By Speed Racer on Monday, January 23, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 63,000
overall rating 10 of 10rating details
- Overall Rating
"I bought this one 2 years ago with 30k on the clock...clean and fully loaded, including the NAV system.
In the words of the Auto Nations dealer who sold me the car, "You're getting a better Honda"; an homage to the '98 Accord V6 coupe I'd bought new, and traded in (for $3,000 credit).
The Accord was still running and getting rated mileage...but it suffered from the kind of 'cosmetic' issues you expect after 11 years. It also didn't start unless you leaned back on the transmission stick; an artifact of a transmission rebuild that didn't go quite right.
The TSX was only a 4-banger, but it promised the same horsepower as the V6 Accord: 200, but elsewhere on the engine rpm curve. I found the TSX lacked the 'snap your head back' characteristic when you punched the gas pedal at highway speed that the Accord still had with 220,000 miles on the clock.
Translation: it took a pregnant pause longer for you to feel that burst of speed, but it eventually got there.
The main difference is in fuel economy. The best highway mpg I ever got with the Accord, at 70 mph and too much air in the front tires was 30; not bad for a V6, but I didn't dare overinflate the front tires in rainy weather or for long trips in the summer.
The TSX? 41.5 mpg highway with the 'right' mix of premium and regular unleaded. The engine calls for 90 octane; who sells 90 octane?
Yes, there used to be places that sold low octane, 100 octane and 3 versions of 'mid-grade'; not anymore.
So I would fill the tank with primo (93 octane) where it's cheap, and top it off when I'd driven 200 miles with regular (87 octane); with a roughly half-and-half mix, I was burning 90 octane gas.
Coming home one night, I stopped at a station that must have had some really fresh premium; I topped it off and started home, 67 miles of mostly highway driving south on interstate 95. I started out on the highway at 65 and slowly accelerated it to 70, kicking out the cruise control to 'coast' on downhill runs.
The trip compute was still reading 41.5 mpg by the time I'd pulled into my garage.
Stylistically, the interior of the car is like a Mercedes or BMW; aside from the signature Acura logo on the wheel, the fit and finish of the leather seats, the plastic/vinyl accoutrements and the power seat adjustments make for a very elegant and comfortable ride.
The dual-zone climate control system is a bit cryptic; and though I actually prefer more 'manual' control over the air conditioning here in Florida, the system works well. My only complaint is that have to invoke a whole set of menus and options through the touch-screen of the NAV display to do something as trivial as make the fan blow harder. Now that winter is upon us, I love driving around with the sliding sun roof open. On sunny days when I know it isn't going to rain, I leave it in 'position 2'; cracked open to vent hot air, while still providing security for my stuff.
With 17 inch rims and 200 horse in a car not much bigger than a Corolla, it feels like I'm driving a European sport sedan. I love the 'trip-tronic' auto-manual feature of the transmission and often initiate planned braking by using engine compression to slow me down. For this reason, I expect to go a long time before I need to do a brake job.
Of course, 'horsing around' costs you fuel economy. Still, with a combined 27 city/highway mileage, I've got some margin to play around.
The Auto Nations guy was right; it's a better Honda. I've put 33,000 miles on the car in the last 2 years. I'll let you know how we're doing in another 160,000 miles."
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