2018 Acura TLX Review, Specs and Release Date – A brand new grille and sporty A-Spec trim aren’t enough to elevate the comfy and feature-laden 2018 Acura TLX.
It’s only been on sale for 3 years, even so the 2018 Acura TLX gets an update that drops its polarizing shield-nose grille and adds a sporty new A-Spec model.
Despite these changes, the TLX remains a near-luxury sedan with a comprehensive driving character.
The TLX earns a 6.8 on our overall scale thanks to its comfort and impressive features. We’d ask more from the styling and official safety data hasn’t yet been released. Stay tuned.
A brand new grille sits between a couple of reshaped headlights and over a less busy lower bumper, while with the spine, visible exhaust outlets appear the first time and join tweaked taillights. While in the cabin, ambient light piping along each side of the very center console and new seat designs freshen up what’s otherwise a wonderfully OK cabin.
2018 Acura TLX
The brand new A-Spec model will likely receive the most attention. It wears a sportier exterior, a unique grille, standard 19-inch wheels, and 4-inch exhausts included in the rear bumper. Its cabin has two trim alternatives for its more heavily bolstered seats, while an A-Spec-specific tyre gives drivers meatier grips. About the hardware front, the A-Spec receives a slightly firmer suspension with an Active Sound Control that amplifies intake noise in the cabin.
The two TLX’s base 2.4-liter 4-cylinder and 3.5-liter V-6 are carried over from last year’s model. The 4-cylinder engine works alongside an 8-speed dual-clutch transmission (which has a torque converter, a unique twist) to send out ability to the top wheels, even though the V-6 runs on the 9-speed automatic to send out its ability to the top or all four wheels.
New tech for 2018 includes an updated 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with revamped menus and response times which are as much as 30 percent faster than last year’s model. The LED headlights score an auto on/off function alongside standard high-beam assist, that should improve on the 2017 TLX’s “Marginal” rating in the IIHS’headlight testing, while wireless cellphone charging brings a dose for the future towards the cabin.
While using 2018 Acura TLX, the automaker sets a base price of $33,995, together with a mandatory $995 destination charge. That sum will take care of a 2.4-liter base model. The brand new A-Spec trim starts at $43,795, while a top-of-the-line TLX Advance typically costs $44,745. Acura’s excellent Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive is a $2,000 option on all V-6 trims, while 4-cylinder models remain front-wheel-drive only.
2018 Acura TLX Styling
A brand new grille and headlights are improvements, even so the Acura TLX still lacks design flair.
The 2018 TLX is a difficult vehicle to get excited by, especially compared to the more avant-garde designs from Lexus, Infiniti, Audi, and Alfa Romeo. The brand new grille is reasonable improvement, even so the TLX still feels a too anonymous to supply over a typical 5 from 10.
The death of the TLX’s controversial shield-nose grille is a welcomed change that dominates the rest of the exterior treatment. Situated high and splayed wide along the fascia, the latest grille as well as the larger LED headlights are less visually heavy versus 2017 TLX, giving this sedan a clean, refined look.
Acura was less extreme with the rear end, delivering mild tweaks towards the taillights, adding a diffuser-like attachment to the rear bumper and building exposed exhausts to jazz up the backside. Whilst the V6 model gets unexciting rectangular exhaust outlets, the A-Spec model gets a handsome set of 4-inch cannons, integrated straight into the bumper. The exhaust treatment is as eye-catching as the latest grille.
Changes in the cabin are milder, composing of revised seat designs on V-6 models that has contrast stitching and piping (V-6 Technology models and above, only). It’s wise an increasingly premium aesthetic for the four standard interior color themes. The piping also appears for the all-black leather/Alcantara treatment and Full Red upholsteries, ppos of which looks fantastic. Ambient light piping appears for the range-topping Advance trim as well as the sporty A-Spec.
Some our past criticisms of the TLX remain. To begin, besides an increasingly prominent grille as well as the sporty A-Spec package, the TLX still feels a little anonymous alongside style-intensive competitors, from traditional mainstream premium brands like Lexus and Mercedes-Benz to near-premium competitors like Infiniti. And although Acura’s designers are making significant strides in the cabin, adding piping—of the leather and ambient-light varieties—isn’t enough to spruce the spot up.
2018 Acura TLX Performance
The A-Spec trim adds sporty touches, but too little substance to elevate the TLX.
The 2018 TLX’s carryover powertrains are not to get interested in, but the appearance of a fresh A-Spec trim to challenge the sporty models from Lexus, BMW, Alfa Romeo, and Mercedes will score the refreshed TLX 6 from 10 points.
While we’ve only tested the 6-cylinder TLX and TLX A-Spec, the first performance from the high-end engine is impressive. With 290 hp and 267 lb-ft of torque, off-the-line thrust is strong, and paired using the optional Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive system, relatively undramatic. At higher speeds, the loftier torque and horsepower peaks—4,500 and 6,200 rpm, respectively—come into play, presenting a good amount of thrust for freeway passes. Although the V-6 TLX remains handicapped by its 9-speed automatic transmission.
While Acura says it improved the ZF-built gearbox for 2018—it will feel more willing to activate using a stop—its dynamic abilities miss as opposed to 8-speed transmission with the BMW 340i, the 7-speed dual-clutch with the Audi A4, and in some cases the 8-speed DCT in last year’s 4-cylinder TSX. Even set to its most aggressive, upshifts don’t happen as quickly, since the transmission still takes it is time on downshifts. Combine that with the simple indisputable fact that nine gears are far too many to rifle through while driving vigorously, and we’ll also recommend the 4-cylinder TLX for the enthusiast’s choice.
The TLX A-Spec can be a bright spot in to select from, anxieties from an engagement standpoint. As you move spec sheets say we have a sportier suspension tune being offered for stiffer springs, firmer dampers, and then a larger rear sway bar, the truth is that these improvements are minor. The A-Spec’s real trump card will be throatier intake note made available from the Active Sound Control system, or perhaps a thicker controls and others aggressively bolstered front seats. The alterations should do a sufficient job of luring the motive force into having a great time and push harder through turns, whether overall dynamic results don’t match up. Our main complaint? The A-Spec is only obtainable being V-6—a 4-cylinder A-Spec probably may have helped notch another point here.
2018 Acura TLX Comfort & Quality
Still quiet and cozy, but spiced up with small design details.
Past TLXs have traded outright driving dynamics for ride comfort as well as 2018 model is no different. The quiet, relaxing ride’s interaction by having a cosseting number of front seats—or perhaps a healthy dose of technology—conserve the TLX score a 7 beyond 10 on our comfort scale.
The TLX really deserves praise for their highway cruising ability. At higher speeds, there’s little road, tire, or wind noise. And the unlikely event you hear something unpleasant? Cue up the 10-speaker ELS stereo, that may provide crisp, clear tunes.
Like last year’s model, the 2018 TLX houses a remarkably comfortable number of seats. But unlike in ’09, Acura has addressed several of our criticisms using the seat design, introducing handsome accent stitching and piping to the V-6 Technology, Advance, and A-Spec models. Combined with the subtle design changes, this new seats now look as premium as each one does comfortable. And they are very comfortable. Wide, heavily cushioned, and supportive enough with the bends, we’d happily cover 1,000 miles through these chairs.
As you move now-standard AcuraWatch suite of driver-assistance features is primarily on board to keep both driver and passengers safe, the device also reduces driver fatigue. There is absolutely no intent to make constant minor steering corrections at freeway speed with the TLX, because lots of people of lane-departure warning with road-departure mitigation and lane-keeping assist, assist in keeping the car centered. Adaptive cruise control, meanwhile, maintains a safe distance and adjusts speed accordingly.
Beyond the changes, the TLX is broadly the same. Head, shoulder, hip, and leg room is unchanged. Actually, the passenger compartment is 93.3 cubic feet, much like it was a student in 2017. Imagine a lot of complaints from in ’09 still apply—the BMW 3-Series as well as Mercedes-Benz C-Class have more spacious cabins and an extra inch of second-row leg room.
2018 Acura TLX Safety
Small adjustments could help enhance the Acura TLX’s safety scores.
Last year’s TLX received a disappointing grade with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s small-overlap and headlight testing, which kept it from being awarded a Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick + rating. The 2017 TLX did acquire five-star-overall rating through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, though.
With small structural changes and larger headlights with high-beam assist, it’s possible Acura could improve on its IIHS scores. But before non-profit can slam a handful of 2018 TLXs into walls, we’ll be leaving this score blank.
2018 Acura TLX Features
A whole new infotainment system, wireless charging, and ambient lights give a far more modern feel.
While Acura’s mid-cycle updates don’t include a great deal of new equipment, there are a few crucial updates accessible, including standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility and a faster, more pleasing infotainment system. That’s enough to the TLX to attain a 9 from 10.
While Apple CarPlay and Android Auto would be the big news, they’re only a component of a revamped infotainment system. Acura made the switch from the resistance-type touchscreen—the one that takes its inputs from physical pressure of a person’s finger—with a capacitive-type touchscreen, like you’d find for a smartphone. The result, the company claims, is a 30-percent improvement responding speeds.
Celebrate a huge difference. While we still dislike Acura’s unattractive twin-screen infotainment system, the harder responsive touchscreen combined with traditional buttons is simple to manipulate. That’s partially because Acura reworked and simplified the menu structure to the infotainment.
Also new is usually an optional wireless charging system, should you have a compatible smartphone. Your author is usually an Apple user, and then we couldn’t test the system’s effectiveness within the road—Tim Cook, wireless charging within the iPhone 8, please—nevertheless the compartment prior to the shifter where charge pad lives is adequate enough for the iPhone 7 Plus.
Beyond these new additions, the TLX remains a near-luxury sedan with an impressive selection of both standard and optional equipment. As it is Honda tradition, Acura sorted everything that extra gear into Technology or Advance packages. Hmo’s adds $3,700 to the price of either the 4- or 6-cylinder TLX and adds navigation, HD radio, Milano leather upholstery (V-6-powered models get the identical upholstery although with contrast stitching/piping), blind-spot monitoring, and cross-traffic alert.
The Advance Package is simply entirely on the V-6 and adds $3,850 atop the price of the Technology Package—so you’ll pay $7,550 to look at 6-cylinder TLX from base to loaded. The Advance Package has anything from the Technology Package after which it adds ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, auto-dimming, power-folding side mirrors, a heated windshield, a surround-view camera, back and front parking sensors, remote start, wireless phone charging, ambient light piping, a rear spoiler, and LED fog lights/puddle lights.
2018 Acura TLX Fuel Economy
The EPA hasn’t rated the TLX, but we expect last year’s numbers to transport over.
As the EPA hasn’t assessed the 2018 TLX, the carryover powertrains, negligible increases in weight, and a deficiency of promises from Acura on improved fuel economy should yield efficiency estimates that are indifferent to last year’s model.
With 4-cylinder models returning 24 mpg city, 35 highway, 28 combined and V-6 trims—no matter front- or all-wheel drive—netting 25 mpg combined, we’re rating the 2018 TLX at the 7 from 10 on our green scale. This rating could change as soon as the EPA publishes its official figures.
As with in 2009, Acura isn’t providing the TLX with any alternative powertrains.
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