Thursday, April 15, 2004

My experience with the Acura TSX

Acura TSX

I had the opportunity to drive an automatic Acura TSX for over a week.

The Ride
I found that the ride is smooth and firm. It isn’t bouncy like the Toyota Camry. It isn’t rough, like the Acura TL Type-S can be when its tires are over inflated.

Performance and Engine
The 4 cylinder, 200-hp, 2.4L engine really makes this car move! While driving in city traffic, acceleration is quick and comfortable. Up-shifting is smooth but tends to be quick. In my experience with Acura, I have found that their cars try to get to the higher gears quickly. While driving on the highway, acceleration is very quick and even fun. Up-shifting is just right.

As with my TL Type-S, the engine is very quiet when compared to just about any other similar car. Trust me, it does make noise when accelerating. You just can't hear it from the interior of the car.

That SportShift
The manual shift override is fun to use when you are accelerating rapidly. But it isn't very useful at other times. I don’t mind using the override, but I’ve not found much use for it.

In automatic mode, you only have two choices: Drive and D3. I think that's kind of odd. You can shift lower with the manual shift override, of course.

Handling is sporty and nimble. I felt comfortable and in control during quick turns, sudden lane shifting and passing. I like the handling more than my 2003 Acura TL Type-S. Additionally, braking seems strong and stable.

Ahh, the Interior
The interior is very comfortable. I like the sleek, molded styling.
-Leather seats are standard, of course. They are very comfortable. The driver side seat is very adjustable with several electric controls. The shotgun seat has manual adjustments only.
-Channel up/down, mode and volume buttons for radio/CD changer are all right at under your left thumb on the steering wheel.
-Cruise Control set, cancel and accel-decel buttons are all under your right thumb.
-The controls for the Moon Roof are in a funny location, hidden behind the steering wheel on the dash.
-The standard radio/CD changer has nice big controls for easy use on the dash. The sound quality is very good, but not equal high-end sound systems.
-Climate Controls are just as easy to use with similar big buttons. There's separate climate control for driver and passenger.
-The adjustable armrest in the center consul has two compartments. The top compartment is a good place for papers. It also has change holders. The bottom compartment is very deep and has a 2nd power outlet. I love that!
-Extra touches include heated seats; a sizable extra storage compartment on the dash; and hand operated emergency break.
-For safety there is the driver, shotgun seat and side curtain air bags.

The exterior style has a modern crisp look. So far, it seems women really like the car’s styling a lot. I’ve been asked by more than one of my female friends if they could cruise around in the car. This could be a warning. That could mean this car is either a chick magnet or a chick car. If the car is received in the same way as a BMW M3, good for guys to own. If the car is received in the same way as the VW New Beetle, the TSX might end up being designated as a chick car. Who knows?

Quick Ending
I’ve had a pleasant experience with the Acura TSX. The styling, interior, handling and power make this a fun car to drive.

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