Finishing School: Acura Asks NSX to Share Its Toys

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
finishing school acura asks nsx to share its toys

Deep within the wild jungle that is Ohio sits a facility in Marysville called the Performance Manufacturing Center. Right now, it’s responsible for crafting examples of Acura’s halo car, the NSX. Soon, however, it’ll also be hucking out hand-crafted copies of the company’s midsize TLX sedan.

As a limited-production car limited to 360 examples, the 2020 Acura TLX PMC Edition will be built by the same master technicians who assemble the NSX. Hey, everyone has to share their toys eventually, right?

Eagle-eyed spotters will be able to determine a PMC Edition from a workaday TLX thanks primarily thanks to its Valencia Red Pearl paintwork. Applied in the factory’s paint facility, which Acura describes as “bespoke,” this shade features nano-pigment technology that produces a high color saturation and deep contrast, which all apparently makes for an eye-popping hue. Total time to apply this paint, including curing, is five days.

The PMC Edition assembly process begins with the delivery of the body-in-white from the main TLX production facility. Once that five-day paint process is finished, PMC techs begin hand assembly, starting with the installation of drivetrain, chassis components, and electronics. Unique 19-inch wheels and exterior trim are also part of the deal. Finally, the PMC Edition is given a unique interior before undergoing the same quality control process as an NSX.

It’ll be fitted with the 290 horsepower 3.5L direct-injection V6 and nine-speed automatic, if you’re wondering. All-wheel drive is part of the deal, too.

If all that seems like a lot of work for a sedan, especially one in a world gone crazy for crossovers, you’re right. However, if Acura has the capacity at PMC – and this program suggests that they do – they might as well utilize it, rather than have those specialized techs sitting around twiddling their thumbs or whatever it is they do on downtime. In case you’re wondering, NSX sales have bounced from 269 in 2016, 581 in 2017, and 170 last year. A total of 79 have been moved so far in 2019.

The TLX PMC Edition combines the kit of a range-topping Advance trim with the sporty character of an A-Line, all of which sounds like a good combination that probably should have been offered in the first place, hand-assembled or not. Until now, buyers had to choose one or the other. That paint is exclusive to the PMC Edition, as is the body-colored grille surround and its wheels. Leather seats with Alcantara inserts and red stitching will be found inside, along with the A-Spec specific steering wheel. Truth be told, your author thinks this is a very good looking car, haters be damned.

Price? Around $50,000, which compares favorably to an V6 AWD A-Spec that retails for $45,200. Given this car’s paintwork and Advance Package kit, which would cost about an extra thousand bucks but delete the A-Specs snazzy styling touches, that’s not unreasonable.

Whether you think a midsize sedan from Acura is worth fifty large is up to you.

[Images: Acura]

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  • Cimarron typeR Cimarron typeR on Apr 12, 2019

    the problem with Acuras now, I don't think any of their current products are purchased by people who really wanted one in the 1st place. The TLX dude really wants an A4. The RDX wants an X3/Q5/GLC. The MDX gal wants a Q7.The ILX person- well they're dad bought it for them. But when these folks can afford to upgrade, they'll be running to the Euros.And when Genesis comes out with their SUV lineup , Acura will fall down another rung.The only reason they haven't fallen further is because Nissan is crumbling. There was a time when this brand was aspirational. Now its transitional.

    • See 1 previous
    • TMA1 TMA1 on Apr 12, 2019

      The only Acura owner I know started out at the Audi store, looking for an A4. When they wouldn't deal on a lease, he headed to Acura and settled on a 4-cylinder TLX. He's a bit of a skinflint. Perfect customer for Acura.

  • Cimarron typeR Cimarron typeR on Apr 12, 2019

    I would've said the same thing until I test drove a work mate's Stinger GT2. He said G70s were back ordered and were getting sticker price. This is without even having stand alone dealerships yet here in KC.

  • Tassos This is yesterday;s news, or even the day before. I reported it here yesterday, and commented on it. Do wake up.
  • 2ACL As far as manufacturers with US operations go? Current Focus or Fiesta. Honda e.As for those with no US operations, I've been intrigued by the Peugeot 508 Sport Engineered and Vauxhall Corsa Electric.
  • Tassos SNAAB shot itself in the foot when it BASTARDIZED its unique brand by BADGE ENGINEERING its vehicles with GOD DAMNED GM, OPEL, CHEVY, LANCIA and who knows what other automotive RIFF RAFF. I know of no Saab Enthusiast (they do exist) who felt sorry when the stupid maker went BANKRUPT.
  • 28-Cars-Later Example is located in Coldwater Michigan, so..." needs work -- including new brakes."Brakes, brake lines, probably fuel lines. Probably should hit the master cylinder too unless there are seal only kits for it."It has an automatic transmission."Likely needs a new one of those as well."an exhaust leak"Add an exhaust to the list."an inaccurate speedo."Wow and TMU to boot!These days five to six bills isn't too horrible but this example could turn into a headache really quick due to parts availability. The right buyer for this is a small time tradesman, the HVAC guy who was just leaving my house is rolling a late P80 Volvo 850 sedan in manual which he treats like a truck. Said he'd love a wagon if he ever came across one... if you're local to Coldwater Michigan this is a nice work beater. Annual inspection/registration tax probably costs nearly as much as the car.
  • 2ACL Amazing price, but that's (IMO) a reflection of the interest in an old 2.0T repmobile made interesting only by being a wagon. The Epsilon 9-3 was a sanitized take on the Saab formula. That's not to say it lacks interesting variants, but this isn't one of them. If it had a stick, maybe. But this generation's automatics are sealed and known to become temperamental if not serviced. If the owner can't provide proof of regular servicing, run.