The Acura RLX is a flagship luxury sedan built on a front-wheel drive platform. An all-wheel drive RLX Hybrid model is also available. Powered by a V6 engine, the RLX arrived on the scene in 2014, replacing the previous RL sedan.
Acura RLX Overview
Acura introduced the RLX in 2014, replacing its previous RL flagship sedan that was produced from 1996 to 2012.
All Acura RLX models come with a 3.5-liter V6 engine making 310 horsepower. It comes paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive. The Acura RLX is EPA-rated at 20/31 mpg city/highway.
A unique all-wheel steering system is standard, which permits the rear wheels to pivot slightly to align with the turns of the front wheels. This system enables the RLX to maneuver into tight spaces and improves overall handling on the road.
The Acura RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD was released at the same time as the standard model, though no RLX Hybrid was produced for the 2015 model year.
The SH-AWD designation represents Acura’s “Super Handling All-Wheel Drive” technology that enhances traction and handling. Instead of an engine-powered mechanical drive shaft to turn the rear wheels, the RLX Hybrid relies on a pair of electric motors to get the work done. The result is improved torque vectoring, which sends positive torque to the outside wheel as you navigate curves. At the same time, negative torque is sent to the inside rear wheel to ensure optimum handling.
A third electric motor joins with the engine to power the front wheels and is located within the transmission housing. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission is standard. This model makes a combined 377 horsepower and is EPA-rated at 28/32 mpg city/highway.
On the exterior, the Acura RLX features a broad, upswept upper grille accented by wraparound “Jewel Eye” LED headlamps. The lower grille has a trapezoidal outline and is offset by curvaceous pockets housing the fog lamps. A broad hood, a swept back windshield and strong shoulders are also present.
The RLX’s beltline inclines to the rear deck. Upper character lines, distinctive sculpting and oversize wheel wells mark its profile. Alloy wheels grace every model. From the rear, the Acura RLX sports large combination lamps and body sculpting.
Inside, the Acura RLX offers excellent room for five and plush, power-operated heated front seats. The rear seat offers more legroom than you’ll find in many competitors, as well as a separate climate control that is located behind the front center console. There’s 102.1 cubic feet of passenger volume and about 15 cubic feet of trunk space in the non-hybrid model.
The Acura RLX is offered in one trim level that’s available with a few option packages. The standard equipment list includes proximity key with push-button start, Bluetooth connectivity, hands-free text messaging, satellite radio, a USB port and a rearview camera.
Technology and Advance packages are available, bringing in features like a Krell audio system, ventilated front seats, heated outboard rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a rear power sunshade and rear window manual sunshades.
Available safety features include a surround-view camera system, front and rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, road departure mitigation, a blind spot information system and a head-up display.