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2014 Acura RLX Serves as New Flagship Sedan

2014 Acura RLX Serves as New Flagship Sedan

By Jeff Youngs, November 29, 2012
Acura characterizes the new 2014 RLX as "the most powerful, spacious, and technologically advanced Acura sedan, ever." The 5-passenger "luxury performance" sedan replaces the RL at the top of Acura's lineup, and goes on sale in the spring of 2013. Pricing is to be announced closer to the car's on-sale date.

"The 2014 Acura RLX heralds the introduction of a number of new signature Acura technologies that provide the driver a feeling of connection to the product, to the road, and to the world from the very moment they enter the vehicle," said Jeff Conrad, vice president and general manager of Acura Sales. "The RLX embodies the Acura commitment to create vehicles with outstanding handling that truly respond to the will of the driver."

Five versions of the new Acura RLX will be offered when the car goes on sale: RLX; RLX with Navigation package; RLX with Technology package; RLX with Krell Audio package; and RLX with Advance package. After the car's initial debut, a new RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD (Super Handling All-Wheel Drive) model will be available.

The RLX is equipped with a 3.5-liter V-6 engine with Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) technology, which allows the car to operate on half of its cylinders while cruising on the highway and coasting, thereby conserving fuel. It generates 310 horsepower and 272 lb.-ft. of torque, and Acura claims that 90% of peak torque is available from 2,000 to 6,000 rpm. The RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD model will include a gas-electric hybrid drivetrain and all-wheel drive and will have a combined horsepower rating of 370.

A 6-speed Sequential SportShift automatic transmission is standard for the RLX model, delivering power to the car's front wheels. The driver can use the Sport mode to quicken shifts, or manually select gears using the standard paddle shifters.

Acura projects fuel economy estimates of 20 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway, and 24 mpg in combined driving for the standard RLX. The RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD is projected to get 30 mpg in the city, 30 mpg on the highway, and 30 mpg in combined driving.

Standard RLX models are equipped with a new Acura Precision All-Wheel Steer (P-AWS) system. The company says it provides independent and continuous control of left- and right-rear steering toe angles for improved handling, maneuverability, and control. Additionally, the RLX is equipped with Amplitude Reactive Dampers for the suspension, and a 4-wheel-disc anti-lock braking system with Hydraulic Brake Boost, Automatic Brake Hold, and Agile Handling Assist features. Agile Handling Assist is a dynamic braking technology.

Two inches longer and wider than the RL model that it replaces, the new 2014 RLX boasts what Acura says are "best-in-class aerodynamics" combined with an interior that delivers full-size space in a midsize package. The RLX is equipped with new Jewel Eye LED headlights, capless fuel filling system, and acoustic laminated glass for the windshield and side windows. A set of 18-inch aluminum wheels is standard. Models with the Technology, Krell Audio, and Advance packages get 19-inch aluminum wheels.

Inside, the RLX provides more rear-seat leg room and more shoulder room than competing models, according to Acura. Soft-touch materials, wood-grain trim, metal accents, and an extended leather treatment for the dashboard, center console and door panels greet occupants.

The RLX offers dual display screens on the center portion of the dashboard. An 8-inch screen is dedicated to navigation functions and a 7-inch display handles audio, climate and connectivity systems. Cloud-based, next-generation AcuraLink services include real-time traffic for freeways, real-time surface street conditions, local search capability, Aha Radio, stolen-vehicle tracking, 24-hour concierge services, and more.

A 10-speaker audio system with HD Radio, satellite radio, USB port, auxiliary audio input jack, and a Pandora Internet radio interface is standard. The RLX with Technology model adds a 14-speaker upgraded audio system, while the RLX with Krell Audio and RLX with Advance models provide an "ultra-premium" high-fidelity audio system.

A lightweight Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure is designed to deflect crash energy away from the RLX's passenger cabin. Additionally, the RLX offers rain-sensing wipers, front and rear park-assist sensors, multi-angle reversing camera, and, with AcuraLink services, an air bag deployment notification system that puts a live operator in touch with the RLX after a collision.

Additionally, the 2014 RLX can be equipped with an adaptive cruise control system with Low-Speed Follow capability, forward-collision warning system with Collision Mitigation Braking, blind-spot monitoring system, and a lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist system.

2014 Acura RLX Concept Preview
2012 Acura RL Summary, Photos & Specs
Acura Car & Truck Ratings

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