a great starting point. I know how trendy it is to bash Acura, but 2014 is looking to be a great year for them, with their top sellers, the RDX, MDX and TL all new.

  • avatar
    readallover

    Talk cars all you want, it is the MDX crossover/SUV that has kept most Acura dealers in business.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Several years ago, I test-drove the previous generation TSX and TL, when both were fairly widely available with manual transmissions (which is what I wanted). They were very close in size, and I was not enamored of the 4-cylinder engine in the TSX. The TL I liked, especially the drivetrain.

    The only Acura model I didn’t like was the first generation RDX, with the old-school (on/off) turbo engine.

    As any used car buyer (like I was) will tell you, used Acuras hold their value well. At the same price, I’d rather buy a 3-year old Acura than a 3-year old Audi, even if the Audi has a nicer interior (which it does).

    But I agree with others, that Acura lost its way after the second generation Legend, which I thought was a very elegant mid-size near luxury car . . . although certainly not a Lexus, and the Integra, which the ILX is going to make people remember very fondly (if they don’t already).

  • avatar
    chrishs2000

    This is really old news. The USDM Accord was ‘downsized’ so that it is the same platform as the World Accord, instead of being on a completely separate platform. From now on, Euro Accord = USDM Accord.

    It’s all up to the TLX. It really needs to go back to the 04-08 TL formula. It’s got a good chance, since the platform (9th gen Accord) is really damn good. The current TL is a monstrosity, and the ILX is cheap and uninspiring. The TSX is not a bad car in itself, but drive the 1st gen (04-08, esp. the 07-08) back to back and you’ll be hard pressed to find many improvements except for a little more mid range torque.

  • avatar
    Jacob

    If future TL/TLX is resized to be smaller, I think it’s a good decision. Acura’s car lineup has been a train-wreck for a while. The anonymous looking and more expensive RL was almost never bought because the TL was almost the same size, while giving you about same goodies (AWD, V6, etc). People probably cross shopped a lot between TL and TSX V6, and now some cross shop between ILX and TSX. TSX doesn’t fit in the lineup even though the first gen TSX was my favorite Acura.

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    The TL is an bloated American market Accord with every option checked.

    The TSX is a bloated Euro market Accord with every option checked.

    The ILX is a bloated Canadian market luxury Civic peddled in the states as an Acura, or so some on this site say, with every option checked.

    How do you make an entire car brand out of derivative models that offer little over their donor cars in terms of quality and refinement? Or is it more of the buttons, leather, extra sound insulation, squishy dampers, and LCD make luxury playbook that got Cadillac thru the 90s…

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      In the case of 90s Cadillac they weren’t as carbon copied as Acuras are now, the Cadillacs then did offer features the lesser GM makes didn’t (3d speedos, standard trip computer, stabiltrak, limp home, early onstar IIRC) and a brand exclusive Northstar engine (which was junk, but exclusive nonetheless). TL *is* built alongside Accord as a clone using shared components and ILX *is* a Civic with minor changes, at least the TSX and RL gave you Hondas from other regions. Deville was never a Park Avenue/Ninety Eight clone despite them all being C-bodies until 1994, Seville was always a K-body and never had another equivalent.

    • 0 avatar
      Jacob

      On the other hand, this strategy is certainly feasible for having a profitable Acura for forseable future. The vehicles may be Honda rebadges, but the R&D is low and sales numbers justify having the premium rebadge brand (except for RL, which was always a flop here).

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    Acura needs to do what Infiniti has done to distance itself from Nissan. The G37 is based on the 370z platform, but no one conisders it a “gussied-up, softened, 4-door Z-car”. Same with the new Q

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    Acura needs to do what Infiniti has done to distance itself from Nissan. The G37 is based on the 370z platform, but no one considers it a “gussied-up, softened, 4-door Z-car”. Same with the new QX not being on the Armada platform.

  • avatar
    andy_1605

    I happily drive a 2012 TL Advanced. Anyone who still calls Acuras grilles “beaks” are simply being lazy. Yes the 2009 TL front was ugly, they quickly corrected it and the current TL/TSX/ILX nose is perfectly fine. You think the 300′s is better?…what exactly do you want it to look like?? the “beaks” thing is played out.

    Also, it sure would be nice to get 5 comments into an Acura review without hearing about the legend or the vigor. They are dead,..its over,..move on its 2013. Go yell at the kids to get off your lawn or something.

    Why bash Acura for its names?…lexus, bmw, volvo, licoln, caddy, audi, infinite,..they all do it. Get over it.

    I personally think the current TSX is very good looking. However Im not sure who would buy it over a new accord,..or a TL. I agree the end is near for the TSX.

    Anyways,..im really looking fwd to my TLS resale value when i decide to trade it in,…good luck doing the same with that 300 haha.

  • avatar
    Jacob

    It’s quite sad that TSX is being killed. I think there has always been a place for a Euro-market Accord in the US. This means we won’t see the TSX wagon updated with 6MT. I’d love to see that car to happen here, but I can hardly see TSX wagon survive in USDM, even if TSX was not discontinued. They stopped marketing the wagon, and I haven’t seen one on the road. Or perhaps my view is blocked in the sea of RDX and MDX.

  • avatar
    GS650G

    I have a TSX Wagon and love it. Not a single complaint about the car and would buy it again.

    • 0 avatar
      Tosh

      I would like a TSX wagon. But doesn’t it rev a bit high at highway speeds? What are the revs at 70mph in top gear? My CL-S revs at exactly 2000 at 72mph.

  • avatar
    Beelzebubba

    I remember the day in late November 1985 when my cousin pulled into our driveway to show offer her new car- the very first 1986 Acura Legend sold in metro Atlanta. She paid cash for it courtesy of General Motors. She was one of the unlucky 210+ Pontiac Fiero owners who had that nasty little fire issue! It melted in minutes and took a brand new set of golf clubs with it! She got a settlement from GM and wanted something larger, safer and classier….and she got it!

    I owned a ’94 Legend L 4-door for years and it was near perfection!

    It’s sad to see what has become of that company…a godawful TL with a beak from hell and an underpowered, gussied up Cimmaron, er Civic, where the legendary Integra once resided…

  • avatar
    ckgs

    This is really old news…are you just baiting the Acura hate?

    I just happily traded my 06 TSX with 120,000 trouble-free miles for a new TL SHAWD. Fantastic car that I am confident will delivery another 120,000 miles of fun, reliable, safe driving all while depreciating slower than just about every other vehicle on the road.

  • avatar
    Beelzebubba

    The pinnacle of Acura design and engineering was the 2004-2008 TL. It still looks amazing and drives better than most new cars costing $50k!

  • avatar
    Spartan

    Acura would have been fine had they not tried to push the corporate beak look so much. The cars look fine now, but it’s too late. The damage has already been done. Not to mention their craze for buttons, which has been fixed in some models.

    Combine that with the fact that the marketplace is fiercely competitive now vs some years ago with increasing pressure from the domestics, and you have Acura hanging out with Volvo when it comes to relevancy.

    Acura is going to be in this position for a long time if they don’t get something exciting on the road that people can afford, so no, not the NSX.

    • 0 avatar
      Beelzebubba

      I disagree slightly with your statement that “the cars look fine now”. The base/3.5 TL is still the most awkward, wonky looking vehicle to me. Even the wheel design contributes to the overall unappealing design….but the base TL in 2009, that was worse than waking up after a three day bender in a tub of ice with one kidney missing!!!

  • avatar
    krayzie

    It’s so easy to fix Acura if they can remember what made them great to begin with back in the day and try to make a comeback with the following:

    1) Ditch the alphabet soup and bring back car names with flare like Legend, Integra, Vigor, etc.

    2) Make engine first, make money later.

    3) Stop copying what the rivals are doing and become a market leader by being different. These days, maybe restart making low driving position and great visibility low hood line / belt line designs as nobody is really doing this (yes I know about pedestrian safety laws, but explain the GT-86 then).

    4) Fire Jon Ikeda and replace him with a real Japanese lead designer that knows real Japanese aesthetics.

    Honda these days is just an American brand and its design really shows aka. clueless both interior and exterior. The modern stuff don’t drive any good either (e.g. arcade like steering, rev hang, macpherson strut).

  • avatar
    Beelzebubba

    If the ILX becomes the only model below the TL in size/price, they need to make some pretty major changes asap! The 2.0L engine is a joke, a Corolla could keep pace with it easily…there is nothing ‘premium’ or ‘entry-level luxury’ or even ‘near-luxury’ with that boat anchor under the hood. The 2.4L and a 6-speed automatic should have been part of the package at intro, but the 2.4L and 5AT aren’t even at dealers yet???

    The base ILX falls between a Civic LX and EX in terms of equipment level and features. It shouldn’t exist, kill it. The ILX Premium should be the lowest trim level and priced about $2k lower.

    I’d love to see an ILX with the last-gen RDX turbo 4cylinder under the hood, 18″ wheels and sportier suspension. An ILX Type-S, perhaps?

    To be honest, I actually like the styling of the ILX. Side-by-side with the Civic, they did a good job of giving it a distinct look, not a tarted-up Civic with an Acura snout and tail lights.

    But please, for the love of God, put at least 200hp under the hood so it can get out of its own way!

  • avatar
    calgarytek

    I rather like the first generation TSX. I think it’s the best of what old Honda used to make. Not so confident about this one.
    Can’t help but think about the ILX when it comes to the TSX. I’m not sure why the ILX costs as much as it does. Perhaps amortization hasn’t set in on the not so new Civic platform. Has it changed that much since 2007?
    I really like the ILX styling. It makes the Civic refresh look childish, riced out. Same for the TSX. They creased it, slapped on a body kit, and it looks like it put on some baby weight.
    What would make the ILX competitive is a 4 grand drop in price and K20 with EarthDreams technology, pumping out say, 185 HP, 160 TQ for a starter package. 6 speed manual of course with 6 speed auto as optional. An upper level trim could have the EarthDreams K24 pumping out 230HP and 190 TQ. The cherry on top would be a variant of GM’s hiper strut and a 2900 LBS weight.

    • 0 avatar
      Beelzebubba

      I agree with you, the 1st generation TSX was my favorite. The 2006-2008 models are especially attractive thanks to the 2006 minor ‘refresh’ and new wheel design. In April 2008, Acura started trying to clear out the 2008 models to make room for the 2009 redesigned TSX. I had already saw photos of what they did to the TL and was terrified the 2009 TSX would be just as hideous (it couldn’t be any worse than the TL!). The lease deals were sweet and I had the dealer near my office trying to locate a Milano Red with Ebony (Black, in English) Leather and 6-speed manual for me. It was an available combo, but out of 300 or so in the Eastern US that were Milano Red, every single one had Parchment (Beige, in English).

      They finally found one in that color combo, but it had the 5-speed automatic and NAV (which I didn’t really want or need to clutter up the dash). A 4-cylinder that hits peak hp at 7000rpm and only makes a measly 165lb ft of torque (at almost 5000rpm) is not a good candidate for pairing with any automatic transmission. You either end up with very frequent, harsh, full-throttle downshifts when you need more power…..or, more frequently, the automatic shifts well below peak power output and a 205hp 2.4L feels weaker than a Toyota Corolla with the parking brake on!!!

  • avatar
    200k-min

    I’ve been looking for a lightly used 2008 TSX with manual and nav. That is a near impossible task. Seems all the TSX’s with manuals are getting hooned up, much to my dismay. They lost me on the styling with the 2009 change.

    As a very happy Honda owner I’ve had a soft spot for Acura but I make no excuses for them, they are a Honda with more chrome. Nothing that they make warrants their new car prices, thus I’d only consider one used.

    This day and age where a KIA has all the same options that an Acura has you really have to differentiate a “luxury” vehicle with a different platform and engine options from your mass-market brand to justify double the MSRP. Acura has done that the worst (minus Lincoln) and thus their problems.


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