Pros balance, handling, quality finish
Cons snug interior for tall people, deserves styling update, FWD limitations
Summary The RSX is a wonderful car. It's responsive, has a very high quality build, offers a very convenient hatchback configuration, and has an impressive reliability record.
Part of the reason that the reliability is so high is that Acura (Honda) invests its technology into vehicle performance under the hood, rather than on chintzy gadgets to sedate people who don't concentrate on driving. Bravo, Acura! Now stop whining about needing more gadgets, CNET reviewers. This is a car, not an office cubicle.
OK, back to the car. There are downsides to the RSX. It's a front wheel drive, which limits its sporting abilities. The MacPherson front suspension really isn't quite as good at a fully independent setup. And taller drivers will want a touch more room in the interior. Most of us will find these minor limitations liveable!
Pros The engine is smooth and precise and for a "sports" car the comfort isn't that bad.
Cons Transmission can use some attention from the designers.
Summary I've driven plenty of Acuras and similiar cars and I have to say this one is a step up for their sports line. The handling is great and the active steering is a plus. A limited differential would be nice and the horsepower is low compared to competitors. I give it a 9 because you can't deny the quality for the money.
Pros Handles great, quick acceleration, 30MPG
Cons Noisy, LOUSY STEREO, Chintzy Interior
Summary I bought my RSX Type S in May of 2002, now at 100K miles I can say may car has been extremely reliable. Talking to other RSX owners seems to bear this out.
So far I have had no real problems at all with my car. I replaced the tires once, and did the brakes at 70K miles.
I do a lot of driving, both highway and local, and as long as you run the highest octance premium you can find, both performance and mileage are great. My average over the entire life of the car has been no less than 30mpg.
The engine revs freely and feels as zippy as when it was new. Oil consumption is low at a qt every 5K to 6K miles. I have used valvoline synthetic since new.
The shifter is precise and feels good even now, some component in the clutch pedal mechanism has worn out, and every once in while I get an annoying click when I depress or release the clutch. The clutch itself is in great shape, no sign of slippage, and engagement is consistant and predictable.
I have had just one alignment over the life of the car so far, it seems to hold it well.
Handling is still very tight, although at 100K miles the struts and dampers are perhaps not as controlled as when new, but there is not a lot of difference.
This car stiffly sprung and has a harsh ride quality, every bump and imperfection in the road is translated to your backside, but it is so much fun everyday that I don't mind it at all.
I have never encountered what I would term overt torque steer, although on very uneven road surfaces under heavy acceleration it will pull ever so slightly one way or the other. On good roads you would not know that this is car is a front wheel drive, its that good.
The unibody is stiff, and handling is very consistent under all conditions.
The car is also quite noisy, and its really only a joy when you have the throttle wide open, the revs are climbing and you get that thrilling ivtec growl going on. (Well it still thrills me.. LOL)
It's not great in the snow, but the oem Michelin tires are better than Yokohamas I replaced them with. One nice improvement would be user selectable/defeatable traction control.
The interior is chintzy. I have the optional trim package and a lot of has fallen off, and I finally discovered that the best way to stick it back on is ge rtv adhesive.
The seats are not as comfortable as they appear, and actually in insane antics do not provide enough support - pull a G in a corner at high speed (and you will) and you'll know EXACTLY what I am talking about.
The AC sucks (sorry) and here's why: The temperature is remotely sensed in the cabin which means on cold days you get an intolerable blast of heat out of the vents initially and then its lukewarm the rest of the time. I am constantly fiddling with the climate controls to maximize comfort. The AC has the reverse issue, but is more than powerful enough for even the hottest days here (100+) I wish they sensed the temperature in the ducts so you can set the air temp blowing on you directly as in all older cars.
There is another problem with the AC in this clime (Boston area) and that is mildew odors since the car was 2yrs old, and the drains are NOT clogged. I have repeatedly used the Acura cleaner as directed and relief is partial and temporary at best. Hopefully this issue has been fixed. It's gross - it's like living in a swamp. If you have asthma, allergies or a cold it is very irritating.
I now make my own mix as the Acura stuff is $13 a can.
Oh, and the stereo. Just rip it out.. It's awful. FM performance is mediocre, the cd changer works fine, the cassette player is even lamer than CNET claims, and the sound quality is mediocre for anything other than light classical music and jazz - not exactly the kind of music the typical demographic will be listening to. No kicking bass, I doubt there is anything below 80Hz in this system.
The fold down rear seats, and the hatch make this car practical for normally daily shopping missions as well. It won't swallow what an SUV would, but the amount of usable cargo space is surprising for such a small car.
That's it in a nutshell. I'm a noted whiner, and despite the above comments I would probably nominate this car as the best I've ever owned. If you are into performance driving I recommend it heartily. If you need a practical, economical, highly reliable, and not overly expensive vehicle I recommend it.
I am sure the 2006 can only be even better than mine, and I am pleased with my 2002. I would expect your experience to be fairly similar.
Pros Excellent handling...plenty of power...excellent gas mileage....sharp looks...This is my second RSX type S my 2002 performed flawlessly for 120k and my now 2006 has been trouble free for 50k...I read where one owner had a problem with his 2003 shifting
Cons The only problem I have encountered ........I really havent had a problem so I can't list any.....
Summary This RSX by Acura is the perfect package...combining power and handling it has great looks and easy to maintain.....
Cons nothing, its perfect
Summary love love love love this car!!! will never trade it in for anything, who cares if it doesn't have GPS and other gadgets, thats not why people buy this car.
I always look twice at my fellow RSX owners driving on the road. High fives all arouns =]
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