New for 2011-Acura

Jeff Youngs | Dec 31, 2010

Acura welcomes its first wagon, the TSX Sport Wagon, and the flagship RL receives a host of improvements

All other models in the automaker's lineup are carryovers


2011 Acura Models
Acura is the luxury brand of Honda Motor Company, a Japanese automaker. Launched in 1986, Acura was the first Japanese brand to enter the upscale luxury segment when it debuted its Legend luxury sedan. That model, based on the Honda Accord platform, was accompanied by the Integra sports coupe/sedan, based on Honda's Quint hatchback (not sold in the United States). Honda's luxury brand continues to focus on high-level automobiles and advanced technology (the company's exotic flagship, the aluminum-bodied NSX sports coupe, was launched in 1991), while the mainstream Honda lineup continues to build economy-minded family-oriented cars and crossovers.

Today, Acura manufactures a range of passenger automobiles. While the Legend, Integra and NSX are gone (the company switched to alphanumeric model names more than a decade ago), the current lineup contains sedans and luxury sport utility vehicles with up-to-7-passenger seating capacities-and a new station wagon is being added for 2011. Models include both front- and all-wheel drive. Acura vehicles are manufactured in Japan, the United States and Canada, and are sold in North America.

2011 Acura Models at a Glance

  • -Carryover from 2010
  • -Carryover from 2010
  • -Refresh and facelift
  • -Carryover from 2010
  • -Refresh plus a new station wagon model
  • -Carryover from 2010

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2011 Acura MDX

2011 Acura MDXThe Acura MDX, a full-size sport utility vehicle, debuted in 2001. Based on a platform shared with the Honda Accord sedan and Honda Odyssey minivan, the unibody MDX offered a full-time all-wheel-drive powertrain with a standard 6-cylinder engine.

The current, second-generation MDX arrived in 2007. Larger in every dimension, the 7-passenger MDX shared a platform with the Honda Ridgeline pickup, which added to its newfound ruggedness. Acura made several changes to its SUV for the 2010 model year. These included a facelift, a new 6-speed automatic transmission, suspension and steering tweaks, and some additional standard equipment. The MDX is unchanged for 2011.


  • Unchanged for 2011
  • Five models: MDX, MDX with Technology package, MDX with Technology and Entertainment packages, MDX with Advance package, and MDX with Advance and Entertainment packages
  • Standard 3.7-liter 6-cylinder engine rated at 300 horsepower
  • Standard 6-speed automatic transmission
  • Standard "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive" (SH-AWD)
  • 7-passenger seating

2011 Acura RDX

2011 Acura RDXThe Acura RDX, a compact crossover sport utility vehicle, previewed at the New York Auto Show as the RD-X concept. It went into production for the 2007 model year. Sharing platforms with the Honda Civic and Honda CR-V, the RDX is a front- or all-wheel-drive (SH-AWD) model with a standard, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine (it is currently Acura/Honda's only turbocharged model) that offers the power of a 6-cylinder, without the fuel economy penalty, according to the automaker.

Unlike its larger luxury-oriented sibling, the MDX, the smaller RDX is designed to offer a much sportier ride-like a sport sedan, Acura says. As is the case with the rest of the Acura lineup, the RDX is offered with a long list of standard equipment, including a 5-speed automatic transmission, leather upholstery, and a 360-watt audio system. The RDX is a carryover model for 2011.


  • No changes for 2011
  • Four models: RDX, RDX SH-AWD, RDX with Technology package, RDX SH-AWD with Technology package
  • Standard 2.3-liter, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine rated at 240 horsepower
  • Standard 5-speed automatic transmission
  • Standard front-wheel drive (FWD)
  • Standard "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive" (SH-AWD models)
  • 5-passenger seating

2011 Acura RL

2011 Acura RLThe RL is Acura's flagship full-size sedan. A descendant of the Legend, the automaker's first model, the RL debuted in 1996. Unlike the competition from Lexus and Infiniti, who both offered 8-cylinder powerplants and rear-wheel drive, the first Legend arrived with a 6-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive. This would be significant, as it would set the course for the RL models that continues even today.

The current, second-generation model arrived in 2005. Unlike its predecessors, it offered a standard all-wheel-drive powertrain (Acura calls it "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive," or SH-AWD), mated to the standard 6-cylinder engine. Another next-generation RL feature was the introduction of Acura's "Advanced Compatibility Engineering" (ACE) body structure that uses high-strength steel and lightweight aluminum throughout the platform. According to the manufacturer, all Acura models use ACE today.

Acura has made several changes to its flagship RL for 2011. These include a mild facelift, new 6-speed automatic transmission (promising better acceleration, more relaxed cruising, and improved fuel economy), interior upgrades, and upgraded electronics.


  • Several changes for 2011
  • Three models: RL, RL with Technology package, RL with Technology and CMBS/ACC package
  • Standard 3.7-liter 6-cylinder engine rated at 300 horsepower
  • Standard all-wheel drive (AWD)
  • 5-passenger seating
  • NEW Revised front fascia with updated front grille
  • NEW Multi-spoke, 18-inch aluminum wheels
  • NEW Sequential SportShift 6-speed automatic transmission
  • NEW Revised subframe and transmission mounts
  • NEW Improved city/highway fuel economy
  • NEW Interior upgrades including new front/rear headrests, revised stitching, updated gauge cluster, new-style wood grain
  • NEW Improved electronic function for navigation system entry, telephone dialing, voice recognition, etc.
  • NEW Parking sensors and power-folding side mirrors added to the top trim level

2011 Acura TL

2011 Acura TLThe Acura TL is a midsize 5-passenger sedan, smaller than the Acura RL but larger than the Acura TSX. Introduced in 1995, the TL replaced the Acura Vigor (the automaker's original 5-cylinder sedan). The first models shared that same 2.5-liter, inline 5-cylinder engine, but later offerings included a 3.2-liter V-6.

The second-generation TL shared platforms with the Honda Accord (it was manufactured in Ohio alongside the Honda), but the Acura product was understandably more upscale. The TL Coupe, called the 3.2CL, debuted in 2001. While it was mechanically identical, sales were lackluster, and it was dropped in mid 2003. The third-generation model debuted for the 2004 model year. Again based on the Honda Accord platform, the US-built TL was fitted with a V-6 engine sending its power to the front wheels.

Things changed significantly in 2009, when the current, fourth-generation TL debuted. The TL was fitted with one of two V-6 engines and optional "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive" (SH-AWD), sending power to all four wheels. A 6-speed manual model added even more performance for enthusiasts. The 2011 Acura TL is a carryover.


  • Carryover for 2011
  • Eight models: TL, TL SH-AWD, TL with Technology package, TL with Technology Package and 18-inch wheels, TL SH-AWD with Technology package, TL SH-AWD 6-speed manual with Technology package, TL SH-AWD with Technology package and High Performance Tires, TL SH-AWD 6-speed Manual with Technology package and High Performance Tires
  • Standard 3.5-liter 6-cylinder engine rated at 280 horsepower
  • Standard 5-speed automatic transmission
  • Standard 6-speed manual transmission (6-speed models)
  • Standard front-wheel drive (FWD)
  • Standard all-wheel drive (SH-AWD models)
  • 5-passenger seating

2011 Acura TSX

2011 Acura TSXThe Acura TSX is an entry-luxury 5-passenger sedan. First introduced in 2004, the TSX was designed to replace the Integra sedan, discontinued years earlier. The first-generation TSX featured a 4-cylinder engine and standard front-wheel drive. That configuration was continued for the second generation, launched for the 2009 model year. Like its predecessor, the Acura TSX is a re-badged European Honda Accord (the US market receives a different Honda Accord than overseas markets) with standard front-wheel drive and a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine.

Acura has made many changes for the 2011 model year. Most significantly, Acura welcomes its first wagon (a re-badged European Honda Accord Wagon). The balance of the model lineup benefits from a facelift, new wheels, improved sound insulation, upgraded lighting, and several electronic upgrades within the cabin.


  • Many changes, including a new model, for 2011
  • Eight models: TSX 5AT, TSX 6MT, TSX 5AT with Technology package, TSX 6MT with Technology package, TSX V-6, TSX V-6 with Technology package, TSX Sport Wagon
  • Standard 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine rated at 201 horsepower
  • Standard 5-speed automatic transmission (5AT models)
  • Standard 6-speed manual transmission (6MT models)
  • Standard front-wheel drive (FWD)
  • 5-passenger seating capacity
  • NEW Sport Wagon model
  • NEW Front and rear fascia styling, revised front grille and updated rear taillights (exterior changes similar to TSX Sport Wagon shown at the New York International Auto Show)
  • NEW Revised 17-inch, 5-spoke aluminum wheels (similar to that shown on the TSX Sport Wagon at the New York International Auto Show)
  • NEW Minor interior changes (including new trim pieces, contrasting stitching for seats, rear A/C vents, etc.)
  • NEW Hard disc drive- (HDD) based navigation system with new full VGA color screen
  • NEW 6-disc CD changer is replaced with a 15GB hard disc drive capable of storing 3500+ songs (Technology package models)
  • NEW Improved electronic function for Bluetooth HandsFreeLink, voice recognition for navigation system, Interface Dial and rearview camera
  • NEW Improved LED interior lighting
  • NEW Improvements to powertrain and aerodynamics enhance city/highway fuel economy
  • NEW Improved sound insulation for underbody panels
  • NEW Automatic transmission shift logic for improved performance and feel

2011 Acura ZDX

2011 Acura ZDXThe Acura ZDX is a midsize luxury crossover that was launched in 2010. Designed to compete in the same niche segment as the BMW X6, the ZDX offers radical "coupe like" styling. Built on the MDX platform-and sharing the identical mechanicals and underpinnings-the ZDX forgoes its sibling's 7-passenger cabin and roomy rear trunk in favor of a heavily appointed 5-passenger cabin (Acura calls it a "Luxury Four-Door Sports Coupe"). The standard powerplant is a 300-horsepower V-6 mated to Acura's permanent "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive" (SH-AWD). All models feature power driver and front passenger heated seats and a premium audio system. In addition, base models are fitted with leather upholstery, while the two upgraded models receive premium Milano leather. A brushed tricot headliner is standard on the flagship model (ZDX with Advance package). Introduced just last year, the 2011 Acura ZDX is a carryover.


  • Unchanged for 2011
  • Three models: ZDX, ZDX with Technology package, ZDX with Advance package
  • Standard 3.7-liter 6-cylinder engine rated at 300 horsepower
  • Standard 6-speed automatic transmission
  • Standard "Super Handling All-Wheel Drive" (SH-AWD)
  • 5-passenger seating

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