ILX 7-Year Anniversary: PAPA Visit to Apex Motor Club – Maricopa, Arizona

Odometer (ILX):  215,000

About 45 minutes from my house is an automotive playground called Apex Motor Club.  Designed with the idea of becoming the “premier motorsports club of the southwest,” Apex was co-founded by entrepreneur and automotive enthusiast Matt Williams.  Matt graciously invited a handful of members of the Phoenix Automotive Press Association (PAPA) to attend a media program on Wednesday morning, June 12, designed to give journalists a glimpse of exactly what the facility currently offers – and will offer in the future.

The heart of Apex is its 2.2-mile track, part of “phase 1” of three phases of expansion that the facility will undergo in the coming years.  The track itself offers something for pretty much any skill level.  I experienced it from a beginner’s perspective in a series of parade laps that got my blood pumping.  If a “parade lap” can do that, imagine what kind of full-on competitive racing could do.  Matt and his team welcomed us with an introduction to the history and the infrastructure.  Apex is located in Maricopa, Arizona, a small community on the outskirts of the greater Phoenix area.

Today, the amenities are relatively scarce aside from a shade pavilion and some portable toilets.  But there are plans in the works to build a clubhouse, restaurant/bar, pro shop, and private garages on the property.  Considering the entire project just broke ground less than a year ago, there has already been some impressive momentum.  Over 100 memberships have already been sold.

The highlight of my trip was when journalists were invites to experience the track firsthand.  I was sandwiched between a Corvette and a Porsche, and we followed a Camaro pilot car.  My little ILX felt understandably a little out of place.  But for each of the 5 successive laps, I got a little more confident in not only the layout of the track but in how to best control my vehicle.  For a “parade” lap it was a pretty spirited experience, and I can confidently say I left plenty of tire tread – and probably a good deal of my brake rotor lifespan – out on the track.  I definitely had a grin on my face when it was all said and done.

In a fitting conclusion to the trip, my 2013 ILX rolled 215,000 miles on the way back to Phoenix – perfect timing since that day was the 7-year anniversary of the day I first took ownership in 2012.

Entry to Apex in Maricopa

Some of the Apex-branded vehicles on-site

Staging area for vehicles

Getting our introduction to the lay of the land

Brittany from Apex, and Matt Ferguson from Barrett-Jackson

Some of the Apex team including co-founder Matt Williams (second from left)

Track tour in a Ford Raptor pickup

Entry to the 2.2-mile course in the ILX

This wasn’t my ILX’s first time on a track.  In 2012 I drove it on the high speed oval at Nissan’s proving ground.

14 Responses to “ILX 7-Year Anniversary: PAPA Visit to Apex Motor Club – Maricopa, Arizona”

  1. Congratulations on your seven year anniversary! The parade laps looked like they were heaps of fun and were much quicker than I’d expect for parade laps, how cool!?! It’ll be interesting to see you visit Apex again in a couple of years once they make even more progress, looks like it’ll be a neat destination for motorsport enthusiasts.

    • Totally – I actually relayed information about Apex to some of my contacts at Honda so that they can possibly look into using the venue for future performance driving programs like NSXPO, etc. Hope your weekend is going well!

  2. Apex seems really cool – and I’d love to tool around the track in my seven-year old Accord! For a parade lap, that seemed really fast!

    Congrats on the ownership milestone. Seven years and 215k… it seems like the ILX is still well bolted together, and it looks great! Any upcoming maintenance or repairs scheduled for it?

    • At this point it doesn’t seem to need a heck of a lot. I actually got a postcard for a free oil change at Acura North Scottsdale so I’ll need to schedule that before it expires on 6/30. Haha that car is so reliable, it’s boring!

  3. Happy Birthday to the ILX! A racetrack is definitely on my radar with a lottery win!

  4. I love reliable and boring cars. 😀

  5. I don’t think that Corvette and Porsche would have made it to Alaska and back with zero problems like your ILX. 😉

  6. Go ILX! Cars don’t get any better than that for long term reliability. Just a new starter over the years; right?

  7. Very cool – and happy birthday to your ILX!

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