Ever since its initial launch in 2021, the Acura Integra has received a lukewarm reception among enthusiasts for being too soft and plush compared to how they remember its sporty-oriented predecessors.
Still, the Integra was always meant to be a more upscale Honda Civic, but that did not stop the Japanese-American luxury arm from catering to the performance crowd.
Code-named as the DE5, the new Integra Type S attempts to bring back the essence of the Integra Type R and the RSX Type S for the contemporary North American market.
The 2.0-liter turbocharged VTEC engine (K20C1) and the standard six-speed manual transmission from the FL5 Civic Type R are carried over, along with the monstrous 320hp and 420Nm.
The Integra Type S comes standard with a set of 19-inch aluminum wheels, four-piston ventilated Brembo brakes, and a triple-exit exhaust system like the one in the Civic Type R.
Unlike its ancestors, the DE5 is derived from the base five-door fastback body, with a 71mm extension of both the front and rear fenders to accommodate the thick set of 265/30 Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tires. As a result, it weighs 1,460kg, a mere 30kg heavier than the shorter FL5 hatchback.
Inside the cabin is a 10-inch driver interface with a 5.3-inch heads-up display, and a nine-inch infotainment display with a whopping 16-speaker system. For maximum comfort on normal days, blind-spot monitoring and AcuraWatch assist technology are also standard safety features.
To further push the Integra Type S into the enthusiast space, Acura brought back its animation series, Type S: Chiaki’s Journey, with the titular protagonist scouted to take on the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
Coinciding with the release of the shorts, Acura also revealed its entry in this year’s Pikes Peak climb, with the modified compact fastback wearing the same appearance, livery, and style as in the anime.
The Acura Integra Type S will roll off the Marysville plant in Ohio, USA, and sales will commence in June of this year. After a year of initial criticism, will this hotter version change your mind and elevate this generation into the reputation Honda fans have been clamoring for?