2003 Acura RSX Review
Edmunds' Expert Review
- High-revving Type-S engine, plenty of standard equipment, nimble handling.
- Modest torque output, tight rear-seat headroom.
Most helpful consumer reviews
2dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 5A)
I bought this car to replace a gas hog (Mustang GT) for college. My job is roughly an hour and a half away and I needed something decently efficient on gas that didn't have the price tag of a Prius, and could still do the work and school trips on one tank. I came across one of these on a local craigslist and haven't had any regrets. It's one of the only Acura's (to my knowledge) that doesn't require premium gas or spark knock if you put regular gas in it. It usually does in the mid 20's mpg in the city and high 20's if not low 30's mpg on the highway. As long as you don't stomp on the gas pedal this car will do amazing no matter where you drive it; which was one of the selling points for me. The only downsides to this car come when you have to either replace belts, headlight bulbs, headlights or taillights. Because the car is so small, space under the hood is in short supply; therefore things like belts typically mean removing the entire front bumper to replace. The headlight bulbs (usually for the passenger headlight) also require removal of the entire bumper, which means you'll need to schedule some time aside for certain "simple" projects. If you need to take an entire headlight or taillight out of the car, the bumpers need to be removed completely as well since the retaining bolts are underneath the headlights and taillights. Besides those downfalls, the car is amazing. If you can find a type-s (200+hp) and don't mind driving a stick, those are the way to go. If a manual transmission isn't your thing the base models still have a good amount of kick to them (150+hp), and parts for these cars are extremely easy to find and aren't a whole lot of money either. Update 2018: I've had this car for 5 years now, and I have only had to do normal maintenance (oil changes, spark plugs, tires, brakes, etc.). This car has never once broken down, or had any issues even in severe winters. This is one of the best purchases I have ever made, and completely explains why you still see so many of these cars on the road.
2dr Hatchback w/Leather (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
This is truly a little gem of a car. I've had mine for over four years, put almost 50,000 miles on it, driven it three times round-trip from Connecticut to Arkansas, driven it around the mean streets of Brooklyn. It never lets me down. I've driven it at 80+ mph with all my worldly possessions (including an antique desk) crammed in the back and STILL gotten 34 mpg. I'll drive it until the wheels fall off, unless I need something with four doors.
Type-S 2dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
Bought my RSX in 2009 with 50,000 miles and now in 2015 has 135,000 and drives like new. I have only done regular maintenance (oil change, breaks ect) Thought that it may be time to drive something newer so I test drove a TSX (2012)and ILX (2016)but prefer my RSX over them both. The RSX has great reliability, has never let me down. They are fast and hug to the road with impeccable handling. Love the simple design of the interior, comfortable bucket seats. Awesome sound system! The heat and AC work better in my car then most new cars I have been in which is impressive given my RSX is 12 years old. Know someone with the same car as me that has 336,000 miles on their RSX hope to be driving mine for that long as I haven't found anything that compares. Absolutely love this car!!!
Type-S 2dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
I've owned my 03 Type S for over 6 years and will most likely be keeping this car for another 6+ years. It really is the best all around FWD sport compact car out there. I always get complements on it's appearance due to the A-Spec package mine was installed with from the factory (body kit, rear wing, aluminum shift knob, sport suspension, 17" wheels). I have never had a major mechanical problem with this car and it still drives like it did 6 years/50,000 miles ago. The only issue I have ever had with my RSX- S is a squeaky/notchy clutch pedal (which is easily remedied by spraying white lithium grease on the master cylinder pushrod).