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Old 07-10-2014, 03:55 PM   #1
meatsack OP
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Acura TSX

I'm getting old.

I've realized that 90%+ of my time behind the wheel is spent commuting down the highway (1 hour round-trip per day). At the end of a long day I'm finding myself just wanting a comfortable, quiet place to spend that 30 minute drive home.

I'm also cheap and don't want to spend new car money.

What I want:
Comfortable
Quiet
Good climate control
Good audio
Reasonably good mileage
Bonus points for a chassis that's engaging and fun to drive when not just droning down the slab.
Sub $25k
5 years old or newer

Lately I've been gazing at the Acura TSX.
Seems like it would fit the bill and I've found a few of the latest generation cars with less than 70K miles for ~$16.5K

Do any of you have experience with these cars? Anything to add? Am I missing some other car that clearly fits the bill?

I do like that the TSX can be found with a 6-speed too.
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Old 07-10-2014, 08:04 PM   #2
Anticyclone
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We have a 2012 TSX wagon with about 30k miles. It's the wife's car, but I drive it on trips and whenever we both go anywhere together.

I like to refer to it as the nicest Accord wagon ever. It's all day comfortable and gets pretty decent gas mileage. We're averaging 25 around town and slightly over 30 on the highway (based on the computer, not calculated by me, YMMV). The car has a solid feel to it, like it will just keep going with very minimal maintenance. Exactly the opposite of the VW Passat that it replaced.

That being said, it's not an engaging car to drive like the Passat was. It's just kind of... there. I would never just "go for a drive" in the TSX. However, you will arrive at your destination comfortably and efficiently. It will eat up some highway miles.

To address your specific concerns...

What I want:
Comfortable Check
Quiet A little road noise on chip-seal, but otherwise, check
Good climate control check
Good audio No complaints, but the source, Sirius/XM is the weak spot for quality. We've never put a CD in it.
Reasonably good mileage check
Bonus points for a chassis that's engaging and fun to drive when not just droning down the slab. meh

MY wife adds: "It's not a bad drive, the steering isn't loose, the car is responsive, but it's not sporty. It doesn't zoom zoom."

Like I said, solid, comfortable, but nothing spectacular when it comes to driving dynamics.

I may be biased though. My DD is a Ford Fiesta ST, so most cars feel a little soft and bloated in comparison.
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Old 07-11-2014, 03:48 AM   #3
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Try the new style Mazda 6. Might be a bit more engaging to drive and optioned out it should be similarly equipped to the TSX. FWIW the quietest, most comfortable car I've driven in recent memory was a 2014 impala rental I had for a few days on a business trip. The thing was astoundingly quiet and had great seats. Not a sporty drive at all but less floaty/bloaty than most similar-sized FWD sedans. More VW than Toyota in suspension damping anyway.
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Old 07-11-2014, 06:52 AM   #4
A-Bone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meatsack View Post
I'm getting old.

I've realized that 90%+ of my time behind the wheel is spent commuting down the highway (1 hour round-trip per day). At the end of a long day I'm finding myself just wanting a comfortable, quiet place to spend that 30 minute drive home.

I'm also cheap and don't want to spend new car money.

What I want:
Comfortable
Quiet
Good climate control
Good audio
Reasonably good mileage
Bonus points for a chassis that's engaging and fun to drive when not just droning down the slab.
Sub $25k
5 years old or newer

Lately I've been gazing at the Acura TSX.
Seems like it would fit the bill and I've found a few of the latest generation cars with less than 70K miles for ~$16.5K

Do any of you have experience with these cars? Anything to add? Am I missing some other car that clearly fits the bill?

I do like that the TSX can be found with a 6-speed too.
I have a 1 hour each-way commute... and like you, had grown to crave comfort over the rest of the usual list of 'wants'... My list looked just like yours...

Due to all the miles put on per year, buying new didn't make sense since to me..... You can find 2-5 year old cars at 50%-60% their when-new prices...

I wanted to be at about $15k-$20k...tops $25k...

Skipped most of the European brands because of reliability and cost-of-maintenance concerns... The only ones I seriously looked at were BMW E39's and E46's..... I nearly bought an E46 330xi 6 speed with 30k on it... but after I left a deposit at 8am, was called by the dealership that the car had sold the night before right at closing and the paperwork just hadn't been posted..ggrrrrrr.....

Nothing that the domestic brands make really interested me (I did drive the new Taurus 3.5 AWD...which was ok but a little pricey for what you got)...

In the end I looked at the RL-AWD, GS350-AWD, RX-350 AWD, LS-460-AWD, M37x and the G37x

After driving a few cars, I decided that the best value for me was in the G37x... Actually most of the other cars were even more comfortable, but the prices went up pretty quickly for low mileage examples...

Ended up with a loaded 2009 G37x with 20k on it at an Audi dealership... still under powertrain warranty etc...

Did a fly-and-drive...

It is very quiet and comfortable on the highway. The 7 speed transmission has a tall top-gear for loafing RPMs at 75MPH (2400 RPM at a true 75)

I am very pleased with it so far...
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Old 07-11-2014, 06:58 AM   #5
Anticyclone
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One other thing about the TSX is it only has 5 speed automatic. The gaps between gears feel huge compared to a 6 or 7 speed auto.
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Old 07-11-2014, 10:55 AM   #6
meatsack OP
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Thanks for the constructive and helpful replies.
Interesting notes on the TSX though not wholly unexpected.

I'm totally into the new Mazda6, but again, not sure I want to go down the "new car" path and take that immediate hit on depreciation. Now, if they ever get the Diesel version sorted out and released that might be different...

I'll have to take a second look at the Infinitys.

The "Driver" in me would love a BMW 3-series. The wallet however isn't so interested in the cost of ownership (insurance, maintenance, etc...).

You give me much to consider. Keep it coming!
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Old 07-11-2014, 11:49 AM   #7
Matt Gent
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I have similar needs and considered some of the cars above, ended up getting a Saab 9-2X aero (subaru wrx wagon in disguise).

For either the Mazda 6 or TSX, I would guess it could be made much more engaging as a driving machine with just an aftermarket rear swaybar. Same for the Saabaru or any other under-steering FWD car.
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Old 07-11-2014, 12:08 PM   #8
RocketJohn
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The TSX is Japan's Honda Accord. Something a bit smaller, sportier and slightly better made. Has been Honda's best product in the line up for 10 years.
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Old 07-11-2014, 02:13 PM   #9
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For the very same reasons as the OP
I'm scoping out the Mazda6 in the wagon version.
Also the Acura Accord Sportwagon
And the meh Accord, but maybe in a V6 2D with a stick
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Old 07-13-2014, 08:16 PM   #10
Thinc2
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I had pretty much the exact requirements as the OP recently. I probably put reliability, nice place to be inside, a good stereo and good mileage on the top of the list.

I thought I was getting a G37, then decided i couldn't live with the appr 18mph it gets. It just didn't make sense to me. I really don't need +300hp.

I ended up with a TSX - 36K miles, $23.5 - maybe overpaid a little - not sure. (has leather and nav)

I like the stereo - it is way better than the Accord. The nav system is great - super easy to use - not a bunch of menus to scroll though.

I am getting 28 mpg in mixed driving. I think it drives fine - it's FWD, so it has the usual slight FWD pull in corners. I like the suspension - firm enough to feel the road, yet comfortable. I find the car quiet, but I ride motorcycles most of the time :)

Overall very happy with the purchase.
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Old 07-13-2014, 08:36 PM   #11
Tripl Nikl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meatsack View Post
Anything to add?
One, Japanese brands offer the best value proposition, IMHO.

Two, Subaru Legacy GT 2005-2009.

Thanks to Google, I was just reminded of why I haven't been looking at the TSX recently, it's ugly. Who the heck approved that nose?!



Thankfully the ugly face probably keeps the used price down *and* can be fixed in the aftermarket:
https://www.google.com/search?q=hond...w=1298&bih=707


Tripl Nikl screwed with this post 07-13-2014 at 08:41 PM
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Old 07-14-2014, 01:23 PM   #12
A-Bone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thinc2 View Post
I thought I was getting a G37, then decided i couldn't live with the appr 18mpg it gets. It just didn't make sense to me. I really don't need +300hp.

I am getting 28 mpg in mixed driving..
I'm at 25mpg in the awd version... but almost exclusively highway miles...
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Old 07-16-2014, 06:25 PM   #13
HandKPhil
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A man of two minds

I was in the OP's exact frame of mind a couple of years ago, when I had an out-of-State job that required me to put in some big miles per week. I went and drove two new TSX's, and really liked them both. Most comfortable seats I've ever sat in. Very nice build quality in these cars. Cockpit was a little small, but did not seem cramped.

The engine made good horsepower at high rpm, but was lacking in torque compared to the 5 cylinder Jetta I was driving at the time. It was the end of the model year at the time, and a nicely equipped 2010 model could be had for just over $28K IIRC.

Strangely, half of me also wanted another small performance car, like the several that I had in the glory days of my youth in the '80's. I guess I wanted one more, before I got (really) old. I ended up buying a new 2013 GTI. The ride quality is nowhere near as nice as the TSX, but the performance and fun-to-drive factor is unbelievable. My butt and hips hurt every day at the end of my 35 mile drive home, but I'm seriously considering trading the '13 GTI in on the even more powerful 2015 model

I do still gaze wistfully at the TSX's I see on my drive home. Maybe someday I'll try another one out...
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:47 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meatsack View Post
I'm getting old.

I've realized that 90%+ of my time behind the wheel is spent commuting down the highway (1 hour round-trip per day). At the end of a long day I'm finding myself just wanting a comfortable, quiet place to spend that 30 minute drive home.

I'm also cheap and don't want to spend new car money.

What I want:
Comfortable
Quiet
Good climate control
Good audio
Reasonably good mileage
Bonus points for a chassis that's engaging and fun to drive when not just droning down the slab.
Sub $25k
5 years old or newer

Lately I've been gazing at the Acura TSX.
Seems like it would fit the bill and I've found a few of the latest generation cars with less than 70K miles for ~$16.5K

Do any of you have experience with these cars? Anything to add? Am I missing some other car that clearly fits the bill?

I do like that the TSX can be found with a 6-speed too.
By a brand spanking new Honda Accord.

The Accord S is the Sports Model. Has 5 HP more than the other models, dual exhaust 18" Wheels Sport Suspension, etc.

If you want all the luxury goodies, buy the Accord EX. Sunroof, Auto Climate Controls, Changing Lanes Camera, etc. You can buy a Brand New EX for about exactly $25K.

When you say a six speed, are you talking a Manual or Automatic. Honda's are now 7 Speed CVT (40 MPG) or Six Speed Manual 37 MPG.

I owned an Accura Legend (2.7 V-6) back in the lat 1980 and traded it in on a new Honda Accord EX (I-4). I hate to say this, but it's true. The Accord was a much better car. The 4 Cylinder 2.4 Accord puts out almost 200 HP, so it isn't exactly a whimpy engine.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:33 AM   #15
meatsack OP
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You guys rock. This is why I posted the question here. On a motorcycle forum.

It looks like I have a bit more research to do, and some test drives before I go much further. At least I have a better direction now.
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