2018 Acura RLX: New Design Direction, Hybrid Tech from NSX, Arrives in Showrooms [News]

2018 Acura RLX Sport Hybrid
[Photo: Acura]
The 2018 Acura RLX, emphasizing a new design direction and featuring tech based on the NSX’s hybrid drive, begins arriving in showrooms today.

Acura went all out refreshing their new flagship sedan. The exterior is sculpted with a bolder style, a new diamond pentagon-shaped grille with a subtle internal diamond-mesh pattern, and features Acura’s signature jewel LED headlamps.

“This redesign of the 2018 Acura RLX is transformational, creating road presence and styling that better reflect underlying performance capabilities of the vehicle,” says Jon Ikeda, Acura vice president & general manager.

The RLX’s hood also has been reshaped, and its rear end gets new LED taillights and a black lower diffuser with two large exhaust tips. There are new wheel designs and two new paint colors, too, including the Brilliant Red Metallic and Majestic Black Pearl.

2018 Acura RLX interior
2018 Acura RLX Sport Hybrid, Seacoast interior color [Photo: Acura]
Inside, occupants settle into plush seats covered in Milano leather with contrasting piping and stitching. Premium new materials and touch points throughout the cabin add a new level of sophistication to an interior with class-leading space and comfort. A rich Espresso interior color is a fresh option. Audiophiles get the pleasure of the unparalleled Krell Audio System as part of the Advance Package or the exclusive ELS Studio Premium Audio System that is included in the Technology Package.

Acura simplified things by offering the RLX in two variations — each in a single-spec trim. The 2018 Acura RLX P-AWS (precision all-wheel steering) with Technology Package has the 310 horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine and an MSRP of $54,900. The 2018 RLX Sport Hybrid with Advance Package has 377 horsepower on tap from a hybrid powertrain derived from the NSX, all-wheel drive, and an MSRP of $61,900 — $4,050 less than the outgoing model.

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Both 2018 models feature Acura’s suite of safety and driver-assist technologies as standard equipment, plus their new Traffic Jam Assist (TJA). Utilizing Adaptive Cruise Control and Low Speed Follow. TJA takes away some of the stress in dense traffic by keeping the vehicle centered in its lane and off the rear bumper of the car in front.

AcuraWatch™ includes the following:

  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) w/low speed follow
  • Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS)
  • Forward Collision Warning (FCS)
  • Lane Keeping Assist (LKS)
  • Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) w/Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
2018 RLX P-AWS w/Tech Pkg 2018 RLX Sport Hybrid w/Advance Pkg
MSRP $54,900 $61,900
Sport Hybrid System N/A 377 hp combined system power
Engine 3.5L 24-valve SOHC i-VTEC V6 3.5L 24-valve SOHC i-VTEC V6
Power (hp) 310 @ 6,500 rpm 310 @ 6,500 rpm
Torque (lb-ft) 272 @ 4,500 rpm 273 @ 4,700 rpm
Transmission 10-speed automatic Motor-Integrated 7-speed DCT
Drivetrain layout Front-wheel drive Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive (SH-AWD)
Curb weight 3,977 lbs 4,380 lbs
EPA-estimated fuel economy mpg 20 / 29 / 23 (city/hwy/combined) 28 / 29 / 28 (city/hwy/combined)

Acura is revamping their sedans this year. Here is a look at the refreshed 2018 Acura TLX