2011 Acura TSX SportWagon: Thinking About It
December 12, 2011
I'm with Donna; I'd buy this car.
The odd thing about the TSX wagon is that it doesn't do any one thing exceptionally well. It's not particularly fast, but it accelerates in smooth, linear fashion, and you can still feel the switch to every Honda nerd's favorite cam profile (still kickin' in, yo). It's not particularly sporty, yet it feels taut and responsive. Those rear shock tower housings protrude into the cargo area and cut down on maximum cargo capacity, but the TSX wagon still feels pretty roomy. And even with the intrusion, the TSX wagon still out-volumes the 3 Series, A4 and CTS wagons, falling just shy of the Jetta Sportwagen and Volvo XC70.
The steering wheel and center stack button orgy is excessive, but I still like sitting among the TSX's technology. The nav system is easy to operate -- if you know where you're going (search function is tiresome; automakers, see "outsource functionality to Google" in the product planning recommendations). The ELS audio system sings pretty sweetly, and I really like the hard-drive music storage option. Nothing good on the radio? Flip to some old tracks you haven't kicked in awhile. The graphics interface is clean, although I'd prefer the dial controller near the shifter.
Comfortable seats (I don't notice lumbar as much as others on staff, nor as much as in other H/A cars), small steering wheel, good visibility; the TSX wagon just does a lot of things well. No standout abilities, but it ties together most of what I'd need as a daily driver and weekend mule. I could haul drums, surfboards, kids and coolers. Unladen, it would be a fun car to romp on twisty roads. I'd fill it with 91 now and then, but not exclusively. The audio would alleviate miserable commutes.
Local dealers are asking about $32,000 for CPO models with the Tech package and 5,000 miles. That's about $3,000 off the MSRP for a new Tech package model. So forget all the V6/manual/all-wheel-drive conditional scenarios; provided you like the wagon in the first place, if you could whittle that CPO price below $30,000, do you buy it?
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor