Buy a ILX or the competition.......??
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Just thought I'd add some pertinent info regarding if one should consider an Acura product, even if a little overpriced, when there are cars that have a perceived greater value like the Buick Verano and assorted Korean offerings. According to Consumer Reports, The Cruze is a dog in terms of reliability and the Buick Regal below average. Considering the Verano is Buick's version of the Cruze, that's a bad sign for that car. The price on the Verano for what you get is exceedingly attractive, placing that model not much higher than a well-equiped Civic but you have to wonder what GM is cutting corners on to make that happen.
The Kia products are Hyundai's weaker cousins and offer hit and miss reliability. It's tough to say what you'd be getting.
A relative of mine just the other day was spinning a tale of woe regarding a Hyundai they bought a year after I purchased my CSX. Granted, that Hyundai has travelled nearly twice as far but the Hyundai was problematic within weeks of being driven off the lot new while my CSX has been absolutely stellar. Literally the only issues with the car have been that once for a couple of days the engine light didn't want to turn off (problem corrected itself and three years later has not returned) and once a tire pressure sensor froze up. That's it in 63,000 Km of driving. That's not a lot of driving, I know, but whereas I feel rather confident in the CSX (knock on wood), my relative has had a rather unpleasant time of it with the Hyundai.
I'm not convinced that other automakers have eliminated the quality gap with the two companies that have the best overall reliability record, overall, in my estimation. Those companies would be Honda and Toyota, though Honda has an edge what with some of the issues that plagued more recent Toyotas.
This is no small thing. If consumers stop putting importance on reliability, then so will automakers. If Acura works hard at making its products, right on down through to the ILX base, high-quality products with excellent reliability and the reaction of consumers is to shun that approach, Honda will stop worrying about quality and compete more on a perceived value basis. I do not want to see that happen because having a car you can count on is perhaps the most important aspect of the overall ownership experience.
The days of being able to out-feature competitors at a given price point are gone. To me the one compelling reason to stick with Honda/Acura is that they build cars that have quality in the areas that matter.
I hope that if any manufacturer in any field pursues quality measured in terms of the expected life expectancy of a device (in the case of a car that would be a decade) consumers recognize that, value it, and reward the manufacturer. This would ensure that we don't get stuck with cars that are problematic over the long haul. If consumers don't care about such quality, manufacturers will also stop caring.
The result will be that we will all be driving automotive junk and have only ourselves to blame for it.
There is something to be said for a well-engineered car and if the ILX is such a product, I hope for all our sakes, it will be a success because of it. If the car is shunned for being too focused on true quality beyond surface considerations, hence appearing to be overpriced, that's bad news.
I don't trust the competition nearly as much as I do Honda. That's still a huge factor for me. It's the one competitive edge I hope Honda retains. I have always wanted quality in whatever I buy and am prepared to pay for it. Figuring out if that quality is there, now that's a lot harder to do than to take a few cars out for test drives, pour over some spec sheets and then consider MSRP relative to perceived performance.
Obviously I haven't tried to compare other cars to the ILX because the ILX isn't available for evaluation yet and really I can't afford to trade in my current car for a few more years. But when the time comes, my main concern will be with what I'm really getting for my money. That's going to be an interesting exercise. In any case, for anyone shopping right now, take a good, long look at your options. There's more to this than MSRP relative to features.