2013 Los Angeles Auto Show with 2theRedline

Odometer (Legend):  527,902

527902

Odometer (ILX):  60,130

60130

Trip Distance:  767 Miles

scottsdale_to_la

The City of Angels welcomed me this Wednesday & Thursday for a feast of automotive eye candy.  It’s hard to believe that it was already a year ago when my friend Branson and I took my Acura ILX to the 2012 LA Auto Show.  It was time once again to head westward and see the latest reveals from Acura as well as other automakers.

I attended the show as media colleague of the “2theRedline” team.  2theRedline is a YouTube auto review channel with over 30,000 subscribers.  Featured there are hundreds of videos highlighting many late-model vehicles.  Sofyan Bey, host of the channel, takes viewers beyond a simple “specs & walkaround” of the vehicles and instead takes us inside each one and allows us to experience a digital driving experience with his candid & thorough feedback.

redline_logo

The big debut from Acura was the flagship 2014 RLX Sport Hybrid, Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive.  This sedan is the most powerful in the company’s 28-year history and delivers an impressive 377 horsepower.  On top of all that, it sips fuel, achieving 30 miles per gallon with combined city/highway driving.  The powertrain specs are a tongue-twister:  We’re talking about a V6 engine, but the fine print takes some time to digest:

  • 3.5 Liters
  • Single Overhead Cam
  • Direct Injection
  • i-VTEC (Variable Valve Timing & Lift Electronic Control)
  • 7-Speed Dual Clutch Transmission
  • 3 High-Output Electric Motors

That makes for some fun science & engineering, but the bottom line is most important:  This thing scoots.  A first for Acura is the head-up display which can show Sport Hybrid system operation, turn-by-turn navigation, speedometer and compass, as well as alerts from various driver-assistance systems.  Also new to the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD are a push-button transmission gear selector.  Pricing for this model is yet unannounced.  I can’t wait to get behind the wheel and take the RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD for a spin.

tyson_with_acura_rlx

Sofyan allowed me to “host” 2theRedline for a 2-minute segment discussing some of the features of this newest iteration of the RLX.

tyson_hosting_2tr

Check out the video here:

On the Honda side, the star of the show was a car called the “FCEV Concept.”  At Honda’s press conference on Wednesday afternoon, my colleagues and I sat transfixed by the lights, music, and water show that was performed before us — just before a white sheet was pulled off the FCEV for dramatic effect.   The FCEV is Honda’s latest creation in fuel cell powered driving.  Here’s more info on this unique ride:

The curious contraption is powered by a fuel cell that uses a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen to create electrcity, which powers the wheels and the car’s electronics. The result is emission-free motoring, with water and heat the only byproducts. Clean, it most certainly is.  Fuel cell technology has the added benefit of more range (and therefore less worrying about running out before you reach your destination) and faster charging than a standard electric battery.

Range for the FCEV is 300 miles, and it can refuel in just 3 minutes.

fcev_conference

Also, here’s a 10-minute video from my iPhone capturing the complete unveil.

My ILX made the trip to California and back effortlessly.  Even faced with heavy rain in the Riverside area as I made my return trip eastbound on Thursday night, the car was confident and controllable.  I ended up turning over 60,000 miles on the odometer near Quartzsite, Arizona before approaching the Phoenix metro area.

60000

For the rest of the nitty-gritty on this trip as well as the people & cars that made it memorable, enjoy the photo gallery below.  It was a great Auto Show and I’m already looking forward to next year’s.

A lot of people hate the long, sparsely populated stretch of Interstate 10 between Phoenix and the California state line.  I love it.  It’s the type of road where you can set your cruise control and just relax.

la_distance_sign

My Garmin Nuvi GPS unit led the way for the drive.

garmin_la

As I got closer to that CA state line, the sun had started to descend beneath the horizon.

ilx_interstate_10

This, my friends, is my favorite time of day to drive.

sunset_i10

For once, traffic in LA was a breeze.  Within about 6 hours of my departure time from Phoenix, I was arriving in downtown at the Westin Bonaventure hotel.  I met up with my friends there, including Sofyan pictured here.

sofyan_with_ilx

Sofyan and I took my ILX for a spin.  He drives a Fathom Blue ILX 6-speed back at his home in Washington D.C. so he felt right at home!

sofyan_tyson_with_ilx

Redline Productions provided me the Media credential that would allow me into the show.

tyson_nametag

Weather in Los Angeles was overcast and a bit wet for my two-day visit, but our view from the 20th floor of the hotel was still pretty nice to look at.

view_from_hotel

Arriving at day 1 of the auto show: Sofyan and I were ready to geek out on all the shiny new rides.

tyson_sofyan

I made a beeline for the Acura exhibit, of course.  Here was the new RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD in all its glory.

rlx_side

rlx_rear

rlx_right_rear

Notice that push-button transmission selector on the center console.

rlx_interior

The entire Acura booth is new & improved this year with a fresh redesign.  The RLX and MDX were featured on turntables, with the rest of the Acura models (black in color) surrounding the center stage.  There was no NSX on display this time.

acura_booth

The ILX there was a 6-speed manual.

ilx_at_show

I met up with a good friend from Atlanta named Davis who runs Rockland Media.

davis_adams_with_tyson

On the automaker side, I met up with Chuck Schifsky, Manager of Acura Public Relations.  Chuck asked how the ILX was doing and I happily gave him a full report.

chuck_tyson

Here’s John Watts, Sr. Manager of Digital Marketing.  John played a key role in my Drive to Five celebration as well as my entry into the ILX ownership world.  He and I have continued to keep in touch over the years.

tyson_john

Finally, I met up with Alicia Jones (National Manager, Honda & Acura Social Marketing) and Lauren Ebner (Assistant Manager of Social Media at Honda).  These ladies are fun to visit with and I always look forward to reconnecting with them at events like these.  Social media is a lot more difficult to manage than it looks!

alicia_tyson_lauren

The new Civic coupe sports a fresh front end for 2014, as well as some new technology including push-button start for certain trim levels.

civic_coupe_front

Honda Accord Hybrid was named as 2014 Green Car of the Year, thanks to its remarkable 50 mpg rating.

honda_booth

A few non-Honda/Acura cars also caught my eye.  One was the Cadillac Elmiraj concept.

cadillac_elmiraj

The new Subaru WRX was unveiled before a huge spectator crowd.

wrx_reveal

Beautiful Audi R8 in matte blue – I enjoyed!

blue_r8

Just hanging out inside a $400k Lexus LFA!

tyson_inside_lfa

Jackson, Sofyan, Rob, and Tyson – finishing out day 1 at the auto show.

jackson_sofyan_rob_tyson

I had considered attending an after-party in West Hollywood sponsored by one of the automakers, but I took one glance at the map and decided against that idea.  Look at all that red!  LA traffic at its finest.

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Day 2 of the show was a little more laid-back.  Each automaker had brought out its entire fleet for display.

sofyan_at_honda_booth

I had the opportunity to meet a celebrity!  Brian Cooley, host of “CNET on Cars” auto reviews, was filming a piece on a Ford Fusion Plug-In, and I approached him to get a picture.

tyson_with_brian_cooley

I was star-struck!  What a great time at the LA Auto Show.

In closing, what you can’t see in my hand in the below picture is a license plate.  An ARIZONA license plate.  Yes, my friends, I have now taken full custody of the ILX and made it my own!

tyson_with_ilx_license_plate

This means the ILX and I are in it for the long haul, and you can expect to see a whole lot more in the future as I continue to explore the country in my Acura.  Thanks to all of you for reading!

ilx_plate

20 Responses to “2013 Los Angeles Auto Show with 2theRedline”

  1. Nice review, and great pics. Congrats on the ownership of the ILX. Wish you many more miles of safe driving. Keep up the good work.

    • Thank you Terry! It is great to finally be able to call the ILX my own after driving it for the last 17 months. I’ve already got a personalized license plate on order, and I can’t wait to see what the coming years have in store for travels. Hope you’re having a great weekend my friend.

  2. Thanks! I do wish Acura had done more to jazz up the RLX – or at least differentiate it more from the FWD version. Oh well … now all that really remains a mystery is the price. Too bad about the spring instead of year-end launch as well …

    • Yeah, the differences between RLX “base” and RLX SH-AWD are subtle, though there are several. Personally I would’ve loved to see the SH-AWD retain P-AWS as well. Can you imagine how long that would make the model name? “I drive an Acura RLX Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive with Precision All Wheel Steering.” Wow. I’m anxious to hear the price point. And I do wish it was hitting the market this fall as opposed to next spring. Not sure what held up the launch.

  3. congrats on the ILX! I bet that RLX will be approaching 80K. I still don’t understand a $400K Lexus!

    • Me neither! And thanks for the congrats! It’s the successor to your Integra and based on my experience so far, I think it’ll last just as long. I’d rather have a dozen ILX’s than just one $400k Lexus anyway…. right? :)

  4. Congrats on complete ownership over the ILX Tyson!! So happy for you, I know you love it. haha.

  5. Thanks 4 the pics! Those are the best ones of the hybrid yet I have seen. I feel much better about the rims now as some off the other pics made them look odd at certain angles. Altho the new grille is OK, I wish that they had chromed the door handles instead – the front did not really need any more bling after redoing the fog lamps but the back & sides could have used some changes.

    PAWS may not have been necessary with the SHAWD but since this is the flagship, Acura should have thrown everything they had in it.

    • You bet – glad you liked the pics. Truly the photos don’t do this car much justice, it has a really upscale look and feel in person. I think they could’ve picked a better color to display it in. Maybe their really deep red (pomegranate, I think it’s called). The sides could’ve definitely used a little more updating for the SH-AWD and I overheard someone at the show saying that they thought the “Hybrid” badge itself was kind of tacky. Overall though, the car seemed to be getting a lot of positive attention. The MPG numbers are great and the level of power is ample. Let’s see how it does in the real world marketplace.

  6. Tyson, great post and looks like it was a ton of fun! Funny I was just in LA a week before. I didn’t know you knew Sofya as I just started following him on IG about a month ago and really paid close attention to his TL reviews on Youtube. You two probably had lots of notes to compare with the ILX and Acura in general. I’m jealous you got to sit in the LFA! I could only dream of seeing that car in person…or drive it!

    • I actually connected with Sofyan through his review video of the ILX 6-speed. We’ve been in touch for about a year now I’d guess. His car is Fathom Blue Pearl and I think he just recently rolled 10,000 miles. The LFA had a VERY nice cockpit, as would be expected for a vehicle of that pricetag. Quality materials throughout!

  7. PS: Also congrats on finally taking official ownership of the ILX. Looking forward to seeing what new adventures come with that car. :)

  8. The official owner of the ILX now, well done Tyson. How does the black chrome look in person? It was hard to tell watching the video on the monitor here at work.

    I’d like to see if the RLX Hy can scoot along just as good as the petrol version. Lets hope you get to test drive one in the near future.

    • Guess I missed responding to this, Dave, but thanks for the congrats. I really like the look of the black chrome grille. Not that the front end really needed any more “bling,” just that it’s a very subtle update. Def hoping to take one for a spin sometime soon.

  9. Ha! Did not realize you were attending the show with the 2theRedline team. I regularly watch Sofyan’s reviews on YouTube.

    Congrats on taking ownership of your ILX!

    -East Brother

    • Hey Kevin, thanks for checking out the write-up! I actually connected with Sofyan quite awhile back when I discovered he was doing a long-term review of a 6-speed ILX. It was great to be able to spend some time with him and the rest of the 2TR crew at the LA show. I’m hoping to see them again next month in Detroit. Maybe I’ll run into you there too?

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