For what it is, it's a good car.
But it's not been marketed very well, nor do their target audience nowadays really care about more than MPG and price. $25.9k isn't a bad start for a car with those features but when most of those "features" aren't really a concern of the casual buyer, then there's the problem with sales.
Thing I don't get is why they're trying to pull defeat from the jaws of victory when there's a fat, perfect market segment just waiting there for somebody to exploit it. Build a $25-30k compact sport sedan with a sharp design and a turbo four developing around 230-240 hp and SH-AWD as an option, make it look okay, call it the Integra, and sell a goddamn million of them to 35-55 year old professionals who are tempted by the WRX, Focus ST, MS3, and so forth but want something a little more grown up that doesn't rape their wallet like the Tier 1s do. As it stands the GTI and GLI have that market essentially to themselves. Undercut the upcoming A3 sedan by a few grand or so, and they've got it made.
Last edited by Turbio!; 10-05-2012 at 09:50 AM.
Turbio--I agree, but the issue is that SH-AWD is now Acura's outdated tech. It's not going to be a focal point anymore, as they ready their next-gen system for launch in the next few years.
SH-AWD is also heavy...part of the reason for the 1st-gen RDX's perceived poor MPG.
Im not sure im seeing how this is a sales "flop" just yet
It was a new model that people didn't know existed yet and each month its been increasing in sales based on the figures posted. Month 4 is almost double month 1. If they go with a nice marketing push and the sales continue to trend upwards then I don't think 40k units is unreachable.
This is so much not on Buick's radar as a competitor that they don't even compare it in our side by side comparisons.
Now that I see standard content, available options, and standard power trains I see why. It is a sub par vehicle for the cash.
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I would put money on the fact that cost efficiency was, by far, the primary driving force for how the ILX came out. While conceptually, I like your idea, I don't think Honda felt they could make a case to spend so much on making such an idea reality. You're familiar with the term "quick and dirty" right? That's how Honda approached the ILX, IMO. It's like the Cimarron of the honda lineup.
Which is not to say that Honda didn't botch the launch of this car. They should have waited until the new hybrid/earth dreams engines came on line to launch this. The current engines are lackluster for anything wearing a "luxury" badge.
Rubbing alcohol is for external injuries. Drinking alcohol is for internal injuries. It's a science. - Nick Miller
Car buyers in this segment are often car leasers, such as myself. I leased a base 2011 328i a year ago. Out the door price was $31k for a car with real leather and a 230hp inline six. Why would I want a $30k ILX instead??
Today you can lease a G25 for the same price as the ILX. Is there any question which is more car?
And yeah, I agree entirely. It's a cheap, quick "hey, we need something smaller, I guess people want fuel economy these days" hack job, indifferently shat out in the mistaken impression that Acura buyers are as committed as Honda buyers.
Last edited by Turbio!; 10-05-2012 at 11:40 AM.
I have to say that I prefer VWs approach to this sort of thing. They have whittled down the platforms as well, but the platforms also seem to be far more flexible and allow for the creation of the cars that from an engineering perspective are related, but from the seat of the pants, have a pretty different look and feel. Not to mention, VW has access to quite a few different engine and transmission combinations (based, seemingly, on the need to develop such different powertrains for the various markets VW has a presence in), so every project wouldn't seem to require an extensive re-engineering process.
To Honda's detriment in this situation, it's also a much smaller company than VW, so there's also that to consider. I'm not as big of a fan of the CRV as you are, but I have to say that I'm not nearly as offended by the new accord, at least based on the pictures I've seen, than I was of the previous gen car. Unfortunately, Honda needs to invest some money in several different engine and transmission lineups and I think they're just too damn conservative. I like your idea about awd for the ILX, but that would require far more forward thinking than I feel Honda has put forth in their current products.
But hey, maybe Honda is putting ALL of their engineering skill into developing the NSX.
the others are either vaporware or haven't reached our shores yet.
I agree that the Verano is definitely a competitor. But, honestly, I didn't even think of it. Like most west coast folk in this target demographic, Buick isn't even on our radars. Also, it doesn't help that the Verano, IMHO, is even more generic looking than the ILX
Consumer reports sums it up well in its Verano review, "Just like with the Acura ILX, you have to want to pay a premium to get a smaller car." People would rather buy a bigger car with the same amount of features without the premium badge.
I think you're right about the GLI. Plus the Jetta has a TDI option to compete with the ILX hybrid interms of fuel economy.
not really compelling, if you ask me. When I first saw them on TV, I thought they were going to sell alcohol.
Actually, I'd add the Suzuki Kazashi to it's list of competitors too.
But sadly for Suzuki, the kazashi is REALLY off most people's radar.
Acura was fine in 2005.
RSX/S sport coupes
TSX sport sedan (much better engine back then, true DOHC VTEC)
RDX turbo cuteute with thoughts of that motor making it into other cars (exciting)
NSX sold for its last year
TL was the most beautiful mid-sized entry-luxury sedan like evar.
RL was looking solid, boasting 300hp from a V6 long before competitors caught up with similar displacement engines
MDX was doing well
Turbio has it right here. They need a sophisticated, adult small sedan with a competitive feature set at a good price. I could maybe see making a case for this gussied-up Civic at $25K. But $30K? As someone else mentioned, there are entry level BMWs, Infinitis and Audis available to those buyers. To say that this car isn't in the same league is not a subjective characterization, it's a fact: A car based on a Civic platform is not the equivalent of BMW anything. It can't be.
Really, I just think they should take all the content of the ILX and put it in the Civic while not charging more. They're so close together in the market (loaded Civic versus base ILX) and as has been pointed out, the ILX was developed on the cheap. Why didn't Honda just make this Civic this good? How does this car justify it's faux-luxury badge? Also, personally, I find wannabe-luxury badges to be pretty embarrassing. If you want your car to impress people, then just get a damn BMW/MB/Audi already.
I think the CR comment is very valid for the compact entry level luxury market. Like I said earlier, people would rather buy a bigger car with the same amount of features without the premium badge.
Especially in a soft economy.