Starting at MSRP $37,500
The All New 2021 Acura TLX
Acura has completely reimagined the new TLX from the ground-up to deliver Precision Crafted Performance to premium sport sedan enthusiasts. It may very well be the best performing, best handling and most well-appointed Acura sedan ever.
Brand New Design
The new platform comes straight from Acura and not shared with Honda. This sexy new design boasts an updated turbocharged powertrain and a cabin redesigned and loaded with technology. After a week of driving I can see how it can compete with the Audi A4 or A6 and the BMW 3 or 5-series. The bottom line is this new design brings a lot of excitement and appeal back to the Acura brand.
There is an immediate wow factor with the exterior design. The TLX in Apex Blue Pearl looks sharp and combined with the 19 x 8.5 Pewter Gray Metallic Machine-Finished Interwoven Wheels gives the TLX a lot of curb appeal. The long hood flows into the diamond pentagon grille to give this newly designed car a classic but exotic sports sedan look.
The Performance aspects of this new design are exciting. The 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 that delivers 272-horsepower and 280 lb.-ft. of torque this combines well with a new 10-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. This simply translates into better throttle response and good gas mileage for the acceleration.
If you’re looking for more power, the more performance-oriented TLX Type S arrives in the spring with a twin-turbo V6 that’s estimated to deliver 355-horses and 354 lb-ft of torque.
The front wishbone suspension provides a quiet ride and drive that’s impressive when opening up on the highway or accelerating around corners. The Advance trim gives you that something extra with adaptive damping suspension.
The TLX’s brakes are precise and derived from the NSXwhich is also noteworthy.
In short the performance is powerful and emotional with a quick and agile response.
The TLX is refined with high-grade materials like leather, available real wood trim, and metal accents. A wrap-around cockpit puts the driver at the center of the design.The cabin has more room up front because of its longer wheelbase.The Ambient lighting adds a lot to the warmth and comfort of the interior with 24 modes.The audio is nothing short of amazing on the new ELS Studio 3D sound system is a 17-speaker Premium 710-watt sound system with TLXtrue 5.1 surround sound. I was really impressed with the sounds system and combined with the lighting and alluring interior vibe you feel like you are in a spaceship ready to blast off into orbit.
True Touchpad Interface
The magic behind the True Touchpad Interface is Absolute Positioning – the one to one mapping of the pad to screen allows you to keep your eyes forward on the road. With this (and the physical boarder on the pad) you can develop muscle memory for key functions, the tech doesn’t rely on a cursor (“Relative Positioning”).
Customization – just like a smart phone or tablet, you can move the Apps and Favorites around to position them to your liking. With this optimized, you will be able to access frequent content (Radio Stations, Phone Contacts, or Destinations) with no more than two actions from anywhere in the system. It was easy to customize the system to my liking.
Natural Language Voice – You can just speak to the car using natural commands like “Take me to…” or “I need to find a…”. Just push the Voice button on the left side of the steering wheel.I was surprised at how good the voice recognition system worked.
The 2021 Acura RDX and TLX have earned the highest possible safety rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Both Acura models qualified for TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) by earning a top rating of “GOOD” in all crashworthiness tests, a “SUPERIOR” rating for the Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), part of the standard AcuraWatch™ safety and driver-assistive technology and standard “GOOD” rated headlights. Not yet tested by the Institute, the all-new 2022 Acura MDX, the brand’s flagship model, is similarly expected to achieve a 2021 TSP+ rating when it is evaluated later this year.
All Acura sedans and SUVs feature the AcuraWatch™ suite of safety and driver-assistive technologies as standard equipment, including Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow and Road Departure Mitigation. The 2021 Acura RDX and TLX feature Acura’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, designed to enhance occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal collisions with a network of connected structural elements to distribute crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle and reducing the forces transferred to the passenger compartment. Acura JewelEye™ LED headlights help both models achieve its best-in-class ratings.
The All New 2021 Acura TLX has lived up to all the hype. I really feel like this car competes with the larger Luxury Sedans like the Audi A4 or A6 and/or a BMW 3 or 5-series but at a better price point. There is a lot of value, especially when you look at the MSRP starting at $37,500. The all new design will catch the attention of Acura lovers but it definitely has enough appeal to bring in a wide variety of drivers.
MSRP $49,325 as tested
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