The 2022 Acura TLX doesn’t have the premium pedigree enjoyed by sports sedans from Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. Where Acura does have an edge is its exciting driving persona combined with its strong value proposition. Aside from the undisputed champ of luxury-class value—the Genesis G70—the TLX undercuts its German competition where American greenbacks are involved. Speaking of involved, that’s how drivers feel behind the wheel where its sophisticated chassis tuning is revealed. Even those TLX models with the standard 272-hp turbo-four have the skills to impress. Add Acura’s torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system (SH-AWD) into the mix for maximum effect. While the 2022 TLX isn’t quite as luxurious or magical to drive as the segment’s best, and its back seat is smaller than its size suggests, the 355-hp Type S proves that Acura still makes cars that can raise your pulse.

ENGINE AND IMPLEMENTATION

The 2022 Acura TLX pushes the limits of performance, tech, and design. The TLX is ready with an exhilarating 272-HP108 VTEC® Turbo engine that befits the premium amenities and alluring, sculpted body. Step up to Type S levels of performance and experience the most powerful Acura sedan ever built. A 355-HP126 3.0L Turbo V6, rear-biased Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD®), and a bespoke Sport+ mode deliver pleasure and power like never before.

ENERGY AND REAL WORLD-MPG

The regular 2022 Acura TLX features a 272-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder lashed to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, and Acura’s all-wheel-drive system, which is called SH-AWD and shuffles power among the wheels to improve agility and traction, is optional. Unfortunately, our test car’s two-ton curb weight diminished its acceleration times. While it hit 60 mph in 5.9 seconds, that’s slower than similar setups in this segment and even the less powerful, albeit lighter, Honda Accord 2.0T we tested. Still, the TLX’s terrific chassis tuning made it very entertaining to drive and proved that Acura can still build a sports sedan.

This sentiment is especially true of the higher-performance Type S, which boasts a 355-hp turbo 3.0-liter V-6, a responsive 10-speed auto, SH-AWD, and a sportier suspension setup. Unlike the regular TLX, it’s available with stickier summer tires on lighter 20-inch wheels. Our first drive showcased its gutsy engine, engaging steering, terrific body control, and strong brakes. However, it does have a firm ride that doesn’t mask road imperfections, and it didn’t feel as nimble as shorter sporty competitors such as the Audi S4.

INTERIOR, CONVENIENCE, AND BOOTH

Inside, the 2022 Acura TLX has an expressive design that highlights its sporty character. These include attractive analog gauges and a prominent rotary drive-mode selector in the middle of the dashboard. Solidified by Acura’s excellent build quality, the TLX also boasts nicer cabin materials than its predecessor, including open-pore wood and real aluminum. Although the sedan feels spacious from side to side, the back seat feels smaller than some competitors in this class. Still, its highly adjustable front seats and excellent forward visibility reward drivers. The TLX also offers myriad interior colors, distinct leather upholstery, and desirable features. The latter includes a large 10.5-inch head-up display and customizable ambient-lighting settings that are each named after iconic driving destinations and racetracks, such as “Pacific Coast” and “Suzuka”.

IN-VEHICLE INFOTAINMENT AND INTERCONNECTIONS

Every 2022 Acura TLX features a 10.2-inch infotainment system that’s primarily controlled through a touchpad on the center console. Some functions can also be manipulated via steering-wheel buttons and physical controls next to the touchpad. There’s also a padded resting place for your wrist below the touchpad that makes it more comfortable to operate. The TLX comes standard with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a Wi-Fi hotspot. Those who want the fanciest ELS sound system and a wireless charging pad will have to opt for the Advance package.

PROTECTION AND DRIVER-ASSISTANCE ASPECTS

Every TLX comes standard with AcuraWatch, which includes a host of driver-assistance technology. The sedan also has new equipment, such as traffic-sign recognition and a driver-awareness monitor. For more information about the TLX’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites.

PHOTOS

2022 Acura TLX
2022 Acura TLX
2022 Acura TLX
2022 Acura TLX

FULL SPECIFICATIONS

VEHICLE TYPE
front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan

PRICE AS TESTED
$49,325 (base price: $40,525)

ENGINE TYPE
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection
Displacement
122 in3, 1996 cm3
Power
272 hp @ 6500 rpm
Torque
280 lb-ft @ 1600 rpm

TRANSMISSION
280 lb-ft @ 1600 rpm

CHASSIS
Suspension (F/R): control arms/multilink
Brakes (F/R): 13.0-inch vented disc/13.0-inch disc
Tires: Michelin Primacy A/S, 255/40R-19 96W M+S

DIMENSIONS
Wheelbase: 113.0 in
Length: 194.6 in
Width: 75.2 in
Height: 56.8 in
Passenger volume: 93 ft3
Trunk volume: 14 ft3
Curb weight: 4026 lb

C/D TEST RESULTS
60 mph: 5.9 sec
100 mph: 15.3 sec
130 mph: 29.9 sec
Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 6.5 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 3.7 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 4.7 sec
1/4 mile: 14.5 sec @ 97 mph
Top speed (governor limited): 131 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 177 ft
Braking, 100–0 mph: 362 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.87 g
Standing-start accel times omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.

EPA FUEL ECONOMY (C/D EST)
Combined/city/highway: 24/21/29 mpg

C/D TESTING EXPLAINED

 

 

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