Better late than never, this article is a critical look at the CL-S6 and the RSX-S through our trip around 5 states from last year. While I share an overall fondness for both cars, I will attempt to reveal small critical details. I admit that I was surprised by how much I liked the CL-S6. The combination of the J-series engine and the LSD had me grinning ear to ear. The RSX-S on the other hand would have been the perfect car for me straight out of college. It's got an incredible blend of utility, economy, refinement, and performance.
The steering column offers a tilt option only with no ability to telescope. For people with long legs who need to sit back further or need to recline their seat, the lack of telescoping wheel may be an issue for them. The CLS6 pedal spacing took a little getting used to compared to the RSX-S. Personally, heel and toe downshifts were just a little bit more difficult to do on the CL-S than the RSX-S. I had to press my heel further down on the gas to get the right amount of engine revs to match the speed. Cup holders are small, so don't plan on bringing along a large drinking cup. Onstar buttons are nicely integrated into the rear-view mirror. Becoming commonplace is the sunglass holder.
The glove compartment is about average sized. The tab to slide the seat forward for the rear passenger does double duty holding the seatbelt in an easier to reach position. However, the seatbelt can very easily slip off this tab. A more integrated design would be welcomed.
A small rear pass-through allows long objects to be stowed in the trunk. It also integrates an arm rest with a storage bin and drink holder. However, this small pass-through is no substitute for a fold down rear seat. The lack of a rear folding seat is a big consideration for me personally, because a car with one makes it so much more flexible to carry large items.
The trunk is quite large and the cargo net helps keep the groceries in place during a spirited drive home. The GPS DVD is mounted in the trunk under the rear parcel shelf. It hangs a bit low and some larger items won't fit in the trunk due to it. We'd like to see it mounted in a less intrusive location. We'd also like to see a better design for the trunk hinges, which also encroach upon useable cargo space. At least the tire jack is easily accessible.