2015 Acura TLX Prototype Is Nearly Production-Ready Replacement for TL, TSX

Take a look at Acura's sedan lineup and it might be hard to understand why both the TSX and TL exist. The Acura TSX is based on the former European version of the Honda Accord, while the Acura TL is based on the former U.S. version of the Honda Accord. Acura is resolving this by cancelling both the TSX and the TL and replacing them with the 2015 Acura TLX, which debuted in prototype format at the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The new TLX goes on sale by the middle of 2014, according to Acura.

Slotting in between the ILX and the RLX, the new 2015 Acura TLX is a midsize luxury sport sedan. Compared with the outgoing TL, the new TLX rides on the same wheelbase and is about the same size inside, but is 3.8 in. shorter thanks to reduced front and rear overhangs. The now-familiar Acura face is plainly evident in the TLX's front styling, the signature shield-style grille flanked by Jewel Eye LED headlights.

Acura says the new 2015 TLX will deliver luxury, refinement, and athleticism. Add safety to that list, due to next-generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure design, a list of optional technologies including forward-collision warning, a collision-mitigation braking system, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist system, and a Blind Spot Indicator (BSI). Additionally, the new TLX will be offered with an adaptive cruise control system equipped with a Low-Speed Follow feature.

Acura plans to offer the new TLX with a choice between two engines. As standard equipment, a new direct-injection, 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine drives the car's front wheels through an 8-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT). Acura promises that the DCT will provide quick, smooth gear changes and will seamlessly match revs when downshifting.

A direct-injection, 3.5-liter V-6 engine with fuel-saving Variable Cylinder Management technology and a new 9-speed automatic transmission is available, and required if the buyer wants Acura's next-generation version of its Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive (SH-AWD) system. The optional SH-AWD is lighter than before, and employs new torque-vectoring technology. Front-drive versions of the Acura TLX come standard with a Precision All-Wheel Steer (P-AWS) system.

All versions of the new Acura TLX are equipped with an Integrated Dynamics System (IDS). The IDS adjusts the electric steering, throttle response, transmission shift mapping, SH-AWD system, and P-AWS system to one of four settings: Econ, Normal, Sport, or Sport+.

Designed, engineered, and built in the United States, the 2015 Acura TLX is claimed to also demonstrate significant improvement in terms of interior noise reduction. Shoppers can find out for themselves once the car goes on sale in the summer of 2014. Final specifications and pricing will be available closer to that date.

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