It's summertime again, and once again we find ourselves in the Appalachian Mountains for one of our comprehensive TOV road tests. We'll start off this combo test by introducing you to the cars that we're reviewing, the 2004 TSX 6MT and the 2003 Accord Coupe 6MT.
The TSX is a significant model for Acura because it foreshadows the look of Acuras to come as well as signalling a shift in philosophy for the marque. Functionally it fills the rather large gap in the lineup between the RSX and the TL.
The '03 Accord Coupe was introduced last fall, but the 6MT we're testing sports a 6-speed manual transmission. We are pleased that Honda and Acura are offering more of their models with manual transmissions. As enthusiasts we always prefer to change our own gears and Honda/Acura seems to be hearing us. Even the sizzling new TL will be offered with a 6MT!
For this TOV road test, we will be driving the cars in all sorts of conditions. Driving away from Atlanta, we'll experience the typical daily grind stop and go traffic that goes so well with a tall latte' and city commuting. Then as we edge further to the north, we'll see how they perform in the long sweepers on the scenic mountain roads. Obviously we'll stop by the Tail of the Dragon again as it provides an intense workout for both the driver and the car. The Dragon's constant switchbacks will test the cars close to their limits.
After a few days in the mountains, we'll head back towards Atlanta and pay a visit to Dynolab of Marietta. Here we'll strap both cars onto the rollers and see how much power their drivetrains are putting to the wheels. And you may have already seen the Accord undercar analysis video and TSX undercar analysis video where we evaluate the underside of the vehicles.
This year there's a little bonus. We lucked out with our timing and were able to run the TSX at an SCCA Solo2 autocross course. I was only able to take the TSX to the autocross as Jeff and Gilbert took the Accord Coupe to cover the World Challenge Race at Road Atlanta.
We normally also take the cars drag racing, but unfortunately, we were rained out even though we made the 180 mile trek to the track. We braved a blinding torrential downpour enroute to the track only to be turned away by track personnel even though the conditions were almost perfect. Who said we don't go out of our way for our readers?
Stay tuned for more videos.
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Shawn Introduces our 2nd Annual TOV Road Test
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