No, the newest version of the
Acura TL, the completely redesigned 2009 model, still doesn't offer rear-wheel drive, like many of its most obvious head-to-head competitors including the
BMW 3 Series,
Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the
Lexus IS, but now its more expensive variant does feature Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD), the sophisticated system used on the RL and MDX. In fact, both TL models - TL and TL SH-AWD - deliver better handling than the previous editions of the car in a larger but still easy-to-maneuver package. Other delectable additions include 22 additional horsepower from the base 3.5-liter engine and a 19-horsepower boost in the top-rated (305 horsepower) engine that drives the TL SH-AWD plus a Sequential SportShift five-speed transmission and an array of electronic niceties including AcuraLink real-time weather. In an exclusive two-part interview with Kelley Blue Book, Acura TL Chief Engineer Mat Hargett gives a deep dive into what makes the new TL tick.