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2016 Acura ILX : Current Models

Approximately 3 years ago Acura introduced the ILX as part of the brand’s effort to focus and streamline its product offering. The ILX was supposed to attract younger buyers to Acura as a competitive entry-luxury car available at a relatively low price point. Fast-forward to today and it’s safe to say the ILX underwhelmed from a sales and product perspective. Two years ago Acura sold 1,703 ILX’s per month, but that number dipped to 1,488 in 2014. It was often panned as a Civic with premium badging, a car that didn’t deliver from a driver’s standpoint while simultaneously compromising Acura’s claim as a luxury brand. Having driven the refreshed 2016 Acura ILX we’re happy to say Acura has done a thorough job of addressing the issues that hampered the original version. At Kelley Blue Book we’ve tracked strong growth for most luxury brands over the past two years, and this updated ILX has a much better chance of riding that wave.

One of the primary issues with the first ILX was its undeniable lack of performance. That car utilized a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine producing 150 horsepower, which simply wasn’t enough to deliver a premium experience. The 2016 ILX upgrades to the same 2.4-liter engine powering Acura’s new TLX, bringing peak horsepower to 201 and bumping peak torque from 140 to 180 pound feet. The transmission transforms from a traditional 5-speed automatic to the same 8-speed dual clutch found in the TLX, improving shift speed and making full use of the engine’s torque curve. We’re convinced buyers will like the new paddle-shifted automatic, which is good because there’s no manual transmission offered in the 2016 ILX (Acura says only 5 percent of ILX buyers chose that transmission).

More power, more torque and an upgraded transmission should translate to quicker throttle response and stronger acceleration. It does, and at the same time fuel efficiency goes up despite these power increases, bumping from 28 to 29 combined miles per gallon. How does the upgraded engine and transmission impact driving behavior? “Track ready” might still be a stretch for this car, but the 2016 ILX is much more competent and competitive with entry-luxury sedans at its price point. The car’s dynamics are fully engaging, allowing us to confidently whip it around winding roads throughout the Napa Valley. Braking is similarly upgraded, with larger rotors and improved brake feel adding to driver confidence.

We also noticed a considerable drop in NVH, making the new ILX quieter and more refined than previous versions. For the 2016 model year it benefits from a 12 percent boost in torsional rigidity through the use of increased high-strength steel in the body and frame. There’s also thicker front door glass, active noise canceling via the audio system and improved engine mounts to reduce drivetrain vibration. All of these improvement help fulfill Acura’s mission to deliver a “sporty elegant” experience at the sub-$30,000 price point (the 2016 ILX starts at $28,820, including destination charge). Beyond its chassis and drivetrain upgrades are several new standard and optional features. The ILX now comes in three trim levels, Base, Premium and Tech Plus. The Base model uses a single 5-inch central display screen for vehicle information, but it also comes with heated front seats, Bluetooth phone pairing, automatic climate control and a back-up camera.

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Sources : 2016 Acura ILX Photo | 2016 Acura ILX Article


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