A portion of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) exhibit a strength in early word reading referred to as hyperlexia (HPL), yet it remains unclear what mechanisms underlie this strength. Typically developing children (TD) acquire phonological awareness, alphabet knowledge and language skills as precursors to word reading. We compared these skills across English-speaking preschoolers with ASD, both with and without hyperlexia, and TD preschoolers. Findings indicated that the group with both ASD and HPL (ASD + HPL) exhibited advanced word reading and letter naming skills as compared to the other two groups, but did not demonstrate commensurate phonological awareness, letter-sound correspondence, or language skills. Findings support an alternative, non-phonological approach to early word reading in preschoolers with ASD and hyperlexia.