2020 Acura TLX vs. 2019 Lexus GS Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

Your buying experience includes...

business_centerProfessional Staff
account_balanceSimple Financing
local_gas_stationFull Tank of Gas
local_car_washFree Car Wash

Safety

The TLX V6’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The GS Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The TLX V6 offers an optional Surround View Camera System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The GS Series only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the TLX and the GS Series 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, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

There are over 12 percent more Acura dealers than there are Lexus dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the TLX’s warranty.

Engine

The TLX’s optional 3.5 SOHC V6 produces 49 more horsepower (290 vs. 241) and 9 lbs.-ft. more torque (267 vs. 258) than the GS 300’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the TLX gets better fuel mileage than the GS Series:

MPG

TLX

FWD

2.4 DOHC 4-cyl.

23 city/33 hwy

A-Spec 2.4 DOHC 4-cyl.

23 city/32 hwy

3.5 SOHC V6

20 city/31 hwy

A-Spec 3.5 SOHC V6

20 city/30 hwy

AWD

3.5 SOHC V6

20 city/29 hwy

GS Series

RWD

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/32 hwy

F Sport 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/30 hwy

3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/28 hwy

F Sport 3.5 DOHC V6

19 city/27 hwy

AWD

3.5 DOHC V6

19 city/26 hwy

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the TLX V6’s fuel efficiency. The GS Series doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the TLX SH-AWD’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The GS Series doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Acura TLX uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The GS Series requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The TLX has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The GS Series doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Acura TLX V6, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the GS Series.

The TLX offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The GS Series doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the TLX A-Spec’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the GS Series (245/40R19 vs. 235/40R19).

The TLX has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The GS Series doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Chassis

The Acura TLX may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 50 to 200 pounds less than the Lexus GS Series.

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

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the TLX V6 SH-AWD is quieter than the GS 350 (39 vs. 40 dB).

Passenger Space

The TLX has .3 inches more front legroom, .8 inches more front hip room, .2 inches more front shoulder room and .8 inches more rear hip room than the GS Series.

Cargo Capacity

The TLX’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The GS Series doesn’t offer folding rear seats, only a ski pass-through.

Servicing Ease

The TLX has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The GS Series doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

A Maintenance Minder is standard on the TLX to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes, spark plug replacement, air filter replacement, tire rotation, radiator flush, brake pad replacement and transmission fluid replacement based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Lexus doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the GS Series.

Ergonomics

The TLX’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The GS Series’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the TLX owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the TLX will cost $1970 to $7015 less than the GS Series over a five-year period.

The TLX will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the TLX will retain 48.4% to 50.83% of its original price after five years, while the GS Series only retains 40.38% to 44.69%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the TLX is less expensive to operate than the GS Series because typical repairs cost much less on the TLX than the GS Series, including $291 less for a water pump, $3 less for front brake pads, $29 less for a starter, $87 less for fuel injection, $1409 less for a timing belt/chain and $222 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Acura TLX will be $15669 to $24463 less than for the Lexus GS Series.

Recommendations

The Car Book by Jack Gillis recommends the Acura TLX, based on economy, maintenance, safety and complaint levels. The Lexus GS Series isn't recommended.

The Acura TLX outsold the Lexus GS Series by almost five to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

How much is your car worth?

Get the best value for your car from an Asbury dealership.

Featured Videos