The Acura RSX debuted in 2001 as a replacement for the Acura Integra. From 2001 to 2004 it was offered in standard or Type S form. The standard RSX used the K20A3 four-cylinder engine that delivered 160 horsepower, while the Type S had the 200 horsepower K20A2. Both versions carried over unchanged until 2005. In 2005, the RSX went through a refresh that gave it new headlights and taillights, and an updated rear spoiler. The Type-S now came with 17-inch wheels as standard equipment, but the real change came under the hood. The standard RSX remained the same, but the Type-S got a K20Z1 powertrain that utilized the camshafts from the Japanese DC5 Type R, as well as the b-pipe, muffler and 4.77:1 final drive ratio. The standard RSX was offered with a five-speed manual or five-speed auto with sequential SportShift technology. The RSX Type-S was only available with a close ratio six-speed manual transmission.

The RSX had a short lifespan and was only produced from 2001 to 2006. Because of its similarity to the seventh-gen Civic, it became common to swap the Type-S’ K20Z1 engine and transmission into the seventh-gen Civic. Oddly, from 2001 to 2005, the RSX was offered with a number of exterior colors, but consumers were limited to either black or beige interior, normally dictated by the exterior color. The RSX wasn’t a bad car, and it was a suitable replacement for the Integra, but the seventh-gen civic was a bit of a flop, so it’s no surprise that the RSX didn’t last past 2006. With that said, let’s take a look back at the 2001 to 2005 Acura RSX and talk a little more about it.

  • Year:
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Transmission:
    5-Speed Manual, 5-Speed Automatic
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
  • MPG(Cty):
  • MPG(Hwy):
  • Torque @ RPM:
  • Displacement:
    1998 L
  • 0-60 time:
    7.2 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    136 mph
  • Price:
  • body style:

The 2005 Acura RSX was available in two versions — the sporty RSX and the high-performance RSX Type-S Both models are powered by advanced engines that featured VTEC intelligent valve-control systems, The VTEC system delivered enhanced performance across a broad power band in addition to superior fuel economy and low exhaust emissions.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29022

To deliver a race-bred driving experience, the RSX is equipped with a 16-valve, DOHC, 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that produced an impressive 160 horsepower and 141 lb-ft. of torque. For 2005, the high performance Type-S model received engine and exhaust system modifications that boosted horsepower from 200 to 210 and torque from 142 lb.-ft to 143 lb-ft. Engine output was optimized by applying high performance camshafts and enlarging the diameter of the intake duct by 10 percent. A larger diameter exhaust pipe and free-flowing catalytic converter helped to boost horsepower by increasing exhaust flow by 10 percent.

Remarkably, given their considerable power, both RSX engines met stringent CARB Low Emissions Vehicle-II (LEV-2) standards at the time and were designed to run for 110,000 miles before the first scheduled tune-up.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29009

The RSX came with either a five-speed manual transmission or an optional five-speed Sequential SportShift automatic transmission that operated like a conventional automatic or, in SportShift mode, put gear selection in the hands of the driver. The automatic transmission also featured Grade Logic Control which reduced shift frequency by holding the engine in a lower gear for better hill climbing and increased engine braking. The Type-S was equipped exclusively with a six-speed, close-ratio, manual transmission for quick, responsive shifting. For 2005, the final drive ratio on this transmission was lowered to provide even quicker acceleration while shift feel was improved by applying carbon synchronizers on the fifth and sixth gears.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29024

To meet the demands of the true driving enthusiast, the chassis of both RSX models featured track-tuned suspension and steering systems for exceptional handling precision, outstanding cornering grip, and a smooth, controlled ride. A unique Control-Link MacPherson strut front suspension and a compact double-wishbone rear suspension system help deliver quick, confident handling, and a smooth, compliant ride while maximizing interior room. On the Type-S, the track-tuned suspension was optimized with firmer springs and dampers, a front strut tower bar and a rear performance rod.

For 2005, the suspensions on both RSX models were optimized through an assortment of modifications designed to enhance handling while promoting an even smoother ride. Suspension enhancements for 2005 include a revised geometry, reduced ride height, retuned bushings, thicker stabilizer bars, firmer damper settings and inversely wound front coil springs that neutralize unwanted steering input caused by spring windup. On the Type-S model, the strength of the performance rod was also increased to help maintain precise suspension geometry, while the front damper top bushing was replaced by a bearing, for smoother steering response.

Standard four-wheel disc brakes with a 3-channel Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) helped to provide secure stopping power. The RSX was equipped with 10.3-inch ventilated discs in front and 10.2-inch discs in the rear.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29006

The RSX utilized a high-mounted rack-and-pinion power steering system that provided enhanced tracking stability, toe control, and a linear steering feel. This system was enhanced for 2005 by applying a quicker steering ratio, a more rigid steering column, and by increasing pump flow by seven percent to provide more responsive steering and an even more linear, on-center steering feel.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29027

The exterior styling of the RSX communicates a message of power and precision through short front and rear overhangs, sweeping curves, and sharply chiseled accent lines. For 2005, Acura updated the styling to make the RSX look lower, faster and more aggressive. In front, the fascia was redesigned with lower, rectangular air ducts, aggressive-looking tri-beam headlights and a new Acura-family grille. Side sills on the RSX were body colored, while the side sills on the Type-S were more substantial, and wraped further around the car to highlight the new wheels and tires. The rear of the RSX was redesigned with new taillight assemblies, a new bumper, larger diameter exhaust tips and, on the Type-S, a deck lid spoiler. The result for both models is a more aerodynamic car that gave off a strong feeling of mass and power.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29021

The interior of the RSX featured a driver-oriented cockpit that was been updated for 2005. The seats were redesigned with more supportive side bolsters and a thicker lower cushion for increased comfort on long drives and support during aggressive cornering. Titanium accents have been added to the integrated headrests and to several key points around the cabin, including the step garnish, the shifter boot ring (models equipped with manual transmission) and the hand brake.


2002 Acura RSX - image 29034

Standard safety highlights included Acura’s innovative dual-stage, dual-threshold airbag system, which deploys the airbags at different rates depending on the severity of the collision and seatbelt usage. The RSX also included side airbags with passenger seat height and position sensors, and dual seatbelt pretensioners on both front seats.


2002 Acura RSX - image 28997

Like all Acura models, the RSX came with comprehensive 4-year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty. Additional ownership benefits included Acura Total Luxury Care (TLC), which provides free 24-hour roadside assistance, concierge service and trip routing.

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What do you think?


  (383) posted on 10.6.2011

It looks so ordinary and simple! I won’t glance in this even for a second. Sorry to say but this Acura RSX is not really impressive considering that it is a sports coupe. Maybe they should enhance it more.

  (415) posted on 08.11.2011

Well I heard that Acura decided to kill this RSX coupe, I don’t want to be rude but I think it is a nice decision that they not continue the production of this one.

  (429) posted on 08.5.2011

So ordinary look! I won’t glance in this even for a second. Sorry to say but this Acura RSX is not really impressive considering that it is a sports coupe.

  (1211) posted on 11.7.2010

Get rid of the ridiculous wing, throw in the turbo, offer it for less than 26K and you got yourself a pretty nice ride

  (798) posted on 01.31.2010

I have the 2002 RSX Type S and my 3 gear synchros is out, but my other gears work fine. Is this a problem with all 2002 RSX Type S, and if so how much to replace the 1 2 3 synchros?