Honda is chanting the mantra in which the automotive industry magically delivers “a collision-free society” by leveraging the latest technology. Though this is hardly a novel marketing strategy, even for Honda, and one that predictably requires you to be patient because the company says it won’t be arriving as standard equipment until 2030.
Attention, future Barrett-Jackson bidders: The final Acura NSX Type S was completed today at the brand’s Performance Manufacturing Center in Ohio. Billed as the last production NSX, the Gotham Gray coupe – number 350 of 350 – was allegedly shilled off to a private collection.
Acura has announced that its first electric vehicle will be called the ZDX – a model you might not remember if car spotting isn’t among your favorite hobbies. Introduced in 2009, the original came into being just as crossover vehicles were starting to become mainstream. But the ZDX remains an exceptionally rare bird due to it being considered an oddball in its own time. Acura only managed to move 3,200 units inside the U.S. during its first full year on sale. That also happened to be its best year by far and explains why the car was quietly killed off in 2013.
Acura has announced that production of the much-anticipated 2023 Integra has officially commenced in Marysville, Ohio. Deliveries of the iconic nameplate are said to commence in June and orders can be placed now.
But with pricing having revealed the starting MSRP of $31,895 — over three grand more than the mechanically similar Honda Civic Si — one wonders if the public interest has held strong. We now know that we’re effectively getting a revamped version of the ILX (also based on the Civic) with a steeper price tag and a more desirable name. The Integra comes with a 200-horsepower turbocharged 1.5-liter inline-four, mated to either a continuously variable automatic (CVT) or a six-speed manual transmission. But the CVT is standard, forcing customers that want a manual to spend $36,895 (including destination) for the A-Spec — which also comes with adaptive dampers, sportier looks, a limited-slip differential, and Acura’s technology package.
As a lifelong Snow Belter, I’ve long considered myself a fairly good snow driver – and I’ve long understood the need for winter tires, even over all-seasons in some cases. A recent trip to the ski town of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, courtesy of Bridgestone, confirmed some of what I already knew – and taught me some new things in the process.
For example, one can be a pretty good snow driver, and yet be pretty far from excellent. More on that in a bit.
Honda has filed to trademark ADX with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), presumably so it can use the name for an upcoming luxury model. While Honda has previously sold vehicles with alphanumeric monikers ending in the letter X, that’s literally Acura’s entire lineup and it’s supposed to be delivering a few new models to round out its rather limited selection.
Last night’s unveiling of the new Integra in L.A. wasn’t a surprise, given the number of teasers released by Acura over the last few weeks. There was a general consensus it would be a four-door hatchback of some ilk, and would very likely share many parts with other members of the House of Honda.
The 2023 Integra (technically a prototype but we all know that 99.9 percent of this vehicle will make production) did indeed appear as a four-door hatch – thankfully not as a tall-riding crossover – complete with a turbocharged engine and manual transmission. This didn’t stop keyboard warriors bleating from the depth of their parent’s basement that “ThIs Iz NoT a ReEl AcUrA” thanks to the 2023’s abundance of doors compared to the 3rd-gen coupe everyone remembers.
Here’s a newsflash for all those nimrods: The Integra has always been available with four doors.
If you were hoping the returning Acura Integra would be the peppy, three-door liftback everyone coveted 20 years ago, we may have some bad news for you. Based on the latest teasers coming from the Honda Motor Company, the fifth-generation model will likely harken back to the five-door vehicles that rarely saw themselves equipped with aftermarket body kits or cold-air intakes and barely received any screen time in the Fast & Furious films.
Rather than focus on the cars of the 1990s ( arguably the high-water mark for the Integra), Honda has decided to base the new model on the first-generation and even included a photo of the 1986 Acura Integra RS 5-Door in the latest marketing materials to drive the point home.
Mid-size luxury sport sedans sometimes come up short when it comes to the sport part of the equation. Acura’s TLX, for the most part, does not.
Yeah, I know, I just gave away my conclusion upfront, thus violating a basic guideline of writing a review. Stick around to find out why I came to that conclusion after the local press fleet tossed me the keys all those months ago (hence the snow).
Having recently revived the Type S moniker for its performance products, Acura is keen to get the label on the famed NSX before it’s discontinued. The mid-engine, hybrid-electric sports car will be leaving us next year. But not before the Honda Motor Company attempts to build the finest example ever to grace the pavement.
Acura has said the vehicle will be produced in limited quantities, with a scant 350 units being the outside envelope. However, 300 of those are supposed to be reserved for the United States, where take rates are higher and consumers appreciate salt-of-the-earth supercars that don’t need to have Italian roots or cars to be manufactured in places with long, European-sounding names. The NSX is assembled at Acura’s Performance Manufacturing Center in Marysville, Ohio, where the town motto happens to be “Where the Grass is Greener.”
Ford’s Lightning has stolen the spotlight this week, but another hotly anticipated vehicle is jumping around and waving its arms (metaphorically speaking, as cars don’t have arms) to remind buyers it exists and goes on sale soon. That vehicle is the 2021 Acura TLX Type S.
One thing I’ve observed in my decade-plus covering this industry is that Honda and its luxury brand, Acura, seem to respond more quickly to criticism than most OEMs.
I note my bias here – I once owned an Accord – but I don’t think my former ownership of a used Honda is throwing me off. My observation, difficult to quantify as it admittedly is, seems correct.
Specific to Acura’s case, the luxury brand was panned earlier this decade for unflattering styling, subpar luxury accouterments for the class, and a slide in performance. Not all of this criticism was fair – a manual ILX is on my “weird cars I’d like to own but probably never will” list, because that thing was spunky – but nevertheless, Acura has seemingly addressed it, and addressed it well, in recent history.
Acura has unveiled the 2022 Acura MDX, peeling back the curtain on the latest iteration of the luxury SUV with its most dramatic redesign in 20 years. For a brand more reliant on technology, Acura’s new flagship model is daring if not somewhat fearless in its appearance.
Sporting an all-new platform and chassis, the MDX also has new sheetmetal.
Acura will reveal the 2022 Acura MDX on December 8. America’s best-selling three-row luxury SUV gets its most dramatic redesign in 20 years. Bolder inside and out, Acura’s new flagship model is claimed to be the most performance-focused, technologically advanced premium SUV in the company’s history.
The Rare Rides series has touched on Acura only once before, in the only Rare Rides Review (to date) of a Honda-owned 2003 Acura CL Type-S.
Today marks the second edition of Acura Time, and we step back to the company’s first-ever midsize coupe. Let’s check out a tidy tan-over-tan Legend from 1989.
The fourth-generation Acura MDX is here. Sort of.
Acura hasn’t actually launched the next MDX, but it has taken the cover off a prototype that previews the upcoming re-done crossover. There is a lot new, as we teased before, but the looks remain relatively familiar.
Slides from an Acura dealer webinar have leaked onto the Internet, and Acura fans, take note.
While almost anything on Reddit needs to be approached with a reasonably skeptical eye – do you really think all those posts on r/relationships are real? – there are a few news nuggets to mine here.
Crossovers don’t have to be totally boring.
Consider the 2020 Acura MDX A-Spec. It could just be another yawn-inducing luxo-box on wheels, but Acura has at least tried to imbue it with some sort of spirit.
Well, as much spirit as is possible with a 4,200-pound crossover.
Last year, I found a 2009 Chevrolet Chevy (a Mexican-market Opel Corsa) in a Denver car graveyard, presumably driven here on Mexican plates and then abandoned and towed away when it couldn’t be registered in Colorado.
We can assume that today’s Junkyard Find came to the Mile High City in the same way, but via the northern border rather than the southern one.
Earlier this summer, Acura and Team Penske invited me to Road America to watch them test their ARX-05 racecar in advance of the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series race.
After I left, I thought I was done with on-site coverage – I figured I’d write my story and have it go live the day after the race, so I could include the results.
I was wrong.
One of the greatest singers of our generation, a young lady from Mississippi who goes by the name Britney Spears, once posited that if you want a Bugatti, or a Maserati, you better work.
Pure poetry, that.
Sarcastic references to mediocre pop-music lyrics aside, the song does hide a good point under its generic dance beats. Work usually does need to come before success. Like the old cliché says: “The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary.”
Hard work preceding success is not news, I know, but we can all use a reminder now and then. And there aren’t as many reminders as visceral as watching a pro driver sling a racecar around a track at full speed, sans competition, as he and his co-drivers and crew prep for a race that won’t take place for almost another month.
Acura pulled the digital wraps off its Type S Concept two days ahead of its public debut at Monterey Car Week, heralding the Type S designation’s return to the brand’s model line. The car seen here hints at what to expect of the looming next-generation TLX and its confirmed Type S performance variant.
“Performance.” That implies something more than just a racy appearance package and maybe an upgraded brake and suspension setup, right? Ideally, yes, but in this case Acura does promise more “go” to back up the show.
One of the more frequent comments I’ve heard since the C8 Corvette dropped is some variation of “the Acura NSX is screwed.”
That comment makes sense – Chevrolet is promising similar performance numbers from the newly mid-engined ‘Vette, with a base price that is nearly $100K cheaper.
So yeah, if the next Corvette fulfills Chevy’s promise at a significantly lower cost than the NSX, that could spell trouble for a supercar that’s already selling slowly by supercar standards.
Still, the NSX has two things going for it. One, logic and rationality doesn’t always matter among the well-heeled – in other words, some will pay for the pricier car, regardless of specs, because of brand name/loyalty, or styling, or whatever.
Two, the NSX is just plain fantastic.
Following news that Acura is restoring the Type S designation for future high-performance models, the brand announced it would also expand its selection of heritage colors. While the NSX is already available in Berlina Black, the company says it will debut Indy Yellow Pearl for the 2020 model year at this month’s Monterey Car Week.
The hue is a throwback to the Spa/Indy Yellow that graced 1st-generation models and managed to stick around on 20 percent of NSXs produced between 1997 and 2003. It looks as though Acura’s future lies partially in its past, which is fine by us.
In last week’s QOTD, we asked you to share the vehicles that pleasantly surprised you after spending some time behind the wheel. Whether your expectations were high or low to start, it’s always nice to recall transportation that impressed.
Today we turn in the opposite direction, and talk about cars that left you feeling disappointed.
Imagine a world in which The Fast And The Furious movie never had a sequel, let alone eight. Dom Toretto and the team didn’t keep being criminals or fighting crime — they just settled down in Southern California and had families.
In this imaginary offshoot of an imaginary world, there is one question that needs to be answered: What would Brian O’Conner drive? He and Mia certainly have a pack of towheaded children that require shuttling to daycare and soccer.
I think your answer is right here: a three-row crossover with some tuner highlights, including a pair of massive exhaust tips and big, blacked-out alloy wheels. The 2019 Acura MDX A-Spec is perfect for cruising the strip on Friday night, followed by a Saturday of dance recitals and antiquing.
While I had hoped to do this a bit sooner, other work got in the way. So Steph and I decided it would be a good way to close out the year.
The Buy/Drive/Burn series has ventured into unpopular cars territory a time or two before. Most recently we discussed three large American sedans that are most unpopular indeed (two of those three are now on their way out). Today we pick a Buy amongst three lower-volume midsize offerings from second-tier luxury brands.
It might not be the reality we want, but it’s the only reality we have. As car sales continue to dwindle (they’re down to roughly 30 percent of new vehicles sold), light trucks have picked up the torch at most brands, though some aren’t arriving fast enough to satisfy jittery executives in today’s stagnating market.
At two premium Japanese brands, the arrival of two crossovers in the scorching compact segment had exactly the effect their creators hoped for. Acura and Infiniti, faced with declining sales in recent years, had reason to smile in October. The recipe is working.
Today’s vehicle represents a couple of firsts for the Rare Rides series. It’s the first time a Rare Rides has featured an old car that’s still new, and it’s also the first time your author actually drove the Rare Ride in question.
An Aegean Blue luxury coupe awaits.
Acura’s entry level ILX is redesigned for the 2019 model year. With new styling and additional technology on board, it fulfills the brand’s desire to display a cohesive design language across all models. But is this refresh of a refresh any good? We headed to Columbus to find out.
Today’s Buy/Drive/Burn trio represent the high-dollar sports car that doesn’t quite make it into supercar territory. They’re very expensive, yet among other extra-fast vehicles in the six-figure segment, they’re considered relatively good value.
This makes them all oddballs; none ever burn up the sales charts. But that doesn’t mean they can’t catch fire.
Acura treated the world to a surprise — and much-needed — refresh for the 2019 ILX this week. While it hasn’t abandoned the brand’s signature visuals, it finally made the model interesting enough to warrant a closer examination. Previous incarnations of the ILX — including the post-2016 facelift — have proven excruciatingly dull, resulting in the quick onset of a cripplingly severe mental malaise.
Based on the ninth-generation Honda Civic, all one could really say about the 2018 ILX was that it was a competent vehicle and perfect for someone seeking luxury on a budget. Then came the brow furrowing, a long sigh, and an extended speech about the superiority of Acura’s TSX.
Normal people also appear to have noticed something was missing, as ILX sales have followed a downward trajectory since 2015. However, Acura’s new styling attempts to remedy that by injecting the sedan with some personality.
It’s nothing new in the industry, nor is it at all uncommon, but Honda’s distinctly balanced product mix continues to tip ever further towards the trucks and SUV side, despite the assertion of American Honda’s assistant VP of sales, Ray Mikiciuk, that cars will continue as the brand’s mainstay.
With the same number of selling days as August 2017, last month showed the automaker’s volume on the upswing, propelled by the strength of light truck sales. In keeping with the theme of balance, only one mainstream car saw its sales increase, year over year, while only one light truck model saw its sales decrease.
Can we really call the Acura NSX a supercar? Some might disagree. It’s certainly not a super seller, anyway, but not for a lack of trying on Acura’s part to get motoring enthusiasts interested in the concept of a two-seater sport hybrid.
For 2019, the second-generation NSX sees its first significant upgrades after awakening from its 11-year slumber in 2016. Improved handling is the goal here, but renewed consumer interest can’t be far behind on the wish list.
Acura would love it if we talked about the brand in the same manner that we did, oh, say a decade ago. Maybe the turn of the century. But we don’t, as vehicles like the second-generation NSX simply didn’t capture our imagination like the original. There’s no cheap, fun little car like the Integra anymore, and cars as a whole are vanishing from conversations as quickly as they fade from sales sheets.
Sales of Acura cars in the U.S. fell over 25 percent in June, year over year, and volume over the first half of 2018 was down 6.5 percent. That leaves Acura’s utility vehicles with the job of counteracting the loss — a difficult task for just two models.
For the freshest model in Acura’s stable — the totally revamped 2019 RDX compact crossover — June returned the news Acura execs were hoping for.
Having first appeared back in 2000 as a 2001 model, the Acura MDX is the Ed Asner of premium midsize import crossovers and a crucial breadwinner in the brand’s utility-light portfolio. While the model’s smaller sibling, the RDX, just underwent massive changes, the MDX soldiers on into 2019 muttering, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Thus, most changes fall into the minor but meaningful category.
One thing the 2019 MDX does seek to fix is its mildly conservative persona, but only for buyers willing to take that leap.
In the fiercely competitive compact crossover segment, a game arguably invented by Lexus, a company has to have a killer app in order to stand out. The XC60 trades upon a platform of safety, thanks to the goodwill built by the Volvo brand. BMW has – rightly or wrongly – its rep for being the Ultimate Driving Machine to lure customers into an X3.
But Acura? Most would struggle to finger a standout attribute of their current offering in that segment, the RDX. This is not to say it is a bad machine – it outsells two of its closest rivals – but the company knows change has to be made, and consequently plans to turn up the volume … in more ways than one.
Set to appear on dealer lots within the next few days, Acura has released pricing for the newest version of its compact crossover, the RDX.
Now in its third generation, the trucklet, contending in the savagely competitive compact luxury crossover segment against such heavies as the BMW X3 and Lexus NX, will make an opening bid south of $40,000, even for customers that want all-wheel drive.
Often found in its larger, older sibling’s shadow, Acura’s compact RDX crossover can at least boast of being the brand’s best-selling vehicle. Over the first four months of 2018, Americans picked up 15,326 of the little crossovers, versus the MDX’s 13,909.
But with popularity comes responsibility. As production begins in Ohio on the next-generation RDX, Acura’s smallest crossover must overcome its own falling sales in order to help reverse the brand’s flagging fortunes.
You would think that after 34 years of having the same guitar teacher, I would be better than I am. Yet that’s not really an accurate statement. From the ages of 12 to 14, I went weekly to The String Shoppe on the Ohio State campus for weekly instruction that frustrated more than it educated. My teacher, also named John, was a former New York studio musician specializing in big band and jazz music. I wanted to play Judas Priest riffs. The results were lackluster, to say the least, so I quit in favor of racing my BMX bike.
Two decades later, I sought John out again for some help in playing the old jazz standards to which I had finally come around. In the years since, he has suffered through a series of health scares and personal reversals, while my travel and parenting schedule has accelerated to something just sort of Warp Speed Nine, so nowadays when we meet it’s on short notice and it’s usually just to noodle around on a James Taylor song or something like “East Of The Sun” for an hour or so. It has been a long time since any money has changed hands.
When I stopped by John’s home studio on Saturday — rather predictably, the two songs we fussed with were “Anywhere like Heaven” and “Over The Rainbow” — he expressed interest in the Lotus Evora 400 I’ve been driving as a “long-termer,” while I noted that he’d chopped in his 2015 Accord LX for a 2018 Acura ILX. The conversation that followed has stuck with me all weekend.
Outside of my hometown of Chicago, New York City remains one of my favorite metropolises. I don’t know why – Manhattan is overstuffed with cars and people, garbage is put out on the sidewalks, hotel rooms are no oasis from street noise, and most goods and services are way too expensive.
Perhaps New York has a unique sort of charm that compensates for all its flaws, some sort of charisma that continues to exist despite the continuing transformation of Manhattan into a living Disney city for the wealthy.
I mean, in what other city would I be brazenly approached by a young man trying to sell me cocaine as I walked back to my hotel after some late-night pizza (partake, I did not. Drugs aren’t my thing. Pizza was good, though) while almost within sight of the most famous urban intersection in the world – one that was undoubtedly crowded to the gills even at that hour? In what other city would I have a surreal on-street argument with a fellow pedestrian over an innocent, touristy picture I took of a street sign? There’s this “only in New York” feeling, a sense that certain things happen to you that just wouldn’t elsewhere.
It’s the kind of place where you can swear bloody murder because the F train didn’t show, but find value in the 40-minute walk across lower Manhattan you undertake instead, all because you don’t feel like doing the logical thing and hailing a cab. SoHo, Little Italy, and Chinatown all look much better from on foot.
In the last edition of Buy/Drive/Burn, we concerned ourselves with unpopular large luxury sedans. The general B&B consensus at the end of the day was that none of them were a great purchase idea (see, you’re getting the point now). In the comments, Brian E. suggested we cover a trio of compact-ish sporty sedans he evaluated in real life, back in 2006.
So let’s travel to those days before the Great Recession and pick apart some sporty import sedans. By they way, they all have automatic transmissions.
Latest Car ReviewsRead more
Latest Product ReviewsRead more
- MelanieRichardson GOOD
- El scotto @jwee; Sir, a great many of us believe that Musk is somewhere (pretty high) on the spectrum and move on.I work on the fringes of IT. Most of my presentations get picked over extensively and intensely at meetings. I'm smart enough to know I'm not that smart and willingly take advice from the IT crew. I bring them Duck Doughnuts too. We also keep a box of Crayolas in the meeting room.At one meeting an IT guy got way into the details of my presentation, the meeting went long as we discussed my target audience. Same IT guy insisted it was a disaster and would fail miserable and that I was stupid. Yeah, F-boms get dropped at our meetings. I finally had enough and asked if he was such an expert, did he want to stand up in front of 30 senior executives and give the presentation? His response was a flat "NO". He got the box of Crayolas. For you non-military types that means shut up and color. Musk is the same as that IT guy, lots of gyrations but not much on follow-through. Someone just needs to hand him a box of Crayolas.
- FreedMike The FJ Cruiser would be a better comeback candidate. The gang back at Toyota HQ must be looking at all those Broncos flying off Ford lots and kicking themselves.
- Tassos 2015 was only 7 years ago. $58k is still a whole lot of $ to pay for a vehicle. FOrtunately one can buy a flagship vehicle with great active and passive safety for half this amount, if one does the SMART thing and buys a pre-owned luxury flagship vehicle. they have historically been SCREAMING BARGAINS. A breadvan on stilts SUV, wether the more compact Macan or the more bloated Cayenne will never pass as a Flagship Vehicle. No matter how well it drives or how reliable it suprisingly is. It still is a breadvan on stilts.
- Sean Ohsee Bring back the 100 series and its I6 diesel.