$36,547 - $43,663

2017 Acura RLX Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2017 Acura RLX was new.

Scorecard

Performance: 7.3

The 2017 RLX has decent overall performance that should be adequate for most duties. The standard engine offers good power and acceleration, and fuel economy is above average. However, handling is a mixed bag, with ride quality that’s somewhere between stiff and comfortable, and less-than-sporty driving dynamics.

  • "The RLX is relatively nimble and wields enough horsepower to handle everyday tasks with ease. Although it's dynamically competent, others in the segment offer a more engaging driving experience and a wider selection of powertrains." -- Edmunds
  • "Standard, front-wheel-drive (FWD) versions of the 2017 Acura RLX serve up a quiet and comfortable driving experience." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "In short, the RLX is more focused on cush than performance; both it and its passengers will be happiest long before the car's tires start to howl." -- Road and Track (2014)

Acceleration and Power

The 2017 Acura RLX has a standard 310-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The RLX hybrid has the same standard engine and three electric motors, which together produce 377 horsepower. The hybrid also comes with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

According to the EPA, the RLX gets 20 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway, which is good for the class. The hybrid model gets estimates of 29 mpg in the city and 30 on the highway.

The RLX’s standard engine delivers good power, and the automatic transmission translates that to smooth acceleration. Shifts are seamless, and the transmission easily finds the appropriate gear.

  • "The 310-horsepower V6 is strong, and power flows smoothly through this Acura's 6-speed automatic transmission." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The RLX model's electrically assisted power steering feels direct and precise, and the 6-speed automatic transmission is responsive and quick to pick the right gear when extra throttle is administered." -- Autotrader
  • "The RLX combines luxury and performance in a way that makes it an excellent everyday commuter. The powertrains are smooth and tranquil, the transmissions deliver seamless shifts, and sufficient thrust is there when you call." -- Edmunds

Handling and Braking

The RLX delivers a smooth and comfortable ride on most streets, but the stiff suspension results in a rough ride over broken pavement. Steering is precise and the RLX handles somewhat nimbly, but it trails many rivals in pure athleticism. Front-wheel drive is standard and all-wheel drive comes with the hybrid engine.

  • "Over long stretches of paved roadway, the RLX cruises effortlessly, almost serenely, as it absorbs bumps and blemishes and delivers a first-class luxury-car ride. The trick up its sleeve, however, comes when the road begins to twist and wind. Where other luxury cars might wallow, with tires squealing at every turn, the RLX carves through S-shaped asphalt like a scalpel-wielding surgeon who's late for his tee-off time. The RLX model's electrically assisted power steering feels direct and precise, and the 6-speed automatic transmission is responsive and quick to pick the right gear when extra throttle is administered." -- Autotrader
  • "Ride quality is on the firm side in the standard RLX and somewhat softer and more forgiving in the Sport Hybrid, though it will wallow occasionally over some roads. We consider it average for the segment." -- Edmunds
  • "Though relatively nimble, the standard RLX doesn't have the taut dynamics of a BMW, Audi A6 or AMG variant of the Mercedes E-Class." -- Kelley Blue Book

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