When I reviewed a FWD V6 TLX earlier this year, I said I didn’t want one. The AWD version is much better though, and I’d consider bringing it home.
I was very surprised to get an AWD TLX as a loaner, as it retails for $42,000, but I was pleasantly surprised with both the car itself and its performance. In March I mentioned the FWD version didn’t drive as well as my TSX, Adding the torque vectoring AWD system really helps a lot, as it felt more planted both in corners and taking off. It also shifted more smoothly, a major complaint of mine about the earlier car. I spent two days with it, and put it through several different situations: back roads, city traffic, day, night, auto mode, manual mode, alone, with passengers.
Overall, I enjoyed the TLX this time around, although there were a few annoyances. First and foremost, the driver’s seat and side mirror kept reverting back to their default settings every time I turned the car off and back on. I’m sure there’s a way to fix it (in fact, with the seat, I know there is for sure). Secondly, and I touched on this before, I didn’t like the sound system. The volume knob is tiny and plastic, and feels like it would break easily. The speakers themselves also didn’t sound as good, though I didn’t play with them that much. Still, there may be changes coming in my life that would make it much more of a hassle to continue DDing a manual car, so an AWD TLX may be in my future, albeit almost certainly a pre-facelift version. First, though, I’d like to check out its AWD V6 predecessor, the unloved 4th generation TL, since it has a real shifter and a more usable number of gears (6 vs. the TLX’s 9). So we’ll see.