Since its debut in July of 2001, the RSX sports coupe has been an unqualified success, winning an array of industry awards including being named to Car and Driver’s ’10 Best’ and Ward’s ’10 Best Engines’ lists. To maintain the RSX’s position as the benchmark in its class, Acura’s dynamic sports coupe receives substantial performance and styling enhancements for 2005 that update its dynamic looks, refine and modernize the interior and make it even more fun to drive.
‘The sports coupe segment is incredibly competitive and you have to keep improving to stay ahead of the curve,’ said **** Colliver, executive vice president, sales. ‘We’ve made substantial performance, handling and styling enhancements for 2005 that will keep the RSX at the top of its class. ‘
The 2005 RSX is available in two versions, the sporty RSX and the high-performance RSX Type-S. Both models are powered by advanced engines that feature i-VTEC ‘intelligent’ valve-control systems, combining VTEC (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control) with VTC (Variable Timing Control). The i-VTEC system delivers enhanced performance across a broad power band in addition to superior fuel economy and low exhaust emissions.
For 2005, the high performance Type-S model received engine and exhaust system modifications that boost horsepower from 200 to 210 and torque from 142 lb.-ft to 143 lb-ft. Engine output was optimized by applying high performance camshafts and enlarging the diameter of the intake duct by 10 percent. A larger diameter exhaust pipe and free-flowing catalytic converter helped to boost horsepower by increasing exhaust flow by 10 percent.
Remarkably, given their considerable power, both RSX engines meet stringent CARB Low Emissions Vehicle-II (LEV-2) standards and are designed to run for 110,000 miles before the first scheduled tune-up.
The Type-S is equipped exclusively with a 6-speed, close-ratio manual transmission for quick, responsive shifting. For 2005, the final drive ratio on this transmission was lowered to provide even quicker acceleration while shift feel was improved by applying carbon synchronizers on fifth and sixth gear.
To meet the demands of the true driving enthusiast, the chassis of both RSX models feature track-tuned suspensions and steering systems for exceptional handling precision, outstanding cornering grip and a smooth, controlled ride.
A unique Control-Link MacPherson strut front suspension and a compact double-wishbone rear suspension system help deliver quick, confident handling, and a smooth, compliant ride while maximizing interior room. On the Type-S, the track-tuned suspension is optimized with firmer springs and dampers, a front strut tower bar and a rear performance rod.
For 2005, the suspension was optimized through an assortment of modifications designed to enhance handling while promoting an even smoother ride. Suspension enhancements for 2005 include a revised geometry, reduced ride height, retuned bushings, thicker stabilizer bars, firmer damper settings and inversely wound front coil springs that neutralize unwanted steering input caused by spring windup. On the Type-S model, the strength of the performance rod was also increased to help maintain precise suspension geometry, while the front damper top bushing was replaced by a bearing, for smoother steering response.
Standard 4-wheel disc brakes with a 3-channel Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) help to provide secure stopping power. The RSX Type-S is equipped with 10.3-inch ventilated discs in front and 11.8-inch discs at the rear. For 2005, a larger diameter master cylinder was applied to increase hydraulic pressure, the rigidity of the brake pedal increased and the pedal stroke was reduced. These enhancements combined to both enhance stopping power and improve braking feel.
The RSX utilizes a high-mounted rack-and-pinion power steering system that provides enhanced tracking stability, and toe control as well as a linear steering feel. This system was enhanced for 2005 by applying a quicker steering ratio, a more rigid steering column and by increasing pump flow by seven percent to provide more responsive steering and an even more linear, on-center steering feel.
To further enhance the Type-S model’s handling prowess for 2005, restyled 17×7-inch alloy wheels and Michelin 215/45R17 all-season high-performance tires were applied.
The exterior styling of the RSX communicates a message of power and precision through short front and rear overhangs, sweeping curves and sharply chiseled accent lines. For 2005, Acura updated the styling to make the RSX look lower, faster and more aggressive. In front, the fascia has been redesigned with lower, rectangular air ducts, aggressive-looking tri-beam headlights and a new Acura-family grille. Side sills on the RSX are now body colored, while the side sills on the Type-S are more substantial, and wrap further around the car to highlight the new wheels and tires. The rear of the RSX was redesigned with new taillight assemblies, a new bumper, larger diameter exhaust tips and, on the Type-S, a deck lid spoiler. The result for both models is a more aerodynamic car that gives off a strong feeling of mass and power.
The interior of the RSX features a driver-oriented cockpit that has been updated for 2005. The seats have been redesigned with more supportive side bolsters and a thicker lower cushion for increased comfort on long drives and support during aggressive cornering. Titanium accents have been added to the integrated headrests and to several key points around the cabin including the step garnish, the shifter boot ring (models equipped with manual transmission) and the hand brake.
Standard safety highlights include Acura’s innovative dual-stage, dual-threshold airbag system, which deploys the airbags at different rates depending on the severity of the collision and seatbelt usage. The RSX also includes side airbags with passenger seat height and position sensors, and dual seatbelt pretensioners on both front seats.
Standard amenities on all RSX models include an Automatic Climate Control System, power moonroof, high-output audio system with in-dash CD player (Acura/Bose Audio System on Type-S), keyless entry system with anti-theft engine immobilizer, heated power sideview mirrors, power windows with an auto-up/down feature on the driver’s window and a leather- wrapped steering wheel. The deeply bolstered sport seats of the RSX Type-S are come standard with perforated leather.
Price this car:
MSRP: $20,275 – $23,670
Invoice: $18,488 – $21,579
Source: Acura Press Release