Acura is an interesting brand. As of now, they don’t really make any really compelling vehicles. Yes, I know the NSX exists, but other than that, Acura makes vehicles that don’t really excite as much as their competitors.
When taking on the likes of BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Lexus and even Infiniti, you need more than your A-game. Unfortunately, Acura has really the NSX as their very impressive car.
Honda’s luxury make has struggled for years trying to hide the fact that they’re dolled up Honda’s. Especially with the sedans, both the ILX and TLX underneath were a Civic and Accord.
The previous generation TLX had a beak of a front end, which definitely hindered the whole car’s look. But, the TLX and other Acura models have the jewel eyed headlights that just look awesome.
For Acura to be taken as seriously as the German’s, they need to make a serious mid-size sedan. So, they need to take the best they have out on the 2018 Acura TLX.
Acura is redesigning the 2018 Acura TLX, which is technically being called a mid-cycle refresh. However, it seems to be much more than a mid-cycle refresh, and more of a redesign.
Acura launched in the United States as the first Japanese luxury brand over here, but since then has lost considerable ground. So the new 2018 Acura TLX has a lot to make up for.
The Specs-2018 Acura TLX:
|Vehicle Type:||Midsize Sedan|
|Power Plant:||2.4 L 4-cyl / 3.5 L V6|
|Gearbox:||9 speed automatic (est.)|
|MPG:||Up to 48 Highway/28 City (Hybrid)|
|Torque:||195 Lb-ft – 260 lb-ft. (est.)|
|Top Speed:||Not Available|
|0-60 MPH (0-120 KPH):||Not Available|
|Base Price:||Not Available|
The Exterior-2018 Acura TLX:
There are a lot of changes on the outside of the 2018 Acura TLX, but some of the car remains the same. Hence why it is technically a mid-cycle refreshment.
From the front, the Acura TLX has never been as compelling as its rivals cars. Lexus is intensely aggressive, BMW is the stealthy secret agent and Mercedes is as flashy as it gets.
But Acura’s have looked like outdated birds for so long, they faded into the back.
For the 2018 Acura TLX, they completely ditched the beak on the front end. And I’m thankful that they did.
Now, you have a diamond pentagon shape in its place, and a completely re-worked face surrounds the new grille.
The jewel eye head lights remain, but they are reworked to fit a new shape. The new headlights look a lot like the new Buick Regal’s headlights…
I do love the new grille. It is probably one of the best looking assemblies out there, but the rest of the front end seems pretty plain.
The look of the 2018 Acura TLX is a contemporary one, and it wins at that, but it just leaves so much on the table. The grille is cool, but it doesn’t fit the more reclusive design of the car.
For the roof and the side profile of the new 2018 Acura TLX, it is largely unchanged. These couple elements remaining the same is why it is considered a mid-cycle refresh.
The rear end of the 2018 Acura TLX is pretty similar to the current model as well.
One of the big differences for the 2018 Acura TLX’s butt is the A-Spec trim package.
This performance package adds a new rear bumper along with new fascia and black trim up front, and larger exhaust pipes and rims.
The A-Spec performance package is nothing really new to the Acura TLX. The issue is the fact that it does legitimately nothing to aid performance.
The Interior-2018 Acura TLX:
The new interior of the 2018 Acura TLX is a bit improved over the previous model. The biggest change is that the new car doesn’t have the traditional shifter that the old car had.
In it’s place, the 2018 Acura TLX employs a series of buttons where the shifter would be. while I’m crazy about replacing a traditional shifter with buttons, there are definitely worse systems out there (looking at you, GMC).
Overall, the look remains the same, save for a couple tweaks and updates here and there. Acura still uses their dual-screen set up for infotainment and climate control. The system in the previous car didn’t work as effectively as Acura/Honda wanted, but I hope this new car changes it.
The Performance-2018 Acura TLX:
Somewhere where Acura is playing a sad game of catch up is the performance of the 2018 Acura TLX.
The 2.4 L four cylinder puts out a rather disappointing 208 horsepower, which is slacking behind competitors. Usually in this segment, base engines output a good 250-280 hp. You see the slight issue, especially when Acura wants you to get their A-Spec model for…sportiness.
On higher trim levels, you can get a 3.5 L V6 that produces 290 Horses, which also lacks behind other competitor cars.
Until Acura produces some serious performance cars outside of the NSX, a lot of people won’t take them seriously as a performance luxury brand. Acura is almost there.
Other than that, the fuel economy seems to make up for it. On top of great fuel economy, the transmission in the 2018 Acura TLX is phenomenal. No one makes better transmissions than ZF (maybe Cosworth…) and their nine speed automatic is seamless.
Sum It Up:
The 2018 Acura TLX is a step in the right direction for Acura. While there is still some ways to go for this Japanese luxury brand, the 2018 Acura TLX is a good step in the right direction.
It is unfortunate that the NSX didn’t live up to it’s expectations, but Acura needs to continue down the path of making cars look fast that aren’t. We need some umph! Expect a release date for the 2018 Acura TLX in late 2017.