Fri. Nov 22nd, 2019

2013 Acura ILX Tech and Hybrid Road Test – Power or Economy?

If a car was able to accurately represent the impact of a crest on the decisions of indoor car cover buyers, it was the old Acura CSX. It was simply a Honda Civic with a redesigned grille, a steering wheel with a different emblem, a slightly more powerful engine and a higher starting price.

For 2013, Acura decided to offer an entry-level model that would be more than just a full-length Civic. The dimensions of the 2013 Acura ILX are virtually identical to those of the Honda Civic, but the ILX body and interior now have a style of their own. The 2.0 liter 4-cylinder engine of the Acura is also a bit more powerful than the Honda.

As part of this road test, however, we focused on the all-new 2013 Hybrid Acura ILX, which went on sale a few months after the ILX petrol engine.

Unlike several hybrid cars, the 17.2 kWh electric motor positioned between the continuously variable transmission (CVT) and the 1.5-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine helps the ILX Hybrid during accelerations, but can not work alone to propel the car. So, the advantage of this hybrid engine is that it lends a hand to the gasoline engine and reduces fuel consumption when it is requested.

The Acura ILX Hybrid 2013 is also equipped with a start-stop system – commonly called Start-Stop – which cuts off the engine when the car is stopped to avoid burning fuel unnecessarily at a red light by example. The system works as it should with very little hesitation, but we noticed a good vibration when the engine restarts. In short, everything could be done a little more discreetly.


Why buy an ILX? One of the main reasons is undoubtedly its high-end techno cabin offering an exemplary finish and materials that are reminiscent of the TL and the MDX.

The 2013 Acura ILX Hybrid offers extensive standard equipment that includes heated leather and electric seats, navigation system, Bluetooth telephony system, satellite radio and reversing camera. If the base ILX could be better equipped – a starting price of $ 27,790 and no heated seats – the ILX Hybrid offers everything you’d expect to see in a $ 34,990 car, and even more .

As we mentioned earlier, the Acura ILX is a compact car and offers exactly the same wheelbase as the Honda Civic. The space inside is not huge, although passengers in the front still benefit from a spacious environment for the head and legs. In the back, two medium-sized adults can sit comfortably, but those over 6 feet (like me) will rub their heads on the ceiling.

During a trip to the beaches of Maine this summer at the wheel of an ILX Tech gasoline engine, we were forced to leave some non-essential items in Quebec because of the low volume of the trunk. The 348 liters of the suitcase make it one of the smallest in its class and I think is one of the main disadvantages of ILX. In the hybrid version, it’s even worse with just 283 liters of cargo space.

On the way

The suspension of the Acura ILX 2013 is rather firm and sporty, but is never uncomfortable. The result is a fun-to-drive car that does not dislike sharp curves and dynamic driving. On the dilapidated roads of the beautiful province, the ILX is less dry than the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid and fully justifies the difference in price with the Civic.

Inside, a soothing silence reigns especially because of the use of laminated glass and insulating materials. The seats are firm, but like those of a Mercedes-Benz, this feature adds comfort instead of harm.

If the Acura ILX equipped 150-horsepower 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine offers honest performance, the ILX Hybrid 2013 and its power of 111 horsepower lacks a bit of punch. The 127 pound-feet of torque are struggling to propel the car off when there are simply not enough horses to pull the 1,356 kg of this ecological Acura. We have tried a few times to lower the clock from 0-100 km / h below 10 seconds, but we never succeeded.

Some say it’s normal with a hybrid car, but the fact remains that the new Jetta Hybrid offers very high performance that could blush several gasoline-powered cars. Even the 188-horsepower 2013 Ford C-Max 2013 Hybrid engine tested recently seemed brighter and more dynamic than the ILX Hybrid engine. It is unfortunate to have no more power under the right foot given the excellent handling of the car.

That being said, if acceleration and replay do not matter, the Acura ILX Hybrid 2013 offers you a comfortable ride while being sporty when you want to have a little fun. The compact dimensions of the car also make it easy to move and park in the city, but the rear view is somewhat compromised by the inclination of the telescope. With the reversing camera offered as standard in the Acura ILX Hybrid, however, this problem disappears.

In short, the Acura ILX 2013 unfortunately imposes a choice between performance and fuel economy. If you opt for the gasoline engine, you’ll get much faster acceleration and rebound than what’s offered by the 2013 ILX Hybrid, which offers a noticeable reduction in gas mileage, but disappointing performance. Note also the arrival of the Acura ILX Dynamic and its 201 horsepower engine paired with a 6-speed manual transmission. We have not had the opportunity to try it, but it must be very fun to drive even if the fuel economy takes for a cold with an average consumption of nearly 9.0 liters per 100 kilometers.

Saving gas

Our test drive of the 2013 Acura ILX Hybrid resulted in an average fuel consumption of 6.7 liters per 100 kilometers, which is better than what we recorded with the Ford C-Max and the Jetta Hybrid. The fact that the performance of the hybrid engine does not encourage excess fuel has a beneficial effect on fuel consumption.

It is also interesting to note that the Acura ILX Hybrid does not require super gasoline, as is the case with other engines in the range. Finally, it should be noted that our test was conducted in winter in very cold weather in addition to being dotted with a heavy snowstorm. At a milder temperature, it should be easy to match the 5.0-liter consumption per 100 kilometers in the city and 4.8 liters per 100 kilometers on the road displayed by Acura.

The 2.0-liter engine obviously consumes more gasoline than the hybrid engine with an indicated consumption of 8.6 l / 100 km in the city and 6.5 l / 100 km on highway. These figures are realistic and comparable to what we have obtained.


The Acura ILX Hybrid 2013 left us a bit on our appetite because of its disappointing performance and its tiny trunk. On the other hand, it remains an excellent road which will appeal to those who have nothing to wax accelerations and who very rarely have to carry objects in the trunk. For these people, the 2013 Acura ILX Hybrid offers a level of sophistication and unsurpassed luxury in this price range. It also offers sporty and fun handling, in addition to a comfortable and quiet ride.

As for the conventional ILX, it manages to do what the CSX has never been able to do: justify the difference in price with the Honda Civic. It also offers more power than the hybrid version, but sees its fuel consumption rise dramatically as a result.

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