2021 Acura TLX

2021 TLX Photos
 Editors' Pick
Autoblog Rating
7.5

Acura vastly improved the handling and driving dynamics with the new TLX to make it a superb sport sedan. The transmission is a low point, but interior quality, tech and overall design are all big wins for the well-priced four-door.

Industry
7
The best-selling luxury car used to be an Acura. The brand's combination of reliability, quality, design and driving dynamics clearly resonated with buyers. In the past decade-plus, however, those last two elements stopped resonating, while the Acura brand subsequently lost its luxury luster. Simply put, the 2021 Acura TLX is intended to turn things around. Its look is bold and athletic in a way not seen since the best-selling TL of the 2000s, while its long-hood/short-deck proportions are like no Acura that's come before. Although they're usually indicative of a rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan, the TLX remains based on a front-wheel-drive architecture with Acura's brilliant Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system. A return to a double-wishbone front suspension ensures truly charismatic handling. That architecture is also unique to Acura as opposed to being related to the Honda Accord. All of the above adds up to a new TLX that's a far more compelling and competitive luxury sedan. If you're considering a BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 or Mercedes-Benz C-Class, it's definitely worth expanding beyond the German borders and giving Acura a try. It's different to be sure, but different can be good, especially for driving enthusiasts who've seen some zest ooze out of the 3 Series in recent generations. Even its interior is suitably luxurious in quality and distinctive in appearance – it looks like nothing else out there and, importantly, doesn't give off the vibe of an Accord in dress pants. While we're not ready to declare it any sort of class leader, it's worthy of playing with the big boys. What's new for 2021? The TLX was completely redesigned for 2021. What's the TLX interior and in-car technology like? The TLX cabin has a modern, high-tech look that won't be confused with something in a European luxury sedan. Materials quality is excellent, while padded simulated leather on the dash and doors provides an undeniable air of luxury. There are style differences between trim levels as well, most notably the open pore wood trim and ambient lighting in the Advance (above left) and the A-Spec's sport gauges, unique aluminum trim and available red leather (above right). There's still some switchgear shared with Honda – particularly the annoying push-button shifter – but at least Honda makes some nice switchgear.  There are notable, Acura-only exceptions to that. First is the large silver knob prominently placed on the center stack that controls the car's driving modes. Considering most owners never change driving modes, this "hey look at me!" placement is more about Acura declaring that it's serious about being a brand for car enthusiasts again than it's for actual functionality. The second would be Acura's infotainment system. It consists of a large, widescreen display mounted high atop the downward-sloping dash. This placement makes it easier to keep your eyes on the road, but we're not sold on its unique touchpad controller. Basically, the pad corresponds to the screen – if you touch the lower left corner, for instance, you engage whatever is in the …
Full Review
The best-selling luxury car used to be an Acura. The brand's combination of reliability, quality, design and driving dynamics clearly resonated with buyers. In the past decade-plus, however, those last two elements stopped resonating, while the Acura brand subsequently lost its luxury luster. Simply put, the 2021 Acura TLX is intended to turn things around. Its look is bold and athletic in a way not seen since the best-selling TL of the 2000s, while its long-hood/short-deck proportions are like no Acura that's come before. Although they're usually indicative of a rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan, the TLX remains based on a front-wheel-drive architecture with Acura's brilliant Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system. A return to a double-wishbone front suspension ensures truly charismatic handling. That architecture is also unique to Acura as opposed to being related to the Honda Accord. All of the above adds up to a new TLX that's a far more compelling and competitive luxury sedan. If you're considering a BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 or Mercedes-Benz C-Class, it's definitely worth expanding beyond the German borders and giving Acura a try. It's different to be sure, but different can be good, especially for driving enthusiasts who've seen some zest ooze out of the 3 Series in recent generations. Even its interior is suitably luxurious in quality and distinctive in appearance – it looks like nothing else out there and, importantly, doesn't give off the vibe of an Accord in dress pants. While we're not ready to declare it any sort of class leader, it's worthy of playing with the big boys. What's new for 2021? The TLX was completely redesigned for 2021. What's the TLX interior and in-car technology like? The TLX cabin has a modern, high-tech look that won't be confused with something in a European luxury sedan. Materials quality is excellent, while padded simulated leather on the dash and doors provides an undeniable air of luxury. There are style differences between trim levels as well, most notably the open pore wood trim and ambient lighting in the Advance (above left) and the A-Spec's sport gauges, unique aluminum trim and available red leather (above right). There's still some switchgear shared with Honda – particularly the annoying push-button shifter – but at least Honda makes some nice switchgear.  There are notable, Acura-only exceptions to that. First is the large silver knob prominently placed on the center stack that controls the car's driving modes. Considering most owners never change driving modes, this "hey look at me!" placement is more about Acura declaring that it's serious about being a brand for car enthusiasts again than it's for actual functionality. The second would be Acura's infotainment system. It consists of a large, widescreen display mounted high atop the downward-sloping dash. This placement makes it easier to keep your eyes on the road, but we're not sold on its unique touchpad controller. Basically, the pad corresponds to the screen – if you touch the lower left corner, for instance, you engage whatever is in the …
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Retail Price

$37,500 - $53,100 MSRP / Window Sticker Price
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Engine 2.0L I-4
MPG 22 City / 31 Hwy
Seating 5 Passengers
Transmission 10-spd w/OD
Power 272 @ 6500 rpm
Drivetrain front-wheel
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