IT’S A BEST BUY BECAUSE:
TLX packs a classy interior, cutting-edge handling and safety features, and peppy performance into a nicely sized package.
Limited options mean that it’s not as customizable as most premium midsize-sedan rivals.
Front-drive models have four-wheel steering for improved low-speed maneuverability and high-speed stability.
WHAT IS IT?
The TLX is Acura’s midsize sedan. When it debuted as a 2015 model, the TLX replaced both the smaller TSX and the larger TL in Acura’s lineup, coming in between those two cars in size (which puts it on the smaller side of the premium midsize-car class). Both 4-cylinder and V6 engines are available. The four comes with an 8-speed dual-clutch automated-manual transmission and Acura’s Performance All-Wheel Steer (P-AWS) system, and is available only with front-wheel drive. The V6 is mated with a 9-speed automatic and is available with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
Standard features on all TLXs include two center-console display screens, heated front seats, rearview camera, and keyless entry and starting. A performance-focused A-Spec trim level includes sporty features such as 19-inch wheels, sport-tuned steering and suspension, sport front seats, and unique trim inside and out. Upscale features on higher-line TLXs include a power driver-seat thigh extension, heated rear seats, heated steering wheel, dark burl wood trim, interior LED “light piping,” wireless cell-phone charging, and a 360-degree Surround View camera system. Available safety equipment includes forward-collision warning and mitigation, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist, road-departure mitigation, blind-spot alert, and rear cross-traffic alert.
A specially trimmed, limited-production PMC Edition model—hand-assembled at Acura’s Performance Manufacturing Center by the same technicians who build the NSX supercar—joins the TLX roster. Only 360 PMC Editions will be built, all of them finished in Valencia Red Pearl paint, which was previously exclusive to the NSX. The rest of the TLX lineup gets four new paint colors but is otherwise unchanged.
EPA-estimated fuel economy is 23 mpg city/33 mpg highway with the 4-cylinder, 20/31 with the front-drive V6, and 20/29 with the AWD V6. The sporty features of the front-drive A-Spec versions drop their EPA highway ratings by one mpg. Both the 4-cylinder and V6 engine require premium-grade gas. In Consumer Guide® testing, an all-wheel-drive V6 averaged 27.6 mpg in 85-percent highway driving.
VALUE IN CLASS
Acura’s TLX is a compelling contender that astutely blends luxury, sport, economy, and everyday practicality, then tops off the package with an impressive selection of technology features. It’s a bit on the small side for the premium midsize class, but in many ways its relatively trim footprint is an asset—and it doesn’t give up that much in interior or cargo space. The TLX might not be quite as regal as some class rivals, but with pricing that tops out under $50K, it is one of the best bargains in its segment.
|BASE PRICE RANGE||$33,000 – $48,950|
|BODY STYLES||4-Door Sedan|
|AVAILABLE ENGINES||206-HP, 2.4-Liter 4-Cyl.; 290-HP, 3.5-Liter V6|
|DRIVE WHEELS||Front or All-Wheel Drive|
|EPA FUEL-ECONOMY RANGE||20-33 MPG|