If humans could only be so fortunate.
Cars, like humans, have life cycles. But unlike us, when they get long in the tooth, they get refreshed, enhanced, redesigned and made new again.
Such is the case with Acura’s 2018 TLX 3.5L AWD A-Spec performance sedan.
The TLX benefits most from three big changes:
(1) Acura Precision Concept-inspired design language and robust tech features
(2) Fresh emotional styling and sport-tuning
(3) Standard Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, AcuraWatch and a host of premium features that make the car among the most technologically advanced in its segment.
TLX looks more the part of a sports car with changes to its stance, proportion, wheels, more sculpted hood, refreshed rear fascia and now signature diamond pentagon grille.
“We’ve really upped the ante in terms of styling, emotion and road presence, more effectively communicating the TLX’s dynamic capabilities,” said Jon Ikeda, Acura vice- president and general manager.
All of this flies in the face of my brother-in-law’s comment: “It’s just a Honda with different badging.” Of course, he didn’t have the pleasure of spending a week behind the wheel of the Acura TLX to know the error of his statement.
Powered by a 3.5-liter VTEC V6 engine with variable cylinder management mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission, the duo generates 290-horsepower. It also features Acura’s SH-AWD system that provides traction in all weather and road conditions.
I’d call it a sophisticated, luxury sports sedan – the complete package.
The sedan is roomy enough for five adults to travel in comfort. And the EPA rates the TLX fuel economy at 29 miles per gallon down the highway.
Standard appointments include push-button ignition, push-button shifter, dual-zone climate control with filtration, heated seats, Bluetooth, Sirius XM satellite radio, auto-dimming rearview mirror and more.
The A-Spec package is a nod to Acura’s performance DNA and includes ventilated sports seats with Alcantara inserts, 19-inch alloy wheels, parking sensors, LED fog lights and a wireless phone charger.
The Tech package pampers with a navigation system with voice recognition, multi-view rear camera, ELS studio premium audio with 10 speakers, blind-spot information, rear cross-traffic monitor and an AcuraLink communication system that supplies real-time traffic and freeway conditions.
And completing the triumvirate is AcuraWatch, a suite of safety features that will protect your family for decades. The package features collision mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning, lane-keeping assist system and road-departure mitigation.
Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with a Honda. But when you make the leap to Acura, you will be well rewarded for your higher car payment. There is a difference – a big difference.
Base Price: $44,800
Price As Driven: $45,750
Vehicles are provided by the manufacturer. List price may vary at local dealerships.