By KBB.com Editors
Acura's answer to premium performance sedans like the BMW 3 Series, Infiniti G35, Audi A4 and Lexus IS, the TL is the only one of that category offered exclusively with front-wheel drive. While rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive vehicles can enjoy some performance advantages, the TL mitigates those differences with an unparalleled front-wheel-drive system. In addition to exhilarating performance, the TL is also comfortable, roomy and packed with a sophisticated lineup of standard equipment. It even returns up to 29 miles per gallon on the highway and is priced considerably below its competitors. In addition to some notable interior and exterior updates for 2007, enthusiasts are celebrating the return of a TL Type-S, with more power, a stiffer suspension and distinctive styling touches.
Fast, fun, comfortable and convenient, the TL is arguably the category's most well-rounded entry and almost certainly its best value.
While the TL's front-wheel-drive architecture is an advantage for someespecially those in wetter climatesother enthusiast buyers might prefer the driving dynamics associated with rear-wheel drive.
A host of moderate changes inside, outside and beneath the sheetmetal add up to a more sophisticated TL. The big news for enthusiasts is the return of a Type-S model, which features more power, a sportier suspension and unique styling touches.
Driving Impressions One of the great beauties of the TL lineup is that, 95 percent of the time, the Type-S is just as comfortable as the base model and the base model...is just as much fun as the Type-S. Still, when the road starts to get curvy and your right foot gets heavy, the quicker, grippier, more responsive Type-S easily earns its price premium. The five-speed automatic has been enhanced for the Type-Swhich also gets wheel-mounted paddle shiftersto deliver smoother, rev-matching downshifts and quicker, crisper upshifts, while the six-speed manual is as tight and precise as you'd expect in an all-out sports car. Without question, no other manufacturer has ever combined this much horsepower and front-wheel-drive running gear with such satisfying results. Rounding out the TL's impeccable behavior are its pleasant around-town demeanor and reactive but comfortable highway manner.
Comprehensive Navigation System
Newly upgraded for 2007, the TL's voice-activated navigation system provides real-time traffic info, Zagat restaurant reviews and includes a rearview camera. It even allows you to upload your entire personal phonebook into the Bluetooth hands-free phone system in one step.
Enhanced DVD-Audio System
The TL's impressive eight-speaker, 225-watt DVD-Audio surround sound system features DTS and Dolby Pro Logic II decoding, plus a six-disc CD changer that plays WMA and MP3 files. There's also an auxiliary input for portable MP3 players and such.
The TL's interior remains one of the roomiest, most comfortable cabins in the category (especially for rear-seat passengers). The list of upgrades for 2007 includes a new three-spoke steering wheel (in place of a four-spoke model), softer seat leather, revised information displays, improved DVD-Audio surround sound system and an updated voice-activated navigation system that provides real-time traffic information and includes an integrated rear-view camera. Type-S models get sportier seats with contrasting stitching, stainless-steel pedals, red (not blue) instrument illumination, dark aluminum and carbon fiber trim and an active noise canceling system that generates sound waves to counteract the bigger engine's additional noise at cruising speeds.Exterior
Cosmetic changes for 2007 include a larger grille, revised front and rear lower fascia, the addition of independent fog lights, mirror-integrated turn signals, redesigned taillight lenses and new 17-inch wheels. The more assertive Type-S is distinguished by a collection of darker trim elements, including black chrome grille and lamp treatments plus wider side sills, a rear spoiler, dual circular exhaust outlets, dark 17-inch wheels and Type-S badges.
Except for the navigation system, a base Acura TL is fully loaded with an impressive DVD-Audio surround sound system, power moonroof, HID headlamps, leather seating, power/heated front seats, steering wheel-mounted controls and six airbags.
A navigation system is the only option available on the base TL. The step up to the Type-S includes navigation, a host of performance-oriented hardware and cosmetic upgrades, a choice of a more responsive five-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission and the availability of high-performance tires.
While the base TL keeps the same excellent 3.2-liter engine from last year (coupled with a slightly softened suspension), the Type-S gets a 3.5-liter version that, according to Acura, gives it faster zero-to-60, quarter-mile and passing acceleration than the 2006 Infiniti G35 and 2006 BMW 330i. The Type-S also gets a stiffer suspension, Brembo brakes, a more aggressive exhaust note and is the only model available with a manual transmission (which includes a limited-slip differential) and high-performance tires.
258 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
233 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/29
286 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
256 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/29 (manual), 19/28 (automatic)
By nancym (NJ) on Thursday, November 07, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Fun to drive. Reliable."
Cons: "Replacement parts are expensive but they do last"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Got this car new and loved it every day since. Fun to drive and very reliable. Has been in two minor accidents (not my fault) and both times it absorbed the impact. It suffered some cosmetic damage but I was completely unharmed. Very safe."
By Guy (MD) on Friday, September 13, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 117,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great price for the features, fun drive, mean look"
Cons: "Some electrical problems, higher maintenance cost"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"For those who have never driven anything over 120 ponies, this car is a beast. With a mean look and sporty interior trim, the TYPE S definitely stands out from the crowd of your every-day drivers. While having a sports tuned suspension, the TL-S delivers a smoother driving experience. At the same time, because it is a sports sedan you will feel a bump here and there. Gas mileage is poor and if you do not want it to drop below 19 mpg city / 25 highway, you better fill it with premium. While we are on the subject of gas, there is a small problem with a filler pipe/fuel cap. If you go on bumpy roads you will get a "tighten fuel cap" warning and a system message which will be read out loud. This is no big deal (no fix necessary/doesn't harm your vehicle), it goes away within 5 minutes and you can cycle the warning off your dash, but it does get annoying. My power steering pump went a-wall at about 100k miles, so if buying used, be sure to have someone take a look at it, $175 fix. The electronics. This car is jam packed with gadgets that will make you feel like Tony Stark (or at least the cousin that gets all of his hand-me-downs). For it's time (2008) I think it had a very good GPS (be sure to update the map disk $99), very simple and easy user interface, and fairly useful voice commands. The key feature that stood out to me was the integrated Bluetooth. Before I get into how great it is, have to add a note about new smartphones. At the time this car was built, the smartest phone on the market was still in competition with Blackberry, so the components are getting old, but slowly. If you will use the AUX jack to play music off your phone and try to answer a phone call using the HandsFree Link in the car, you will be greeted with silence, because all new phones reroute the sound to the "Headphones"/your car's AUX system and not the Bluetooth. Basically, unplug the audio jack from your phone when you try to answer a phone call. Other than that, the pairing process is easy (all voice controlled) and relatively quick in setup. I fell in love with the GPS, the backup camera, the Bluetooth and still am, despite it getting old. The downside of all these gadgets: the lights. When you drive the car at night there are about as many lights on the car's dash as on the space shuttle. It looks awesome...until one of them burns out. My seat heater light went out about 100k miles in, then the hazard lights button, then the setup/info button. I would replace them all, but the only easy ones are the seat heater and hazard flasher button. The lights on the GPS/radio unit are actually soldered in, so once they go out, the unit has to be removed and every light has to be replaced. I'm definitely not doing it on a car with 120k+ miles. It will, however, drive you insane if you love the car as much as I do. The interior is top quality, I have never owned a luxury car and this was a huge upgrade from my 2004 corolla. Carbon fiber accents on all doors, all black interior, leather and a back seat that even a 6'2" guy can squeeze into...semi-comfortably. Loved it. To sum up, this car is definitely an eye candy and you will enjoy the looks and comments you get when someone sits in the passenger side. I drove it throughout college and, let's just say, it was a good social investment. The car will not make you cool by any means, but it will make you stand out among your friends for sure. Very reliable, aside from the small annoying electrical problems, great driving experience and non-astronomical maintenance cost (but you are buying a sports car, so with great power comes great financial responsibility). Low profile tires will run you up $700-800 on average, watch out for snow, this car isn't AWD but the vehicle stability assist system helps. ABS is amazing on this car, stops on a dime. Treat it well and it will give you nothing but love."
4 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By krothe (LA) on Friday, May 31, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 170,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "reliable, dependable, beautiful"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"Bought my baby brand new in Jan 2006. I researched for several months and narrowed my choice to 3 vehicles. The test drive was the icing on the cake. The other vehicle's base price were in the range of the TL - but all the features that were included in the Tech package for the TL were very expensive options on the other brands. In the first three years, I put 90,000 miles on the vehicle. 4 years later, no squeaks, rattles, or anything that would show its age. I love this car - so much that I bought a 2009 TSX for my wife then upgraded in 2010 to a MDX. I am an Acura fan. I really don't want to give up on my TL, but it is approaching the 200k milestone, and I'm afraid that it's days are numbered. The maintenance costs have been very reasonable (about $600 / year which includes tires, and major maintenance - transmission servicing, suspension replacement, brakes, etc.) The only component I've had to replace was the power steering - only because my battery died in a parking garage and I had to steer the car out of the multi-level parking facility without any electricity to get the car to a tow truck (and it damaged the steering pump). The service department is awesome - I don;t think i'll ever buy another car that isn't an Acura."
7 people out of 7 found this review helpful
By NHB3GTL (WA) on Friday, May 17, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 125,000overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "Quick, looks nice, sporty to drive."
Cons: "Cheap construction, transmission issues, too small"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"I think everyone by now should know to not buy any Honda car with an automatic transmission, every time they come out with a new model they say "oh these ones don't have the issues the old ones did" but after 60k miles on this thing guess what quit? The transmission of course, upon reading all the acura forums you will find how common this is. Manual trans Hondas = great. autos= not so much. Ive also replaced in the first 100k the starter, heater valve, about 100 interior lights, a leaky headlight assembly, leaky taillight assembly, trunk latch assembly, lots of interior parts that break (buttons, the subwoofer, etc) and yes I have always done all the maintenance timing belt, water pump, oil changes, TRANSMISSION service etc. This car has been well cared for but its just a typical cheaply made foreign car. The pros of it are that I have never ever had a problem with the engine itself always idles and runs smooth never had a check engine light on. It really is a nice looking car inside and out, just too bad overseas manufacturers cant make anything last (but really how do you sell new cars if they build em like they should) kinda like appliances nowadays, they would go out of business if they made them reliable. Anyways I would recommend this car as long as you are prepared to work on it. Like I said fun to drive, looks nice, but overall its an overpriced cheaply made vehicle."
10 people out of 18 found this review helpful
By Annie123 (CA) on Thursday, May 09, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 100,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great handling and smooth ride."
Cons: "Keeping this car up isn't cheap. But it is worth."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I own the 2007 Acura TLS., in white. Before an accident on May 6, of this year, not a dent anywhere on my car. I have had several offers on my car because it is such a awesome looking car. Drives and handles great. It is expense to keep up. Luckily, the damage to the driver side will be able to be fixed. I was the only one of three people who walk away from this nasty accident. That car really held up to the impact. I can't say enough about my car. I was hoping that it would not have to be totaled. I couldn't replace that year and model. Acura Made a big mistake in changing the body style on these. I wouldn't touch the Acura models today. Hope you are luckily enough to own an earlier model. I know I am."
5 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By Utley (FL) on Wednesday, May 01, 2013
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Price, Value, Features, Horsepower...."
Cons: "Gas Mileage could be a bit better."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"My 2007 TL with Tech package is my 4th Acura and you simply cannot find a car such as this one, with all of the features, anywhere in the same price range. Acura service is top notch, and the car is fantastic. Like any other car, you get what you put into it, and I have always taken great car of my cars. Would love to see Acura make a 2 TL Coupe!"
4 people out of 5 found this review helpful