I just bought a 2012 Acura TSX with 4 miles on it yesterday. When I got out at home I noticed that there was a funny smell like burnt plastic. I could smell this just standing next to the engine. It also came in bit through the vents. Is this normal? Should I be worried?
Does it smell like, maybe, rotten eggs? Sulfur? If so, it’s the catalytic converter, and it’s normal. Every new car does this until the cat is broken in.
You could also check under the car to see if a stray plastic bag got sucked up onto a hot exhaust pipe, or onto the catalytic converter, where it’s now melting.
Unlikely it would happen in only a few miles, but it’s possible.
Not to worry. No, this is not normal, but probably nothing more than a stray piece of leftover plastic or a few drops of spilled lubricant on the hot exhaust. Drive another day or two and the smell should fade out. If it persists, bring it back to the dealership and let the mechanics check it out.
Where is the TSX made/shipped from?
My Mazda was made in Japan and they had to spray soemthing on the car when they shipped it over here to the US to prevent the salt water damage from the trip. It took a few weeks before the smell went away, but it’s fine now.
Quick search shows the TSX is made in Japan, so your car likely got the same treatment as mine, so just drive with the windows down for a little while and you should be good to go.
“…drive with the windows down for a little while and you should be good to go.”
I hope our new friend doesn’t live in Phoenix. But the car is under warranty. The dealer will take care of it if you take it to them soon. Unfortunately, you can’t wait too long or they may say you did something to it.
100% normal, ALL brand new cars will do this untill all the new burns off… Its from the exsaust system mostly (residual oils from when the pipes were made)… It will go away in a few hundred miles at the most… I work for a Honda dealership and I know the smell well
I agree with gsrag. It is common as the machining oils and in some cases labels cook off the exhaust system. I’m not sure it’s ALL new vehicles, but I bow to his experience in branny new vehicles.
Update: OK so I now have 100 miles on the Acura TSX. The burnt plastic smell DID go away as bscar2 predicted. And now I do smell the rotten eggs (i.e. sulfur) smell which I gather from shadow fax is the catalytic converter.