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2024 Acura TLX Type S Rips Off NSX-Level Grip in Our Testing

But maybe that says more about Acura's departed supercar than it does the TLX

2024 Acura TLX Type S front three-quarter
  • We recently put the updated 2024 Acura TLX Type S through our testing regimen.
  • The TLX pulled off an impressive lateral grip measurement on the skidpad: an even 1.0 g.
  • This puts the TLX Type S ahead of many of its competitors — and makes it nearly as grippy as the Acura NSX.

The Acura TLX Type S is a front-wheel-drive-based, all-wheel-drive sport sedan. It's at the sharper end of its segment, but it's not some stripped-down track-day special. And yet it still manages to pull an even 1.0 g around our skidpad without compromising ride quality or comfort.

Why's that impressive? Well, the Acura NSX Type S supercar — which costs over $100,000 more than the TLX, has 245 more horsepower, weighs 300 pounds less, and has a more favorable weight distribution and a more sophisticated all-wheel-drive system — pulled an almost negligible 0.01 g more than the TLX during our testing.

But here's the thing: The TLX didn't overperform; the NSX underperformed.

First, let's look at how the TLX Type S compares to some of its rivals in skidpad results:

  • 2024 Acura TLX Type S: 1.0 g (Pirelli P Zero tires; treadwear: 280)
  • 2022 Audi S4: 0.96 g (Bridgestone Potenza tires; treadwear: 260)
  • 2023 BMW M340i: 0.97 g (Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tires; treadwear: 300)
  • 2023 Mercedes-AMG C 43: 0.96 g (Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tires; treadwear: 300)
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2024 Acura TLX Type S rear three-quarter

Photo by Rex Tokeshi-Torres

That's impressive, but says more about the NSX than it does the TLX. The NSX just isn't nimble enough, not on its toes enough or lively enough. Sure, you can fit the NSX Type S with an optional set of Pirelli Trofeo R tires that would likely result in better numbers, but take a look at how it compares to cars running similarly "standard" (read: non-track-prepped) summer tires:

  • 2022 Acura NSX Type S: 1.01 g (Pirelli P Zero tires; treadwear: 280)
  • 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Z51: 1.09 g (Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tires; treadwear: 300)
  • 2023 Lamborghini Huracán Tecnica: 1.06 g (Bridgestone Potenza Sport tires; treadwear: 300)

Perhaps it's a victim of its own complexity, but we expected the NSX to feel much more tactile and edgy. On a public road, the NSX is devastatingly quick, but during steady-state cornering it feels almost inert. Understeer is the dominant trait, and when we expected the trick all-wheel-drive system to help the NSX, it still felt like the rear tires were pushing the fronts around until they gave up. The NSX Type S runs a pretty standard 245-section front and 305-section rear tire setup, just like a lot of other mid-engine cars.

We feel like this might've been part of the engineering brief for the poor NSX. Stability and real-world performance demand a margin of safety and understeer, but it seems like Acura just wasn't allowed to push the performance envelope like we know it can. Even the TLX Type S is better proof of Acura's chops.

Edmunds says

The TLX's impressive showing is further proof that tires make all the difference.