The Acura brand does not offer the launch of the Integra for sale other than the “return of the brand icon”. There’s a lot of self-promotion in this, but there’s something the British refer to as the beautiful word heritage – namely heritage. However, the current fifth-generation and previous fourth-generation Integra are separated by a huge technical chasm, adding to the 16 years of production timelessness.
And we can only talk directly about ideological continuity. Even the body is no longer a coupe or a sedan, but a practical five-door liftback with a large trunk. And in that, of course, there is a certain safety net for Honda with a large audience.
The five-door exterior design is certainly inspired by previous Integras, including the original that helped launch the Acura brand.
Fans will be pleased that all the body elements of the car belong to them, that is, without mergers with other models of the brand, which reduces the cost of the image.
By the way, the design of the dashboard, unlike old cars, focuses not only on the driver, but also on the front passenger, who, if desired, can easily reach a 10.2-inch screen with Apple CarPlay and Android. Auto. There is a wireless smartphone charger in the tunnel. It is unlikely that the owner will terminate the sound system,
because the regular ELS Studio 3D with 16 speakers produces 530 watts of power, which is comparable to an expensive home audio center.
In the list of innovation achievements, the Japanese noted innovative front airbags for the driver and front passenger in the segment, specially designed to reduce the risk of head injuries and neck damage.
The large lower opening in the lower part of the bumper is not fake, it supplies air to the intercooler of the turbocharger. There are other signs of a sports car, for example, thanks to the air intakes, air curtains form around the front wheels, softening the oncoming flow. There is a front aerodynamic “skirt” and a rear spoiler integrated into the tailgate.
The new Acura Integra is the first turbocharged car in model history.
Under the aluminum hood is a 1.5-liter 4-cylinder turbo unit with a capacity of 200 horsepower (192 Nm). Torque peaks at 1800-5000 rpm, which theoretically gives a quick response to throttle and allows easy “breathing” of the engine at the top of the turn.
What the Japanese have launched specifically for the segment is the 6-speed manual transmission.
It has a short stroke, low gear ratio and automatic speed control. In sport mode, the claimed response time for manual shifting is 430 ms. In addition, the rev selection system “flashes” in the layout when the electronics senses that it is better to shift into a lower gear.
With so much traction on the control wheels, Hondas provided the problem of parasitic steering, or in common words – the “goat” of the front axle. To maintain controllability in the “mechanical” modification, torque is transmitted to the axle shafts via a helical limited-slip differential.
However, there are more compromise options for trouble-free riders – a standard Honda CVT tuned for driving pleasure. In the United States, where the premiere of the car took place the day before, the cost of the model starts at $ 32,000 (about 2.2 million rubles at the exchange rate of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation).
Where does the legend come from?
Those who are over 40 and have at least a little gasoline in their blood, well remember models such as Mazda RX-7, Nissan Skyline, Toyota Supra and others. These are the so-called JDM models (from the Japanese Domestic Market – cars for the domestic market) – the essence of the Japanese marketing phenomenon that arose in the 1980s and reached “zero”.
In most cases, these are compact front-wheel drive coupes, less often Japanese-made sedans and roadsters, powerful enough engines for improved handling and low weight. In fact, a small curb weight for a unit of power was the Japanese’s glorious weapon against heavy and clumsy American muscle cars.
For several decades, “JDM guns” have flooded megacities, spilling new blood on the street racing subculture.
and then gradually pulled off the streets, losing the buyers’ wallet race to more utilitarian “hot” hatchbacks.
When Honda launched the Acura brand, the US equivalent of Lexus, in 1986, it badly needed a car that would grab the immediate attention of wealthy Americans. A compact, sporty car with authentic Japanese reliability and character – this is what the Integra became, paving the way for Acura in the world’s most competitive (at the time) market.
And it wasn’t just a success—the Honda team had a whirlwind breakthrough: the two-door sold a quarter of a million parts in its first years.
But mostly we are talking about a cramped, “selfish” coupe, that is, designed for the driver (sedan appeared much later).
sunset with trump cards
The Integra coupe was originally developed by Honda as a brutal alternative to the Civic sedan and hatchback (which was a typical car for housewives and office workers in those days) with more precise control settings and powerful engine output.
The Integra’s trump card was that already in the second generation it had two overhead camshafts combined with Honda’s proprietary VTEC electronic valve actuation system.
This made it possible to extract an impressive 170 horsepower from a small-capacity 1.8-liter engine without significant damage to the resource and reliability.
While American and European automakers with similar or superior power supply only offer heavier sedans or refined sports coupes that cost significantly more. For comparison, the five-liter V8 in the Ford Mustang of that time delivered about 200 horsepower.
And, of course, the Integra had its own special double wishbone independent suspension, which has become the brand’s signature model for many years. In addition, the Japanese, in order to increase the coupe’s power-to-weight ratio, so desperately saved weight that even the rear window brush and the mirror in the sun visor are no longer mounted on the car.
Eventually, these efforts paid off: The Telegraph, Motor1, Road and Track publications recognized the Acura Integra as one of the greatest front-wheel drive cars of all time, and included the authoritative American magazine Car and Driver Integra on its list. one of the top 10 cars of the year for four years.
There was a place for the Japanese car on the screen – in the first episode of the then street racing Fast and the Furious, Dominic’s sister Mia Toretto was driving an Acura Integra.
Fans of the Need for Speed series also remember the Japanese trophy – it can be found and set in the first part of Underground, terribly.