Acura ILX Years to Avoid and The Best Years

Acura ILX Years to Avoid – Are you considering purchasing an Acura ILX, but want to make an informed decision? Choosing the right car is crucial, and understanding which model years to avoid can save you from potential headaches down the road.

In this article, we’ll discuss Acura ILX years to avoid, highlighting the worst years to help you make a wise purchasing choice.

When it comes to car shopping, knowledge is power.

Acura ILX Years to Avoid

By understanding the pitfalls associated with certain model years, you can steer clear of potential issues and ensure a smoother ownership experience.

We’ll explore the Acura ILX lineup and shed light on the specific years you should approach with caution.

Acura, known for its reputation of producing luxury vehicles, introduced the ILX as an entry-level sedan.

While the ILX offers a blend of comfort, style, and performance, not all model years have been equal in terms of reliability and overall quality.

It’s essential to be aware of any recurring problems or design flaws that might have plagued specific years.

Acura ILX Years to Avoid

To make your decision-making process easier, we’ll provide you with valuable insights into the Acura ILX’s troubled years, helping you avoid potential frustrations and costly repairs.

Acura ILX Years to Avoid

By understanding the weak points of certain model years, you’ll be better equipped to find a reliable and enjoyable Acura ILX that suits your needs.

Let’s explore the intricate details and uncover the information you need to make an informed decision when it comes to purchasing an Acura ILX.

2013 Acura ILX: A Troubling Beginning

The 2013 Acura ILX entered the market with style and a more spacious interior compared to its Honda Civic counterpart. Though its fuel efficiency and price range might seem enticing, this model year has received its fair share of complaints.

Despite receiving positive reviews from Edmunds (4.8/5) and US News (7.4/10), the feedback from actual owners unveiled its blemishes.

The major issues with the 2013 Acura ILX lie in the airbag, suspension, and transmission system.

Multiple users have reported the airbag’s failure to deploy during accidents, leading to injuries and crashes.

Moreover, some owners have expressed concerns about the brakes failing to function correctly while the car unexpectedly accelerates.

The suspension has also been criticized for being noisy and uncomfortable when driving over bumps. Due to these serious issues, it is best to avoid the 2013 Acura ILX altogether, regardless of its attractive price range.

Read Also: Why Are Acura ILX So Cheap?

2016 Acura ILX: Performance and Reliability Decline

While the 2016 Acura ILX maintained a reasonable price tag and offered extended standard features, it faced a decline in overall performance and reliability.

This model year continued to suffer from issues reported in the 2013 version, signaling a lack of progress.

The most common complaints from owners of the 2016 ILX involve the drivetrain, brake, airbag, and transmission. Several drivers have raised concerns about acceleration and brake problems, with the car unexpectedly accelerating even when the brake is applied.

The airbag has been a significant concern as well, with some owners reporting deployment failure or even explosion during deployment, leading to a recall by Acura.

Additionally, the transmission has been criticized for making clunking noises during acceleration and gear shifts.

As a result, potential buyers should be cautious about the 2016 Acura ILX and consider alternative options.

2019 Acura ILX: Lagging Behind Its Rivals

The 2019 Acura ILX faced considerable criticism from various reviewers, earning the lowest overall reliability rating among all ILX models on JD Power (2.5/5) and Edmunds (3.9/5).

Despite an upgraded infotainment system and AcuraWatch standard safety features, this model failed to impress with its interior and overall performance.

Competing against other luxury small cars, the 2019 ILX ranked last (#22 out of 22) on US News. Its lackluster performance and underwhelming upgrade contributed to this rating.

While some may appreciate its relatively affordable price, it falls short of delivering a true luxury experience.

Potential buyers looking for an upscale sedan may want to explore other options that offer better features and performance.

2021 Acura ILX: An Uncertain Future

As the Acura ILX’s popularity declined, the 2021 version showed some improvement by receiving fewer complaints compared to its predecessors.

However, being a relatively recent model, its long-term reliability remains unknown.

Critics have described the 2021 ILX as a sluggish ride that lacks substantial performance upgrades. Even the braking system fails to deliver the expected excellence for a modern car.

The cabin also struggles to minimize wind and road noise, affecting the overall driving experience.

While the premium trims offer a more luxurious feel, the base model does not live up to expectations.

Despite these shortcomings, the 2021 ILX is not a terrible choice; however, it falls behind even the oldest ILX versions in terms of overall ratings, with Edmunds giving it a modest 6.6/10 and US News rating it 6.8/10.

By avoiding these problematic model years, you can enhance your chances of finding a reliable and enjoyable Acura ILX that meets your needs and expectations.

Best Acura ILX Years

When it comes to choosing the right Acura ILX model, reliability and performance are key factors to consider.

The Acura ILX has had its share of ups and downs throughout its production history, but there are certain model years that stand out as the best choices.

Best Acura ILX Years

In this section, we will explore and highlight the best Acura ILX years, focusing on 2014, 2020, and 2018 models.

2014 Acura ILX: A Solid Performer

The 2014 Acura ILX is a standout model year that offers significant upgrades in terms of interior comfort and driver visibility.

With features like a rearview camera, heated seats, and leather upholstery as standard, this ILX model provides a more luxurious driving experience while still maintaining an affordable price.

In terms of reliability, the 2014 ILX receives positive ratings. US News rates its safety at an impressive 9.3/10 and gives it an overall rating of 7.9, while Edmunds scores it 4.7/5.

Despite having 38 complaints on, it still remains a reliable option.

One notable achievement of the 2014 Acura ILX is its ranking of #8 out of 18 in the 2014 luxury small cars category by US News. This is the highest ranking achieved by any ILX model thus far.

However, it’s important to note that the 2014 ILX is not immune to the airbag issue that has affected many Acura ILX models due to the faulty Takata airbag inflators.

If purchasing a used 2014 ILX, it is crucial to verify if the airbag issue has been addressed and resolved.

2020 Acura ILX: Reliability and Comfort

The 2020 Acura ILX is another model year that earns its place as one of the best options. It receives a commendable rating of 7.3 out of 10 from US News, and JD Power gives it an excellent reliability score of 82%.

This indicates a high level of dependability for the 2020 ILX.

Not only does the 2020 ILX offer reliability, but it also provides a comfortable ride and a host of standard features.

As of now, there have been minimal to no serious complaints reported on NHTSA, and there have been no major recalls for this model year.

Furthermore, the 2020 ILX comes in only one trim, allowing buyers to enjoy its wealth of standard features without the need for costly upgrades.

2018 Acura ILX: A Decent Option

While the 2018 Acura ILX experienced lower sales compared to other years, it still proves to be a decent choice with only 3 complaints reported on both NHTSA and CarComplaints combined.

One user complaint highlighted issues with the transmission noise and weak suspension system.

However, these concerns have not been widespread, suggesting a level of reliability for the 2018 ILX.

It’s worth noting that the 2018 ILX did not receive significant upgrades compared to previous models. Its price remains on the lower side compared to rivals, and its fuel economy continues to impress.

However, the handling and ride quality is not exceptional, though they are somewhat better than the worst model years.

In terms of ratings, the 2018 ILX earns a 7.3/10 from US News but ranks #17 out of 19 in the 2018 luxury small cars category. Edmunds also scores it 6.9/10, just slightly above average.

Conduct thorough research, review vehicle histories, and take test drives to ensure you find the Acura ILX that best suits your needs and preferences.

Acura ILX Common Problems

The Acura ILX is a luxury compact sedan that offers style, comfort, and performance.

However, like any vehicle, it is not without its share of problems.

Acura ILX Common Problems

Let’s explore the common issues and recalls associated with the Acura ILX, including airbag failures, acceleration during braking, driveshaft problems, engine stalling, reduced visibility from headlights, doors opening by themselves, and incorrect fuel gauge readings.

1. Failing or Exploding Airbags

One of the most frequently complained-about problems in the Acura ILX relates to its airbags. Specifically, the 2013-2014 ILX models, including the hybrid versions, have experienced issues with airbag deployment.

Some owners have reported that the airbags failed to inflate during a collision, while others discovered that the airbags could explode without any collision occurring.

These problems led to three separate recalls: one for the 2013 model year (16V061000) and two for the 2013-2014 model year, including the hybrid (19V182000, 19V500000).

It’s important to note that these recalls were not exclusive to the ILX; they were part of a nationwide recall affecting millions of vehicles equipped with faulty Takata airbags.

The faulty airbags were attributed to propellant degradation due to prolonged exposure to high humidity and temperature cycling.

2. Car Accelerates When Braking

Some owners of the 2016 Acura ILX have reported an issue with sudden unintended acceleration while braking. This means that the car unexpectedly accelerates even when the brakes are applied at low speeds.

This problem is not unique to the ILX and has been observed in other Acura models, such as the MDX.

Although Acura has not officially investigated this issue, it is suspected that the problem lies with the electronic throttle control mechanism.

Malfunctions in this system can interfere with the vehicle’s speed control, leading to unintended acceleration during braking.

If this problem occurs, it is recommended to have the throttle control mechanism replaced, which can cost between $500 and $700.

3. Rusting or Separating Driveshaft

Certain model years of the Acura ILX have experienced driveshaft problems. For the 2013-2015 models (including the 2013 hybrid), a recall (20V770000) was issued due to reports of complete driveshaft failure and loss of power.

The issue was traced back to a lack of appropriate protective coating during manufacturing, causing premature rusting.

The 2016-2019 ILX models also had a recall (19V424000) related to the driveshaft.

In this case, too much grease was applied to the set-ring on the half shaft, preventing proper engagement and resulting in driveshaft separation and power loss.

The solution for both recalls involved inspecting and replacing the affected driveshaft components if necessary.

4. Engine Stalling Due to Fuel Pump

The 2019 Acura ILX faced an issue with engine stalling, leading to a recall (21V215000). The problem was traced back to a faulty fuel pump impeller.

The low-pressure fuel pumps in certain Acura and Honda models, including the ILX, had impellers that were prone to swelling.

This would reduce fuel flow and result in decreased power or engine stalling. The solution involved replacing the fuel pump assembly at no cost to the owner.

Reduced Visibility from Headlights and Potential Fire Hazard

Owners of the 2013-2014 ILX models complained about reduced visibility after prolonged use of the headlights. A recall (14V323000) was issued to address this problem.

Honda determined that excessive heat buildup within the headlight assembly, caused by the original design, could lead to the deformation and melting of plastic components.

This, in turn, could affect headlight operation and potentially result in a fire. The solution involved replacing the headlights with updated designs capable of dissipating heat effectively.

5. The door Opens By Itself

In July 2012, Honda issued a recall (12V338000) for over 170,000 vehicles, including the 2013 Acura ILX. The recall was prompted by improper door latches, which could cause the doors to open while driving.

The issue was attributed to a loose cable connecting the interior door handle to the door latch mechanism. Replacing the front door latch assemblies resolved the problem.

6. Incorrect Fuel Gauge Reading

In January 2019, Acura recalled more than 4,000 2014-2019 ILX models due to a deformed fuel tank that affected the fuel gauge accuracy. The raised height of the fuel pump caused the fuel level float to stick, resulting in an inaccurate fuel level display.

Despite numerous owner complaints, Acura took several years to address this defect. The recalled vehicles were inspected, and if the defect was present, the fuel tank was replaced free of charge.

If you own an Acura ILX or plan to purchase one, it is essential to stay informed about these potential issues and take appropriate measures to address them.

How long does Acura ILX last?

No matter which used Acura ILX you choose, it should be able to last at least 200,000 miles or more.

Is the Acura ILX reliable?

Overall, the Acura ILX’s reliability is rated at 91.65, making it very reliable compared to some other cars. The average overall reliability rating is 57 for comparison.

Why was Acura ILX discontinued?

The Acura ILX has been discontinued because the company plans to focus on the Acura Integra for the sedan market in the United States. The discontinuation of the Acura NSX is attributed to declining sales and the company’s shift towards electric vehicles.

Does Acura ILX need premium gas?

According to Acura, premium gas is recommended for models like RDX, MDX, TLX, RLX, and ILX.


The Acura ILX has had its fair share of problems over the years, but it remains a reliable and durable vehicle overall.

When considering the reliability of the Acura ILX, it is crucial to understand that no vehicle is entirely free of problems.

However, the ILX has proven to be a dependable choice with an overall reliability rating of 91.65, surpassing the average rating of 57 for other vehicles. It has also demonstrated the ability to last for at least 200,000 miles or more, making it a long-lasting option for drivers.

While there are certain model years and specific issues to be aware of, diligent maintenance and thorough inspection before purchasing a used Acura ILX can help mitigate potential problems.

Understanding the history of recalls and addressing any outstanding issues, such as airbag replacements, driveshaft inspections, and fuel pump replacements, can provide peace of mind for ILX owners.

In summary, the Acura ILX offers a balance of affordability, comfort, and reliability.

By staying informed about the common issues and taking necessary precautions, potential buyers can make an informed decision about the Acura ILX model year that best suits their needs and preferences. Remember to consider the information provided in this article when evaluating different Acura ILX years to avoid.

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