2019 Acura TLX Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Fuel system, brakes, electrical and engine issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

By Brian Jones | Updated on

By Brian Jones | Updated on

The 2019 Acura TLX is not a low-budget vehicle. Discerning customers purchase this model because it’s supposed to be top of the line. Even the automaker claims that the newest lineup offers “performance at its core,” but current drivers aren’t sure what’s keeping this car going. It suffers from electrical system glitches, engine failure, fuel system malfunctions and defective service brakes.

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NHTSA Complaints for the 2019 Acura TLX

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Engine
8
Fuel/propulsion System
6
Power Train
4
Electrical System
4
Unknown Or Other
3
Service Brakes
3
Structure:body
2
Vehicle Speed Control
2
Power Train:automatic Transmission
1
Fuel System, Gasoline
1

Problems with the Electrical System

In today’s modern vehicle, the electrical system is responsible for running just about everything. When something fails, as it is with this Acura model, customers get frustrated and give up on the brand.

That’s what this Cars.com review discusses. “Car is comfortable and rides nice-BUT technology/electronics totally unreliable! Rearview camera stays on in drive. Nav system constantly states ‘device is not supported.’ Fuel low indicator light stays on after putting gas in tank. Phone does not turn on when you hit answer- have to say hello twice. Nav buttons not responsive- home buttons and speak buttons often do not work. Dealer cannot find anything or reproduce???!!! A lot of B.S — son has same car and same problems. Have owned a total of 8-10 Acuras- this is the worst.”

It looks like this loyal customer is about to choose a different brand to trust. Acura is fully aware that there are issues and even released Service Bulletin #BBMV191201 that talks about clients’ concerns with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay that won’t answer incoming calls. Since this is considered to be a basic function in many cars these days, it’s unheard of that a luxury model would suffer from such problems without a resolution. Maybe the tagline should be “lackluster performance at its core.”

Problems with the Engine

The engine is probably the most important component, alongside the transmission. Yet, Acura didn’t even get this part right when producing the TLX.

Just look at this NHTSA review. “I live in Colorado and use paddle down shift to gear down for slowing on declines. When I do that, the car accelerates for a few seconds before slowing down. This is a very dangerous situation because you believe you are slowing to avoid running into the car in front and instead you are increasing speed toward the back of the car in front. Acura Customer Service says that this is the way the car is designed, but does not defend the logic of that design. I cannot believe that this has not caused serious situations and accidents.”

While this particular situation isn’t mentioned by the automaker, there is an engine-related recall that could be more dangerous. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V298000 relates to almost 100,000 vehicles and states that the timing belt teeth could separate on their own, causing the engine to stall in the middle of the road. Whether the TLX is stopping or going faster on its own, it’s clear that this vehicle is ready to get into an accident. At the core, it’s possible it’s actually just a lemon.

Problems with the Fuel System

The 2019 Acura TLX also seems to be having a lot of trouble with the fuel system. Complaints abound on popular sites.

Here’s one from the NHTSA website. “2019 Acura TLX 2.4L. Purchased brand new less than a month ago with less than 900 miles on the vehicle. Sudden emissions problem and parking brake, Check Engine Light flashing after vehicle has been sitting/parked. This has happened repeatedly and seems to be a known problem to Acura which the dealer does not know how to repair. When dealer checks problem, it shows a problem code indicating emissions leak but after testing, nothing can be found.”

It doesn’t take long to figure out where the fuel system problems are stemming from. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V0600000 discusses a recall affecting more than 400,000 vehicles. It seems that the 3.5L V6 engines allow the fuel particulates to adhere to the fuel pump components, leading to a reduction in performance and causing an engine stalling situation. Again, this defect leaves the TLX vulnerable to an accident, especially if it stalls in the middle of the highway. Is there any part of this vehicle that wants to go? It would appear that it would be happier to sit still and look pretty.

Problems with the Brakes

Rounding out the list, a look at the service brakes on the TLX shows just as many concerns as the other major systems.

Read one more NHTSA complaint. “I was driving on a residential street approximately 10 mph and turned into a driveway. There was another vehicle parked ahead. I stopped hard on my brakes but my car didn’t stop and hit the parked car. As it happened so quickly, I must have turned the steering wheel, continued to press on the brakes but ended up also hitting a building.”

If this was one instance, it could be blown off as driver error, but that’s not the case. In fact, numerous complaints across the web point to a major braking defect on this Acura model, yet the automaker hasn’t taken any steps to address it. Instead, the vehicle is left to continue running into objects when it won’t stop as intended. There aren’t even any service bulletins discussing possible brake failure. Is Acura trying to hide the issues or simply worried about its high-performance reputation? At this point, it’s clear that this model can only be described one way – rotten to the core.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Acura pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.

Complaint Data

CategoryEngine
DateNov 23, 2022
StateNY
Description
The car does not restart after it has turned off during an idle stop. This is part of the start/stop system. The stop/start feature will leave you stranded at stoplights due to a failure to restart the car. To restart, you must put the car in park mode and hit the start/stop button at least twice to turn it off, then turn on the car. This causes some panic when you get into the situation, as it is not the expected behavior. For people who are unaware can be put in a very challenging situation. This has happened multiple times in the past few months.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateAug 23, 2022
StateWA
Description
Stopped at red light and car would not restart after the auto idle turn off function had engaged. All lights on dash flashed and car kept going into neutral. Car would not restart for nearly 10 minutes and I was left stranded in an incredibly busy intersection with cars flying around me honking and yelling. I could have been killed as well as the man who stopped to help me. Incredibly angry to call my local acura dealership and find out that this is a known problem. Makes me sick to think how many lives are in danger and no actual recall has been done to my knowledge.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateAug 02, 2022
StateMD
Description
Vehicle failed md emissions inspection 3 times in a row because obd computer could not communicate.
CategoryEngine
DateJun 08, 2022
StateGA
Description
The auto start stop feature failed to start vehicle in 3 different occasions, leading to a traffic jam every time and vehicles behind me almost hitting me because they thought I will be moving with traffic, still waiting on acura for appointment to bring vehicle
CategoryPower Train:automatic Transmission
DateMay 16, 2022
StateTX
Description
The contact owns a 2019 acura tlx. The contact stated while driving approximately 45-50 mph, the vehicle inadvertently shifted into neutral causing the vehicle to slow down and stop in traffic. The contact was able to pull over and call a tow truck to take the vehicle to the dealer. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The contact stated that the emissions warning light was illuminated. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 45,000.
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateMar 14, 2022
StateMD
Description
Nhtsa recall number:19v-060 appears to be exactly what is going on with my vehicle. I was broke down on the side of the road with warning lights on my dashboard. After having it towed to my mechanic they were able to identify the issue is related to the fuel pump. I looked up issues with my 2019 acura tlx and fuel pumps and found that there is a recall. Only my vin does not qualify for the recall. However, the issue described in the recall is exactly what's going on with my tlx. I was lucky enough not to have an accident but I very well could of if I had not pulled off the highway!
CategoryStructure:body
DateDec 06, 2021
StateCA
Description
My hood floats and rattles at freeway speeds. It is concerning in that other honda vehicles also exhibit the same symptom and are now being recalled for hoods opening unexpectedly due to structure issues.
CategoryEngine, Fuel/propulsion System
DateOct 21, 2021
StateMD
Description
My acura tlx engine drive reduced completely on the highway, went going 60 to 25 roughly up to date maintenance 100% oil life and now im concern that's my vechile has been manufactured failed. Since I purchased my vehicle my seat beats get stuck unable to clip belt. My car came with speakers not working dealer tried to tell me I was crazy, until the speaker system was check yess sure enough no speaker sound at all. In my main base front center speaker ( verybig deal) all of this last friday my tlx aspec 3. 5v6 has been making noise and running at a very low reduced speed for no apparent reason while flashing a engine sign. Flash blank with warning engine. This event has put me at risk of safety and protection of customer purchase violations as I developed change in my daily life being blind sided about my acura tlx car safety and manufacturing issues. I complaint about this after purchase of vechile and they fixed the repair at no charge. But who wants they car ripped apart never in same fresh condition as purchase. I now receive bends in dash board related to speaking replacements documented in acura profile. Yes it hasn't been my car has been diagnostic and going for rare down of engine components at the acura dealer. This is outrageous and so scary knowing I have too been dealt a bad tlx.
CategoryFuel System, Gasoline
DateAug 23, 2021
StateNY
Description
The contact owns a 2019 acura tlx. The contact stated that while driving 40 mph, the parking assist fault warning light illuminated, and the emergency automatic braking system engaged. The contact attempted to turn off and restart the vehicle however, the vehicle failed to engage properly. The contact waited for approximately 2 hours after contacting a towing company to tow her vehicle. The vehicle resumed normal operation. The contact mentioned that the gear failed to shift from drive to reverse. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the fuel fuller system was faulty and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired however, the failure recurred two additional times. The contact mentioned that she received notification of nhtsa campaign number: 21v215000 (fuel system, gasoline) in july and had the recall repair performed. The failure mileage was approximately 10,000.
CategoryEngine
DateAug 02, 2021
StateNJ
Description
Idle stop system works properly 99. 9% of the time. However, three times in the last 12 months, I was stopped at a light and when I took my foot off the brake the car did not start. I tried to re-start, but it did not start immediately, took about 10 to 20 seconds to start. In each of the cases, I was able to restart just not right away. These three instances were about four months or so apart. The system was checked by acura service twice, and no issues found.
CategoryPower Train
DateMay 19, 2021
StateWA
Description
I was pulling on to interstate 5 when attempting lane change I accelerated with no success. The gas pedal was pressed harder and still no acceleration and that went on for at least 3 to 4 seconds. This happens to me every day. I have tried different brands of fuel but always premium and that has made no changes. The vehicle had a fuel system recall which made little if any improvement when it was performed over a year ago.
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateFeb 10, 2021
StateMD
Description
The vehicle hesitates to accelerate while in motion and from a stopped position. The hesitation occurs during gradual and immediate acceleration. You can hear the hesitation in the engine. Car has less than 10k miles at the time of this submission.
CategoryElectrical System
DateNov 02, 2020
StateMD
Description
My car was parked came out to start it and the car wouldn't start just keeps flickering the lights
CategoryFuel/propulsion System, Power Train
DateOct 11, 2020
StateWA
Description
When I back out of somewhere and select `drive' on the transmission there is a delay of 2 seconds to 5 seconds before it engages in 'drive' . That is a long time when a person is pulling out on an arterial. The acceleration iwhen in 'drive' is not consistent with a similar hesitation. From the time the accelerator has been pressed it could be 2 to 5 seconds before it begins to move. It has been terrifying when merging on to the freeway or simply just pulling out on any roadway. The transmission seems sluggish when going from drive to reverse also but that is not going to cause an accident like not being able go forward is. This had a recall on fuel pump programming and that made little or no improvement. I have acura invoices and film that I have taken on another device that can be provided.
CategoryEngine
DateMay 05, 2020
StateCA
Description
I stopped(stationary) at a light to make a left turn into the freeway. While stationary the engine went into automatic idle stop to save gas and once the light turn green the car was not able to turn on at all and had to call aaa. It was giving me error messages in regards fuel pump and brake system etc. In the dash. *tr
CategoryService Brakes
DateFeb 01, 2020
StateMA
Description
I was entering a left-hand turn lane, with a red light. The third-party investigation showed I entered the lane at 35mp. I started gentle breaking and when there was no response, I pushed the brake hard and to the floor. I did not feel the car decelerate but the investigation shows that braked for 7 seconds plus and hit the last car in line at about 20mph. The investigator was unable to recreate the circumstances.
CategoryElectrical System
DateJan 16, 2020
StateNY
Description
Front sensor warning repeatedly goes off when stopped whenever it rains. It will continue to alert when going from a full stop to moving for several seconds and stop. It will restart the alert once the car comes to a full stop again. This repeated erroneous sensor alert serves as a major safety issue as it serves as a constant and dangerous distraction to the driver. Each time the alert goes off it drives your eyes off the road and onto the alert on the dashboard creating the potential for involvement in accidents. This issue was noticed on delivery of the new leased vehicle. At that time it was the left front sensor which had the same issue. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer 3 separate times where the left front sensor was readjusted then on the next visit replaced. Problem continued, on the third visit the entire front end of the car was removed and done which resolved the left front sensor but resulted in the continuous front center sensor alerting. Valley stream acura has failed to address this as a safety issue and has offered no resolution to the problem.
CategoryService Brakes, Vehicle Speed Control
DateDec 30, 2019
StateCA
Description
I was driving on a residential street approx. 10 mph and turned into a driveway. There was another vehicle parked ahead. I stopped hard on my brakes but my car didn't stop and hit the parked car. As it happened so quickly, I must have turned the steering wheel, continued to press on the brakes but ended up also hitting a building.
CategoryService Brakes, Structure:body
DateDec 07, 2019
StateMA
Description
The car did not brake when approaching a stoplight. Crashed into the last car in line. Investigation showed I started braking at 35 mph for 7+ seconds, before the crash. Two lines in both directions, the speed limit was 40 mph.
CategoryElectrical System, Fuel/propulsion System
DateNov 22, 2019
StateTX
Description
Acura tlx, 2019, fuel system failed, shifted gears on its own and I had to immediately die to safety concerns. This issue first appears in september 2019, with 5k miles. Ok november 10,2019, tlx display boards for (navigation and temperature adjustments, use of phone and radio would cycle down on it own. This happened repeatedly while the car is in drive or park. It causes a huge distraction while driving or going into reverse because you cannot utilize your back-up camera, adjust the temperature and cause a major distraction while driving. I've reported the issue to acura advised me on what steps I should take to self diagnose this. This automobile is not safe to drive. The dealership has provided little to no updates on what exactly is wrong and the automobile has been in their possession for over a week.
CategoryElectrical System, Engine
DateSep 16, 2019
StateTX
Description
Vehicle turns itself off after backing in and sitting idle for 30 - 60 seconds
CategorySuspension
DateAug 27, 2019
StateFL
Description
Tl* the contact owns a 2019 acura tlx. While driving 50 mph, the contact heard an abnormal wiping noise and the vehicle shook violently when the accelerator pedal was depressed. The shaking stopped when the brakes were applied. The vehicle was taken to napleton's palm beach acura (6870 okeechobee blvd, west palm beach, fl 33411, (888) 980-7593) to be diagnosed, but the cause of the failure could not be determined. The vehicle was not repaired and the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 200.
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateJul 25, 2019
StateCA
Description
2019 acura tlx 2. 4l. Purchased brand new less than a month ago with less than 900 miles on the vehicle. Sudden emissions problem and parking brake check engine lights flashing after vehicle has been sitting/parked. This has happened repeatedly and seems to be a known problem to acura which the dealer does not know how to repair. When dealer checks problem it shows a problem code indicating emissions leak but after testing nothing can be found.
CategoryEngine, Power Train, Unknown Or Other
DateJun 23, 2019
StateNH
Description
My car stalled for the second time on june 12, 2019. First time was march 31, 2019. Since I already got the recall notice (nhtsa recall 19v-060) before the first time, I took it to the dealer and they said they fixed the issue by doing a software update. However, even after the software update, it stalled again on june 12th, 2019. It looks like either a new issue or their software update did not fix it. There is also a possibility of the updated software having new bugs. In my car, the issue could be with the computer, or other electronics or mechanical defects which acura has not been able to find out during my several visits to their service. This is because most or all features of the car have been malfunctioning eversince I leased it. Another big issue is, apparently, the car computer did not record the stalling that happened on march 31st. Therefore, it looks like my car has a bigger issue than just software. The car (2019 acura tlx) has numerous issues ever since I leased it in september 2018 and they all continue. I have taken it to the dealer several times and none of the issues had been fixed. All features on the car malfunction and cause distraction while driving. The safety features not only don't serve the purpose of safety, but malfunction instead causing distraction and are very unsafe. The car would have been safer without these malfunctioning safety features. Acura has not fixed any of these malfunctions, although I have visited the dealer several times. To top that the car stalled twice which is even more serious. Although, my appointment is for 6/24/19 (I could not get an earlier one since they don't seem to take it seriously), the customer service rep called me a few days after scheduling it and said she did not expect it to help. I will still keep the appointment, even though the rep indicated this stalling will be dismissed as nothing.
CategoryEngine, Power Train, Vehicle Speed Control
DateApr 24, 2019
StateCO
Description
I live in colorado and use paddle down shift to gear down for slowing on declines. When I do that, the car acelerares for a few seconds before slowing down. This is a very dangerous situation because you believe you are slowing to avoid running into the car in front and instead you increasing speed toward the back of the car in front. Acura customer service say that is the way the car is designed, but does not defend the logic of that design. I can not believe that this has not caused serious situations and accidents.

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Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 20 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

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