The refreshed sedan is in line with the new design language at Acura, most notably the adoption of a "diamond pentagon grille", a new signature that's a very welcome replacement for the disgusting chrome beak that's been plaguing otherwise good looking Acuras for nearly a decade.
Acura's 2018 RLX is meant to reflect the automotive brand's new design direction through the company's flagship sports sedan. This marks the first Acura application of this new Honda-developed transmission; it's already in use in the 2018 Honda Odyssey minivan and soon will be installed in the redesigned 2018 Honda Accord.
The new look gives the front fascia of the 2018 RLX a stronger persona, we think, with a better reflection of the RLX's status as a luxury sedan.
The redesign begins with the exterior, which is far more sculpted than the previous generation RLX. Acura brags that this driveline shares componentry from the NSX supercar's hybrid setup, but it produces less power than that mid-engined stunner does-196 horsepower and 135 lb-ft less, to be specific, for totals of 377 horsepower and 341 lb-ft. Two Sport Hybrid SH-AWD models will be offered.
If the non-hybrid variant is preferred, the RLX gets the same 3.5 litre powerplant but without the electric motors (obviously). There are new wheel designs and two new paint colors, too, including the Brilliant Red Metallic pictured here and Majestic Black Pearl. The base 3.5-liter V-6 still makes 310 hp but now is paired with a new 10-speed automatic gearbox. New contrast seat piping and stitching and a new available Espresso interior color round out the interior changes.
Every RLX will come with the AcuraWatch suite of active safety features. These include adaptive cruise control, low speed following assistance, and a newly-added traffic jam assist. The newest feature is Traffic Jam Assist that works in conjunction with the adaptive cruise control's low-speed follow function to keep the auto in its lane and at a safe distance from the vehicle in front. A new addition to AcuraWatch is traffic jam assist which is a sort of modification to adaptive cruise control specifically for congested traffic.
Standard features on the Sport Hybrid will include heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats and steering wheel, a Krell audio system, an around-view camera system, parking sensors, LED fog lights, and remote starting.