2023 Acura Integra: Production Ready And True To Form

2023 Acura Integra Eibach Lowering Springs Install
2023 Acura Integra Eibach Lowering Springs Install

2023 Acura Integra A-Spec

If you grew up in the 90s you’re probably familiar with the Acura Integra, that light, affordable, fun-to-drive hot hatch with the bug-eyed headlights. One of the Japanese automaker’s original models, it made waves with up-and-coming professionals for its blend of practicality and weekend warrior fun. Like all things 90s, the Acura Integra is back and brand new as a 2023 model. After a preview last fall, the automaker took the wraps off the production version today.

“We wanted to stay true to those who were fans of the Integra,” Andrew Quillin, Lead for Acura Public Relations said at the unveiling. “We sold more than 1 million of the old ones, and any time you bring something back, there’s an element of nostalgia that fans have, about what the Integra was and what it should be. We wanted to be true to that winning formula.”

2023 Acura Integra: Prototype Parallel

The production version of the 2023 Acura Integra looks an awful lot like the pre-production prototype that was unveiled before the LA Auto Show last year. That’s no surprise since Acura often stays pretty true to their pre-production vehicles.

Like the 1986 original, the new Integra is a five-door liftback that combines some of the looks of the first-generation model with current-generation Honda Civic Hatchback DNA. While the Integra shares some bits and pieces from the Honda, including the Civic Si’s engine, the important touchpoints are all Acura. “The car shares some of the tech from the Civic but its shell is unique. This is not just a Civic Hatchback,” Quillin said.

2023 Acura Integra A-Spec

The Integra is 5-inches longer than the Civic hatchback, and an inch longer than the sedan, Quillin said. There are also plenty of soft-touch materials, like microsuede seat inserts and padded door panels, that make the interior of the Acura Integra look and feel more premium.

Quillin also said that the new Integra is only a partial replacement for the outgoing ILX, the brand’s smallest car. Introduced way back in 2013 and related to the then-current Civic, the ILX goes away at the end of 2022, but Acura says the new car will feel quite different from its predecessor. “We had to hit certain targets that really embody what Integra is,” he said, “If we didn’t hit those targets, this car would not have been called Integra.”

The new car takes aim at machines like the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe, Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz CLA while undercutting all of them on price.

2023 Acura Integra A-Spec
2023 Acura Integra A-Spec
2023 Acura Integra A-Spec

2023 Integra Trims: Simple Selections

The 2023 Acura Integra will come in thee trims, but the automaker defines its trims by packages. There will be a base model, an A-Spec Package, and an A-Spec with Technology package. All models announced thus far will use a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine making 200 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque.

With a starting price of around $30,000, the base Integra puts power to the wheels via a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) that Acura says will simulate gear changes when accelerating. For those purists who want a 6-speed manual, you’ll have to step all the way up to the top-of-the-line A-Spec Package with Technology trim, which Acura says should top out in the mid $30,000 range. While many enthusiasts would welcome a higher-performance Type S version, Acura hasn’t announced one yet.

At the base level, the Integra comes with features like a power moonroof, LED daytime running lights, a 10.2-inch digital cockpit display, a 7.0-inch touchscreen with (wired) Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as the AcuraWatch safety suite, which includes adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and rear-cross traffic alerts, amongst other features. There are also three selectable driving modes: Comfort, Normal, and Sport.

The mid-level A-Spec is really a looks-only package, while the A-Spec with the Technology Package gets a head-up display, wireless charging, Amazon Alexa integration, wireless Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto, and an upgraded 16-speaker ELS Studio 3D audio system, LED interior lighting, and an additional drive mode: Individual. Individual Mode allows the driver to customize the engine settings, steering, suspension, stop/start and gauge settings.

2023 Acura Integra A-Spec
2023 Acura Integra A-Spec
2023 Acura Integra A-Spec
2023 Acura Integra A-Spec

An Integra NFT and a Metaverse Showroom

Interestingly or oddly, depending on your perspective, Acura has opened online reservations today and is offering the first 500 customers who reserve a new 2023 Integra, the opportunity to claim an NFT designed by Andreas Wannerstedt, a Swedish 3D artist.

The NFT features Wannerstedt’s unique surreal textures and colors on a 2023 Acura Integra. Once a customer reserves an Integra, they can claim the base NFT, which will then “upgrade” to a unique Integra NFT when the vehicle is delivered. Acura is still working out the final details of what that might look like for the customer.

Acura will also launch a virtual showroom in the Metaverse, on a platform called Decentraland. A cryptocurrency-powered VR platform, Decentraland allows users to purchase everything from virtual land to clothing and cars using the platform’s cryptocurrency. While customers won’t be able to buy Acura vehicles through the platform (yet?), they can browse a Wannerstedt-created wearable collection and play a racing game called “Beat That.”

Acura says that the Integra will hit real-life showrooms in late May. Reservations are open now.

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