What Is It?
2015 Acura TLX
What's New About This Model?
The 2015 Acura TLX effectively replaces both the TSX compact sedan and the TL midsize sedan in Acura's lineup. It features four- and six-cylinder engines, front- or all-wheel drive and innovative new eight- and nine-speed automatic transmissions.
When Does It Go on Sale?
Acura said to expect the TLX "later this year," so figure on late summer at the earliest.
How Much Does It Cost?
No official pricing has been announced, but the TLX will likely arrive with a price tag similar to the TL sedan it's replacing.
How Many Body Styles and Trim Levels Are There?
The TLX will come as a four-door sedan only. Acura doesn't traditionally offer distinct trim levels, and the TLX isn't any different. There are essentially three variations to choose from: front-wheel drive with the four-cylinder engine, front-wheel drive with the V6 and all-wheel drive with the V6. The first variation can add the Technology package for more options, while the latter two models can add both the Technology package and the Advance package to get all the latest features.
How Does It Measure up to the TSX and the TL?
The TLX rides on the same wheelbase as the old TL, but the TLX's overall length is down by 3.8 inches thanks to shorter front and rear overhangs. According to Acura, the TLX is also at least 100 pounds lighter than the TL thanks to the use of additional high-strength steels.
What Kind of Engines and Transmissions Does It Have?
• 2.4-liter, inline four-cylinder: 206 horsepower, 182 pound-feet of torque (FWD)
• 3.6-liter V6: 290 hp, 267 lb-ft of torque (FWD, AWD)
• Eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (2.4-liter)
• Nine-speed automatic (3.6-liter)
What Kind of Mileage Will It Deliver?
Thanks to reduced weight (versus the TL) as well as the new eight- and nine-speed transmissions, the TLX is expected to deliver better EPA mileage numbers than its predecessor. Front-wheel-drive models with the four-cylinder are anticipated to earn ratings of 28 mpg in combined driving (24 city/35 highway) while front-wheel-drive models are estimated at 25 mpg in combined driving (21 city/34 highway). Adding all-wheel drive to the mix drops the numbers slightly to 25 mpg combined (21 city/31 highway).
What Kind of Unique Features Does It Offer?
The TLX offers both all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering. The latter comes standard on all models and uses small changes in the direction of the rear wheels to initiate turns more quickly. Acura's all-wheel-drive system has also been upgraded with a wider range of capabilities that drivers will be more likely to feel in everyday situations.
The TLX will also offer what Acura calls an Integrated Dynamics System (IDS). It essentially adjusts the characteristics of the suspension, engine, transmission and steering to suit normal or sporty driving. For the first time, IDS will offer a Sport + setting that maximizes every aspect of the car's systems for maximum performance.
What Models Will It Compete Against?
Audi A6: If there's another midsize luxury sedan known for offering all-wheel drive, this Audi is it. The A6 is also stuffed full of technology, much like the TLX.
Infiniti Q50: All-new for 2014, the Q50 features all of Infiniti's latest technology, including a hybrid model that packs more power than the standard V6.
Lexus GS: Like Infiniti, Lexus offers a hybrid version of its midsize sedan for those who want performance and efficiency. Standard models are V6 only, however, so if you need the extra mileage you have to pay up front for the hybrid.
Should You Wait for It?
The TLX is a significant upgrade over the TL and TSX sedans it replaces. Its drivetrain technology should deliver improved performance along with increased efficiency, while the interior changes should make for a more comfortable and enjoyable drive. Unless you're looking to get a great deal on an outgoing model, the TLX is worth the wait.