- Acura’s largest, most luxurious sedan
- Standard Four-wheel steering system improves handling
- Unique “jewel-eye” LED headlights
Seamlessly blending performance and comfort, the 2015 Acura RLX is a capable flagship for the Japanese luxury automaker.
The RLX made its debut last year, replacing the RL at the top of Acura’s lineup. Most of the sheet metal is free of drama, with the familiar Acura shield grille up front and slight creases on the sides to give the RLX some sculpting. The highlight of the exterior is the RLX’s headlight clusters, which get full LED setups as standard. LED daytime running lights can be found on many modern cars but the RLX also gets LED headlights as well. Eight individual LED elements are arranged in 4x2 design that Acura calls “jewel eye” and it gives the RLX its visual signature. 18-inch alloy wheels are standard, with 19-inch wheels optional.
The 2015 RLX only have one engine/transmission combination, a 310-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 that is mated to a six-speed automatic. Front-wheel drive is standard, with Acura’s super-handling all-wheel drive (SH-AWD) system optional. It can send torque not only to the front or rear wheels, but from left to right as, maximizing torque to wheels with traction. The RLX also offers a precision all-wheel steering system that can turn the rear wheels in both directions, turning counter to the front wheels to offer tighter cornering on canyon roads, or turning with the wheels to make smoother lane changes on the highway. There is also Acura’s standard Agile Handling Assist, which can apply the brakes slightly to individual wheels and keep the RLX in line with less steering effort.
Any line topping sedan has to have an interior to match its status and the RLX does, with a cabin that offers both luxury amenities and plenty of technology as well. Leather upholstery is standard ((Milano perforated leather seats are optional) and the dashboard/center console get metallic and faux wood inserts. The technology laden cabin offers not one, but two large screens in the dashboard; the lower screen has the audio and climate controls, while the larger, higher display shows more driver centric information including directions from the optional navigation system. Bluetooth connectivity, Pandora internet radio interface, HD radio, power moonroof, three-zone automatic climate control, and a USB port are standard.
2014 versions of the RLX got a Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS and the 2015 version will get the same designation. Standard safety features include six airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes, a rearview camera with guidelines, and AcuraLink, which can call for help in the event of an airbag deployment. There is also plenty of optional safety technology, including lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, and forward collision warnings with a Collision Mitigation Braking system that automatically applies the brakes if the car senses a frontal collision is imminent.