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2015 Acura ILX

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2015 Acura ILX Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 6.9

There's a new luxury sedan segment that's opening up, and the 2015 Acura ILX is at the forefront. Priced well below cars like the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4, the ILX is also smaller, but it packs a lot into its compact dimensions. It looks great, and is easily one of the more attractive Acura sedans to come along in recent years. Its 4-cylinder engines come with excellent fuel-economy numbers, and the ILX has enough technology and performance to convince luxury-sedan buyers that they're being smart, and not cheap. Granted, the Acura nameplate doesn't have the cachet of the Audi A3 or Lexus CT 200h, but like the similar Buick Verano, the ILX does have one significant advantage: price.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want a bit more sophistication and a more status-conscious brand, but without spending a lot of money, the 2015 Acura ILX may be right up your alley. The 6-speed manual-transmission model comes with a bigger, more powerful engine, turning the ILX into a compelling luxury sports sedan.

You May Not Like This Car If...

While definitely a premium offering, the 2015 Acura ILX still isn't exactly bursting with the luxury-sedan cachet you get from BMW, Audi, or Cadillac. It's definitely on the small side, and there are still folks out there who think that luxury engines start at six cylinders.

What's New for 2015

Aside from a new paint color, the only major difference in the 2015 Acura ILX lineup is the absence of the ILX Hybrid. That's fine, since the ILX got a few much-needed upgrades last year, like the addition of active noise cancellation and an upgraded audio system.

Driving the ILX
Driving Impressions

The 2015 Acura ILX is based on the Honda Civic, and it'd be easy to say it drives like a fancy version of that Honda. Except, it...

... doesn't. Although the ILX is small and light like a Civic, its sophisticated interior layout and quieter cabin make for an overall more pleasant driving experience. The light steering effort and comfortably firm ride are also at odds with its Honda cousin. With the hybrid gone, there are two models to choose from. The first has a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder connected to a 5-speed automatic transmission. This version is fine around town, but don't expect to break speed records. The second ILX packs a more powerful 2.4-liter engine available only with a 6-speed manual transmission. This turns the ILX from an entry-level luxury sedan into one with the considerable performance street cred of a Honda Civic Si or, if you're old-school, an Acura RSX.

2.4-LITER i-VTEC ENGINE
If you like driving a manual transmission car, you're in for a treat. Not only is the 6-speed available in the ILX sedan one of the sweetest you'll find, but it's also connected to a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder taken straight out of the Honda Civic Si.

STYLE
Acura's styling has charitably been called "controversial" or "polarizing" in recent years, but the company navigated into calmer waters with the Acura ILX. While not jaw-droppingly beautiful, the clean lines and uncluttered surfaces even make the signature "power plenum" grille look good.

2015 Acura ILX Details
2015 Acura ILX photo Interior

The 2015 Acura ILX sedan offers up roomy seating for its front two passengers, both of whom will find the clean layout of the dash and simple-to-use entertainment system refreshing. Last year, the ILX added much-needed active noise cancellation, helping to calm an otherwise obnoxious level of road noise. Comfort and convenience items like keyless entry, dual-zone climate control, Bluetooth, and a power tilt/slide moonroof are standard, as are an iPhone-compatible USB port, text messaging and Pandora radio. Rear-seat passengers aren't quite as coddled as the front, but there's still room for three should the need arise.

Exterior
2015 Acura ILX photo

The exterior styling on the 2015 ILX is what we'd call "subtly elegant." In fact, Acura's design language is evolving into much more comfortable territory, putting an emphasis on timeless class than shock value. The controversial "power plenum" grille treatment is still there, but toned down and integrated much better. Compare it to the overly plain Buick Verano sedan or the restyled Lexus CT 200h and its outrageous grille, and the ILX looks better and better.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

What the 2015 Acura ILX includes as standard equipment would once have been considered "loaded." The list is long, and includes a power sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless ignition and entry, Bluetooth and audio connectivity, and a 6-speaker audio system with a USB/iPod interface, and Pandora integration. Also standard are leather seating, an 8-way power driver's seat, heated front seats, and 17-inch aluminum-alloy wheels.

Optional Equipment

If the plentiful standard equipment isn't enough, the 2015 ILX is available with two option packages. The Premium Package adds a multi-view rear camera, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, HID low-beam headlights and fog lights. The Technology Package includes navigation, Real-Time Traffic and Weather, a 10-speaker Surround Sound audio system, 15GB Media Storage and Song By Voice, voice recognition, and GPS-linked solar-sensing temperature control. However, the Technology Package isn't available with the 2.4-liter engine, an odd omission in our opinion.

Under the Hood

Two distinctly different engines are available for the 2015 Acura ILX. The first is a 150-horsepower 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. An enlarged version of the powerplant available in the Honda Civic, this engine sends its power through a smooth-shifting 5-speed automatic transmission. That's fine, except that virtually every sedan the ILX competes with has a 6-speed or better. If you're the kind of person who always asks for the Tapatio, you might be more interested in the 2.4-liter 4-cylinder. With 201 horsepower, this engine gives the ILX some extra kick. Be forewarned though: You'll have to shift for yourself, as the only available transmission is a 6-speed manual. However, using it is no chore, as it's one of the slickest manual transmissions you'll find anywhere.

2.0-liter inline-4
150 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
140 lb-ft of torque @ 4,300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 24/35 mpg

2.4-liter inline-4
201 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm
170 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/31 mpg

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2015 Acura ILX Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.5
Out of 10

Based on 35 Ratings for the 2013 - 2017 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    8.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.3/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

Great vehicle for value

By on Monday, July 11, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 200

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great Look, Smooth Ride, Nice interior, comfy, $"

Cons: "Lack of inside storage, no XM"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I just bought a 2017 ILX in red. It is a great value for the money. My TSX lease just ended and I had to let it go. When comparing to TSX, the ILX is more comfortable for sure, has a nice back up camera, push button start, cool LED lights, and a smoother ride. The TSX has better storage spots, ILX has no change spot, nothing for sunglasses and poor side storage. Also, TSX is a lot quicker off the line with tighter steering. The look of the ILX in my opinion is really nice with simple clean interior."

A nice and pretty sedan! Love it!

By on Wednesday, June 22, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great Value, Comfortable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"As you see, this car is much more economy than all the other cars in the same level. I own a 2016 Acura ILX with Tech Plus. This one makes me feel so safe when driving. Saw some critical comments on the other sites saying that the cars interior is not that good; totally disagree, like the interior. Love the seats, screens and all the other design. The room is big enough; the second row has enough room for the passenger's legs. Have to mention about the fuel economy: the car I drive has average 30.5 mpg. Before I purchased ILX, the only other car I considered is Audi A3, However, the room is much smaller than ILX. And like others said, German cars cost you more on maintanance. In a long term, Japanese cars keep the value for sure. I am that one who do not care about horsepower or speed, so I made decision. But as you may know, 2016 ILX makes a big progress over 2015 model, it has 201 horsepower. If any of my friends who is going to buy a sedan with $30k budget, I would suggest them this one. If you consider buying this car, listen to those who have already owned 2016 Acura ILX regardless those who do not have one. Because we are those who drive this car everyday."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

always wanted an acura growing up still love it w

By on Friday, June 3, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,777

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive"

Cons: "n/a"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"never had any problems with the car still brand new still love it will last a long time kept the maintenance up on it. runs great."

Nice blend of economy, performance and reliability

By on Friday, May 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Quicker, quieter, nicer interior, more comfortable than a civic or mazda 3. The 8-speed DCT with paddle shifters is a huge performance bump. Not quite as quick or good on the skid pad as an Audi or BMW but better fuel economy and much less to maintain. Just a good mix of them all. My favorite compromise between the German entry luxury and the economy and reliability of the Japanese."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Great car for the money

By on Friday, May 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfortable, Great Quality & Price"

Cons: "Slower than would like"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have only owned this car for one week and already love it. I traded in my 2003 CL, Type S which I had for 11 years. I love all the extra features that my car didn't have such as the Bluetooth, backup camera & push start. The only thing I do miss about my CL is the speed and acceleration. This car doesn't even compare to my CL. But for me that is a minor price to pay. The ILX does however get much better gas mileage and I can use regular gas instead of premium now. I love the look of the ILX and how comfortable it is. It is definitely a smoother ride than what I am used to. I would always drive the ILX as a loaner car when mine was being repaired and never really thought about buying one. But when it came time to trade my car in I knew I wanted another Acura and looking at some of the other models this was the best deal. And I know with Acura's quality and low maintenance costs I won't be spending a ton of extra money. I would definitely recommend this car if you are looking for an affordable, comfortable luxury car and are not concerned about speed or horsepower."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Nice features, but BAD suspension.

By on Friday, May 6, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Great price, nice highend features."

Cons: "Too light (car's weight), BAD BAD suspension."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"This car has all the nice features like other expensive Acura cars. The only 2 complaints I have, however, are what I consider regarding safety and comfort. For safety: It's a very light car - probably the lightest car I've ever driven, and having been driving for other Acura cars (TL, MDX), I'm used to heavy cars and feel it's safer that way. When making turns, I feel the ILX is a little hard to control since it's so light. Another important problem is - it's suspension is the worse I've ever driven - even worse than an old Toyota Corolla I had back in the 90s. With our MDX and any other cars, I've never felt this way. This ILX feels very bumpy, almost like it has no suspension. I hope they have improved this for the newer year ILX."

4 people out of 10 found this review helpful

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