Acura TSX Performance
Reviewers say the 2013 Acura TSX has good performance, but think other upscale small cars, particularly the TSX’s German competitors, are sportier. Of the two available engines, they prefer the optional V6 engine because it is calm and refined when driven around town, but has extra power when more is required of it. Most reviewers say the manual and automatic transmissions are smooth, and they enjoy the TSX’s comfortable ride.
- "It's hard to find a better balance of dynamics and comfort than what the 2013 Acura TSX delivers." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "While the Acura TSX models are certainly pleasant to drive, they're not as sporty as some other choices, nor are they as opulent as models that make luxury more of a priority." -- Edmunds (2012)
Acceleration and Power
The base TSX has a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine that makes 201 horsepower. It comes standard with a five-speed automatic transmission, and a six-speed manual is optional. There’s also an optional V6 engine, which makes 280 horsepower and comes with the automatic transmission. The TSX’s fuel economy ratings are highest with the base engine and automatic transmission, which yields an EPA-estimated 22/31 mpg city/highway. Those ratings are good for the class. With the V6 engine, the TSX averages 19/28 mpg.
The four-cylinder engine receives mixed reviews from the automotive press. While some test drivers say that it’s loud and unrefined, some think it’s not pitifully slow, like some base engines. Test drivers prefer the optional V6 engine for its balance of quiet and strong performance. Both the manual and automatic transmissions receive positive evaluations for their slick shifts.
- “The 4-cylinder sounds loud, and to some testers, unrefined, particularly as its speed rises. The V6 has a great performance sound and is nearly silent at cruise." -- Consumer Guide
- "But more than pure numbers, what's important about the TSX V-6 is the huge amount of mid-range, tire-spinning power available, especially compared to the 4-cylinder's. The V-6 also makes more alluring sounds when driven with vigor, yet it's smoother and quieter around town." -- Road and Track (2010)
- "Both transmissions work well; the manual is easy to work thanks to a short-travel clutch and linear throttle tip-in, while the automatic provides pleasantly smooth shifts." -- Edmunds (2012)
Handling and Braking
Test drivers say that the Acura TSX handles well, and like that its handling becomes firmer at higher speeds. However, one reviewer says the TSX's German competitors have much better handling. The TSX’s steering is accurate, and the brakes also get good reviews.
The TSX’s ride quality receives mixed reviews. Some test drivers think that the driver and passengers will be pleased with its quiet ride, while one says that the firm suspension picks up too many bumps in the road.
- "TSX handles quite well for a front-wheel-drive car. Steering feel is pleasantly light at low speeds and firms up on the highway. The brakes have fine stopping control and pedal feel." -- Consumer Guide
- "The … Acura TSX rides calmly and quietly at highway speeds." -- Edmunds (2012)
- "When cruising along on the freeway, it adequately absorbs surface irregularities and mutes running noise. If there's anything to complain about, it's Acura's electromechanical power steering system; it makes its contribution to fuel efficiency but doesn't have the feel and feedback of its German competitors." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Stiff suspension may prove too firm for bad roads." -- Cars.com (2012)