The redesigned 2021 Acura TLX earned a Top Safety Pick+ from the IIHS, which is the non-profit safety organization's highest honor. The IIHS cited "Good" ratings on all six crash tests, and "Superior" ratings for the mid-size sedan's ability to avoid or mitigate a crash.
The 2021 Acura TLX got longer, lower, and wider this year, and the wheelbase stretched to push the wheels to the corners. It's no longer based on the Honda Accord, though the 2021 Accord also won a TSP+ award. The new platform helped the TLX earn top marks on the driver- and passenger-side small frontal overlap tests, which the old TLX had earned only an "Acceptable" rating. The insurance industry-funded IIHS said injuries to the right leg of the driver remained likely in the 2021 TLX, based on dummy reactions to the driver-side small overlap crash test.
With its bundle of standard safety features, the 2021 Acura TLX avoids crashes as well as it withstands them. The "Superior" rating for its automatic emergency braking system means that at speeds of both 12 mph and 25 mph, the TLX automatically stopped to avoid crashes with other vehicles and pedestrians. Other driver assistance features that come standard on the 2021 TLX are active lane control, adaptive cruise control, a driver-attention monitor, and automatic high beams. Options include blind-spot monitors, rear cross-traffic alerts, and front and rear parking sensors.
The standard LED headlights earned "Good" ratings in their ability to project both front and side illumination at far distances on straightaways and curves to complete the safety sweep for the TLX. Fortunately for other vehicles, the IIHS said the headlights didn't exceed glare limits.
Other mid-size sedans that won a TSP+ award include the 2021 Mazda 6, 2021 Nissan Altima and Maxima, 2021 Subaru Legacy, and 2021 Toyota Camry. For luxury sedans, the 2021 Lexus ES, 2021 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, 2020 Tesla Model 3, and 2021 Volvo S60 join the TLX with TSP+ honors.