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1304 2013 Acura Ilx March Update
four seasons long-term tests

2013 Acura ILX - Are We Being Too Rough?

Miles to Date: 11,910

Patrick M Hoey
#Acura, #ILX
2013 Acura ILX reviews to date

Since the Acura dealership replaced our ILX’s rear dampers last month, the suspension feels significantly softer. “I’m delighted to experience the ILX with a functional rear suspension,” says senior editor Phil Floraday. “No more harsh impacts from the back end.”

Now, it appears that the only thing “harsh” about the ILX is the buffoons who drive it. The bottom of the steering wheel somehow got scraped, which led some editors to question whether the leather is too soft and therefore more susceptible to damage, but they’re probably the same oafs who keep scuffing the door panels with their sneakers.

The ILX is a much more pleasant car to drive than it was just one month ago.

On the other hand, with the hard plastic on the bottom half of the door and the rest of the interior’s rather downmarket materials, the cabin doesn't have a very tough skin. The lack of plush materials makes it clear that balancing the “small luxury” equation was not an easy task for Acura. That’s not to say it’s the only car company with that problem. “Every automaker is struggling to figure out what buyers in this segment want,” says associate editor David Zenlea. “I hold out hope for the Mercedes CLA-class, which I think has the potential to be a big hit.” Executive editor Todd Lassa agrees: “The Mercedes CLA250 will blow this car away in the marketplace, not least because of the CLA’s three-pointed star. The equipment level is pretty similar to this car’s at just under $31,000. Props to Acura for including a rear-center armrest, which the Mercedes does not have.”

At least the baby Benz will have available navigation. Sorry to repeat ourselves, but we're not over the fact that this trim level cannot be had with a nav system. “You can order navi on a Civic Si but not its Acura sister? It baffles the ever-loving hell out of me, especially since this car is pitched at the tech-loving millennial buyer,” says associate editor Evan McCausland. “Would offering the system on a manual-transmission ILX really add that much complexity to Honda’s build schedule and component procurement process?”

The lack of navigation won’t keep us from driving, though, especially now that the ILX is back on its stock tires. Its Continental winter tires worked well in snow, but, on dry roads, they made the car feel squirmy, let it wander on the highway, and allowed torque steer in third gear. The all-season Michelin Pilot HX MXM4 tires are much better, but they’re still just adequate. Come summer, they'll leave us wanting for more grip. But, hey, at least the Michelins are quieter than the Continentals. Between that and the softened rear suspension, the ILX is a much more pleasant car to drive than it was just one month ago.

2013 Acura ILX Specs
  • Overview
  • powertrain
  • chassis
  • measurements
  • equipment
  • options
Body style 4-door sedan
Accommodation 5-passenger
Construction Steel unibody
Engine 16-valve DOHC I-4
Displacement 2.4 liters (144 cu in)
Power 201 hp @ 7000 rpm
Torque 170 lb-ft @ 4400 rpm
Transmission 6-speed manual
Drive Front-wheel
EPA Fuel Economy 22/31/25 (city/hwy/combined)
Steering Electrically assisted
Lock-to-lock 2.8
Turning circle 36.1 ft
Suspension, Front Strut-type, coil springs
Suspension, Rear Multilink, coil springs
Brakes F/R Vented discs/discs
Wheels 17-inch aluminum
Tires Michelin Pilot HX MXM4
Tire size 215/45VR-17
Headroom F/R 37.9/35.9 in
Legroom F/R 42.3/34.0 in
Shoulder room F/R 55.6/53.5 in
Wheelbase 105.1 in
Track F/R 59.4/60.3 in
L x W x H 179.1 x 70.6 x 55.6 in
Passenger capacity 89.3 cu ft
Cargo capacity 12.3 cu ft
Weight 2978 lb
Weight dist. F/R 61/39%
Fuel capacity 13.2 gal
Est. fuel range 330 miles
Fuel grade 91 octane (premium unleaded)
Standard Equipment
  • Power sunroof
  • Heated exterior mirrors
  • Leather-trimmed sport seats
  • Acura premium audio system w/7 speakers
  • SiriusXM satellite radio w/trial subscription
  • Heated front seats
  • Power 8-way adjustable driver's seat
  • Rearview camera
  • Xenon HID headlights
  • Fog lights
  • 6-speed manual transmission
  • MP3/auxiliary audio jack
  • Push-button ignition
  • Bluetooth
  • Automatic dual-zone climate control
  • USB port
  • Hill start assist
  • Brake assist
Packages & Options
  • None
I was so looking forward to getting an Acura ILX but changed my mind once I found out the 6M could not be bought with Navigation.  Its totally ridiculous that the Civic with the same basic components offers a 6M but Acura does NOT.  I had put off purchasing another car with the hopes that the 2014 Acura ILX model 6M would be offered with Navigation but just found out the 2014 model will NOT have include it.  I've owned an Acura TL in the past with 6M and loved it but since the ILX 6M won't offer the Navigation I'm looking at BMW and Audi.  Wake up ACURA and offer your customers what they want.  Adding Navigation to all your cars is a no brainer.
I own this car and I love it. It does have shortcomings, but the powertrain makes up for all of them in my book. Forget nav though. Add memory seats and power lumbar. It's silly that you get the "1" and "2" keys from Acura but they don't really do anything in this car.

I definitely didn't cross-shop a buick. Pshaw! I don't care if the Buick has light speed. I'll put my  acura next to a buick any day and ask random people to pick which one they would want. I'm sure the Buick outsells it.... to Hertz, Avis, etc.
Anyone who compares the TSX hasn't driven both. This car has a better feel. Plus, if I'm dropping this much coin, I want Acura's latest and not the outgoing model that's seen everywhere.

There weren't many other options considering a manual was a requirement for me. I drove a 2014 Mazda 6, but it doesn't feel like it wants to go fast. Bimmers are too expensive for me. I've owned enough volkswagens not to make that mistake again and I have to have 4 doors and 2 carseats so BRZ, mustangs, etc. are out.
I agree that the 2.0 liter and Hybrid offer no compelling reasons to buy. I haven't driven them but no amount of tech would make up for slow powertrains for me. You'd be better off with a fully loaded Mazda 6  unless you really have to have an Acura badge.
John Kelly
I cannot imagine why they stopped the TSX and made this. 30k could get you a nice used 3.2TL.  I would get the civic over this any day, and the civic isn't doing so well at the moment.  They really need to fill in the gap left by dropping the RSX.  2-door hondas with MT's are arguably the most fun you can have on public roads. The buttery smooth clutch operation and the clockwork-like gear shifts with nice mechanical feedback are enough to make you forget about oppressive speed limits and get your kicks accelerating out of corners.  Though, I'm biased as an owner of a '95 Prelude V-Tech. Unless I'm missing something, all the other Japanese manufacturers have a sport coupe in either the main, or luxury line (or both). Subaru and Scion share their Toyota GT. Nissan has all sorts of flavors of 2 seat-er, 6-cylinder, Z's and G's. Mazda will sell you a rotary engine, even if it's not terribly quick. Lexus always reserves a spot for a nice IS-something. The NSX needs to come quick and deliver or honda will lose its grasp on the sport coupe market completely. I'd kill to see a new prelude or integra or RSX. Or they could offer ANY form of non-hybrid CR-Z for people who like to add their own go-fast parts. That's my rant. Hope somebody agrees.

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