12 MONTH CAR REVIEWS: 2013 Acura ILX - Not as Perfect as its Powertrain

September 30, 2013
2013 Acura ILX Profile View
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Long-Term 2013 Acura ILX Update - FALL 2013 (3 OF 3)
Miles to Date: 24,687
The hero of our Acura ILX 2.4’s yearlong story is its powertrain. Its punchy inline-four engine and its six-speed manual gearbox with the best shift linkage this side of the Audi R8’s metal-gated six-speed manual deserve all of the credit for making our ILX as fun as it is.
Just about every comment in the ILX’s logbook starts off with someone trying out a creative way to describe the car’s powertrain. Web editor Jake Holmes, for one, recently called the six-speed manual “supple,” and the 2.4-liter engine “responsive and throaty.”
2013 Acura ILX Profile View
“I really appreciate the way they work in harmony,” continued Holmes. “I always want to wind out the engine and hear it snarl all the way to redline, and I love the snick-snick closeness of the six-speed manual.” Another commenter agreed that the engine is “a hoot to rev” and the shifter is a “joy to row.” One staffer went so far as to say that if the Subaru BRZ or Scion FR-S had an engine and gearbox this enjoyable, they’d be near-perfect cars.
Copy editor Rusty Blackwell put it best when he said that he “wouldn’t like driving an ILX if it didn't have this absolutely wonderful engine and gearbox.” And he’s right. If we’d opted for a base model, with its 150-hp, 2.0-liter four, or hybrid version, we probably wouldn’t. The 2.4-liter engine and its six-speed manual transmission make this the best ILX you can buy.
That’s not to say, though, that this powertain makes the ILX the best luxury compact car you can buy. Remember that a Honda Civic Si sedan, a far less expensive car with the same engine and transmission, trounced our ILX in a head-to-head comparison we conducted this past May. A powertrain, however nice it is, is only one part of a car. So, after one year, what’s the sum of our 2.4-liter Acura ILX’s parts, of which the powertrain is only one (or two)?
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

Long-Term 2013 Acura ILX Reviews to Date:

FALL 2013
2013 Acura ILX - Not as Perfect as its Powertrain
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Photo Gallery

  • Sitting in South Bend, Indiana.
  • The Honda Civic Si sedan beat our ILX in a comparison.
  • There’s that lovely powertrain.
  • What a fantastic six-speed gearbox.
  • Our favorite thing to do in our ILX.

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