"I owned this car until very recently but bought it brand new. I did not know the problems I was going to have until after I owned it for three years. Then the fun started.
First, an intermitant electrical problem confounded the mechanics. After four attempts it was realized the engine sensor was bad and nothing was wrong with the car. That was a relatively inexpensive $500 repair covered under the extended warranty I purchased.
Then, at 63,000 miles the tranmission went. I rescued my wife and drove the car to the dealership in third gear (the only gear working) There we found out we were #8. Number 8 of what? In line for a transmission - there were 7 other Acura TLs in for the same transmission replacement, and it was on back order since they are failing all over the United States on Acura TLs, Acura MDXs, and Honda Accord V6s (they all share the same five speed transmission).
After a month of waiting we were finally able to get a $4500 transmission installed. This was also under the extended warranty, which cost about $1200 - well worth it considering the car had $5000 repairs at this point. We were warned that this replaced the transmission, but did not fix the problem as it was still in the new transmission - and to expect it to fail again at double the mileage if our driving habits stayed the same.
At 81,000 miles the electrical problem returned, this time it was the oxygen sensor on the engine as well as the engine senor failing a second time. This repair was another $1500 - again under the extended warranty bringing the total to $6500.
Immediately after this repair, we sold the car (with the $50 fee to transfer the warranty to the next owner). The warranty was going to run out in 19,000 miles and I did not want to have to pay for repairing a car that had never been super reilable."
"I put a lot of miles on my vehicles and this one has responded extremely well. Very nimble and always ready with a burst of power when needed. The only reason I'm even considering another vehicle is to move more people and pets."
"these cars look awsome and are very comfortable. the only problem is the transmissions are very prone to failure. acura extended the warranty to 7 years and 100,000 miles. there is a safty recall for the transmissions and there are numerous people who are on there third and fourth transmissions.
i will be staying away from acura from now on."
"Except for some initial teething problems, this is the best car I've ever owned. The car had to have the transmission swapped out at 34,000 miles, but since then, nothing else has broken down on it. Who ever thought the entire exhaust system would last 13 years and 149,000 miles, and still is intact? Ditto, the alternator, radiator, power steering, shock absorbers, etc? My Acura mechanic (who by the way, always asks me to sell my car to him)told me the engine will easily pass 350,000 miles. Go Acura!"
"I am the original owner of this '02 TL. Initialy, I loved the car. A great highway cruiser. 28+ mpg on the road. Great sound system. Rode and drove very well. Then, the clearcoat started to turn white. After that, it started to peal off the trunk area, then all over. Very disapointing. The entire car needs repainting. Then the transmission went out. Yes, a new one had to be installed. The front left wheel bearing went out, and the transformer for one of the headlights also. A $880 fix for the headlight at the dealer. I now have more money in the car than it's worth. My 17 yr. old drives it now."
"I bought this 1999 car used in 2006 at around 40,000 miles. 155,000 miles later, it still has a lovely pick up and gets a solid 29 mpg on expressways. I thought of trading the car in, but it's such a comfortable and roomy car (sun roof, leather seats) and has been such a good performer, I may try to hit 300,000."
"I bought my 2000 TL new in late 1999 and have only put 73,000 miles on it because of a short work commute and a hubbie who likes to drive his own vehicle for trips. The only time this car has not started right up is twice when it needed new batteries.
It's has great acceleration and handling and is very comfortable to sit in and drive. Being geographically challenged, the Nav system has been a blessing! The Nav is easy to use and delivers me to the accurate location. I'll be sorry to sell it but my nephew is bugging me...he wants it next."
"Bought this car for $6K even w/ 150K miles. Why so many miles you might ask? With Acuras, I don't hesistate 'cause like my last Acura w/ 200K miles (which got totaled by another car), they don't break...period. Got my mechanic to check this one out before buying, he said 'Wow, 150K and no oil Leaks?' No CV joint issue, no a/c problem. Just leather, cold A/C and Bose sound system...perfect. Dollar for Dollar, I don't think u can beat the value and reliability offered by an Acura in any luxury class."
"I have owned this car for 7 years and it has been the best all round car I have owned in 38 years of driving. Comfortable, roomy, reliable, drives and handles well. All the desired options are standard and the climate control is strong and quiet. I love that engine. Ample power, and gets 23-24 mpg around town and 28-31 on the highway @ 75+. Transmission is smooth and solid. Paint and interior still look new although it is not garaged. Acura service and warranty top notch. Only a couple minor issues in 114k miles. The automatic rear mirror went bad, but replaced under warranty even though car had 60k on it. Passenger seat airbag sensor failed and also replaced under warranty. One set of front brakes, 4 tires and 1 battery is all it has needed other than routine fluid and filter changes. If I had to replace this car tomorrow I would buy a 2002 or 2003. The TL was redesigned in 2004 into a slightly larger version. The 2000-2003s are a "just right" fully optioned, comfortable and reliable car. Conservative and pleasant styling that looks reasonably upscale, but a frugal car that is always ready to go when I turn the key. I plan to get 200k miles out of my car."
"Bought my 2003 Type-S certified with 64K, now has 83K. I like this car a lot and
will be sad when it is time to part with it.
Only major out-of-pocket expense was brake rotors. Basically a trouble-free car.
I have not had the transmission issues well-known with this generation of the TL.
I average 24 MPG mixed city and freeway driving, which is good for the ample power and size of the car.
The TL Type-S is a great value because it has all of the modern safety features and luxury essentials, while providing a nice blend of performance and comfort. This is a well-balanced package. Honda deserves praise for the graceful styling, I like the newer exterior designs far less.
The Bose sound system is excellent. Plenty of room for rear-seat passengers and cavernous trunk space. The interior is comfortable and of high quality, but lacks the more modern look. The gauges are large and nice to look at.
Acceleration and handling are two strong points of the Type-S. This front-driver works better in the turns than my rear-drive BMW Z3 that is about 500 pounds lighter!"
"Bought my 2002 3.2 TL Type S brand spanking new in October 2001. Made the move to a "10-Year" car from my 1997 Honda Civic (which I love to this day) with 130,000 miles. Compared the Acura against the BMW 3 Series, Audi A-4, Lexus IS-250 and decided I could really enjoy the money I was saving by buying Acura. I knew the quality of Honda products and expected the reliability. Replaced first transmission at 50,001 miles at Acura's cost. Replaced 2nd transmission at 98,000 miles at Acura's cost. I've got 151,000 miles on the car now and the tranny is slipping a tad but not enough to make me worry...yet. Love the understated power of the car and how it "looks like another family car" until you punch it! Been through a boat load of tires but have had no issues other than the tranny. I change the oil and rotate the tires every 5,000 miles, I had the timing belt replaced at 100,000 and I still love the car. My only wish is they would have put the 6-speed manual from the CL Type S into this car."
Pros: "Comfortable, handles well, great in snow, looker."
Cons: "Premium fuel is needed"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I have owned several cars in my lifetime and I must say this has been my absolute favorite vehicle. I have had to perform routine maintenance but the car has never broken down on me. Even with 217k miles I will still get 29 MPG on family trips with 4 adults, 1 child and a trunk full of luggage. I have never been stuck in the snow, have never had the car break down on me, or had any component on the vehicle wear out in an unreasonable time. I will be a lifelong fan of Acura because of this car."
"I bought my TL as my first car with just under 150K miles on it. I got it fairly cheap, but the car has been anything but cheap. The VTEC engine runs very strong and hard, and is very fun to drive. Im over 170,000 miles and the only problems I've had were a starter (normal for a 15 year old car) and dents from previous owner. This car is very reliable, and if you keep up with maintenance it will last you well over 200K miles. Its got all the bells and whistles such as leather seats and bose sound systems. I will be coming back to Acura for my next vehicle."
"Previous three Acuras (back to a Legend) all went over 250K without a bit of mechanical trouble - compared to my cars from Ford, Buick, Mazda, Pontiac, Datsun (!) and even an Opal (that got totaled by the dealer while repairing).
After 60 years riding around with others in everything from Porsche to Cadillac to Prius, I have never had or seen a more comfortable, thoughtful, reliable automobile."
"This car has a good look to it, is reliable, runs great despite high mileage. Gas pedal is a bit stiff and the controls on the dash and radio are a bit outdated for its year. Air conditioner and heater are great especially on auto and the defogger works in seconds. Overall a good car to have for a long time."
"The only thing I needed was a new transmission and Acura replaced it at no cost to me. That was a recall item that was covered if you had issues. It's been a great car which is why I still have my 2001! Hard to justify buying a new one when it runs so well. Figure it has another 100,000 to go,"
"Bought new in July 2000. At a service around 12k miles the dealer identified that this car was impacted by the trasmission issue and replaced the transmission - no questions asked. I never knew the problem existed and the car has run perfectly since then (now 97k miles). The car is still comfortable, drives well, and everything still works. I had the Bose stereo replaced by an aftermarket model to get more features, sounds great! I plan to drive this car for another 100,000 miles."
"The Acura TL is a great value. It runs great and has not needed any repairs. Routine maintenance is all that has been needed to keep this car running great.
The interior is really comfortable, with Heated Seats, Climate Control, and other convenient features.
Avg. gas mileage based on my driving is 23 MPG. 19 MPG in the city and 31 MPG on the interstate.
This is a great car, buy one if you can."