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Acura RL

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  • bobb1bobb1 Posts: 22
    FYI - Heard from my phone guy at work and also on this board somewhere the Sony/Ericsson is a better blue tooth fit. I bought the T635 and really like it -now if my RL would arrive I could comment on the RL and Sony - However two guys in my office have Sony's and Bluetooth with Lexus LS430 and the phone works well. Good Luck
  • beliasbelias Posts: 316
    Well, why not be fair about what kind of cars we compare to each other. I remember a while back that there was a lot of beef over whether an Acura CL-S should be compared with a Pontiac Grand Prix and almost all the Pontiac fans insisted it was a great comparison because the Pontiac is a better value until somebody said well, a Daewoo compares favoribly with the Pontiac and it is even a BETTER value than it (by another $6K). Point being that there are pretty well-established segments for comparing vehicles and though those lines have been blurring in recent years, I honestly believe that when it is crunch time and people have to put their money where their mouth is, they fall into those segments. A prime example of this is exactly this 300C to RL comparison. There is no question that if you were to look at the specs themselves you would most certainly choose the Chrysler with the added value. However, take a look at the actual driving experience you have, the interior build quality and materials, the DVD Navigation system (with telematics), the systematically-unified approach to Acura's design (i.e. everything works well in unison), and your mind will quickly be changed.
    When I talk to my friends about these things I pose a question to them in the end to help them sort out these "comparison" struggles. Simply put, I say to them, hey, if there is no price difference in any of the cars that you are considering, which would you choose? It seems like a simple question, but, it gets down to the heart of the matter (i.e. what experience do you like the best?) For those friends, the answer has, many times turned out to be the BMW (of course they almost always have to include one in their comparison and test drives). Then of course, I ask them a second question saying basically that, based on their decision, are they willing to pay $XXXX more for it than their "second" or "third" choice (if that vehicle happens to be more than those choices). If not, then they know what they can not get, if so, then they will be happy with the vehicle they've chosen.
    Either way, when you have to plop down your money, a simple set of specifications doesn't do it. You end up basing your decision on a variety of other criteria. It may even be that you love the car but hate the dealerships or servicing experience. Who knows. But the automobile market knows that people that have special preferences for luxury and/or performance are willing to pay that extra premium for it. Only you can decide what's best for you.
  • If you want to turn heads get the NSX in Rio yellow or Imola orange and people will gawk at you 24/7. Acura has never been about in-your-face looks, low-key luxury and refinement that's always been an Acura hallmark. The legendary 2nd gen. Legends which were one of the best styled cars to come out of Japan had all of these traits. Same formula applies to Lexus, Infiniti, Benz and used to apply to BMW and you can see what market reaction and sales they're getting from it.

    The Chrysler mafia car that's the current press darlin looks neat "today" but which one is better built, better engineered, more refined and will hold up longer. The 300 is one of the best domestic makes currently but on a world platform against others it's only average. The interior still says domestic which to me is plasticky and cheap lookin. If you like "bling" buy the cheaper doemstic, if you care about quality you'll understand what Acura's all about. People who care what others think are shallow, insecure souls (LA numero Uno) and they can keep buying their lower quality Euro. brands, those of us who know will buy what's best for us..

    The Japanese are the most thorough, detail driven automotive engineers in the business and coming from an engineering and racing heritage tradition as Honda my money is on this one.
  • The Acura is being compared with a BMW 7 or an S class Mercedes?

    Well, if that comparison is really valid, the Acura would win on the value proposition alone.

    However, I do not think the RL was aiming at the Big German Flagships. All that I have read about the Acura Flagship (for years) is that it had set its sights on the Audi A6, or perhaps the BMW 5 and the E Class Mercedes. Truth be told, the FWD A6 and the RL were probably contenders. I doubt that folks who looked seriously at RWD 5 series Bimmers cross shopped the RL (in droves).

    The new RL seems to be keen to be compared with the new A6 3.2. Equip both of them to the $50K MSRP and they seem "competitive" (to me anyway).

    The RL surely would win the features and options race and the A6 probably edges the RL on being more of a drivers car. Since I haven't yet driven the RL, I am not able to defend these comments.

    The A6 board certainly has more than one poster who chose the A6 over the RL due to the behind the wheel experience. I suspect the Audi is "sportier" either by design or by heritage -- but the SH-AWD certainly has to be a great technology and in some respects an edge for the RL.

    If a sales person compared the RL with the high buck Germans (or even the high buck Japanese), I would have to wonder.

    The RL appears to be a very high value car -- and a luxury sporting car, to boot. I just can't see it entered into a comparison contest with the 7 Series BMW or the A8 or the big S class Mercs.

    But, as usual, I could be wrong.
  • shotgunshotgun Posts: 184
    A good post indeed and let me add the following concerning your comment "... A prime example of this is exactly this 300C to RL comparison..." I cannot, for the life of me, comprehend why, individuals (not necessarily you Belias) continue to insist on comparing V8 vehicles to the V6 Acura RL?!? I wish everyone (including magazines) would keep the comparos on an apple to apple basis. Bring on the naturally aspirated V6s like the E320, BMW 5 series, DXC 300's, STS, CTS, Audis, Volvos, et al. and after all is said and done, the RL will rule! And lets not forget to take a hard look at the quality of materials, fit, finish, and the all important reliability factors that so many tend to overlook. I dare say, that at this juncture, the RL has no peer in its category and is nothing less, than a world-class sedan...
  • shotgunshotgun Posts: 184
    Allow me to pontificate concerning the notion of automotive prestige. Mercedes and BMW enjoy a high prestige factor because of their longevity and exposure in the automotive arena. They've been the builders of "world-class" cars for many years and thusly have established their position of "prestige" via heritage.

    Honda/Toyota/Nissan are, on the other hand, newcomers who have, arguably notwithstanding performance, established themselves as the undisputed leaders when it comes to factors of quality and reliability. That said, it stands to reason that, the cache brands of Acura/Lexus/Infiniti must, pay their dues, via the test of time, before they're rightfully anointed, by the buying public, as "true" prestige products.

    The enlightened few that are cognizant of the value Acura/Lexus/Infiniti offers, and who, capitalize on this knowledge by buying these products...are, in my opinion, substantially ahead of the game!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Some off-topic posts have been removed - stick to the cars, folks.
  • riker2riker2 Posts: 36
    The prestige factor of a Mercedes, BMW or Jaguar still exist for their flagships. But as they have moved down-market to C-class and X types, and mere mortal companies have moved up-market, the blurriness is beginning to get significant.

    Adding to the problem are manufacturers whose flagships have been less impressive than their middle tier products. I don't think anyone would argue that the last generation RL was a less admired car than its little brother, TL. And the Infiniti Q45 has yet to gain a real foothold, while little sister G35 is a darling of the automotive world.

    To be honest, of the newer luxury namplates only Lexus has achieved the distinction of offering a line-up of LS, ES, and RX styles that are ALL considered among the most desireable in their class.

    If one were to be dispassionate, we'd probably all just run out and buy the Lexus that met our needs and budget. But we ARE passionate, and so a long list of manufacturers lure us with a combination of real value and illusion.

    Whatever it is we end up driving, we'll be replacing it in three to five years. Some of us chasing the newest innovation, While the rest of us will be ardently loyal to a carmaker we fell in love with in high school.
  • What has been surprising to me since I purchased my 2005 RL (Oyster Blue) last October has been all of the "nice car" comments I've received from individuals spanning the socio-demographic spectrum. Sample comments--My boss (58-year-old MIT-trained engineer: "We're paying you too much!"; 20-year-old valet (male): "Thanks for letting me drive this...!"; Random 55-year-old man driving a Lexus GX470: "That's one nice car...do you enjoy it?"; 30-year-old female colleague: "nice ride you've got!"

    Obviously, not a scientific survey of public opinion, but it speaks to me at least of the car's general appeal. It's not an "edge" car like the 300C (which I like, but many hate).

    But most of all, the car has been trouble-free and handles beautifully.
  • I generally agree with what taylORD has said about the RL. However, I analyze the car from a somewhat different perspective. I do not really care if the car is a "head turner" and I agree with some of the responses questioning his view by saying that "in your face" edgy styling could have backfired on Acura. In general though, his subsequent posts and his views on the RL are on target.

    Specifically, I do expect distinctive styling, luxury appointments, some level of spaciousness and comfort and above all performance. The top of the line Acura should have world class braking and acceleration (not necessarily 5 second 0-60 but better torque and at least be able to outperform a TL). It should also allow me to pick up a another couple for dinner or take my family on a trip with plenty of backseat space and trunk space (say equivalent to a Mercedes E320). I honestly cannot understand why the car is lacking in these areas when they had to know that these are key issues for many of the buyers they are targeting. The interior is nicely appointed and the SH-AWD helps close the handling gap which has been a problem for Acura but a top of the line luxury performance car should have the space/comfort to truly be luxurious and the performance credentials to truly be a performance car (not struggle to do as well as many $30,000 cars for acceleration/braking, etc.).

    I don't really give a damn if other people notice the car. It actually is even worse if they do (as some people have been bragging) if the car does not truly have the goods. Where I come from, we call that big hat but no cattle.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I bought a TL 6-speed in May after being fully convinced my next sedan would be a 5-series. The combination of the new TL's performance characteristics, saving $15-18k over the 530i (or $25k+ over the 545i), Acura quality and reliability and the long list of standard features made the decision relatively easy.

    Prior to the TL, I came pretty close to getting a Boxster S as a "fun" car in 2002, but opted for the Honda S2000 and had absolutely no regrets. Saved $25k+, matched the performance of the Porsche and required a grand total of 4 oil changes in 2.5 years.

    But, when I took my TL infor service last week and was given an RL to test drive, the Honda/Acura value equation was missing. At least compared to the TL or S2000. If faced with the choice of a $50k RL or $60k 545i, I would jump for the 545i. The RL was just too little more than my current TL in luxury, and LESS in performance. Granted, I am partial to a manual transmission and might feel differently if the RL were so equiped.

    I think the RL is a very nice car, but, like the former RL, I think falls into a "tweener" situation where it doesn't provide the performance or prestige of its upper class competitors, nor does it look or feel like a $15k upgrade to the TL. I hope for Acura's sake, it doesn't suffer a pre-mature death, but even the service manager confessed that he doesn't see the value.
  • 14871487 Posts: 2,407
    Acura needs to wake up and realize that it takes more than outstanding reliability and fit and finish to distinguish a luxury car. Most non-German luxury cars are reliable and those that arent great it that area seem to sell anyway. I see a lot of people here are talking about the RL as if it is far ahead f the competition in build quality and overall quality. It is too early to say that when you consider that Lexus, Infiniti, Cadillac and even Jaguar make high quality cars. The initial and long term quality surveys bear this out and I dont think there are any luxury car s left ont he market that dont have good build quality. Cadillac knew their cars had to stand out because features and quality alone would not get buyers into the vehicles. Acura needs to realize the same thing because all luxury cars are great these days. Another thing to remember about quality is that much of drop off in German quality is due to excessive electronics and the RL has just about every electronic gimmick found on the competition and then some. In the past Acura left out a lot of features to keep prices down and that was probably a good thing in terms of reliability. With the RL they have jumped in with both feet and could find themselves with a lot of glitches that have affected MB and BMW lately.

    As for the great V6 in the RL, I really dont see the point. It's nice to have all that hp from a 3.5 V6 but the car doesnt outperform other cars in its price range, nor does it get significantly better mileage. Because of it's high curb weight the car barely outruns much weaker V6 competitors. Cars like the A6 and STS equipped with weaker six cylinder engines will probably run 0-60 in the mid to upper 6 second range.
  • carnaughtcarnaught Posts: 1,578
    "Cars like the A6 and STS equipped with weaker six cylinder engines will probaly run 0-60 in the mid to upper 6 second range."

    Surely you mean the 8 cylinder STS as the 6 cylinder is a slug compared to the RL.
  • My black/black RL is the 21st car I've owned, and today makes it 30 days, w/ just over 3000 miles.

    Over the years I've had many different kinds, including Rolls Royce, Mercedes, Cadillac, Volvo, Honda, Toyota, Chrysler, among others. I bought the '05 because:

    1) It had the nicest quality and feel of any I've sat in or driven in recent memory.
    2) It is specifically NOT flashy in any way.
    3) It'll equal or outperform almost anything in reliability. I don't want a car with a warranty, I want a car that does not NEED a warranty.

    The most interesting comment I've heard yet was from a client after I gave her a ride. She owns a Chrysler dealership, BTW. "Nice looking car, good lines. What is it?"

    -This was sparked because all my cars are stripped of their badges/logos and repainted for cleaner lines-

    I replied: "Thank you. I made it myself. Me and Honda."

    For me, anyway, this car is close to perfect. Now give it Toyota's HSD and I'll buy another one tomorrow.

    Peace folks! :)
  • natenate Posts: 12
    Would anyone know if I could change my RL tires to a 255/50R17 without any problems with the car? That way I get more choices of tires, and get to put on my favorite tires. I am not happy with the OEM tires on the car.
  • Post 4850 by Habitat1 and post 4851 are very insightful posts in my opinion. Each of the comments are well thought out and highlight some of the compromises Acura made with the RL (and the rationalizations that people make to defend the car).

    I doubt the RL will die a premature death but I am really hoping Acura pays attention to some of the concerns being raised. I would really rather buy an Acura than a BMW, Mercedes or Audi, but it looks like it may have to be a TL (wait for 2006 and hope for SH-AWD).
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    "Value" is comparative. In the mid-luxury car segment, RL competes well (if not exceeds) comparably equipped A6, 5 series (V6) and E320, with top reliability to boot. On the other hand, RL should not be compared with A8, 6 or 7 series, S series, LS 430 and Q45, because those cars are at the top of the "pecking order" and they cost quite a bit more. Like many posters have said, only apple to apple comparison makes sense.

    Likewise, we should NOT compare TL to Accord because they are in different segments, but they are at or near tops in "value" within their respective segment.

    Also, "value" has both objective and subjective components. A person who is financially well off and does not mind spending more for whatever reasons (including prestige, new technology, bragging rights or simply personal satisfaction) would not care about the incremental $15k. To him, all the "intangibles" are worthwhile.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    It is interesting to read the 4850 and 4851 Posts, I agree. Bottom line for us TL owners...it was a very easy decision to pass over the 2004 TL when it arrived last year after a long anticipated wait for the all new design. Glad we waited for the new RL which we really feel very good about and purchased. It will arrive for Thanksgiving!
  • urieluriel Posts: 9
    Stock Tire (245/45/17)
    Sidewall: 4.3 in
    Radius: 12.8 in
    Diameter: 25.7 in
    Circumf: 80.7 in
    Revs/mi: 785

    New Tire (255/45/17)
    Sidewall: 4.5 in
    Radius: 13.0 in
    Diameter: 26.0 in
    Circumf: 81.8 in
    Revs/mi: 775

    Speedometer reading with non-stock tire is 1.4% too slow. When your speedo reads 60 mph, you are actually traveling 60.8 mph. (This would be acceptable)

    New Tire (255/50/17)
    Sidewall: 5.0 in
    Radius: 13.5 in
    Diameter: 27.0 in
    Circumf: 84.9 in
    Revs/mi: 746

    Speedometer reading with non-stock tire is 5.3% too slow. When your speedo reads 60 mph, you are actually traveling 63.2 mph. (This choice would not be acceptable)
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "Also, "value" has both objective and subjective components. A person who is financially well off and does not mind spending more for whatever reasons (including prestige, new technology, bragging rights or simply personal satisfaction) would not care about the incremental $15k. To him, all the "intangibles" are worthwhile."

    I fully agree with that statement in principle. It just doesn't apply to me personally with respect to the $15k increment between a RL and TL. For me (an admitted manual transmission oriented driving enthusiast), the RL is at best equal to the TL 6-speed in performance and driving enjoyment. The luxury side of the RL is somewhat above the TL, as is its interior size. If my TL was stolen tomorrow, I might indeed have a difficult time deciding whether get another, or to go for a $60k 545i 6-speed or to go for a $55k E320 CDI. Those $25k and $20k increments buy some "real" performance advantages over the TL, as well as some other "intangibles". But the $15k increment for the RL hardly buys me anything, given MY personal preferences. If the RL offered a 6-speed, sport suspension option and V8 competitive with the 545i for $60k, I'd probably be much more likely to consider it. I fully appreciate and respect that some who value luxury over performance and have a $50k spending limit might find the RL to be their best choice.

    Regarding tire size / speedometer error:

    If I'm not mistaken, the RL comes standard with 245/50 tires, not 245/45. Therefore, a 255/45 would be a closer match. However, it should be noted that ALL Honda/Acura speedometers read 4-5%+/- too fast to begin with. If the speedometer says you are doing 70, you are actually doing 67+/-. This was confirmed by my service manager in a call with the regional representative. It can also be easily checked by setting your cruise control and using a stopwatch to time miles on a marked highway. The only exception to this "programmed conservatism" in speedometer readouts by Honda/Acura is the digital readout of the S2000, which is spot on accurate.

    As such, you can jump up a tire size or two in actual outside diameter and still not be reading too low.

    P.S. BMW's and Porsches are even further off on their speedometer readings.
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