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Acura RL



  • hunter001hunter001 Posts: 851
    I agree that some interior materials are of better quality in the RL as compared to the TL......but realistically speaking, that is the easiest aspect in a car, that a car company can remedy. Exterior looks and quality of interior materials can be changed with minimal engineering.

    Also, could you please explain the "technology that goes into the RL from the F1 Program" that you mentioned ?

    Basically as I understand, the RL uses an old tech non-variable valve timing engine with a 90 degree SOHC configuration, which pretty much explains why Honda is hardpressed to obtain any more HP from the engine. Also, this 90 degree configuration is inherently un-balanced in a V6, and require additional mechanisms to quell the un-balanced vibrations. A 60 degree high tech variable valve timing configuration of engines like the TL/TL-s on the other hand, is naturally more balanced and runs smoother. The 90 degree configuration, incidentally would be ideal in a V8 DEFINITELY NOT in a V6. Some examples of the 90 degree V6 configuration would be the Oldsmobile Aurora V6, where GM wanted to develop the V6 on the same assembly line as their V8 engines, and took the cheap way out (to not have to design 2 entirely different assembly lines) by maintaining the 90 degree configuration of the V8 in their V6.

    Considering the technology in both the TL-s engine and the RL engine, logically I would presume that the "F1 program" has benefitted the TL/TL-s and not the RL !!!

    Also, while much cheaper cars like the TL/TL-s use a 5-speed sportshift adaptive automatic transmission, the "Flagship" soldiers on with a 4-speed automatic !!! Can you name one other "Luxury car" that plods along with a 4-speed automatic ??


    I agree that ponies alone do not make a car...but then could you explain why Acura has to resort to liberal "Incentives and Rebates" to move a car like the RL, while cars like the TL/TL-s are selling like hotcakes ? Hell, the RL from what I understood, was being sold for roughly 32K (Non-navigation model), BRAND NEW, end of the last model year....does not bode well for future resale of the car, does it ?!!

    In 2000, I was originally on the lookout to purchase an RL, but after looking at the TL and driving it extensively, I simply could not bring myself to buy the RL. I bought my TL with Navigation, and paid cash on the spot !

    During a trip a few months back in the TL (> 2500 miles), this mercurial and powerful cruiser (lots of reserve power at all speeds)kept on the highway all day long at 70-90 mph and the overall mileage during the trip was 32mpg !!! This was with Automatic climate control on the whole way and with 4 people and associated light luggage ! That is Honda Civic mileage territory, I might add. Even at the end of the trip, I felt thoroughly refreshed and not in the least bit tired. During a particular trip, during which I kept the TL at a steady 70mph with cruise control on, the car returned 36mpg !!! This is in a large car with a powerful V6 engine. Normally the car gives about 22-24 mpg during a 40%city/60% highway type of trips.

  • l943973l943973 Posts: 197
    Here are some of the features that I appreciate in my RL that are not available in the TL. The current RL has more but I don't have those features so here goes...

    Auto headlight system
    Power tilt/telescope steering
    Block forged connecting rods
    Honeycomb Floor Panels (F1)
    Microfinished Crankshaft (F1)
    4-coat/4-bake paint finish (99 as the last year of the 5-coat finishes).
    3-stage induction system for optimal torque at low, med and hi rpm.
    Adjustable rear head rests
    Padded leather armrest on each door. This may be small, but I use it everyday and love it! One of the best features in the car. :)
    Longer reliability record. My brother in law's 99TL had fit/finish body panel problems and so did many other owners during that first production year including loose interior door trim. When I got my RL the TL was just being made and only offer 4-sp sportshift.

    Things I like in the TL not offered in the RL

    60 degree V6 design
    260 hp Type-S engine
    5-speed auto

    In the end, I would still get the RL if I could get it at invoice or less over a TL at MSRP. I excluded the usual std features like heated seats and mirrors, HID, etc...
  • l943973l943973 Posts: 197
    I did some more research on my shutter steering and checked out the pads and rotors. The rotors looked in excellent condition and the pad was slightly warped but not significant. One thing I heard was that if the lug nuts are not tighen evenly, you would also get this problem.

    So I wiped off the rotors and brake pads reinstall the calipers and used a torque wrench to tighen each lug nut to about 80 ft/lbs. So far, the shuttering hasn't come back. I'll still replace the pad in another 10k miles when I hit 75k. Those NISSIN pads seem to last a long time.
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    I'd agree with just about everything you say, hunter, except for the conclusion. The RL and TL both have engines descended from the meaningless market phrase, "F1 experience." But the RL's is an older design. If I were more of an engineer (someone help out?) I'd know why the RL design has made it so that the engine couldn't be up-dated to twin cam Vtech etc.

    But certainly, Honda recognizes the mistake they made in going toward the soft, cruiser type of design in the mid-'90s with all of their models except the Integra and have 'corrected' the mistake with new designs up and down the line up except for the RL which they've only re-tuned to this point. Certainly, there will need to be a new RL if it is to stay on the roster, as well as one further up the lineup with a V8/AWD.

    And while the idea of the TL appeals to me, I thought about it and remembered I spend most of my time in pretty heavy traffic, not on the twisties, or on long highways, not on country roads, and decided that the RL really fit the bill. Btw, besides the TL I also had on my list the MB320, the A6 4.2 & the Volvo S80. Each was either overpowered or overpriced or had reliability issues that kept bringing me back to the RL.

    So based on my experience, while I agree with what you're saying, I come to a different conclusion. But it's only my experience (not ignorance).

    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • himomerhimomer Posts: 59
    I'm glad I'm not the only person that feels that way, i probably skipped that post. I want to go drive the 2002 this weekend, but i have to take a 90min drive just to get to the town, then i have to deal with really heavy traffict because the dealer is near one of the best malls in our state, and since school started on monday it will be horrible to get over there, but if i dont go now i doubt i will go before October.
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    The new TL is a great car. And well-priced for the features you get, not unlike the Odyssey EX minivan when compared side-by-side with the competition. I took my sister-in-law to check one out and she was willing to plunk down the $6K more than the Accord EX-L V-6 would have cost ("everyone has an Accord" was her observation). The 225 HP is more than the 210 in my RL.

    But, the RL has the roominess that I like. I get a "closed-in" feeling in the TL and Accord EX, even more with their respective coupe offerings. A newer RL with the V-8 RWD layout will no doubt please some of those who are "dissatisfied" with the current V-6 models, but at what price? Surely, it will crash the $50K barrier. There will still be the need to bridge the price gap with the TL-Type S in the low $30Ks.
  • The TL is a nice car with power to burn, but it's still a stretched, dolled up Accord. I like the RL for the size. I have had 3 Legend/RL's (90,93,00). I will be really disappointed if the high $$$ V8 RWD RL creates a gap that is not filled.

    I paid 33k for my left over 2000 RL in Dec and I think there is no better value around. I just drove it by myself 800 miles across the midwest, IN to KS. What a joy to drive. No fatigue or sore butt.

    After I got home I started driving my 99 Accord V6 coupe. Nice car, but not an Acura....
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    Did'ja know the interior size, legroom, headroom, etc., is almost identical as you go from the TL to the RL? Strange, huh? I think the apparent extra room in the RL is a result of the more vertical A-pillars. The slant of the TLs mean the windshield ends up closer to your face.

    Did you happen to see the review of the TL in the latest edition of Auto World. They rarely get excited or rave about anything, and I've never heard them give the kind of praise they had for the TL Type-S. Even I, who love the car, wasn't that excited by it.

    Just curious, phild_mason, but I'm guessing that your 00 had some demo mileage on it?

    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    Now, that's a DEAL, even with some demo miles! There's the Lexus ES-300 for around that price, but underneath it all, you know that it's a gussied-up Camry XLE for about $6K more.

    OTOH, people "dissing" the RL for it's lack of a V-8 and alleged "ho-hum" styling is what has made it available at such bargain prices. I think I'll keep it under my hat and let everyone else pay stratospheric prices for the competition. And yes, the angle of the windshield does affect the feeling of roominess. My history with Legends include the inaugural non-leather '86 sedan, '87 coupes (twice), and '91 LS sedan before my '96 RL.
  • You got me pegged. My 00 had 1000 miles on it, however I could have gotten brand new ones for the same. I wanted the Ruby Red Pearl. I love that color. They dropped red in 2002. Too bad, but makes mine more unique.

    As you stated the TL and RL have similar interior specs. In fact the TL has more cubes because of the center console. The angles do make a difference and the RL feels bigger.
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    I like that color, too, but around here, reds don't sell. The dark maroon RLs had a very limited following. Reds generally "enjoy" a reputation as "police magnets."

    I had a Millenia in "Merlot," before the wine really became popular. Not as dark as "Burgundy," which was part of the attraction for me. Still, it was a color that needed to "grow" on people; most have an aversion to it compared with the in-vogue choices.

    1000 miles? That's next-to-nothing! Salesmen and service demos around here go on the block with 3500-10,000 miles on them, and the prices are often nothing to write home about. You got a deal!
  • Prophet, I like the Millenia's in Merlot, etc. I thought about those, but they are also a little small.

    I am amazed at the number of green, white and heather mist RL's out there. I find them somewhat boring. I do like the new silver.

    I don't worry too much about the Ruby as a cop magnet.

    I have more trouble with my 99 Accord coupe in San Marino Red. Now that one is a cop magnet. I try to keep in under control since I tend to stick out pretty good.
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    We have "random" road blocks for DUI checks on holiday weekends. It's supposed to be "random," but the definition's up for interpretation.

    Driving my RL, I appear to be a typical law-abiding citizen contributing to society. A four-door sedan conjures up an image of stability and responsibility. When I was once stopped, all I needed was to produce were my driver's license, vehicle registration, and no-fault insurance card after being politely asked if I had a drink that evening. No field sobriety test. I notice that we also get waved on when driving the minivan.

    Most of the ones who get stopped are driving low-rider or monster pick-up trucks, two-door coupes, and "tricked-up" rice-rockets. They're the ones doing the one-legged knee bends and toeing the line. And asked to produce their "re-construction" permits. Plus sound meters testing the decibel level of their headers and light meters determining the darkness of their window tint.

    We continue to get fatal accidents with young lives getting snuffed-out for no good reason. Speed and alcohol are definite factors.
  • stanny1stanny1 Posts: 962
    C&D just gave the worst review in its history to the 3.5RL in the September issue.
  • l943973l943973 Posts: 197

    They also gave the Lexus LS430 bad reviews. Car and driver tends to favor sports sedans and sports cars. I think Road and Track does a better job reviewing cars. I subscribe to both.
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    I used to have a white Oldsmobile 88 -- talk about a stealth machine! No one wanted to look at it, including the police, including me!

    C&D takes journalistic pleasure in saying aggravating things. Some of it is witty. Much is half-witted, written often-times by kids with no life but cars. Have you read Auto World? They used to be quite objective, but now they seem to be going for readership... Enter, "style," meaning ridicule anything without a fancy hood ornament or a V8.

    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    Actually, I agree with everything Daniel Pund has to say. The difference is that I like it. He doesn't. He holds the coming V8 version out with hope. I think it's an interesting development, but I hope it doesn't mean the end of the current approach at Honda.

    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • poonsspoonss Posts: 7
    FYI: RL was number 10 last year and it is number 9 this year.

    It beats out Jaguar XJ, Volvo S80, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Lexus GS-Series, BMW 5-Series, Cadillac Seville, Mercedes-Benz CLK, Lincoln Continental, Jaguar S-Type, and Cadillac Eldorado. It only trails these cars-Lexus LS430, Cadillac DeVille, BMW 7-Series, Toyota Avalon, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, and Toyota Camry in Vehicle Satisfaction Scores for 2000-2001. The survey proved that bad magazine reviews does not nesscessary reflect how a car will satisfly its owner in the real world.
  • I can't figure out what that guy from car&driver was smoking before he wrote(if you can call that journalism) his review on the RL. First of all, anyone who has even looked at the specs of the RL knows that it reaches peak torque at a very low 2800 rpm's not the 3500 he made up in lala land. The high torque, low rpm engine is one of the better features on the car and gives it a feel close to a v8. He also claims that it is horrible for tall drivers. Well, guess what? The RL has 1 more inch of front headroom over an E-class MB, that is a huge difference.
    Not to mention that it comes fully loaded with every available feature (moonroof, cd, etc.) for thousands less than the E-320 and 10-15K less than the E-430. Go ahead and follow the crowd, but I'll get in my Acura and enjoy the smooth ride and money in the bank any day.
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    Some "journalists" apparently believe that the fastest way to "fame" is to create controversy by "bashing" an otherwise well-regarded vehicle like the RL. This is an old trick and a perfect example of how it's possible get opposite opinions from the same set of facts - it depends on what's important to each person. The "lack" of two cylinders means little to me - if I were in the market for a Lexus GS, the 300 (I-6) would be just fine as opposed to the 400 (V-8). You don't have to buy the biggest, most powerful, or highest-priced to have the best.
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