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2015 Acura TLX

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 2/27/2015 Stefan Ogbac
2015 Acura TLX© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 Acura TLX

New for 2015

The 2015 Acura TLX is a new model that replaces the TL and TSX in Acura's lineup. It is available with two new engines and transmissions, rear-wheel steering assist on front-drive models, the automaker's Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive system (SH-AWD), and a host of safety features including collision mitigation, lane departure warning, and blind spot detection.

Vehicle Summary

The 2015 Acura TLX is a luxury sports sedan available in front- or all-wheel-drive configurations.

Overview

Two engines are available in the 2015 Acura TLX: a 2.4-liter I-4 with 206 hp and 182 lb-ft of torque paired to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and a 3.5-liter V-6 rated at 290 hp and 267 lb-ft mated to a nine-speed automatic. All-wheel drive is only available with the larger engine while front-drive variants have rear wheel steering. Fuel economy is competitive for the class with I-4 models rated at 24/35 mpg city/highway, front-drive V-6 cars at 21/34 mpg and 21/31 mpg with all-wheel drive.

Handling is a 2015 TLX strong point with a firm ride, well-controlled body movements, and excellent steering feel. Understeer, however, is prominent in V-6-powered models with SH-AWD, which detracts from the car's driving dynamics. Acceleration is good with both engines, giving the car good power for passing and merging. Additionally, the power doesn't come at the cost of fuel economy as the 2015 TLX is one of the most frugal luxury sports sedans. Both the eight-speed dual-clutch and nine-speed automatics are well-tuned with good responses in Sport+ mode and shift quickly when left to its own devices.

While not as commodious as the outgoing Acura TL, the 2015 TLX's interior has good room for adults with respectable front seat space. However, rear seat accommodations are tight for taller adults, and the extra structural bracing eats into trunk space, reducing it to 13.2 cubic feet. Cabin refinement is a strong point with a quiet cabin and comfortable seats that make the car ideal for long-distance driving. Tech and safety features are impressive with adaptive cruise control with low speed follow, lane keeping assist, collision mitigation braking system, navigation, and a 10-speaker, 490-watt Acura/ELS sound system on higher trim levels.

The 2015 Acura TLX has not been crash tested by the NHTSA but earned a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS earning a good score on four categories and an acceptable in the small overlap front category (good is the highest possible score).

What We ThinkAs an entire package, the 2015 Acura TLX is compelling because it offers lots of technology, good driving dynamics, and luxurious appointments that improve upon the outgoing TL and TSX. In a First Test review of a V-6 model, we said that the car provides good performance and handling, but the prominence of understeer in models equipped with all-wheel drive ruins the car due to its abrupt mid-corner transitions. Additionally, we noted in a First Test of a 2.4-liter equipped TLX that the smaller engine "can't quite keep up with its turbocharged competition" with slower acceleration due to its lack of power and torque. The 2015 TLX's interior is a nice place to be, with a well-appointed and built cabin, good sound insulation, and comfortable, supportive, and well-bolstered seats. Although the infotainment system is improved, we said in a First Drive review that "the graphics looked somewhat dated" compared to its competition.

You'll Like

  • Great fuel economy
  • Good handling
  • Refined cabin

You Won't Like

  • Prominent understeer in all-wheel-drive-equipped cars
  • Straight-line performance isn't up to par with competition
  • Tight trunk space

Key Competitors

  • BMW 3 Series
  • Mercedes-Benz C-Class
  • Audi A4
  • Cadillac ATS
  • Volvo S60

Rating

4 star

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