2020 Acura RLX vs. 2020 Audi A7

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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The RLX has standard whiplash protection, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the whiplash protection system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The A7 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the RLX and the A7 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras and available around view monitors.

Warranty

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Acura’s powertrain warranty covers the RLX 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Audi covers the A7. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the A7 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

Reliability

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The engines in the RLX have a single overhead cam for simplicity. The engine in the A7 has dual overhead cams, which add to the number of moving parts and the complexity of the cylinder heads.

Engine

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The RLX Sport Hybrid’s standard 3.5 SOHC V6 hybrid produces 42 more horsepower (377 vs. 335) than the A7’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the RLX Sport Hybrid SMG gets better city fuel mileage than the A7 SMG (28 city/29 hwy vs. 22 city/29 hwy).

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the RLX’s fuel efficiency. The A7 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

Transmission

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A ten-speed automatic is standard on the Acura RLX V6, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the A7.

Brakes and Stopping

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The RLX stops shorter than the A7:

RLX

A7

60 to 0 MPH

112 feet

116 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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The RLX’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the A7’s standard 45 series tires.

Chassis

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The Acura RLX may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 50 to 350 pounds less than the Audi A7.

The RLX uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The A7 doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

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The RLX has 7.1 cubic feet more passenger volume than the A7 (102.1 vs. 95).

The RLX has .6 inches more front headroom, 1 inch more front legroom, 2.4 inches more front shoulder room, 1.8 inches more rear legroom and 1.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the A7.

Cargo Capacity

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With its sedan body style, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the RLX offers cargo security. The A7’s hatchback body style, non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Acura service is better than Audi. J.D. Power ranks Acura 6th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 9% lower rating, Audi is ranked 8th.

Ergonomics

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The RLX Sport Hybrid has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The A7 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The RLX’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The A7’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

A power rear sunshade and manual rear side window sunshades are standard in the RLX Sport Hybrid to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The A7 doesn’t offer rear side window sunshades.

Model Availability

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The RLX is available in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. The A7 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the RLX owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the RLX will cost $3400 less than the A7 over a five-year period.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Acura RLX will be $12667 to $14848 less than for the Audi A7.

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