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2011 Acura TSX

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2011 Acura TSX Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.7

While its Acura TL big brother competes with heavy hitters like the BMW 3 Series and Infiniti G Sedan, the second-generation Acura TSX is light on direct competitors. Why? Because for those seeking a premium-branded sedan with a $30,000 starting price and fuel economy that reaches into the 30 miles-per-gallon range, the choices are rather limited. The Audi A4 is one, as are the Volvo S40 and Lexus IS. However, the TSX's big advantage versus most of its competitors can be summed up in a word that a premium-brand marketer like Acura would never use: Value. The base model with a manual transmission (another increasingly rare feature in this class) starts just over $30,000 and even fully loaded barely reaches $34,000; a loaded V6 stays just south of $40,000. Piece together its quality, performance, features and fuel economy, and the TSX looks to be one of the best premium sedan bargains going.

You'll Like This Car If...

In terms of technology, fuel economy, performance and value, the Acura TSX is a premium-level bargain. Not only does it offer an enviable resale and reliability record, it's one of the few sport sedans left that still offer the option of a manual transmission.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Unlike the Audi and Volvo sedans, the TSX does not offer the option of all-wheel drive. More troubling to some of us is the electric power steering system that demands constant attention on the highway.

What's New for 2011

For 2011, Acura makes a number of changes aimed at quieting the TSX's cabin and improving fuel economy. Along with an all-new Sport Wagon addition (reviewed separately), the TSX receives revised front and rear styling, as well as a number of interior upgrades. An improved Technology Package includes a new LED backlit navigation screen, Song by Voice user interface and 15 GB of downloadable storage space on the system's 60 GB hard drive.

Driving the TSX

Driving Impressions When it comes to all-around driving fun, we could hardly ask for a better balance of enthusiasm and comfort. We like the six-speed manual's precise shifting action and the five-speed...

automatic's exceptionally aggressive Sport mode, the later being especially welcome on the automatic-only V6 model. The 2011 Acura TSX encourages a quicker pace when the road begins to meander, and adequately absorbs surface irregularities and external roars when cruising. If there's a fly in the TSX ointment, it can be found with Acura's efficiency-enhancing electromechanical power steering (EPS) system. Devoid of feel that sometimes borders on numbness (depending on which KBB editor you ask), the TSX is no match for competitors such as the Audi A4 or BMW 1 Series when it comes to accurate steering feedback. While most vehicles require subtle steering input when traveling straight down the highway; the TSX seems to require constant, unnatural-feeling corrections. We're hoping the system will be improved over the life of the TSX, because we really like the rest of the package.

DVD-Audio Surround Sound
Audiophiles will have to have this comprehensive premium sound system. Included in the Technology Package, the 5.2 DVD-Audio Surround Sound is so utterly clear and clean, it puts all other stock systems to shame.

Voice-controlled Navigation System
The 2011 Acura TSX offers a sophisticated navigation system with an LED backlit eight-inch screen that Acura claims delivers 400 percent better resolution than last year's system. Also on board is Acura's Song by Voice music search, and voice activation for the navigation that allows for voice input of city and street names, Zagat restaurant information, weather conditions and real-time traffic information and rerouting. A rear-view camera is also part of the package.

2011 Acura TSX Details
Interior

If soft, warm and rich is the vibe you seek from a premium sedan, settling into the TSX may leave you lukewarm. Although the new interior does bring a bit more color to the console, door panels and steering wheel, even the contrasting color stitching isn't enough to make the high-tech TSX feel like an a upscale Audi. That's because the TSX eschews traditional luxury cues for a more technological type of richness, although wood-look trim is available. Beyond the visual, the TSX's interior is all business, offering seats that are both comfortable and supportive, and a rear seat that sufficiently passes the six-footer test. New rear heating/cooling vents help keep rear passengers comfortable while a climate controlled center console keeps perishables from perishing. The smallish trunk is less impressive, but long items can be safely stowed once the 60/40-split rear seatback is deployed.

Exterior
2011 Acura TSX photo

Defined by sharp edges, pronounced wheel flares and a forward lean that gives it a bolder, more athletic demeanor than the original TSX, the 2011 Acura TSX is made more alluring with a new front grille and headlamp treatment, new fog light bezels and a new front lip spoiler. Around back, new tail lamps and license plate garnish heighten the TSX's visual appeal. Mirror-integrated turn signals, 17- or 18-inch wheels and a long shoulder crease all combine to make the TSX look longer and wider than it really is.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2011 Acura TSX boasts a long list of standard equipment that includes Bluetooth phone connectivity, iPod integration (and simpler auxiliary input), steering wheel-mounted controls, leather seating with position memory, moonroof and dual-zone climate control. The V6 adds 18-inch alloy wheels, one-touch ignition key start and Acura's new Active Sound Control system, which works by eliminating exterior sound entering the cabin. All the safety gear is included, such as front, front side-impact and two-row side-curtain airbags, plus electronic stability control.

Optional Equipment

Every bit of optional equipment available on the 2011 Acura TSX is wrapped up into one mouth-watering Technology Package, the highlights of which include a world-class DVD-Audio Surround Sound system and a comprehensive advanced HDD navigation system, both of which are detailed in the "Favorite Features" section of this review.

Under the Hood

The 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine is coupled with either a slick-shifting six-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic that features a high-revving Sport mode. Like in so many Honda and Acura vehicles, the i-VTEC engine is at its best when pushed hardest. Those seeking better low-end performance should look at the new 3.5-liter V6. With 280 horsepower on tap it's sure to be a scintillating ride, although without a manual transmission, probably not as much fun as the base car.

2.4-liter in-line four-cylinder
201 horsepower @ 7000 rpm
172 (manual), 170 (automatic) lb.-ft. of torque @ 4300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/29 (manual), 22/31 (automatic)

3.5-liter V6
280 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
254 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/28

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2011 Acura TSX Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.3
Out of 10

Based on 168 Ratings for the 2009 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.4/10
    Quality
    9.5/10
  • Reliability
    9.6/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.3/10

Very reliable and great on gas

By on Saturday, January 02, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Gas mileage"

Cons: "Lack of power"

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

"Very economical car with great reliability. The exterior has aged well and I think it's a better looking car than the TL or ILX. The car came equipped with a lot of standard equipment that would cost thousands of dollars more verses the German brands. The gripes I have about this car is its power is not great and you really have to make it scream to get up to speed. The backseat room is very small and there's no backup camera. I would give this car a favorable rating because it's been a great car for me."

A Keeper

By on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

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
9/10

Pros: "Great Looks, fun driving, great features, reliable"

Cons: "Back Seats kind of tight"

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

"I am in the middle of my three year lease on this car, and I am faced with a really tough decision - do I trade in for a new TLX, or do I keep? This car has exceeded all of my expectations, and instead of getting bored with it and wanting the newest, I honestly love this car more and more with each passing day and am seriously considering buying it out after my lease ends! The look, the feel, the driving dynamics are phenomenal, and of course, being a Honda Product - no visits to the dealer or shop other than routine maintenance! I've been really disciplined with how many miles I drive on this car, in case I decide to trade-in, however, I don't see a trade-in my future - this is a keeper! What I love about it is the balance between new technology and old in one package. I enjoy the fact that my Acura still has a Manual E-Brake! And of course the reliability of Honda/Acura's 2.4L V-TEC engine is my favorite part of this car - 200HP, without a turbo charger and a tried and true engine that will last for many 1000's of miles without any issues. If you need a good entry level luxury car at a reasonable price without the "gremlins" that plague the competition from across the pond - look no further - the TSX is the car to own! Too bad you may not be seeing my car on the used car lot for sale!"

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Best vehicle I have ever driven.

By on Tuesday, November 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 84,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Very reliable car and lots of fun to drive!"

Cons: "Dont have any cons for this car."

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

"This car has excellent acceleration,and the steering,brakes,and tires give you a true sports sedan driving experience. Even with its incredible tork and acceleration, I still managed about 25+MPG in the city, and 30-34 MPG highway. When you combine all of this with the premium sound system and bluetooth,its a really sweet ride. Just last week, I had the car completely serviced. My service tech heard a small noise when he went to start it, and he determined that it would probably need the timing belt replaced in the next 6 months. I didn't feel right selling this car in that condition, so I paid the $700 to get the work done now. That should give someone a peace of mind for at least the next 100K miles!"

9 people out of 22 found this review helpful

Will never buy anything but Acura in the future.

By on Monday, October 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 129,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Gas mileage, ride quality, comfort, accessories."

Cons: "Bump into exterior and you will leave a nice dent."

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

"I find myself volunteering to drive whenever friends or family want to take a road trip. This car is amazing. On a trip from Greensboro to Atlanta I averaged 42mpg thanks to the Bridgestone Ecopia tires that are standard on this car. The interior is quiet and the sound system is nice. The back seat is a little tight but who cares.........I never ride back there. If purchasing this vehicle make sure you pay a little more to get the technology package. It is worth every dime."

8 people out of 15 found this review helpful

Space, style and bulletproof reliability

By on Friday, October 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,372

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
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "reliability, cargo space, value for features,"

Cons: "missing latest tech (collision and blind spot)"

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

"The TSX Sportwagon is my 4th Acura and I expect it to last as long as my first (22 years and 230,000 miles). It may not have the most up to date technology (collision avoidance, blind spot warning, text message reading, etc.) but, for the value, it has everything I need. There is plenty of space to fit four passengers comfortably, five in a pinch. The cargo area can easily swallow a variety of items; I even fit a 12 foot tree with all the seats down from rear to dash. Some may not like the "beak" on the front but it is distinctive enough without being too flashy. Fuel economy so far (4300 miles) has averaged 23.46 with 80% city / 20% highway driving with a high of 27.6 and low of 21.35. It is great for long trips, my longest between fillups has been 480 miles with a gallon or two left in the tank. It is very solid and stable on the highway with a little more road noise than expected but that is what the amazing stereo is for. I am disappointed that this is the last model year for the TSX but will enjoy my Sportwagon for many years to come!"

9 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Perfect and sporty!

By on Wednesday, September 23, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,000

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
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great around town"

Cons: "Some work on long drives"

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

"Great car around town with excellent performance and mileage. Easy to handle and comfortable interior."

4 people out of 11 found this review helpful

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