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First Drive: 2017 Acura NSX

2017 Acura NSX.

The 2017 Acura NSX will disappoint a lot of people on the internet.

People will complain the NSX should be normally aspirated, complain the car is too heavy, too complicated, complain that Japan’s supercar should not be built in Ohio. People will (check the comments on other sites, they already are) complain the new NSX is not the old NSX. Acura knows this and does Acura does not care because the new NSX is not about the past. After all, the “N” in NSX stands for “New”.

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Acura RLX Sport Hybrid: A Surprise Sleeper?

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There aren’t many sleepers produced right from the factory anymore. Everyone knows when you’re packing a solid amount of horsepower these days. We managed to find one though, and it’s arrived in the form of the Acura RLX Sport Hybrid.

It looks like a mild-mannered premium sedan on the outside. Under the skin, however, it’s packing a combined power output of 377 horsepower. Additionally, it’s making use of three electric motors to help send torque to exactly where it’s needed. It’s the first production use of an all-electric Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive-System, otherwise known as SH-AWD.

That’s damn near supercar tech… in a car that’s going under the radar for all the wrong reasons. Say hello to a true sleeper.

[Disclaimer: Acura tossed us the keys to the RLX Sport Hybrid and included a tank of gas. We proceeded to drive the car in a fairly un-hybrid like manner yet still saw nearly 30 miles per gallon being returned.]

Quick Spin: 2015 Acura ILX

acura ilx 2015 front side

I try to write a review of every car I drive, but this is not always possible. In 2015 for many, mostly personal, reasons I missed a few. One of those was the modern interpretation of the classic Integra, the Acura ILX.

It’s quiet and it rides well. The interior is very nice and super comfortable, with all the latest bells and whistles can be expected from a modern premium car. It’s safe, too, with all kinds of traction systems, airbags, collision avoidance, it will even steer itself back onto the road if it detects that it is about to go off. Its dual-clutch transmission might the best one in the business, as it uses a torque converter for smoother take-offs, a common gripe of DCTs. With all that, it’s even reasonably priced and comes with Honda’s renowned reliability.

And yet I can’t seem to love it.

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First Drive: 2016 Acura ILX

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The entry-level luxury market is a hot spot right now in the industry. Strong competition amongst the offerings typically breeds great options for the consumer. You have plenty of ways to get in with an upscale automaker, so deciding on the best course of action is a good problem.

Acura has an updated answer to the problem with its 2016 ILX. This is the second go-around for the car, which launched a few years ago and was viewed as not more more than a slightly more fancy Honda Civic.

Acura knew it needed to bring more to the table, so let’s dive in and see if that’s the case here…

[Disclaimer: Acura flew me to Napa and let me toss the ILX around on the backroads around wine country. I’m still waiting on the day that we switch to beer and cicerones over wine and sommeliers.]

Review: 2005 Acura NSX
Meet your heroes…


I was 25 years old when the Acura NSX went out of production. With its introduction to the U.S. market in 1991, I had been alive for its entire production run, and I never got to drive one much less sit in one. I’d seen them from time to time, and my close friends father owned one for a brief period. Still, I was never fortunate enough to earn any private time with what I assumed to be an amazing machine.

My first car was a 1987 Honda Prelude. My second car was a 1985 Nissan 300ZX. I currently own a 2000 Honda Civic Si, and I once drove a 1972 Datsun 240Z across the country. I’m a fan of Japanese cars. The Acura NSX remains very near the top of the mountain for me when it comes to all time great machines.

That’s why I was nervous to spend an entire week with one. A 2005 Acura NSX plucked from the Honda museum in Torrance, California. It was all mine for seven days.

Seven glorious days… meet your heroes.

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Review: 2014 Acura MDX

2014 acura mdx technology front side

It is a common believe among Hooniverse readers that, despite my best efforts to say otherwise, cross-over SUVs are the work of the devil and that when you guys need a vehicle capable of hauling people or things, you get either a station wagon or a minivan. Evidently the case is the same for large fuel-efficient sedans; those too are the killer of enthusiasts and they certainly do not belong on an enthusiast car site such as this. Unfortunately you’re all wrong, because as long as it is car-related, it belongs on Hooniverse, and as long as it’s car-related we won’t need no stinkin’ Manifesto to tell ourselves that we should be something that we are not.

I, who consider myself an enthusiast, have owned over a dozen vehicles in my life, everything from a Honda CR-X to a BMW M5, interlaced with some Jeeps in between. Shockingly, I consider my current vehicle, a 2005 Acura MDX, to be the best car I have ever owned. In its 135,000 miles in has never failed me, despite frequently being abused and often poorly maintained. It has been in two serious accidents now, one with airbag deployment, and each time it made it home under its own power.

After recent negotiations with my accountant/boss/wife, it was determined that we have the budget and a want/need for a new family vehicle. We are a two-kid, one-car, city family; truly an oddity in the United States. For this reason I must choose such vehicle wisely; it must be safe, reliable, roomy, comfortable, and be relatively inexpensive to buy, own, and maintain. Oh, and it must meet the wife-factor, which has a completely unknown set of expectations. It was under these criteria that allowed my MDX to have been so good to me. Its upcoming replacement, whatever it may be, has some big shoes to fill. 

It therefore shouldn’t be a surprise that I was very interested in the new 2014 Acura MDX. Now I finally had a chance to drive one and evaluate it from the end-user’s perspective, and, well, I  truly don’t know how I feel about it. 

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Quick Spin: 2013 Acura ILX

I don’t think it’s wrong to want to wear nice clothes. When I’m wearing items that might be a bit more expensive than my usual threads I wind up feeling better. No, I’m not a depressed person by any means, but good clothes can take me from an eight to a nine. Ten is reserved for when I’m not wearing any clothes.

So maybe the Honda Civic wanted to upgrade its wardrobe a bit. I think that’s the case, because the 2013 Acura ILX is essentially a Civic that shops at Nordstrom.

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Review: 2012 Acura TSX wagon [w/Video]

The Occupy Movement holds court in locations throughout the country. Protesters are trying to get their message heard by those they have serious issues with. Hoisting signs, talking with the media, and holding court in major metropolitan areas is the manner in which the angry 99 percent have chosen to air their ideals.

As an automotive enthusiast, I too have something to protest about. I want more wagons in my life.

Acura is listening to enthusiasts in this regard. The 2012 Acura TSX wagon is the result of our collective enthusiast bitching, moaning, crying (I get emotional sometimes), and general wailing that we all want more wagons. Acura heard the cries, and produced a wagon for our longroof consumption. Now, Acura gets to listen to the bitching, moaning, crying (it’s the little things), and general wailing from a large portion of those same enthusiasts and hand raisers, because the car doesn’t meet their requirements.

Who’s right here? Are self-proclaimed wagon lovers overlooking the TSX wagon simply because they have issues with the shiny schnozz, or are there greater problems at hand?

They may be right… they may be crazy. But this just might be the entry-level luxury longroof that they’re looking for.

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2010 Acura ZDX

Vincent Van Gogh was born March 30th, 1853. He was a Dutch painter whose work is admired by many today. During his 37 years on this planet however, he was a tormented soul whose work was not appreciated or even looked at. After his death by a self-inflicted gunshot wound, his fame slowly grew and he is now considered one of the greatest painters in history. His work is a major part of what is referred to as “modern art”.

The 2010 Acura ZDX is an all-new luxury sports crossover/wagon/sedan/vehicle. It blends sports car power and handling with luxurious amenities and comfort. It’s style is polarizing with some angles showing great beauty while others appear a bit beastly. Like Van Gogh, the ZDX is casting aside the shackles of past design ethos and experimenting to create something fresh. Will it need time to marinate in our minds or can the ZDX skip the posthumous appeal and grab a piece of your soul while it’s still alive?

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2010 Acura TL SH-AWD with Six-Speed Manual

The film Roxanne, written by Steve Martin and released in 1987, is a modern version of the classic play Cyrano de Bergerac which was penned exactly 90 years prior. A random fact, the original version is actually responsible for the modern usage of the word “panache”. In the more modern version, double-edged-sword Martin portrays the main character named C.D. Bales. A small town fire chief, CD is a witty and talented man held back by a prominent feature which he is greatly sensitive about. He has a massive nose and it causes him to perceive his image as ugly. In the end, he and the title character Roxanne profess their love for each other as she sees that he is so much more than just a man with a big nose, and he realizes people view him differently than he views himself.

The first generation Acura TL is a mid-size luxury sedan which was released in 1995 (1996 model) to replace the outgoing Acura Vigor. It was a solid blend of sporty driving and luxurious amenities. As the years passed, the TL has gotten sleeker, more luxurious, and more powerful. In 2009, the TL has entered its fourth generation and it’s now facing a crisis. People are staring at its nose and overlooking the rest of the car. The Acura team is hoping to change that with the 2010 Acura TL SH-AWD equipped with a six-speed manual transmission.

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