The cars we loved.
The Acura TSX was designed as an entry level luxury car to replace the Integra sedan that was discontinued in 2001. The TSX is Acura’s smallest and arguably best looking sedan offering. It basically is a rebadged European Accord which is smaller than the American version of the Accord which the TL is based on. If all that sounds confusing, it should be. Honda sells many variations of the European based Accord in configurations not available in North America.
In keeping with its entry level status, it was only offered with one 4 cylinder engine good for 205 hp. Not bad for a 2.4 L. A six speed manual transmission was also offered, a rarity in a sedan of this caliber. The TSX’s suspension was a double wishbone front and a multi-link in the rear that was tuned by the Honda to maximize handling and cornering speed. Performance was one of the car’s virtues. It’s compact size, efficient engines and sporty looks made it a favorite with press and public alike. The TSX made Car and Driver’s Ten Best list in its first three years of production.
With a base price under $30,000 you got a car loaded with power leather seats, sunroof, xeon headlights and 17-inch alloy rims, undercutting BMW’s 3 series and the Lexus ES300. Although the TSX’s resale value was not as high as BMW’s 3 Series, it was higher than the larger TL. High sales continued with small detail changes then in 2009 a fully redesigned TSX was introduce to much fanfare.
The more squared and angular design was not as immediately lovable as the previous design, but was still attractive with a kind of Missy Elliot type of angularity. It had grown somewhat in size, but more importantly it would soon offer a 3.5 L 280 hp V6. All models were initially available with a engine similar to the last 2.4, 4 cylinder but made 4 less horsepower. Honda stated that the new engine spread it’s power more evenly through the powerband, making the car much more rewarding in all types of driving situations. The 2010 TSX was available with Honda’s 3.5 L hybrid gasoline-electric V6 (280hp).
The TSX had done a good job of maintaining its sporty character while growing slightly in size. Fuel economy has managed to go up as power has increased also. It’s interesting to note that the current Honda Accord has moved upscale to match the TSX in options and now is very close in horsepower. The TSX continues to distinguish itself with distinctive cutting edge design and
a high fun factor.