Vehicle Reviews:
2016 Acura ILX Review

Acura is pushing the reset button with its 2016 Acura ILX. The initial iteration of its compact luxury sedan tumbled out of the gate – and while it was an excellent appearing sedan, its driving experience was too similar to the Honda Civic, its corporate cousin. Therefore, Acura returned to the drawing board, and added a new drivetrain, updated the interior and exterior styling, offered new technology, and made the vehicle quieter on the road. The outcome was extremely positive: The Acura ILX for 2016 is a significantly improved vehicle, one which breaks the tie it had with the Honda Civic, as well as one which deserves consideration against the competition, not only the Buick Verano, yet also Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz CLA250.

You Will Like This Vehicle If…

The Acura ILX will make an excellent case for itself amongst young up-and-comers searching for high-end features within a luxury brand, yet who cannot quite make the swing to a bigger vehicle, or one of the Acura’s European rivals.

You Might Not Like This Vehicle If…

We would be lying if we stated that the brand held the exact same cachet as Audi or Mercedes-Benz, and status seekers might skip over the compact luxury sedan. A lot of what the ILX, on the other hand, provides is available in bigger mainstream cars, like the Honda Accord.

What is New for 2016?

The Acura ILX for 2016 is available with a plethora of upgrades as compared with 2015. Every model gets a 2.4L four-cylinder and eight-speed automatic transmission. Its chassis is 12% stiffer, its steering is sharper, there will include more high-tech motorist’s aids, and the tail and nose get refreshed, which includes Acura’s Jewel Eye headlights.

Impressions on Driving

In the Acura ILX the powertrain combines 2015s best engine with its eight-speed automatic we already have enjoyed within the Acura TLX. The most wonderful thing concerning the transmission’s operation is how unremarkable it actually is. Place it in Drive and go on about your business, and you will never even notice it, and while in Sport – particularly while you are shifting for yourself utilizing the steering wheel mounted paddles – its shifts are quick and crisp, yet never jarring. This sedan is as fast as 2015’s sportiest model, and improved suspension and steering make it shockingly fun on mountain roads, and just as comfortable simply cruising around town. Also, the ILX is visibly quieter than 2015’s vehicle. It isn’t any Rolls Royce, yet it is a huge improvement, and fast back-to-back comparison proved just how loud the old vehicle was.

Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission

Dual clutch automatic transmissions – that automate the function of the manual transmission for faster shifting – are provided from many manufacturers, yet the Acura model has a twist: There is also an old-school torque converter, offering a boost in torque and overall smoother operation.

Tethered Navigation App

For mid-grade models that don’t have the complete navigation suite, the brand provides a smartphone-based option. Integrating an app and special HDMI adapter cable, owners of iPhone’s may use their data plan and phone for navigation, instead of upgrade to a higher level of trim.


Here is the best improvement the brand made to the ILX interior: the gift of silence. There is a lot less wind and road noise, and the 2.4L four-cylinder’s song is very sporty, and heard at the right time. Otherwise, it is pretty standard issue for this sedan class. There is great use of materials, and not too much hard plastic, comfy seats in rear and front, as well as intuitive controls. Well, almost – some argued that the two-tier screen system might use an additional pass through the ergonomics department, yet others utilize it fine. The A-Spec model seating gets special fabric, as well as gray contrast stitching.

The Exterior

The Acura ILX already was visually distinctive from Honda Civics’ sedan, yet Acura’s tweaks to the ILX for 2016 bring it into line with the present Acura aesthetic. Firstly, there are the Jewel-Eye headlights – multi-lensed LEDs currently discovered on every Acura vehicle – but, these have a separate LED running light bar, and it appears pretty good.  Its headlights flank a redesigned grille, plus, it all is above a bumper that has been reshaped.