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2005 Acura RSX Pros and Cons at TrueDelta: Why I chose my 2005 RSX base w/5 spd manual by 05RSXbaseL

05RSXbaseL

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Reviewed: 2005 Acura RSX

2dr Hatch 160-horsepower 2.0L I4 5-speed manual FWD

Why the 2005 Acura RSX?

Exterior styling

Reserved, but not boring. Classic, flowing lines that look good from any angle.

Interior styling

Simple controls, perfectly laid out for easy accessibility. No electronic gadgetry - just basic knobs for climate and volume control. Nice contrast in dash material textures. Great looking seats. Pedals nicely spaced, but would be better with aluminum covers instead of rubber.

Fuel economy

Averaging 32 MPG in mixed driving (60% highway, 40% suburbs).

Powertrain performance

Surprisingly quick for just 160hp, but then the car only weighs about 2800 lbs. Revs very quickly. The 5 speed means less shifting in traffic, and its action is typical Honda goodness.

Handling

Nicely weighted, communicative steering puts the car where you want it. Very balanced chassis makes fast turns fun. Feels tossable and always ready for the next curve.

Why Not the 2005 Acura RSX?

Materials & workmanship

The pedals should have been covered in, or manufactured from, aluminum. Instead, they are just stamped steel covered in rubber. The leather insert on the driver's side door is starting to peel away. The exterior window trim pieces on both doors cracked and faded, as did the trim in the rain channels on the roof.

Safety & braking

Brakes felt mushy, with long pedal travel, and the car would sometimes pull to the side under hard braking. Then I had the system flushed. Now the travel is much shorter, engagement is more positive, and the car doesn't pull to one side anymore.

Conclusion

The RSX checked all the boxes for me: Reasonably quick, reliable, fuel efficient, good looking, hatchback practicality, and fun to drive.

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Response from scumbling1

8:39 pm February 17, 2016

Great review! I would jump on the opportunity to purchase an identical car as yours, if one in decent shape showed up locally.

I was curious if you had any trouble with rust? I've heard murmurs about that being an issue, but who knows if that was only a few anecdotes.

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Response from 05RSXbaseL

11:30 am February 20, 2016

Scumbling1: I don't see any major rust issues yet. The only rust problem I've seen thus far is with areas hit by rock chips getting rusty if they aren't touched up right away. The paint on the hood and front fenders seems thin to me because so many chips made it past the clear coat and color coat, down to the metal. Perhaps it's just my bad luck and not the paint, though.

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