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The FREE Complete Bay Area Auto Enthusiast Guide
PRICEY RLX HYBRID A GOOD MIX OF POWER, LUXURY

By NITISH S. RELE – motoringtampabay@gmail.com
This Acura flagship may not win accolades like its competitors but the ride truly is up to the job of perfectly blending performance and luxury. And with a hybrid power train added to the mix, the RLX becomes more appealing than ever before.
Our all-wheel-drive test car was equipped with a direct-injected 3.5-liter V-6 engine cranking out 377 total horsepower and 341 pounds-feet of torque while mated to a 7-speed auto gearbox. Basically, the RLX hybrid gets three electric motors: a 35-kilowatt (47 hp) up front and two 27-kilowatt (36 hp each) in rear, all of which are powered by a 1.3-kWh, 260-volt lithium-ion battery. When the car is coasting or the brakes are applied, the electric motor functions as a generator, capturing kinetic energy that would normally be lost as heat through the brakes. Instead, it converts the energy into useable electricity for recharging the battery pack.
The aluminum hood meets up with jewel-eye LED headlights, which are flanked by a dark chrome-plated grille and a lower revamped lower bumper fascia. Tech-laden, safety-related features include forward collision and lane departure warning and lane-keep assist (which maintains the car in its path), collision and road departure mitigating systems, blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control and a 360-degree camera.
Standard amenities include 12-way power front seats (heated/cooled), electronic tilt/telescopic steering column, tri-zone auto climate control, HD radio, push-button ignition and shifter, wood/metal trim on doors and console, moon roof and a Krell 14-speaker system. Two large color screens atop each other, a 7-inch and 8-inch, are conveniently located to provide audio, nav, phone, information to the driver.
We averaged around 29 mpg in combined driving (EPA estimates are 30, with 28 city and 32 highway), all of which are creditable. But the sedan comes at a hefty price of $65,000, placing it in the league of top European performers such as Audi, BMW and Porsche.

RLX (AWD, ADVANCE)
Tires: 245/40R19
Wheelbase: 112.2 inches
Length: 196.1 inches
Steering: electric power rack-and-pinion 
Suspension: independent double wishbone front; multilink rear
Fuel capacity: 15.1 gallons
Weight: 4,359 pounds
Web site: www.acura.com

CALLING ALL ACURA DEALERS IN THE WEST CENTRAL AREA: if you would like to be listed here as one of the test-drive dealerships, e-mail us at motoringtampabay@gmail.com