Photo Credit: Jeff Voth

Road Test: 2023 Acura TLX Type S

The TLX from Acura is a sports sedan now in its second generation that is offered in three trims.

The top of those three, the Type S, recently graced my driveway and while I enjoyed the overall driving experience, there are a few things that could use some tweaking.

2023 Acura TLX Type S

Pricing for the TLX starts around $54,700 for the A-Spec trim, and the Type S will run you $64,210.

Powertrain: The Type S is a very powerful sports sedan, propelled by a 3.0-litre turbocharged V6 engine which delivers 355 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque almost effortless.

And the 10-speed automatic transmission does an excellent job of handling all that power, and the Type S features Acura’s SH-AWD system.

2023 Acura TLX Type S

The TLX Type S has an estimated combined fuel efficiency of 11.2 litres of premium fuel per 100 kilometres, but I was not able to come close to that at 12.8 L/100 km.

Exterior: The TLX is a very nice-looking sedan, with defined lines from front to back. The grille is flanked by a nice set of Jewel Eye LED headlights.

The Type S comes with nice 20-inch alloy wheels, with red Brembo Brake calipers peeking through.

2023 Acura TLX Type S

Some black accents on the TLX include the exterior mirror and the spoiler on the trunk lid. The rear also features a nice set of quad round exhaust ports.

The rear styling accentuates the stance of the TLX, which appears wider thanks to the haunches over the rear wheels and the taillights stretched all the way to the outer edge of them.

2023 Acura TLX Type S

Interior:  While I generally like some red accents and touches in a black cabin to add a splash of colour, the TLX Type S goes a little overboard on the red in my opinion. I would have reversed the ration of red/black on the Ultrasuede/leather seating.

That being said, the interior is fairly comfortable, although rear legroom is not the greatest.

The front seats are heated and cooled, and it comes with a heated flat-bottom steering wheel.

I was also not a big fan of the push-button setup for the transmission and its placement dead centre in the console.

Infotainment: The one big negative for me on the TLX is Acura’s insistence on using a touchpad to control the infotainment system. While great in theory, in practice it is sub-optimal. And when used in Apple CarPlay, it’s sometimes downright unusable.

2023 Acura TLX Type S

I hope that Acura has plans to revisit the use of this touchpad for a more intuitive setup.

The lack of touchscreen functionality on the 10.2-inch screen was also a negative for me.

Thankfully, there is some functionality through physical buttons on the steering wheel and next to the touchpad.

The system is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as satellite radio and a Wi-Fi hotspot, as well as wireless device charging.

And for the audiophiles out there, the Type S is equipped with an ELS Studio 3D Premium audio system which has 17 speakers, including a split subwoofer.

Drive: The TLX Type S is a pretty sporty vehicle, and the driver can control just how much of that they want through Acura’s Integrated Dynamic System.

There are five modes on the Type S: Comfort, Normal, Sport, Sport+ and Individual.

While I spent most of my time in Normal mode, Sport, and Sport+ definitely have their appeal – especially when you are on the highway and there’s nothing but clear pavement ahead of you.

The Type S also has a sportier suspension setup that other TLX trims, enhancing the handling of this trim. When combined with the chassis setup, the overall driving experience is enjoyable, although you will feel a lot of the road imperfections inside the cabin.

Conclusion:  The TLX Type S is a stylish sports sedan, with a few foibles that for me make it somewhat less desirable. And that’s a shame because they have nothing to do with the look and performance of the vehicle, but the functionality of the interior controls.

It is also up against some fairly stiff competition in this segment.

2023 Acura TLX Type S
Price as tested: $64,210.00
Freight: $2,595.00
Configuration: Front engine/All-wheel drive
Engine/transmission: 3.0-litre Turbo V6/ 10-speed automatic
Power/torque: 355 horsepower/ 354 lb-ft of torque
Fuel (capacity): Premium (60 L)
Combined fuel economy ratings (L/100 km): 11.2 L/100 km
Observed fuel economy (L/100 km): 12.8 L/100 km
Warranties: 4-years/80,000 km (basic)
Competitors: Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Cadillac CT5, Infiniti Q50, Lexus ES, Mercedes-Benz C-Class
Website: Acura Canada

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