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Acura RL



  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Thanks Steve....I appreciate your encouragement. In fact I re-thought the whole idea of settling for the RL. Tomorrow I am heading to Bentley Dealer. ;-)
    Just Kidding!
  • sacguysacguy Posts: 27
    FYI.....both cars are in high demand and are selling for full MSRP.....I talked to Audi today and the earliest I can get one is to order now for January delivery. Now I have to see how long for the RL and drive both of them......FYI,,, the pricing is amazingly similar, with a few minor tradeoffs in options for both...
    The Acura RL, competitor to the A6, is priced at $49,990.00, when you add the 18" wheels and back-up sensor, it is $51,300.00. The comparably equipped A6 is $51,270.00. The prices are virtually the same for comparable vehicles!
  • Please, it is just a little insulting to think that I asked this question without considering getting a Bluetooth phone. Ditching my $500 phone/PDA combo is just not an option right now.

    Ok, I'll keep looking.

    Oh, and love my new RL by the way.
  • Acura RL vs. Audi A6 - similar "bells and whistles", but COMPLETELY different on the road! The A6 looks and handles like a luxury vehicle, impressive drive like the A8. As for the RL, I felt like I really had to grasp the wheel when driving over rough roads--it just didn't feel stable.

    But my recommendation - test drive the RL, the A6, and the A8L. The goal - compare the handling of all 3 cars, but especially try out the air suspension in the A8L (very fun!) THEN, wait until Spring when the A6 will offer the air suspension too--if it is anything like A8L, it may be worth the wait.

    Oh, and for the "bells and whistles" - the MMI on the A6 is far superior in simplicity and more modern in the appearance on the screen. Also, the "zoom-in" and "zoom-out" feature transitions flawlessly (no wait-time in the transition). It looks just like it does in the commercial you find on the Audi website. However, I am disappointed about Audi discontinuing On-Star.
  • sacguysacguy Posts: 27
    Kristicar, what exactly does the air suspension do, I know it raises and lowers the car, but what did it do to the ride (harder, softer, etc) and handling? I know the base price is increasing in January, not sure I want to spend any more, so your opinion would be great. Also, was the A6 harsher in ride than the RL, noisier inside or anything else you noticed?
  • Although the new A6 is a very nice, Audi's reliablity record is very very poor. Why spend the same amount of money on a car that is only going to last half as long.
  • The current air suspension is not to be confused with active suspension [real time]. The air suspension has several settings, 3 or 4, I can't remember off the top. The entire car is raised and lowered based on a command given by the driver or if left in auto mode, based on road speed. As the car lowers, for example, the springs are compressed, the car's cd lowers and generally both the handling and the ride become tighter.

    I do like the air suspension, however, my test drive experience with Cadillac tells me that MagnaRide would be preferable (for me), as it is an electronic system that can adjust the shock absorbers up to 1,000 times per second. MagnaRide then, is more or less a real-time system whereas the air suspension system used by Audi is simply "active" (but not real-time in the sense that MagnaRide is).

    The suspension that I, admittedly, know little about, but based on what I know would be "a great compromise" is the one that was on the short-lived Audi RS6 (dual diagonal "passive real-time" control of the shocks); this system would almost prevent body roll in cornering.

    I would suspect that SH-AWD and one form or another of an adaptive suspension (and perhaps a somewhat stiffer suspension, based on the comments posted here) would be formidable.

    Still, with only reading as my guide, it appears that the Acura is "tuned" on the lux side of the equation and the Audi is tuned to the sport side (translated = some folks may find the Audi a harsh ride compared with the Acura RL).

    Had Cadillac not priced the STS w/AWD so high, perhaps the STS with AWD and MagnaRide would have been today's achievement of the Holy Grail of balance between luxury and sport. At that price, I will not be shopping for the STS.

    But, when you've got what will probably be a $50,000 Acura and Audi and perhaps a $43,000 Chrysler 300C AWD to fully examine, hmmm -- as I said, it is the golden age to be in the market for a car. . .don't you think? Or don't you?
  • mevandemevande Posts: 190
    I have been reading the RL "threads" here (2005). I have an 1999 BMW 740i with 38,000 miles. Its paid for:). The BMW has been more reliable than any Acura I have had (3.. 89 Legend coupe red!, a 1992 Acura Legend and a 1995 Acura Legend "GS".. GS was a blast and best "Acura" yet in my opinion). No doubt there is allot of cool technology in the new RL. However, the cars seems rather ordinary in appearance. Its not a head turner. I don't need a car that IS a head turner, but at least want some "prestige" when shelling out 50K for an Acura. The Acura seems to lack "cachet". Any opinions on this "subjective" subject?

  • I tend to agree with kristicar. I have yet to drive the A6 3.2 but the 4.2 did feel a lot tighter than the RL. At the same time it felt more sluggish (weight?) and certainly noisier (engine sound on acceleration was very noticeable).
    Can any RL driver tell me about 4 things that bother me with the RL:
    - no ledge to put yr left arm by the drivers window. Did anybody notice?
    - foot brake gets in the way of left foot when resting
    - rear middle seat is so elevated no one can spend much time there, even little kids
    - XM did not sound so fabulous on sound system. I have an Allroad and XM sounds truly CD quality, whereas it sounded more like FM on the RL.

    Thx for the feedback
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    If you're looking for "cachet", you're not going to find it in an Acura.

    However, some people could give a rat's *ss about cachet.
  • larry6larry6 Posts: 26
    Yes...I have noticed that there is no ledge to put my left arm by the driver's is a struggle to keep it there.... However, the driver's left-side arm rest seems high enough that I could get used to placing my arm there...if all else fails...I have seen arm rests advertised that seem to fit between the window and the door that could provide that type of support.

    As for the rear middle seat... after some of the posts on this list...I tried sitting in that middle seat...frankly, it was next to impossible for both my head and bottom end. However, we do not frequently need a car for 5 for was not a major disadvantage.

    I did not notice whether the foot brake gets in the way of the left foot when resting.... what would concern me however, is whether it gets in the way of removing the left foot on its path to the break pedal. Has anyone noticed if that was a problem?

    On our last drive -- I wanted to focus on the performance of the car -- so I did not turn on FM or XM.
  • josheeljosheel Posts: 73
    as with larry's reply I don't ride around with 3 adults in the back seat haven't notice any foot problems with braking and I drive freeways all day with stop and go MY radio sounds great maybe you need to have your's checked. The one thing I'm not sure about is road noise how quite is the noise canceling system suppose to make the car???
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Autozine has been a bit harsh on Cadillac’s magnaride:

    “Theoretically, using electromagnetic field to alter viscosity of damping fluid, hence damping rate, is a clever idea. But the European and Japanese experts are not fools and they know what advantages and disadvantages the Magnetic Ride Control has. Drive a STS equipped with this optional feature and you will know - it limits body movement successfully, but it pays the price in ride quality. No matter in comfort or sport mode, the ride is stiffer than a luxurious saloon ought to have. Undoubtedly, air suspension is still a better solution.”
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    "If you're looking for "cachet", you're not going to find it in an Acura.
    However, some people could give a rat's *ss about cachet. "

    "Some people" That would be me! But between you and me the car has a quiet kind of distinction that some of us really appreciate, and it grows on you and for the most part it's way too early to judge as it is barely on the street yet.
  • sacguysacguy Posts: 27
    Long term reliabilty is of course somewhat of a concern, but I never keep a car more than 3 with free maintenance on the Audi plus the warranty, that is not as important an issue, as if I were to keep the car for past the 48k miles. I still may end up with the RL, but have not made the final decision!
  • In addition to having a horrid record of reliablity, Audi's have notoriously low resale values. If you plan to keep the vehicle for 3 years, I wouldn't expect very much back on the A6. i would be willing to bet that the RL will have better resale. I looked up a 01 A6 4.2 quattro on edmunds. Guess what trade in value is $22k. $22k for a car that was originally about $50k and is only 3 years old is what I call POOR resale.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    OK that's 44% after 3 years.

    In a USA Today article published on October 8th was an excellent study on cars with the best and worst resale value. (source Kelley Blue Book)
         THE BEST.....
                Mini Cooper 3 yr....62% 5 yr...52%
                 Volvo XC90 62 52
                  Nissan 350Z 62 51
                  Acura TL 62 48
                   Infiniti G35 Coupe 62 48
                   Mazda RX8 62 47
                   Honda Odyssey 62 45
                   Honda Civic 61 44
      THE WORST.....
                   Pontiac Aztek 3 yr....27% 5 yr....18%
                   Chevy Blazer 27 19
                    Buick Century 29 19
                    Suzuki Vitara 30 19
                    Mitsubishi Diamante 31 20
                    Chrysler Sebring 32 20
                    Ford Ranger 33 20
                     Mercury Sable 33 20
                     Jaguar X Type 36 20
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    "what would concern me however, is whether it gets in the way of removing the left foot on its path to the break pedal."

    That would apply only if you use left-foot braking --- which I thought a technique used only by New York taxi drivers!
  • manybmwsmanybmws Posts: 347
    I just want to say I have had a '91 & '95 Legend as well as a '99 528 and currently a '03 530 for background. So I went to test drive a new RL to see how close they have come to a 5-series. Here are my observations:

    1) Interior is very nice with superb seating. Materials quality is inching ever so close to BMW.
    2) Ride was firmer than previous Acuras I have owned and quite similar to my 530 with normal suspension.
    3) Power was more than a 530 for sure but felt a little longer to respond probably because of heavier weight in spite of more torque.
    4) I could feel the power in the front wheels through the steering wheel. Not torque steer at all but it gave the steering a little lighter weight than the 530.
    5) The takeup on abrupt bumps seemed to be less forgiving than on the BMW.
    6) On very rough surfaces I feel the BMW wins.
    7) Throttle off response is not as smooth as the BMW. Now this might go away as the car breaks in.
    8) Brakes feel on par.
    9) Seating position is excellent with nice cockpit feel as the BMW.
    10)Engine sounds are a bit louder and more guttural than a BMW. I still think a BMW six is a winner.
    11)If you have to have all the toys - an Acura might be $3-5K less than a 530, so there is a BMW premium.

    Enjoy your new RLs...
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    So there was no category in which the RL was better than the BMW, it was either either even or relatively subpar.
  • bartalk2bartalk2 Posts: 326
    Car & Driver has an extensive road test of the RL in the December issue. Very positive except for a few minor quibbles.
  • shotgunshotgun Posts: 184
    Seems to me that the author was so overwhelmed with the overall excellence of the RL that he simply couldn't accept the notion that the RL is the superior most major automotive magazines have already reported
  • satiresatire Posts: 71
    So where's my loyalty bonus Acura???? In the fall of 1984 I went to Toyota to buy my first new car. The salesman (brother to my best friend at the time) refused to remove his $500 markup on a stripped Tercel that I could barely afford. Next day I went to Honda. Got myself an Accord hatchback at a great price because the salesman took pity on my financial situation.

    Eight years later I purchased a 1993 Accord. Then a 1997 Acura CL. Next up was a 1999 TL. I now have a 2002 RL. My next car will be another RL but probably a 2006 (I want me those air cooled seats that Acura will have to eventually offer).

    So again, Acura/Honda, where's my loyalty bonus????
  • satiresatire Posts: 71
    By the way, if it wasn't for that $500 markup I'd probably be driving a Lexus today. But alas, that bad experience turned me off on Toyotas for life.
    Do you think dealers ever consider such issues or is it "make money now" d*** the consequences?
  • prophet2prophet2 Posts: 372
    It's part of the "bird in the hand" theory and a bit short-sighted. The secret is developing clients, not just making a sale.

    As far as "loyalty bonuses" go, you have to get in line behind me: 1986 Legend; 1987 Integra LS; 1987 Legend L coupe (2); 1988 Integra LS; 1991 Legend LS; 1993 Integra LS Special Edition; 1996 RL; 2001 Honda Odyssey EX; 2002 Honda Accord EX-L V6; 2003 RSX.

    With all the referrals from me (over 100), they should give me a free 2005 RL!
  • larry6larry6 Posts: 26
    Bodble2 is perceptive, sharp -- and absolutely correct; the left foot is not used for the brake (or shouldn't be). I suspect I became confused because our second auto has standard transmission. Please forgive my mindlessness...and let's hope that my left foot will remain at rest in the '05RL. Thanks Bodble2 for the heads up!
  • As a BMW 530 driver for the last 3 years, and 2 other 5 series before that, I felt exactly the same on all these points.

    RL has more technology choices so new cockpit is a lot "busier" than last generation 5 series.

    Interior sound is less in BMW.

    Tough call...
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    I suspect there may be a few of us out there that drove straight stick for years and may even carry forward the tendency to cheat, and use the left foot on the brake once in a while. I do. and usually its in a situation making one of those "California" stops as we called them or "rabbit' stops and you want to move quickly through an intersection that is clear.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Very inciteful Shotgun.
  • Frustrating: Audi dealer is owned by several brothers -- they own geographically separate Acura, Audi, Cadillac, Chevrolet and Toyota stores.

    I test drove an Acura TL -- and got to look at but not keep an RL brochure (reason: salesperson only had one). No RL's to test, all presold. I get in a leftover last gen (but new) RL. I decide I like the TL a lot (but didn't care for the torque steer); but the TL's sound system is the best I have ever heard in any car, period.

    I test drove an A6 4.2 -- but as much as I liked it, it was $56K and I am really only interested in a 3.2; I did get a brochure to take with me however (woo woo!). I asked about a 3.2 test drive -- they have 1, presold 3.2, about 6 4.2's, 5 of them presold. I'll wait to test the 3.2.

    Note: I ask my sales rep (at Audi) are these cars selling at MSRP, less or more. I've known this guy for 20 years -- he says, "we've been taking off $1,200 on the presold ones (4.2's that HE knew of), so far." He didn't know about the 3.2, since the car had been presold by another sales person.

    Note2: The Acura rep said MSRP, period (I though, well at least there was no MARK-UP!)

    Drove to Chrysler dealer -- asked for 300C brochure with AWD version described, no brochure period on this model was available. Gave sales manager my card and asked to be called when there was a 300C w/AWD that I could test drive. He claimed 11/15/2004 (was that production or availability? I don't think he really knew so he said it both ways once each).

    Conclusion: frustration at the process, but "patience is a virtue."

    Conclusion2: not knowing anything other than what I have read about SH-AWD, it would seem that the Acura TL w/SH-AWD would be sold at a pace equal to or greater than its production -- what a great car, and a great sound system (yea, I know I already said that).

    The A6 4.2 had 18" wheels with Ultra High perfomance seasonal tires -- the XM radio was slightly less good than the Acura, but the power and responsiveness of the car belied its size.

    Can't wait to try these three cars back to back to back (the Hemi engine may be sweet, but power alone will not seduce me).

    Oh, post script: A6 dealer rep, said "money factor is 'artificially high' right now, I would expect it to decrease in November or December."

    He who goes first, apparently, pays the most.

    I wonder if Acura and Audi will begin some "normal" discounts first quarter 2005?

    The current 300C, BTW, is now being "normally" discounted plus $1,000 off from Chryco.
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