Acura will roll out a refreshed 2018 RLX sedan during the Monterey Car Week that incorporates similar changes made to the smaller TLX sedan and MDX crossover SUV. Chief among the changes is the new signature diamond pentagon grille design which is incorporated into a new front clip that features a more sculpted hood surface. Other upgrades include new wheel designs, LED taillights, dual exhaust tips and a gloss black rear diffuser.

As the division’s flagship sedan, the 2018 Acura RLX Sport Hybrid is equipped with a 3-motor hybrid powertrain that incorporates a 3.5-liter V6 to put out a combined 377 horsepower driving all four wheels. This Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system is similar to the hybrid setup used in the NSX supercar. The standard RLX drives the front wheels with a 310-horsepower 3.5-liter V6, which is now mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Those models also benefit from rear-wheel steering to sharpen handling and improve the vehicle’s low speed maneuverability.

“This redesign of the 2018 Acura RLX is transformational, creating road presence and styling that better reflect underlying performance capabilities of the vehicle,” said Jon Ikeda, Acura vice president and general manager.

Also: Get your first look at the new and redesigned cars of 2018

New Traffic Jam Assist

In addition to a high level of standard equipment (the Sport Hybrid includes premium Krell Audio, surround view camera, heated/ventilated front seats for starters), the RLX also benefits from the AcuraWatch suite of driver assists. The newest feature is Traffic Jam Assist that works in conjunction with the adaptive cruise control’s low-speed follow function to keep the car in its lane and at a safe distance from the vehicle in front. The other driver assists in AcuraWatch include lane keeping and departure warning, forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking.

The 2018 Acura RLX will be offered in three new colors and has upgraded cabin materials and touchpoints, including redesigned seats with contrast piping and stitching and a new Espresso color scheme. Pricing and the official on-sale date will be announced later.

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