Acura TSX vs Acura TL

fserve55fserve55 Member Posts: 17
edited September 2015 in Acura
I have between 25 and 35K to get rid of. I am very value oriented and want a trouble free ownership. Wait for the new TL and order at MSRP or get the new TSX now at MSRP (for the most part). Any ideas or thoughts about either the TSX or any older version 00', 01', 02', 03' TL's??

See Also
2015 Acura TLX


  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I have a TSX and love it. It is hardly "anemic", doing 0-60 in a little less than 8 seconds. Nor is it related to the Integra in anyway.

    If I were you, I'd probably hold off a month and look at the TL. If you have the extra money, and don't mind a slightly larger car, go for the TL. The TSX is smaller and less powerful, but handles great and is another nice option.

    The Accord is a better buy than either the TSX or the TL (IMO). But, it the sedan is kind of wonky looking and it won't handle nearly as well as the TSX.

    The TSX, TL, and Accord are all fine choices. The Accord for bang for the buck, the TL for the most power and gadgets, and the TSX for a smaller tight handling car.
  • rihoopsrihoops Member Posts: 91
    Get the TSX loaded, its a blast to drive and the TL will be fun, but up to 10 g's more. Spend the extra $ on something else.
  • fserve55fserve55 Member Posts: 17
    thats what i'm thinking! I was also considering doing the same with the Accord V6 EX though. Save the money from the TSX and get the EX V6. Spend that money on something else as well......haha....i'm indecisive. oh well. maybe i'll bag everything and procrastinate for another few months.....gosh i hope i dont' do that!
  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Member Posts: 1,978
    Unless $$ are tight then go with the v-6 240 hp Accord. The TSX is an anemic Intregra 4-door replacement with Acura luxury, nothing les nothing more. In other words performance was a secondary consideration.
  • crazybabydoccrazybabydoc Member Posts: 32
    If money was tight we wouldn't be having this conversation. If you need transportation buy the Accord, if you want a driving experience buy the TL.
  • rihoopsrihoops Member Posts: 91
    Have you driven the 6 speed TSX? Not anemic at all in my opinion. Feels faster to me than my 99 Accord EX V-6. Also, the Integra was built off the civic platform while the TSX is built off the JDM Accord platform. No relationship at all.
  • acura_fantacyacura_fantacy Member Posts: 5
    I was at Acura dealer the past weekend, the TSX at least cost you $26.5K plus tax and other fees, it will run $28K OTD easily. I just don't see why spending that much $$$ for a 4 cylinder car. If you have the money, wait for the 2004 TL comes out.
  • fedlawmanfedlawman Member Posts: 3,118
    How can you complain about $28K OTD for a TSX when folks are dropping up to $10K more for a 4 cylinder Mercedes, Audi, or Saab?
  • fserve55fserve55 Member Posts: 17
    I agree about the $$ and the 4 banger...i re-drove the TSX tonite, after everything...i think i'm waiting for the TL. TL is going to be about 5 grand more...(i want the NAVI)...i think it will be worth it....thanx!
  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Member Posts: 1,978
    Estimated pricing 2004 TL with Nav $35,500
    MSRP of TSX with Nav $28,990

    Assuming you can get $500 of TSX MSRP you have a $7k difference
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    but that is easy for me to say, having purchased the TSX. For that 7k, you can a much more poweful, fully featured vehicle.
  • rihoopsrihoops Member Posts: 91
    guessing the TL with Nav and dealer add ons will run closer to 37 than 35. If money is no serious consideration, wait and buy the TL. Otherwise get the TSX.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    The prices have not yet been released. Most sources are claiming that the TL prices will be close to the TL-S last year. That might make the TL-Nav more like $34,000 to $35,000 than $37,000.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 207,739
    For the money, its the best deal.. about $25,500 plus tax right now.

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  • fedlawmanfedlawman Member Posts: 3,118
    I'd rather own and drive a TSX. Come to think of it, I also prefer the TSX over the '04 TL.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    If price is taken into consideration? Surely you wouldn't take the TSX straight-up over the '04 TL?
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    in my opinion, and I own a TSX. For five to six grand more, you get a lot more car. I think it is worth the extra money.
  • fedlawmanfedlawman Member Posts: 3,118
    If price isn't a factor, I'd take the TL, sell it, buy a TSX, and pocket the difference. I bought the TSX because it is a nimble, fun, sport sedan with an even measure of luxury and performance. The TL is simply not what I want in a car.

    I liken it to someone giving me free box seat tickets to see John Tesh in concert...thanks, but no thanks.
  • squirreljamsquirreljam Member Posts: 71
    I'd take the TSX over the TL straight up - in fact, that's what we did - sell my wife's TL (2000) and replace with TSX.

    (disclosure - haven't driven the 04 yet, but neither have y' this is all heresay)

    I fully understand that the 04 TL is a new animal (from the y2k one), but the TL's mission is different - it's an entry luxury sedan with a touch of sport, while the TSX is a sporting sedan with some luxury accoutrements. Our TL was a great touring sedan, comfy on the highway, but didn't handle nearly as well as the TSX. I also prefer the small size of TSX, and I'm 6-5, 205lb (I was amazed when I discovered that I could fit under the sunroof comfortably - better than the TL).


  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
    TL will probably have the same transmission that has been failing in the current generation TLs. I hope they fixed it as some people want to believe, but what if they didn't? And now all the TLs will have more horsepower than the current TL-S. I hope that tranny can handle it.
  • ash213ash213 Member Posts: 40
    Talk about paranoia, I mean some people still think that Honda Motor Company will just ignore a known problem, and extend that problem to a brand new design. What do you think, they are suicidal in this highly competitive business. Give me a break. Again there is no perfect car out there, and probably never will be. All models will have lemons in them (you will hear most about), its unfortunate but will happen (to better understand talk to a statistician). It could be me, but what do you do, go out and hand craft a car for myself.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I completely agree. Whatever the problem was with the AT in the old TL, it will almost certainly be completely resolved in the new vehicle.

    BTW, tranny problems affected approximately 2% of Acura TL drivers, according to the auto editors at Consumer Reports. That problem was nowhere near as widespread as some people seem to assume.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    I think it was more like 2% of TL & CL & Accords, which makes for quite a number of frustrated owners.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    The new TL really isn't that much bigger than the TSX. Only about 3" longer, and a couple of inches wider.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    The Tranny problem was on the CL and TL. I think Honda had an extended waranty for the Tranny on the Prelude as well, but I don't remember what the issues were.
  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
    "What do you think, they are suicidal in this highly competitive business"

    judging by how they addressed the current TL's tranny issue, they are.
  • squirreljamsquirreljam Member Posts: 71
    Gotcha - I should have said smallER. I was trying to get at the different foci of the two cars - TSX to me feels a good bit smaller than TL, even if the quantitative difference isn't much.

    Admittedly, the new manual on TL could help make that car feel sportier. One of the things I hated about the TL was the auto trans with no engine braking [without manually downshifting].

  • jebinc1jebinc1 Member Posts: 198
    I have driven them all. They are all great cars. Drive 'em all yourself, look into your wallet, make a decision, negotiate your deal, and most of all, have fun. You can go wrong with any of them.

    PS. Resale value on the '03 TL might be a problem if you intended to sell in in a couple/few years. The Navi screen is smallest in the TL and Largest in the TSX (graphics look stretched IMHO) and the EX V6 has an 8" screen. Good luck.
  • billyperksbillyperks Member Posts: 449
    Are you leasing your TL or financing?
  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
  • billyperksbillyperks Member Posts: 449
    The reason I asked is- I get the feeling you are very disappointed with TL.

    If you were financing I would have suggested that you put a "FOR SALE" sign in the window and get rid of the car.

    Listen- I am not trying to be rude, as I said, I get the feeling of frustration from you whenever you post a message.
  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
    hey I love the car when she is in a good mood.
  • dimariadimaria Member Posts: 44
    I have an 02 TL that I brought in for service the other day. The loaner car the dealer gave me was an 04 TSX. I agree that the car feels really tight and looks to be put together well. The interior materials seemed of better quality than my 02 TL. However, several things really bothered my about the TSX.

    1. The seats seemed really hard and less comfortable than my TL. (I guess this is what they mean by "sport" seats)

    2. When I closed the door on the TSX I didn't get the solid "thunk" sound like my TL. Instead I got more of a tin can sound. To me, this made the car feel cheaply made. Not something I would expect from Acura on any Honda product.

    3.That 4 cylinder engine just doesn't cut it. I'll take my 225 horsepower V-6 any day.

    Bottom line I think you should get a TL. I think even the 2003 TL, which may not be as modern or contemporary looking as the TSX, is a better car for the money than the TSX.
  • cooldad24cooldad24 Member Posts: 163
    Accord V6 XLE: $26.5K , 240 hp, good performance, roomy, OK material, no stability control nor Air curtain, Couple of them in your neighborhood, frequent recognize others as yours and fairly bland styling and relatively less standard features. Fully loaded one could cost $30K.

    TSX: I4, $26.5K, 200hp at 6500rpm?, nimble, sporty feel but not as fast as the other two. Mixed material better than Accord but less than TL, no stability control nor air curtain. Sitting for 4, or 5 unless all three are kids or super Models with knee at chest, better styling with A logo. Better equiped Japan/Europe version Accord but not on the par of Luxary brand. Interior noise is worth than the other two but consume less fuel. Price go as high as $30k after adding expansive options.

    TL V6: $35.5k, 270hp in roomy package. Much better exterior with European taste, full features including EBD, Break Assist, Stability and air curtain, high standard interior materials (better than the other 2), quiter and refiner, longer warranty(5yr/60k vs. 3yr/36k), XM radio standard, full loaded. Prestige brand and Model but cost 4-6K more plus additional fuel cost yearly.

    Which is for you. It depends on your priority and budget. And how long is goign to keep it. It you will sell it in 5 years, you probably will sell 4-5K more on TL due to the quantity. In used japanese car market, higher trim and high price one usually hold their value better since buyer can affod and not favor lower trim and model.(that explane why small or compact Japanese cars have the highest depreciation rate). If that is the cast, the 5 years overall cost is not that different. But if you intend to keep it very long, then the 4-6k difference is for life, well almost. So sorting out your priority is the key. No car is for everyone, it depends on what you want from it. I rather go for most I can afford and save form something else is unnecesasary like clothing or fansy resturant. I don't want to be regret later why didn't choose the more luxary one when both meet your priority. Devide the 6k over 10 years, is $50 per month only! The more important is you have to stay with the car for 10 years! So you have to sorting out the functions you want the most not the 4k to 6k in the pocket. For some, image is everything, like my wife!
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    The Accord V6 EX (there is no such model as an Accord XLE) does comes standard with side-curtain airbags and, while it does not have stability control, it does have EBD and traction control. A "fully loaded" one will not cost anywhere near $30. More like $25,000 because they are selling at invoice. The Accord, like the TL, now has XM radio standard.

    The TSX comes standard with stability control and side-curtain air bags. I'm not sure what "expensive options" you are mentioning. But, you have the choice of the model with and without Nav. The only other options are relatively inexpensive dealer add-ons (mudflaps, wheel locks, trunk luggage net, trunk mat, foglights). Nobody I know spend more than $500 on that stuff, and most owners didn't spend anything. Usually, the dealer is willing to give you most of the add-ons as part of the deal. In the Acura line, like the Honda line, there are no factory options available.

    As for the TL, don't forget that prices have not yet be released. It may wind up costing less than $35.5.
  • max63max63 Member Posts: 76
    Just read a newspaper ad for the 03'accord EX-L V6, which is fully loaded, for $23,676. A relative just bought a TSX for $500 over invoice. I am assuming the TL will be sticker or very close to sticker. The accord would seem the best value, but everyone has one!
  • tommyijrtommyijr Member Posts: 56
    I checked out the Accord and bought the TSX, loved the style and handling of both, what did it for me was this, the TSX is 100% built in Japan while the Accord is built by Americans....ever wonder why there have been warrenty extentions of the Accords over the past few years? I did.....
    I love the TSX, and the RSX I traded in........
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I have to disagree with you on this point. TSX drivers always make that claim (built in Japan is better). However, my last vehicle was an American-built Accord and it was reliable as hell. My new TSX should be just as reliable (and it does seem to have a nicer fit and finish than my last car) but I'm not convinced it is somehow more reliabile than the American Accord.

    BTW, in Consumer Report's surveys, American built Hondas are just as reliable as the ones built in Japan.
  • leftfield1leftfield1 Member Posts: 8
    For a better driving experience, choose the TSX. The Accord is solid and the TL is a luxurious and nice, but very bland, ride. The TSX has the luxury and style the Accord lacks and offers a better, more fun driving experience than the TL.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    I can't say whether American-built Hondas are any more or less reliable, but from my experience, Japanese-built models have superior build quality in regard to fit and finish.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I have to say that the Accord I traded in for my TSX was not as nice in terms of fit-and-finish. Seams are much tighter in the TSX, and the quality of materials is clearly higher. For example, the lids covering the various storage areas are made of a thick plastic, and everything is really nicely textured. The switchs all have a "click" to them and you feel like you are in a very expensive car.

    The switches in the Accord were a bit more flimsy, and the climate control dial used to crack every year or two. There were also gaps on some of the panels.
  • tturedraidertturedraider Member Posts: 159
    uncledavid - I think the following statements are one big reason the TSX has such high quality materials and strict structural tolerances.

    "The front-wheel drive TSX was engineered and appointed to compete with Europe's best sedans in the sporty near-luxury segment (the European D segment). This segment includes cars like the Audi A4 and the BMW 3 Series.

    The TSX is based on the sophisticated European Honda Accord, a completely different and more performance-oriented vehicle than U.S. Accord models. This lineage makes perfect sense for Acura, because the European Accord is a high-line, high-performance vehicle that directly competes with the German luxury brands. In Europe or the U.S., as the European Accord or TSX, this vehicle competes with the same European origin sedans."

    "In keeping with its European competitors, the TSX driving character is sharply focused on the sporty end of the scale." "The takeaway for the driver is an ultra-competent entry luxury sports sedan that's immensely fun to drive."*ws4d-db-query-Show.ws4d- ?*ws4d-db-query-Show***004074***-wieck_media***-***acura(director- y)TSX(directory)***.ws4d?acura/TSX/results(r)_text.html
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    I think the differences you mentioned are more a function of the TSX being aimed at a higher market segment just as tturedraider alluded to. This cannot be blamed on the American workers. But what CAN be blamed on them is the uneven panel gaps and misaligned hood/door/trunk that I have found on both my 2001 CL-S and 2002 Accord
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I wonder, however, if I wouldn't have noticed the same improvements if I bought a new Accord (instead of the TSX). It is true that the TSX has much nicer fit-and-finish than my 1996 Accord (which was built in Ohio). My ealier Accord was a great car, but it did have some interior quality issues (like larger gaps between pannels, and cheap feeling plastics). However, it may be the case that Honda has improved interior fit-and-finish across the full line. So, perhaps my TSX's nicer interior is not because it was built in Japan, it is just that Honda products have been better over time.
  • tommyijrtommyijr Member Posts: 56
    Years ago the reliability of the Honda product would never be questioned, now-a-days it is and I am not just talking about the interior. I'll give you that, perhaps the interior has become more refine over the years, I think the interior of the TSX is very comfortable with easy to use features, what I was eluding to was the overall reliability of the mechanics of the two cars. Two relatives had to have complete transmission replacements on their Accords, one was a '98 and the other was '00. That was almost unheard of with Honda Motors 10+ years ago, not so now. This isn't so much an indictment of the American Unionized worker as much as it is a compliment to the quality product continuing to come out of Japan. This is Honda's bread and butter, it has never been about interior appointments, it has always been about the quality of the engine et al.... I just feel a little safer with the TSX for this reason, if it wasn't that big of a deal, I'd a bought a Ford Focus..........
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    I think the newer Hondas have more FEATURES and GADGETS, but not necessarily better quality in terms of craftsmanship and material. I've always thought the pre-94 Accords had better quality interiors. Same thing if you compare the '97 - '01 CR-V to the current one. Or how about the '83 - '87 Preludes to the newer ones? Now, Acuras are supposed to be a step up from Hondas, so you can't really compare Acuras to Hondas.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I think the tranny that caused so much trouble for Honda and Acura was actually built in Japan and shipped here.

    As to the comparison between Honda and Acura, I personally see that as an illusion. The TSX is called "Honda" in Europe and in the JDM, as are all Acuras. Acura is not a company so much as it is a marketing concept.
  • dulnevdulnev Member Posts: 652
    I drive a 2003 TL-S, but it just ended up in a shop (failed transmission). The dealership gave me a new TSX as a loaner with only 2K miles on it. After a day of driving, I feel like it's a nice car, but an incredibly underpowered one compared to a TL. Now, I'm not comparing it to my current 260hp TL-S. Instead, I'm comparing it to my previous car: 2000 TL. Still, the difference in power is very significant.
  • fcbcdwfcbcdw Member Posts: 7
    Pick the TSX. Even though soemone mention the TL transmission's problem only effect 2% of the TL. You never know are you the lucky 98%? =)
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