By on November 10, 2014

Honda Integra Type R DC2

The last time one could buy an Acura Integra/RSX new off the showroom floor was in the mid-2000s. That time could come again soon to help the upcoming NSX, and the brand overall.

Car & Driver reports Acura’s chief designer, Dave Marek, said a performance brand such as his employer “needs a flagship and… an accessible sport car. Not a sports car, but a sport car.” While the flagship — the NSX — is set to leave Ohio beginning next year, the reincarnated Integra/RSX would likely begin its return to the showroom floor in 2017 at the earliest.

Though Marek couldn’t be more specific regarding the supporting actor, he did acknowledge that Honda went the wrong way in making Acura too upscale, not at all helped by the Great Recession that turned what would have been the next NSX into a non-homologated Super GT combatant.

Meanwhile, Acura will debut a refreshed ILX next week at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show, which he says is a harbinger of things to come:

There are changes coming, and then there are more changes coming. It’s not what our direction is going to be, but it’s a step in that direction. There are lots of resources and activity going into making Acura back into what it was.

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65 Comments on “Acura May Unleash New Integra As Early As 2017...”


  • avatar

    This is great news, although Honda’s missteps over the years are not completely reassuring. Now I just have to make my 1996 Acura (315,000 kms) last three more years somehow.

  • avatar
    petezeiss

    Swell, a new little zippy-car when the country is craving CUVs. Oh, well, if they want to keep their toy division open that’s their call.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Just hold on, Acura will get it’s own version of the HR-V, you’ll see. I predict they’ll name it the, um… HDX

    • 0 avatar
      sproc

      Because the CLA and A3 are doing terrible, right? Clearly there’s a market there. I think this is great news. It doesn’t even need to be a hatch (would be nice), just something a lot quicker and more interesting than the ILX.

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        Would the CLA and A3 be doing as well if they didn’t have crossover versions?

        • 0 avatar
          sportyaccordy

          Yes… can you explain the logic of how the existence of the GLA/Q3 have any effect on the CLA/A3?

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Well, yeah, but do I really need too?

            The economies of scale are the cost advantages that enterprises obtain due to size, output, or scale of operation, with cost per unit of output generally decreasing with increasing scale as fixed costs are spread out over more units of output.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            The RDX is a fancy CR-V, which is based on the Civic. This new “Integra” will be an ILX Coupe, again based on the Civic.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            The predicted “HDX” will be a fancy HR-V which is a Honda FIT, my logic has come full circle

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            You dont need to do anything, but if you want to say that the CLA/A3 would not sell as well if the GLA/Q3 didn’t exist, I don’t think it would be unreasonable to be asked for an explanation as to why

            If anything the cars cannibalize each other a bit as they are going for pretty much the same markets.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            What part of my explanation don’t you understand? Why would you say this hours later after I gave you a very reasonable explanation?

      • 0 avatar
        MBella

        I don’t get the hate on the performance of the ILX. It’s quicker than it’s turbo competitors, without the added complexity.

    • 0 avatar
      cackalacka

      Yes. Because apparently the country is 100% soccer mom.

  • avatar
    VW16v

    Why is it going to take Acura three years to produce a civic si hatchback ?

  • avatar
    hubcap

    “…Acura’s chief designer, Dave Marek, said a performance brand such as his employer…”

    Maybe its just me and my perceptions but I don’t see Acura as a performance brand and I’m somewhat intrigued that Acura higher ups do.

    There might be a slight disconnect between their perceptions and the reality on the ground. I guess it’s some what understandable due to the Fog of War or maybe it’s just me.

  • avatar
    snakebit

    The Integra( and I’m purposely not including RSX) was a Civic wearing Armani. I think Acura forgets that they are already producing a ersatz Integra, the ILX, which is also very apparently a Civic, but wearing clothes from the picked-over Bling outlet store, and is nothing more.IMO, if Acura wants to regain Acura buyers, they should begin again by offering real Acuras, such as the first generation TSX or its 2015 equivalent, and no, I don’t mean TLX.

    • 0 avatar
      LeMansteve

      Don’t forget, the (excellent) original TSX was a European Honda Accord wearing an even thinner layer of Armani.

    • 0 avatar
      Synchromesh

      First gen TSX was a disappointing piece of Eurotrash compared to the last gen Integra. I owned a ’00 GS-R sedan of which TSX was a replacement and I wouldn’t touch the latter. It was larger, heavier and more luxurious. Everything I didn’t want to see in an Integra.

      • 0 avatar
        snakebit

        Glad I read your second sentence first. What you wanted in a sedan and what I wanted is like two parallel versions of the Three Bears. The Integra was just right for you, and the first generation TSX was the perfect sedan for me. What’s Eurotrash to one guy is European-like(read BMW 3-Series)to another. I’d had a ’92 GSR coupe and a ’94 GSR coupe, and liked the two as far as they went, but they seemed very Civic-like in their feel and construction. The first Gen TSX could have been just a four-door RSX, but Honda/Acura gave us a rebadged Euro Accord with longer wheelbase and its own rear suspension and the build quality of a 3-Series. My point of reference was 17 years with Acura, and currently driving my second 3-Series coupe.

        Anyone who drove both a 2000 GSR sedan and a 2004-2008 TSX would never confuse the two, either in build components or suspension. The RSX was a replacement for the GSR hatch, but slightly better trim and the basic suspension from the concurrent Civic. For my part, depending upon finances at the time, I’ll look for a very low mileage ’08 TSX or spring again for a CPO 3-Series coupe.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      The ‘Teg was Civic-sized, with the quality of an Accord (and the ba–z to run with the best of them).

  • avatar
    Gardiner Westbound

    Acura should stop talking and start doing. The money it has spent endlessly tarting up and adding gimmicks to its cars, like the RL’s electric motor AWD, could have gone to a new RWD platform competitive with and more reliable than the German brands. It could also throw a few bucks at improving customer care.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      A RWD platform at Acura would have been money well wasted. Luxury customers don’t care about those things anymore.

      If there’s anywhere Acura needs to invest it’s in styling. Their cars range from ugly to anonymous. ILX is their best design and it looks like a Japanese Dodge Avenger.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Then who is ordering the Mercedes models without 4MATIC and BMW models without X-drive. I say it matters, it just doesn’t matter to everyone, or Honda’s target demographic for the Acura brand.

        • 0 avatar
          sportyaccordy

          The same folks ordering FWD RX350s and XTSs. Nobody is buying a 4,400lb 750Li for its RWD dynamics, it’s all about the badge and luxury in that realm. RWD just works at that realm as it gives the car the right look and is the cheapest way to put down 400+ HP.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Well, if they’re going to unleash the Integra, it must be tied up somewhere right now. Let me have a look around. Yes, there it is, tied up in committee.

    Situation normal.

  • avatar
    VoGo

    I would have thought that the announcement of a new Integra would be welcomed as great news by car enthusiasts.

    Not here.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      … yeh

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      I don’t think anyone here expects them to do it right. I’m sure there will be more than enough pant-wetting at TOV to make you happy though. :)

      The last Acura I would have been willing to go into 5 years debt for was the 2008 TL-S. And I actually did try, but apparently Carmax didn’t know how to buy out a lease.

    • 0 avatar
      LeMansteve

      It’s because the existing Integra enthusiasts know a 2017 Integra will probably come without a high-revving NA engine which was such a huge trademark of the GS-R and Type R models.

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    Integras were great cars.

    Guy I work with had one with over 300k miles on the clock.

    (Psst: that’s miles, not kilometers)

    Those cockroaches hung around for years. Prized by high school kids with fart cans and grad school students who just couldn’t let their first car go.

    Then said grad school students go on to get good corporate jobs and feel warm and cozy about buying that Acura crossover. That horrendous, beak-nosed Acura crossover.

    I guess it’s gonna be like history repeating itself.

    We’re over the fad that was the Integra now, aren’t we? Don’t do it again, Acura.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Bingo! well said, it’s over, move on…

    • 0 avatar
      SCfanboy

      My first car was an Integra and I currently drive a 2005 TSX. Part of me wants to relive my youth and send Acura a deposit, but this would be a completely emotional and impractical decision.

      You’re right. Perhaps the moment has passed. The Integra crowd is grown up with kids and a commute. As Thomas Wolfe said, “You can’t go home again.”

  • avatar
    bball40dtw

    So a 2-door ILX? Isn’t the ILX already an Integra with more doors?

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      Yes. And remember, the original Integra came with 5 doors. In fact, it was originally called the Honda Quint – that name signifying 5 doors.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        >> And remember, the original Integra came with 5 doors.

        I remember. And that makes the TSX Wagon the true next Integra. Not some ILX variant. And the TSX Wagon even has double wishbones on all four corners.

        Huh? They killed the TSX Wagon?? Never mind. :P

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    I have mixed feelings about this. A lot of what made the original Integra great were conditions that just don’t exist anymore. Expectations were quite a bit lower. SUV/truck bumper heights didn’t dictate auto design. Kids had money to spend on brand new cars. Etc. etc.

    What would a new Integra be? I could see it maybe being something like an Acura TT. But IMO the TT concept is flawed as well. The interior is nicer, but the car is less practical and not much better than the GTI/Golf R dynamically. Similarly, I doubt a new Integra would be able to distance itself much/make a solid value proposition vs an ILX with the same powertrain/drivetrain. And I don’t think there is a business case for a one-off RWD platform for it, especially in the affordable price range the Integra occupied. I think Acura would do better to just work on making the ILX better, and maybe offer it in a coupe/hatchback version.

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      >> What would a new Integra be?

      When I drive my Mazda3, I sometimes think, “so that’s where the Integra engineers went.”

      In an alternate reality, a modern 5 door Mazda3 could be an upgraded 1986/87 5 door Integra. They’re both fun to drive, fuel efficient, have innovative drive trains, great shifters, and are class leading in their respective time periods.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    Too little, too late.

  • avatar
    tedward

    I really don’t see the good news here at all. When Acura says Integra I immediately think of a 2-door version of the ILX, itself a poorly badge engineered Civic IMO. Now, it gets interesting if you assume that it will be packing the next Si’s turbo 4, but even in that case it will need to sport a far nicer and more tasteful interior than what Acura is doing lately if it wants to play with the S3 and CLA. If they don’t use the Integra to launch the new turbo 4 and the next gen compact/Civic chassis I don’t see what good could come of this.

    The best outcome I can see here is if Acura goes AWD and uses the Integra to debut the new Civic turbo. Then at least they will have re-entered the premium battleground at parity with their competitors in terms of drivetrain packaging. Acura has let me down with basically every new product they’ve launched lately, I can’t get excited about this without more info.

    • 0 avatar
      S2k Chris

      Agreed on all counts. Pretty sure this will just be a warmed over Civic Si, an ILX coupe. Blah.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      The Integra was a badge engineered, tarted up Civic. I don’t think that in itself is a bad thing. Lexus’ bread n butter are reworked Camrys (ES/RX). The question is whether or not such a car has any place in today’s market. I am going to say no. I like coupes and my daily driver is a 2 seater. But I can get the same performance and driving engagement from a much more practical body style. The Fiesta ST would not gain anything from having a coupe body. The M3 sedan gives nothing up to the M4 coupe. Etc. etc.

      If Acura wants to appeal to the enthusiasts they should just work on making the ILX more fun to drive and competitive against the likes of the S3/CLA45. And maybe think about doing something worthwhile with the CR-Z.

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    Why the Integra? The Legend was more saught after and established the brand back in the 80’s. The RLX is nice, but the Legend would be more appropriate. As far as the Integra goes, fine…as long as the Legend follows. Acura should have passed on the three letter nomenclature.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Given Hondas and acuras current lineups, I have zero confidence in them producing a worthy successor to the Integra or RSX.

  • avatar
    stuntmonkey

    I don’t get the fuss. All 4 generations on the Integra were upper level Civic variants (the RSX was still labelled as an a integers in other markets.) The ILX is an Integra, a rose by any other name. The reason it doesn’t smell as sweet is because it’s base power delta to the Civic isn’t as big as in previous versions and that it needs something automatic for the 2.4 trim. The refresh looks like it will address this, and whatever new is coming down the pipe coincided with the expected next Civic platform.

    • 0 avatar
      energetik9

      You could argue lineage there, but the truth is the ILX and the Integra trace their roots down two different pathways. The ILX from the Civic and the Integra from the Accord. A significant difference.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        >> The ILX from the Civic and the Integra from the Accord.

        Actually, both the ILX and the Integra are rooted to the Civic. The 1986/87 Integra could even swap door panels with a Civic of the same period. But the Integra had the DOHC engine with programmed fuel injection, and disc brakes all around whereas the Civic had the SOHC engine with drum brakes at the rear.

        The Integra had genuine stuff — technical and luxury — to get excited about. The ILX… not so much.

  • avatar
    calgarytek

    I wonder if they’ll re-engineer the Civic before coming out with a ‘teg.
    It better have double wishbones on those fronts otherwise it’s the same POS every one else drives.

    Nothing in the history of ‘small’ cars comes close to the reliability coupled with the handling precision and the feel of a front wheel drive Honda with chassis codes EF/EG/EJ/EK/DC2.

    • 0 avatar
      psarhjinian

      Are we still having the front-double-wishbone discussion?

      It’s not needed; you can make a good front-strut setup. Case in point: the BMW 3-Series, which at least as far back as the E30 did quite well, thank you. Another case-in-point, but front-drive this time: the modern Mini Cooper. Heck, even the RSX was a better handler than the double-wishbone Integra.

      The front-double-wishbone thing really didn’t amount to much more than theory.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        The RSX was worse (look up Real Time Racing’s successful petition for the RSX to the SCCA) but that was due more to Honda’s terrible suspension design decisions than the faulting of the strut suspension. The rear was a multilink setup, like they had been doing for the previous 15 years, and they completely bungled that too.

        That said, I’ve had my fair share of DWB Hondas and have driven some great front strut FWD cars as well. This is just one of many tired “let me pretend like I know something” memes/tropes people fall back on here when there is an appropriate trigger.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Actually, the FD2 is by far the best handling Civic chassis of all time.

      And of course, let’s not forget that struts are good enough for BMW & Porsche, as well as pretty much every great FWD car that has isn’t a Honda, including the equally great Clio RS, 205 GTi, etc.

      Civic’s real enemy is its size and weight. It’s footprint is the same as an Accord from the 90s, which was a medium car. If Honda wants to recapture the spirit of the old Integra it will have to do something with the Fit platform. Even then though, with careful design the strut suspension will be fine.

  • avatar
    energetik9

    They can talk all they want, the truth is Acura is suffering for a long identity crisis. Legend….gone. NSX…..long ignored and gone. Integra…gone. TL, once a decent sport sedan, now a bloated crusier. The RL, decent, but over engineered and underpowered, suffering from an identity crisis itself. No halo car, no sports car, over engineering, poor styling, and some very poor entry selections. The new NSX might answer the halo question, but in general, this is indicative of slow decline.

  • avatar
    DearS

    To most customers including me the Integra was effectively a more comfy Civic, but I bought it because I was looking at the Type R and GSR variants. Without a TypeR I don’t was a Civic Si or Integra as much. just how I feel!

    The Civic Si seems like a sport car, the TypeR was a sports car, albeit a sport car makes more sense for most people in terms of practicality.

    I hope this next Integra is light, rigid and nimble.

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    Ok you guys just HAVE to check out Autoblog… What could be an Acura minivan was photographed in camo.

    Yes, you heard me.

    Acura. Minivan.

    Changes coming, indeed. Oh please, please name it the VDX!!!

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    My point was exactly that…the Legend name had a certain appeal. When they started the letter nomenclature, some consumers got confused and simply walked away. Im sure the RLX is a fine car, I just think it might sell better with the Legend name attached.

  • avatar
    superchan7

    I’ll bet the ‘I’ in ‘ILX’ is a quiet pointer to the Integra. A hot ILX would be an interesting car.

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    They should also consider losing the toothy grill/front end. It was an interesting look for about 10 minutes …now lets see something better. Again, another reason people walked away…it’s a look that has stayed around past it’s expiration date.

  • avatar
    Spartan

    Those who remember the Integra from years past have since graduated from such cars. We drive midsize sedans and crossovers now because we have families and much different priorities. We aren’t teenagers or college students any longer. We’re all in our late 20s and early 30s these days. Of course an Integra doesn’t excite us!

    I had a Honda Prelude during my teenage through college years (2001 – 2006). If Honda said, “In 2016, the Prelude will return.”, I wouldn’t care. I have a wife and kid on the way. A 2 door sport coupe couldn’t be further from my mind. Now, if you told me Acura was building a longitudinal FWD/AWD layout and the Legend name was revived, you’d have my attention. Maybe not a sale, but that would at least interest me.

    Sometimes it pays for a brand to revisit its roots. However, at the root of it all for Acura, the Integra may as well have been a dressed up Honda Civic. It was a lightweight FWD sporty car with a high revving 4 cylinder motor. There’s far more exciting cars on the market than that.

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