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2011 Acura TSX Tech Review

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Sometimes it really is hard to see the forest for the trees. And whether you understand that saying or not, you still get the concept that looking past something's appearance is often the hardest thing to do. I learned that this week with the Acura TSX 2011.

It's not that this car is glaringly ugly—not really. It's just that it's not particularly attractive either. Some may like the futuristic, almost spaceship-inspired front grille, but those some would be few and far between. Since Acura first introduced the modernized front end in 2009, it was met with distaste from most, but the look stuck and hasn't changed since.

It's not that this car is glaringly ugly—not really. It's just that it's not particularly attractive either. (Photo: Sébastien D'Amour/Auto123.com)

Perhaps that's what irks me most about the Acura's exterior look. Honda and Acura pride themselves on being a forward-thinking company that's always on the leading edge of technology and development, and yet their latest models look as if they rolled off the assembly line 3-4 years ago. That's not very forward-thinking in my book. From the bulky, alien-bred front grille to the round-insert taillights, the Acura TSX is not the most attractive car on the road.

However, if you can look past all that and get behind the wheel (preferably with your eyes closed to avoid any adverse reactions to the exterior design), you'll change your tune about this car—at least I did.

Inside, the Acura TSX takes on a whole new level of design and one that I wish translated to the outside. While some may think the gauge and centre stack are a bit cluttered with too many buttons and options, I think it has an extremely modern, streamlined look that's easy to navigate (after the first few days of use). My tester boasted an upgraded interior with the Premium Package and Technology Package that ensured my seats were extra fancy (perforated leather) and that my onboard entertainment and nav system were boosted to the nines with an Acura ELS Premium Audio System and 15-Gb hard disk drive.

The audio system is quite impressive and something I came to really love by the end of the week. The in-dash screen is a good size, however, the menu choices are less than intuitive and can be quite obnoxious to scroll through. Best to leave it on the map and forget about navigating your satellite radio or iPod on there.

Inside, the Acura TSX takes on a whole new level of design and one that I wish translated to the outside. (Photo: Sébastien D'Amour/Auto123.com)