The 2023 Acura Integra Is Trying To Please Everybody

After plenty of teasing and no shortage of excitement – and skepticism – from purists, the 2023 Acura Integra has finally made its debut. Bringing back a much-loved nameplate, the premium sport compact borrows the excellent underpinnings of the Honda Civic Si, and pairs them with sleeker styling, more upscale interior, and – perhaps most important – the option of a six-speed manual transmission.

What it's not, as Acura fans already knew to expect, is a return to the original three-door Integra that was so beloved from the '80s onwards. Instead, today's modern Integra adopts a liftback body, with four doors and a swooping roofline that Acura insists is a little reminiscent of a coupe, at least.

Under the hood, there's a 1.5-liter VTEC turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. That may not sound all that big, but with 200 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 192 lb-ft of torque between 1,800 and 5,000 rpm, it should be enough for some back road fun nonetheless. We've seen Honda make excellent use of its version of the engine in various Civic forms, after all.

A transmission choice for purists

It's paired with a CVT automatic transmission as standard, with Step Shift faux-ratios and paddle-shifters on the wheel. Again, that may not entirely please the purists, but it's a sensible choice for Acura given its positioning of the 2023 Integra as the gateway to its line-up.

For those to whom that's still anathema, there'll be an optional 6-speed manual transmission, with close-ratios and automatic rev-matching. Integra models with the stick-shift also get a helical limited-slip differential (LSD).

Acura's Integrated Dynamics System (IDS) offers three drive modes – Comfort, Normal, and Sport – while the Integra A-Spec with Technology Package throws in an Individual mode in which settings for throttle response, transmission mapping, steering feel, gauge color scheme, and in-cabin sound can be tweaked. Acura's Adaptive Damper System (ADS) is also available, with different tuning for each of the drive modes.

Goodbye 3-door, hello fastback

On the outside, there's the latest iteration of Acura's Diamond Pentagon grille, with JewelEye LED headlamps and LED daytime running lights. Matching LED fog lamps are optional. At the rear, there are dual exhaust finishers, along with wide, single-piece LED taillights. Acura fits 17-inch wheels as standard, with 18-inch and 19-inch versions available.

Throw in the A-Spec package and that switches out some of the exterior trim for gloss-black, such as on the window surrounds, and the front and rear fascias. It also adds a lip spoiler, along with A-Spec badging on the front fenders and tailgate. Finally, 18-inch alloys in Shark Gray finish get 235/40R18 all-season performance tires, larger than the standard rubber.

The best tech is optional

Inside, there are synthetic leather seats in the entry trim, with 8-way power driver-side adjustment and heating for the front. They're available in Ebony, Red, and Orchid finishes. The Technology Package upgrades the driver side to 12-way power and throws in microsuede inserts in the front seats. A-Spec trim cars get stainless steel pedals, red gauge needles, and matching contrast stitching on the wheel, seats, shifter, and shifter trim.

A 10.2-inch Acura Precision Cockpit digital display for the driver instrumentation is standard, as is a 7-inch infotainment touchscreen with wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. With the Technology Package, that display is enlarged to 9-inches, and the smartphone projection goes wireless; there's also a Qi wireless charging pad, a 5.3-inch head-up display, Alexa Built-In, and USB-C ports front and rear for charging.

The standard audio system packs eight speakers, while the ELS STUDIO 3D upgrade has 16 speakers. Remote start is available in the Technology Package on the CVT car, as are interior LED ambient lighting and exterior LED puddle lamps.

A competitive price promise

Standard is AcuraWatch, with Collision Mitigation Braking System, Traffic Sign Recognition, and – on CVT cars – Traffic Jam Assist. There's also Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and the Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS). Blindspot warnings with rear cross-traffic monitoring are standard, too, while the Technology Package adds front and rear parking sensors, plus Low-Speed Braking Control (LSBC).

The 2023 Integra is expected to arrive in spring 2022. Acura still isn't confirming exact pricing at this stage, though it's taking early reservations now, and suggesting that the car will start at around $30,000. Whether it'll live up to the lofty expectations of long-time Integra fans, as well as usher new blood into Acura ownership, only time will tell.