One of the most reliable cars on the road, what you pay extra on top of the price of a Honda Civic will pay off in spades down the line.
There just is nothing like the EL for reliability. While friends talk of nightmare scenarios and spiraling costs and hassles of fixing countless problems with their Fords or their VWs, my EL has given me no problems whatsoever in the four years I've been driving it. Nothing. Nada. Zip. No breakdowns, no faulty components, no electrical problems, no fit and finish quality issues, no expensive repairs, no tow trucks required.
There are more powerful cars available (the 1.6 EL struggles a little when carrying 4 adults, for example) and many that are more luxurious, but you'll pay more for them and you'll be far more likely to end up broken down on the side of the highway waiting for a tow truck instead of enjoying the long weekend.
The build quality of this car is exceptional - nothing is falling apart or requires replacement. There are no leaks, no problems with the electrics or air conditioning, no rattles, nothing that needs replacing beyond those items Acura recommends be replaced after certain periods of time or kilometers driven. It's quite amazing. I haven't had so much as an oil leak.
It also looks smart and handles very well in most driving conditions. Road feedback is excellent and the car never feels out of control.
Minor niggles include excessive wind noise on the highway and seat heater switches that are annoyingly easy to turn on by mistake, which on a hot day does not make for a comfortable ride. But these are pretty much all I can find wrong with the car.
Overall this was absolutely the right purchase for me for my first car. I've driven many others and the EL outperforms and outhandles many more expensive and more powerful cars, and is the best in its class that I have come across. Even more importantly, I'd challenge anyone to name a more reliable vehicle on the road today.