For the new model year, Acura’s flagship receives a new exterior and interior design and standard 10-speed automatic transmission. The slightly-less-sedate 2018 Acura RLX arrives in dealerships this week starting from $55,865, up $450 from last year.
Starting prices also increased for the more powerful RLX Sport Hybrid. These models cost $62,865 compared to $60,915 from last year. However, Acura is now offering the Advance package as standard equipment.
Now, Sport Hybrid customers receive a free upgraded Krell audio system with 14 speakers, heated and ventilated front seats, heated outboard rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and other features. When adding in all these extras, buyers save $4,050 compared to the 2017 Sport Hybrid model equipped with the Advance package.
All RLX models feature Acura’s suite of safety technologies, including adaptive cruise control with low speed follow, collision mitigation braking, and lane keep assist. New for 2018, Traffic Jam Assist joins the package. The feature works to keep the vehicle centered in its lane and at a set distance from the vehicle ahead.
For 2018, the RLX receives a new diamond pentagon grille that brings the flagship model in line with other new products from Acura. The automaker also redesigned the hood and wheels, also adding exposed dual exhaust finishers and a gloss black rear diffuser.
Six new paint colors add a bit of spice to a previously mute color line, especially Brilliant Red Metallic. Inside the cabin, the RLX features a new Espresso interior color option and redesigned Milano leather seats with high-contrast stitching.
The RLX comes standard with a 3.5-liter V-6 making 310 hp and 272 lb-ft of torque. A new 10-speed automatic transmission replaces the old six-speed. Sport Hybrids, capable of all-wheel drive, make 377 hp and 341 lb-ft of torque thanks to a V-6 engine paired with three electric motors.