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When searching for a dependable used car, $5,000 can actually get you much more than you might expect. If you’re willing to do the legwork to find a well-maintained, low-mileage Acura TSX, the payoff in longevity and reliability will be huge. Plus, you’ll get a fun daily driver in this luxury sports sedan.

History of the Acura TSX

With the first production in 2003, the Acura TSX lasted a solid 11 years until the automaker discontinued in 2014. Acura combined the TSX and TL models into the TLX. This performance-focused sedan marries the TSX’s affordability and the TL’s luxury.

On its way out, the TSX came with its share of drawbacks, including many safety issues with the 2012 model. But back in its heyday, the Acura TSX was a force to be reckoned with among sedans.

The golden year of the Acura TSX

In 2008, the Acura TSX knocked reliability and enjoyment out of the park, with affordability still in mind. The 2008 model is an entry-level luxury sedan with handling and technology that was revolutionary for its time.

The high-revving 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine can produce up to 205 hp and pairs with an optional manual transmission. It makes for a zippy ride despite the considerably average gas mileage of just 23 mpg. But as for reliability, you can’t get much better than the TSX for a reasonably priced, fun, and easy-to-maintain pre-owned option.

Technology that holds up today

The 2008 Acura TSX’s suite of features and smart electronics still holds up today. And though it doesn’t boast Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, you can still play your favorite music. Standard features include leather upholstery, heated front bucket seats, an eight-way power driver’s seat with memory, a four-way power front passenger seat, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a sunroof.

Plus, the audio system comes with Bluetooth connectivity, an in-dash six-CD changer, satellite radio, and an auxiliary input jack. That means that even if you’ve ditched your CD collection, you’ll still find ways to connect your phone to blast your favorite tunes.

Best used buys under $5,000

With a price tag of under $5,000, the Acura TSX is one of the best used buys you can find. Forbes recently compiled a list of great pre-owned cars under $5,000, and it praises the TSX as fun and reliable. With engaging handling and a sleek look, this sedan offers a pleasurable drive.

Forbes also points out the TSX’s minor drawbacks. They include a small rear seat and so-so gas mileage. Plus, it’s not easy to find a well-maintained, low-mileage used model. Despite these disadvantages, the under-$5,000 price tag is still worth the benefits of such a reliable ride.

Finding a used Acura TSX

Although we think the 2008 model is the best option for a used Acura TSX under $5,000, Forbes recommends any TSX model year from 2004 and 2008. When it can be difficult to find a used option with low mileage, it’s good to have a wider range of options.

For under $5,000, the Acura TSX is a fun, dependable daily driver. With technology that still holds up and a solid suite of features, the 2008 model is far from outdated. Overall, it’s an excellent option for anyone with luxury taste on a budget.


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