Overview: The replacement for the TL and TSX sedan was introduced for the 2015 model year with crisp styling and an appealing price.
Drivetrain: A 206-horsepower four-cylinder is fitted with an eight-speed automated manual transmission; available 290-horse V6 uses a nine-speed automatic to provide torque to the front, or, optionally, all four wheels.
The TLX is Acura’s latest entry-luxury sports sedan that competes in a segment it practically invented back in the late 1990s. But with changing times and increased competition, Honda’s premium division developed a new lineup strategy for 2015. In sprucing up its model inventory, Honda’s up-level unit sought to have one vehicle to replace the TL and TSX sedans that departed after the 2014 model year and came up with the TLX. Notice that the name even takes from both cars. Physically, the TLX is shorter than the TL by 3.7 inches, primarily due to a reduction in front and rear overhang. It’s also about an inch narrower and the roofline is slightly lower. However the wheelbase remains identical to that of the TL, ensuring adequate legroom for rear-seat riders. Under the hood is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 206 horsepower and 182 pound-feet of torque. It’s mated to a quick-shifting eight-speed automated manual “dual clutch” transmission, called a DCT. It features an automatic transmission-style torque converter that helps smooth out the shifts. Optional is a 3.5-liter V6 with 290 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. A nine-speed automatic transmission with a console-mounted pushbutton gear selector is exclusive to the V6. The four-cylinder TLX is strictly a front-wheel-driver, while V6 versions are available with an upgraded version of Acura’s SH-AWD. All four-cylinder and FWD V6 models come with all-wheel-steering (P-AWS) that slightly alters the rear wheels in phase with the fronts when turning at speed. During low-speed maneuvers, such as when entering a parking space, the P-AWS slightly turns the rear wheels in the opposite direction. The TLX comes standard with ECON, Normal, Sport and Sport+ driving modes. The latter maximizes the car’s performance abilities with crisper shifts, added steering effort and a throatier exhaust note.