A K20 engine, a slick-shifting 5-speed, and leather seating, spending nine racks on a CSX stuck in California might be a no-brainer.

Browsing Facebook marketplace and I came across a 2006 Acura CSX Premium (+ Navi) priced at $8,995 with 177,000 miles for sale in Turlock, California (where Colin Kapernick went to HS btw.)

On the market for 25 weeks, either the owner forgot to delete his ad after it sold or shoppers are put off buying a Canadian market car in California.

Here’s a screenshot of the listing and a gallery of photos.

Best Used Subcompact Cars $15K and ...
Best Used Subcompact Cars $15K and up for 2022

The Acura CSX was a Canadian market subcompact that shares its chassis with the 2006-2011 North American Honda Civic. Differences between Civic and CSX include front and rear fascias, K20 engine variants standard in both base CSX and CSX Type S (base Civics got SOHC R18s,) slightly sportier suspension and available leather seating.

The CSX looked markedly better that Japan decided to use the CSX design language for their JDM Civic over USDM Civic.

This particular one for sale is a non-Type S but has that highly coveted K20 engine, five speed manual, and factory leather.

The K20Z2 under the hood of this CSX is comparable to the K20A3 found in base Acura RSXs. At 9.8:1, both share the same compression ratio and, at 153 HP and 139 lb-ft, share similar power ratings. CSX’s peak HP comes in 500 RPM earlier compared to RSX.

177,000 miles seems a tad high but, for a 15-year-old car, it’s par for the course.

If I were in the market for a sporty four-door, this CSX ticks off a lot of boxes.

K-series engines are timing chain, so I’d ask if there are maintenance records indicating valve adjustments, spark plugs, and a water pump replacement at 100,000 miles.

I’d, of course, look for any signs of leaks around and under the engine and thoroughly inspect mounts, struts, and bushings since all will likely be worn at that age.

At $9,000, I looked at 2006-2011 Honda Civics, and this Acura CSX is priced on the higher side of the used 8th gen Civic spectrum.

It might not be the spicier Civic Si engine found in the CSX Type S, but it’s a high revving K-series engine installed from the factory with 40 more HP than the USDM Civic.

Add the added factory performance over a regular Civic and that leather seating and this CSX looks mighty enticing.

Which leaves the elephant in the room…

How is it legal to register and drive an Acura CSX from Canada in California (or any state in the United States?)

To be eligible to register a Canadian market vehicle in the United States (and California) it must meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS)and EPA/State emissions compliance ratings.

It’s legal to import and drive an Acura CSX in the United States, including highly regulated California.

Since the Acura CSX is structurally similar to the USDM Civic and, the fact that this is not the first Acura CSX I’ve seen for sale online in California, it’s safe to assume the CSX probably passes FMVSS.

And, if it’s not clear from under-the-hood markings, you can probably obtain a letter of compliance from Acura of Canada/USA to the same effect.

As for EPA and California emissions, Acura CSXs meet Tier II Low Emissions standards for both the EPA and California’s ARB (CARB.)

Here’s an emissions label from this Acura CSX for sale on Honda-Tech earlier last year.

With registration and emissions worries cleared up, pulling the trigger on a CSX already here in the United States might be the move if you’re in the market for a sporty but practical sedan.

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1 COMMENT

  1. I have a 2010 Acura CSX in California. Lemmie tel ya it took me 6 months to get all my paperwork in order to get it across the border and registered at the dmv. This was back in 2016 and still have it. All legal but doing all my oil changes myself.

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