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Behind the Wheel: 2021 Acura TLX Type S

Behind the Wheel: 2021 Acura TLX Type S

There was a time when the Acura badge represented elevated luxury and performance from the legendary house of Honda. While older models, like the Integra, Legend, and original NSX have developed a slight cult obsession, recent models have felt slightly uninspired and bland in comparison. With the 2021 TLX Type S, Acura makes big moves to resurrect its past reputation and deliver us something that’s both luxurious and technically advanced, while simultaneously delivering an exciting performance.

In a few words, mission accomplished! 2021 is a complete, from the ground up, redesign of the 4-door TLX. It’s longer, wider, and in general, much more aggressively styled. Big, lightweight, 20” alloy wheels, with red Brembo brake calipers tucked behind, make a powerful first impression. As do the oh-so-pretty jewel eye LED headlights, gaping front air vents, and large front-mount intercooler. Rounding out the rear, are flared quarter panels, a small black spoiler, and menacing chrome quad exhaust pipes. All of these cosmetic findings are included in the first-ever Type S version of the TLX. This Type S package is the most exciting change of all for 2021.

Some exciting new engine options are available. A 2.0L turbo 4 for your more entry-level models. More notably though, is the 3.0L turbocharged V6 found in the performance-focused Type S model. The resulting thrill ride can be credited to a total system output of 355 hp. Managed by the sporty 10-speed automatic transmission. Accompanying this much more powerful engine in the Type S model is adaptive suspension with extra chassis bracing and a special Sport+ driving mode. These performance enhancements deliver tight, confident handling around corners, satisfying acceleration, and overall great performance.

Once inside, you’ll find beautifully sculpted, bolstered sports seats. Leather-trimmed, with suede inserts and Type S embossed headrests. A race-inspired, flat-bottomed steering wheel further sets the tone like no other single part could. Premium in look and feel. More technologically sophisticated and feature-packed than ever before. With a 17-speaker ELS 3D audio system serving as the delicious-sounding icing on the cake.

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With all these technical and safety features, combined with the driving aide suite of Acura Watch, you start to appreciate the extraordinary bang for your buck. The all-new 2021 Acura TLX Type S brings back what we most loved about the Acura brand. That carefully curated blend of performance, technology, and luxury. Across the line, the TLX promises to deliver all of the above. In Type S trim though, it might be so good, that it develops a small cult following of its very own.

Price as tested: $54,625.00

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