We think it"s fair to say the 1994-2001 Acura Integra--in particular, the Integra bearing the GS-R design suffix--rates a small but significant footnote in the continuous saga the the automobile. Okay, probably it doesn"t actors a shadow fairly as long as, say, the Corvette"s. However it"s no exaggeration to say the this car has been among the major linchpins the the burgeoning oriental hot-rod phenomenon. There room hordes the slammed Integras zooming about out there in the soil of the an excellent Freeway, icons of a new-age mechanolust who lexicon is utterly there is no of the native "small-block V-8." and also without putting too fine a point on it, the Integra has actually been, to paraphrase old Chico Escuela, berra, berra great to the Acura department of American Honda engine Company, rolling follow me for eight years basically unchanged, around twice the normal design life span. No major changes equals no retooling investment, i beg your pardon in turn equates to increased profitability. All of which provides you wonder why anyone would also consider changing the name. Yet the marketing gurus clearly perceive things in the socioeconomic ether that space invisible come mere mortals, and so that is the the Integra"s instead of is cloaked in alphanumeric anonymity, as with the remainder of its Acura stablemates. Goodbye, Integra. Hello, RSX and also RSX Type-S.

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Honda"s brand-new i-VTEC adds consistently variable valve time to the VTEC dual-lobe electronic came system.

Fortunately, these reportedly random selections indigenous the alphabet room affixed to what appears to it is in a pretty good sports coupe, regardless of an ominous portent come the contrary. Favor the recent rebirth of the Civic, the newest Acura eschews the unequal-length control-arm front suspension that has long been a Honda allude of distinction, employing instead a much more mundane MacPherson-strut setup. But don"t be deceived. Return the RSX--even the hot-rod Type-S--exhibits the resistance to turn-in (read, understeer) common to basically all front-drive cars, there"s much less the it right here than in the GS-R, and it"s well balanced by a willingness for the rear finish to slide when the driver backs off the accelerator or applies a touch the brake. It"s called oversteer, a properties treasured by enthusiasts and rare in cars through a pronounced front weight prejudice (61 percent the it up front in the Type-S) and also with former wheels the are forced to transmit both power and steering inputs. And it"s every the sweeter here for that forgiving nature.

The Type-S deserve to be coaxed into a modest four-wheel drift, but it return to the course of righteousness v a small waiting and also perhaps a hints of the contrary lock. In a word, it"s delightful--a small front-drive sports coupe that can be vectored through the throttle, and also its small, racer-sized steering wheel and quick (2.6 transforms lock-to-lock), surgically sharp variable-assist rack-and-pinion power steering. Include a new 2.0-liter engine emerging 30 much more horsepower than the GS-R"s 1.8 (see sidebar), a slick brand-new short-throw six-speed hands-on transmission (Type-S only), and potent, no-fade disc brakes (with generous 11.8-inch vented front rotors in the Type-S), and you have a recipe for best in class, no issue what they speak to it.

Basics: The Integra instead of is all-new, yet its dimensions are decidedly familiar. In ~ 101.2 inches, the wheelbase is unchanged, the all at once length--172.3 inches--has shrunk by 0.1 inch, and also the width (67.9 inches) has increased by simply over fifty percent an inch. The only significant change is the car"s height, which has actually soared 2.5 inches, an convey aimed at enhancing the viability of the behind seat as a place to sit without doing your well known impression of Quasimodo ducking roughly in the Notre Dame belfry. Although much more headroom is a plus, the many appealing facet of the new interior is an instrument panel that"s gone from Japanese generic to distinctively contemporary, finish with de rigueur black-on-silver gauges that morph to red backlighting in ~ night.

The color scheme in ~ the Type-S tends toward dark charcoals and also blacks, simply as the did in the Integra GS-R, however a textured product that feels more like cloth than plastic lends one upscale look come the instrument binnacle, door panels, and shift knob, and also Acura ultimately seems to have actually realized that climate and also audio controls are most likely to it is in manipulated by world rather 보다 elves. Three large rotary knobs operate the an initial automatic climate-control system available in Acura"s entry-level lineup, and also the various buttons and switches administrate the terrific Bose audio mechanism are size to permit use through gloved hands v the vehicle in motion.


brand-new black-on-silver instruments function red backlighting after dark.

The brand-new bucket seats, leather-clad in the Type-S, feature combined side airbags and also belts, and also excellent lateral support. There"s many storage for tiny objects, and forward sightlines are commonly Honda, which is come say much better than most. The sheetmetal that surrounds this friendly interior is probably not fairly as distinctive as on the vault car--the distinctive double-snake-eye headlights space gone, replaced by a challenge that"s consistent with the new family look developed by the CL coupes and TL sedans.

But the lines are clean, and the tidy proportions, through minimal front and rear overhangs, correctly reflect the car"s athletic character. And beyond merely looking good, the body shell has actually a many to do with that character. Like every brand-new car that rolls onstage this days, the RSX has actually a far higher chassis rigidity than its predecessor--116 percent enhanced in torsional stiffness and 35 percent in bending, follow to Acura--and also though insurance claims like this make united state wonder what the previous vehicle was made of (linguine? licorice whips?), the decisive responses the the Type-S imply the RSX is indeed composed that the right stuff. Increased rigidity and also other structure upgrades aimed at crashworthiness--Acura jobs a five-star NCAP rating in frontal crashes--inevitably display up as an ext weight, and also that"s true here, come the tune of about 200 pounds in the Type-S. Yet that is offset by the enhanced thrust.

The GS-R"s noted power-to-weight ratio was simply over 15.1 pounds every horsepower versus 13.9 because that the Type-S. The other inescapable new-car weight obtain is in the realm of price. Although Acura was officially noncommittal ~ above this issue, we think the RSX and also Type-S will certainly be substantially more expensive than their Integra forebears, although direct comparisons space deceptive because the brand-new line will certainly consist, at the very least initially, of simply two well-equipped trim level (versus three) and also one hatchback coupe body format (no four-door sedans). With that in mind, us look for the RSX to begin at about $23,000 and the Type-S at around $24,500. If those prices prove to be accurate, they"ll propel the RSX to the height of that class, no necessarily one enviable position.

On the various other hand, the price might well be continuous with the car"s power versus that is competition. And also remember: BMWs usage strut-front suspensions, too. Honda Rewrites the VTEC Alphabet exceptional engine technology has long distinguished Honda cars from the herd, and the brand-new 2.0-liter DOHC 16-valve aluminum engines in the RSX and also RSX Type-S include a new chapter to this countless quest. Honda"s VTEC system, introduced with the NSX sports car back in 1990, was a major step forward in the find for more power from a provided displacement there is no resorting come force-feeding steps such together turbo- or supercharging. By utilizing 2 sets that lobes--one mild, one wild--on the camshaft, VTEC (for "variable valve timing and lift digital control") could alter valve lift and also duration as well as timing. Since then, several manufacturers have actually come up with variations top top Honda"s theme.

Thus the RSX was preferred for the an initial installation that i-VTEC--" i" because that "intelligent" valve control, which adds consistently variable valve timing to the system"s bag of tricks. That operates ~ above the intake electronic came only and, based on ECU info, advances or retards cam timing repetitively through a variety of 50 degrees. The basic RSX version of the new 2.0-liter engine has actually a milder version of i-VTEC that"s intake side just in every respects. This engine additionally has a dual-stage entry manifold--long runners feed the fires listed below 4600 rpm, quick runners come onstream above--that bolsters low-end and also midrange performance.

The net is a fairly modest (by high-revving Honda standards) horsepower peak--160 at 6500 rpm--and fairly strong (by the same standards) torque output: 141 pound-feet in ~ 4000 rpm. The Type-S engine share the exact same block, however its internals are beefier and it"s various up top. The compression proportion is 11.0:1 matches 9.8:1; its VTEC mechanism operates on both the intake and also exhaust valves; it"s equipped through a single collection of input runners designed to boost high-rpm output; and it provides a bunch an ext power: 200 speech at 7400 rpm.

VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 2+2-passenger, 3-door coupe

ESTIMATED basic PRICE: $23,000–$24,500

ENGINES: DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter 4-in-line, 160 hp, 141 lb-ft; DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter 4-in-line, 200 hp, 142 lb-ft

TRANSMISSIONS: 5- or 6-speed manual, 5-speed automatic v lockup torque converter

DIMENSIONS:Wheelbase: 101.2 in Length: 172.3 in Width: 67.9 in Height: 55.1 inCurb weight: 2700–2800 lb

C/D-ESTIMATED power (TYPE-S):Zero to 60 mph: 6.7 secZero come 100 mph: 19.0 secStanding 1/4-mile: 15.5 sec

VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 2+2-passenger, 3-door coupe

ESTIMATED basic PRICE: $23,000-$24,500

ENGINES: DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter 4-in-line, 160 hp, 141 lb-ft; DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter 4-in-line, 200 hp, 142 lb-ft

TRANSMISSIONS: 5- or 6-speed manual, 5-speed automatic through lockup talk converter

DIMENSIONS:Wheelbase: 101.2 in Length: 172.3 in Width: 67.9 in Height: 55.1 inCurb weight: 2700-2800 lb

C/D-ESTIMATED power (TYPE-S): Zero to 60 mph: 6.7 sec Zero to 100 mph: 19.0 sec standing 1/4-mile: 15.5 sec

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