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Parks McCants's picture

Acura TLX Jewel Eye LED Headlights turn dark into daylight

In a recent night-driving road test of 2015 TLX, Torque News-Acura was astounded by the near-day-light illumination of Acura's latest Jewel Eye LED 5 projector beam headlamp technology. We believe Jewel Eye is the white-brightest and safest night-driving illumination, day-time running light assesory in the automotive world today.

In a recent night-driving road test of 2015 TLX, Torque News-Acura was astounded by the near-day-light illumination of Acura's latest Jewel Eye LED 5 projector beam headlamp technology. We believe them to be the best in the business.

The drive

One has to experience driving 2015 Acura TLX in the dark, to fully appreciate the superior headlamp array that is Acura "Jewel Eye" LED 5 beam technology. We've never experienced anything quite like it in any other production car or light truck. Jewel Eye headlamps, as standard featured throughout the Acura sedan lineup are stunning.

The Jewel Eye benefit to the night driver is a brighter, whiter and wider field of vision, with a 200 millisecond quicker illumination of distant road and side of the road objects. At 60 mph that's 17 seconds quicker than conventional headlights.

Acura puts it this way

Stunning, highly illuminating Jewel Eye® LED headlights are standard equipment on all TLX models. Five LEDs per side provide a whiter, brighter beam, use less energy and last significantly longer than HID or traditional halogen headlights.

On low beam, the three outer LEDs on each light reveal the road more clearly without blinding oncoming traffic. The lenses are precisely aimed, yet focus the LED beam over a longer, wider area.

Engaging the high beams adds the two inner LEDs, illuminating distant objects 200 milliseconds sooner than conventional lights. At 60 mph, 200 milliseconds is over 17 feet.

All LED lenses can act as daytime running lights, giving the TLX a distinctive light signature even in bright sunlight.

When the lights are turned off, reflective surfaces behind the lenses contribute to the bright, jewel-like appearance, says Acura engineering.

We like Acura's state of the art while-light LED headlights for near future offerings as found on 2016 MDX. And yes, Jewel Eye headlamp technology will be featured on 2016 Acura NSX Hybrid Supercar when released for sale in the fall of 2015; we look forward to driving it!

Enjoy the video. We appreciate you viewing our TLX video and always welcome your thought provoking commentary.

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Comments

Howdy Parks and good day to you. Another benefit from LED lighting, that is not often related, is that they run significantly cooler. The benefit in an Auto application is that the lenses should hold up better and not cloud up as quickly over time because you won't be, "cooking" bugs and stuff onto the lenses that are picked up while driving. Aside from the fact they just look, "Cool". Did somebody say, "relevant", (keep flogging that horse). Be well, all best.
Welcome JeffS. Good point. We just refinished the lenses on the ol' SUV. like you said, they do look "Cool." As to the horse? Hopefully that horse isn't close to dead! Take care!
Actually, over at Honda/Acura the horse is alive and well, and just itching to run. Looks like the, "Derby" is getting interesting. New MDX, RDX, RLX, TLX, ILX, CR-V, Pilot and the New NSX, HR-V and Civic about to be released, unheard of from any Auto mfg. I know of, (the extensive reboot of nearly the entire line, in such a short period of time). Honda has been burning the midnight oil and it looks like a, "Win, Place and Show Trifecta" to me. Your countdown to, "Blast off" in the NSX is underway I'm sure, gonna give new meaning to the term, "Rocket man".
Thanks for that video! I live in the Appalachian mountains. My wife and I bought a 2016 Acura MDX last week, our first. We are finding that, when we drive down a hill, the jewel eye lights create the visual sensation of a distinct straight black line across the windshield. The sharper the descent, the lower the line between the lighted area and the darkness above, ie the "black line." It is scary how low it can go. We had to cut the high beams on several times whether oncoming traffic was coming or not in order to see adequately. Do you have any experience or reports on hilly terrain with the jewel eye?
Welcome JohnW. Interestingly enough I did experience what you refer to as the " black line." I didn't think anything off it. Although I can see how it could be a bit disconcerting under some driving conditions. What I personally find beneficial is the width of the beam.For the first time, I can see deer clearly grazing in the dark on the side of the road, very helpful where I live, Wishing you safe and trouble-free driving.
I agree with you completely, JohnW. I just HATE the "black line" effect of the headllghts on my 2014 MDX. My wife and I live in Atlanta but have a little cabin in the hills of North Georgia, and when we're up there, driving on the hills can be really frightening. Uphill is fine; downhill can be really scary. Our experience echos yours -- we've had to switch to high beams on numerous occasions when going downhill to have ANY forward field of vision. If I could switch these "jewel eyes" for something that did not produce that "black line" effect I'd do it in an instant.
Welcome Rex. Acura may have a fix for this. Please check in with your dealership of choice and let our readers know what you discover. You may be able to switch out to a more conventional beam. Take care.
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the TLX LED nighttime light rating a mediocre. See their report and the measured light throw distance ... generally dangerous performance in my opinion. I had a loaner 2016 TLX for a week and agree the jewel eyes were awful. For folks paying what they do for a brand new TLX this is not something they probably want to hear. For me, every other aspect of the TLX was great.
I didn't have a problem with it. Cheers!
Parks - wow, happy to hear you are happy! Big whoop. I'll defer to IIHS scientific, quantitative analysis any day.
Back at you John! We all have choices when shopping for a car or light truck, over 200 of them. Take care.