Acura SLX Origins
Cosmetically, the differences between the Acura SLX and the Isuzu Trooper include a different grille and wheels: both the interior and exterior trim show minor differences. Several more luxury features come with the SLX than with the Isuzu Trooper, demonstrating an effort to make the SUV fit in with the Acura brand. With this model, Acura aims to create an SUV that appeals to the luxury crowd, so the changes made to the Trooper make the Acura SLX look more stylish.
Consumer Reports issued a report on the safety of the Isuzu Trooper from 1995 to 1997, which also includes the 1996 and 1997 model years for the Acura SLX. During the testing, Consumer Reports found that these SUVs tend to roll easier than their competitors. As such, Consumer Reports rated both the Trooper and the SLX unacceptable due to their poor safety records. The report has since been proven false, yet it did damage the sales of both models. Acura discontinued the SLX in 1999, citing poor sales as its reason.About the Acura SLX
The size and dimensions of the Acura SLX make it a popular choice for consumers who want an SUV but do not have an interest in taking it off-road. Passenger comfort and plenty of cargo room make the Acura SLX one of the roomiest SUVs in its class. The tall build of the Acura SLX ensures plenty of head room both in the front and back of the vehicle; it also allows for taller windows, which improve visibility. The back seat can comfortably seat three adults. Instead of a hatch-style rear opening, the SLX comes equipped with a set of dual swing-out rear doors. The doors have a 70/30-split to allow easier opening and loading/unloading of cargo. However, the Acura SLX's tall wheelbase causes some passengers difficulty when entering and exiting the vehicle.
Unfortunately, these features do not make the SLX stand out from its competition. In fact, its poor fuel economy and bad press hindered sales of the vehicle. Within the same price range, the Acura SLX competed against the Lincoln Navigator and the GMC Yukon, as well as the Ford Expedition and the Chevrolet Tahoe, which sold for significantly lower prices.Acura SLX Features
Initially, Acura offered the SLX as either the base-level model or with a premium package added. Anti-lock brakes, air-conditioning, a six-speaker audio system, and power windows and locks come standard on all models. When choosing the premium package, customers enjoy leather upholstery, heated and power front seats, and a moonroof.
In 1997, the power moonroof became a standard feature on all models. With the 1998 refresh, the premium package was discontinued and several of the features became standard on the SLX. At the same time, Acura restyled the front end, upgraded the engine, and made several other changes to the SLX, making it similar to the Isuzu Trooper.
While the Isuzu Trooper comes with either a manual or an automatic transmission, the SLX only offers an automatic transmission. The first version of the Acura SLX contains a 190 horsepower, 3.2-liter V-6 engine, which Acura upgraded to a 3.5-liter V-6 engine, rated at 215 horsepower, in 1998.
The Acura SLX is not a light vehicle. Common complaints with the first version relate to the sluggish engine, which particularly lags during acceleration. Also, while braking is good, it can take a considerable distance for the vehicle to completely stop.
The Acura SLX has four-wheel drive, and its drivers can switch between two- and four-wheel drive at speeds up to 60 mph.