2018 Acura RLX Adds Fresh Styling, 10-Speed Automatic Transmission

2018 Acura RLX 11 photos
Photo: Acura
2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX2018 Acura RLX
Near identical to the fifth-generation Honda Legend, the Acura RLX went on sale in 2013 for the 2014 MY. The 2018 RLX, however, makes everything better thanks to lot of small updates.
Scheduled to make its public debut at the Monterey Automotive Week on August 15, the 2018 RLX loses the controversial beak and gains the new pentagon grille. LEDs beautify both the front and rear, while the sculpted hood and black-painted aerodynamic diffuser are welcomed updates.

More exciting, however, is the top-of-the-line RLX Sport Hybrid. What makes the range-topper interesting is the powertrain, which combines the Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive System with a hybrid system comprising of a 3.5-liter V6 and three electric motors. The setup closely resembles that of the MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD and is indirectly inspired by the NSX supercar.

In total, the RLX Sport Hybrid has 377 horsepower to offer. Acura is so proud of it, the automaker’s promises “instant acceleration, precise handling, outstanding all-weather performance, and excellent fuel economy.” But at the end of the day, nothing has changed in the Sport Hybrid’s case as far as performance is concerned. This, in turn, takes us back to the regular RLX.

Coming standard with front-wheel-drive and P-AWS, the 2018 Acura RLX makes use of a 10-speed automatic transmission that replaces yesteryear’s six-speed slushbox. Four additional forward gears translate to more refinement and superior acceleration and passing times. On the safety front, the newitity is Traffic Jam Assist, a constituent of the AcuraWatch suite.

By Traffic Jam Assist, the automaker refers to a combination of Low-Speed Follow and Adaptive Cruise Control systems, thus helping keep the car in its lane as it follows the vehicle in front at a set distance. Collision Mitigation Braking System with automatic emergency braking is also standard.

The 2018 model year refresh brings forth three new exterior colors, including two premium offerings: Brilliant Red Metallic (pictured) and Majestic Black Pearl. Inside, meanwhile, the upgraded materials and touchpoints are complemented by the new Espresso interior option. Pricing isn’t available for the time being, but bear in mind the 2017 Acura RLX starts at $54,450.

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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