Acura ILX to be Tweaked for Better Value

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  1. #1
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    Acura ILX to be Tweaked for Better Value


    Disappointing sales are pushing Acura to rethink its entry-level ILX sedan with the goal of shedding its “near luxury” image.

    It’s a problem Acura has struggled with for years and enough to hold the brand back from competing on the same level as BMW, Mercedes and the like. Now it seems the maker is preparing to tweak the ILX with less than a year of sales under its belt.

    Built in the same factory as the Hond Civic, it’s hard not to see parallells between this and the brand’s reactionary strategy toward competing with cars like the Hyundai Elantra. The biggest difference is that Honda has long been the big player in the compacy economy car market while Acura trails other luxury brands in sales and appeal.


    “(The ILX is) not hitting our sales expectations,” American Honda president John Mendel said to reporters at the L.A. Auto Show last November. “Consumers have told us they like the 2.4L and they wish they had an automatic, but they say the midrange vehicle is underpowered and they don’t see the value in it.”

    As much of a misstep as choosing not to offer an automatic with the 2.4-liter engined car was, it isn’t the only soft spot to poke at in Acura’s strategy.

    It was meant to be seen as the sportier version but customers opting for the reasonably powered gas car are also restricted from picking the tech package, which adds navigation. Given that, it’s hard to think Acura even wanted to sell the 2.4-liter engine in the ILX.

    Fancying itself the shepherd, it seems like Acura is humbled into realizing that it’s more of a sheep to its customers.

    Mendel hasn’t specified exact tweaks to the ILX yet, but if the Civic is any indication, the car will likely come loaded with far more tech goodies in the near future.

    More: Acura ILX to be Tweaked for Better Value on AutoGuide.com
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    At least they're making a move to improve the ILX. Along with tech packages, I think a performance model ILX will do it well, it has the potential and the people to by them.
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    hmmm... How about bringing back the type s line?
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    I good friend of mine who is an "Audi guy" is looking for a car for his wife and liked the ILX but with the auto trans felt it was lethargic.After he drove my 2.4 his said it was perfect but wants the auto for Mom and the kids.

    Are you listening Torrance ?

    Oh and the lease on their A4 is up in March
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    The 6-spd 2.4L model needs 2 things to win my heart (and wallet).

    1) Make it QUIETER.

    It sounds exactly like my 2006 Civic LX when driving on the highway. The tire roar filling the cabin is unbearable. Road noise is not, in fact, a "feature". If it sounds just like a Civic, then why would I spend an extra $7000 just to add leather to a Civic Si?

    ANSWER: I wouldn't, Acura. Spend an extra $100 and inject some damn foam or extra Dynamat where your engineering analysis model tells you it will be most effective.

    2) 60/40 split folding rear seat with a passthrough.

    God forbid that some people want to occasionally carry something that has larger dimensions than 2 bags of groceries. Why should I have to sacrifice 3 seats to carry a pair of skis or a 2x4 or a cello? (These are things that a normal car buyer would potentially want to occasionally haul).

    ANSWER: I should not have to pay $30k to have to sacrifice 3 seats to carry things that normal people need to carry. Audi A3 will eat your lunch, Acura.

    Give the consumer an option to add on the more versatile fold-down rear seat options. I would happily pay a few hundred extra bucks for a 10x increase in utility.
    Last edited by garythecynic; 01-22-2013 at 06:08 PM.
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    About making it quieter, Acura should take a look at what Buick did with the Verano, if they can make the ILX as quiet as the Verano then it will help A LOT.

    Could be something great for ALL acura's.
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    I guess some extra sound deadoning material would help too i guess.
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    If you guys remember the Acura Integra this is suppose to be the replacement for it. And the platform is based on the civic's. Although some could be asking for a bit much but I do agree that it needs a bit more than what it is now. Hopefully revisions can be done for the next one. Otherwise this will be a tough game for acura.
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    "Although some could be asking for a bit much" :P

    I know I ask for a lot in my cars, but I think that the average Acura buyer is "choosier" than the average car shopper. We demand smart ergonomics in addition to above-average driving dymanics. Otherwise, we'd all drive boats (aka Toyota Camrys).

    To further highlight the lack of 60/40 split rear seats, let's take a look at the Civic Si sedan ($23,000). So basically, Honda is telling me that my $7k upgrade to an ILX loses me a split fold rear seat?

    I think the game has changed since the days of the Integra. There was a bigger gap between the Civic and Integra, because the Civic used to be the true budget car in Honda's lineup (now the Fit fills this role). Nowadays, it is tougher to justify the $7k price jump while losing car features that are useful to everyday drivers.

    Perhaps more telling is how the Integra compared to other small cars of the time. It was a god among men. Back then (1990s), you really had very few options for a small, fun-to-drive daily driver for under $30k. Especially once you consider adding a tinge of luxury features that the Integra offered. Perhaps the VW GTI? As far as I know, all the other small cars were absolutely miserable to drive.

    Acura has missed the mark with the ILX, but not by much. If they pull off this refresh, then they have my money and my respect.
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    Quote Originally Posted by garythecynic View Post
    "Although some could be asking for a bit much" :P

    I know I ask for a lot in my cars, but I think that the average Acura buyer is "choosier" than the average car shopper. We demand smart ergonomics in addition to above-average driving dymanics. Otherwise, we'd all drive boats (aka Toyota Camrys).

    To further highlight the lack of 60/40 split rear seats, let's take a look at the Civic Si sedan ($23,000). So basically, Honda is telling me that my $7k upgrade to an ILX loses me a split fold rear seat?

    I think the game has changed since the days of the Integra. There was a bigger gap between the Civic and Integra, because the Civic used to be the true budget car in Honda's lineup (now the Fit fills this role). Nowadays, it is tougher to justify the $7k price jump while losing car features that are useful to everyday drivers.

    Perhaps more telling is how the Integra compared to other small cars of the time. It was a god among men. Back then (1990s), you really had very few options for a small, fun-to-drive daily driver for under $30k. Especially once you consider adding a tinge of luxury features that the Integra offered. Perhaps the VW GTI? As far as I know, all the other small cars were absolutely miserable to drive.

    Acura has missed the mark with the ILX, but not by much. If they pull off this refresh, then they have my money and my respect.
    Acura is missing the mark, but at the same time the car market now is much different than it was back in the Integra days.

    I think if the Acura ILX has any hope in being successful it's going to need to fill a niche, offer more bang for your buck, and just be a better vehicle.
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