The 2009 Acura RL is an evolved version of the generation of Acura's flagship that first entered the market in 2005. The main changes to the car's exterior styling are bolder chrome flashes across the revised fascia and rear decklid, as well as the usual nips, tucks, and lens reshaping. Under the hood, a larger V-6 delivers the oomph the previous RL lacked.
Inside, things are mostly familiar, with some nice trim upgrades and a subtler palette than in our previous test cars. The much-lauded voice-control system has expanded its vocabulary to 700 commands, joining a few other … Read more
Acura has heard our prayers and answered with an announcement that it will be offering the 2010 TL SH-AWD with a new six-speed manual transmission for "the enthusiast driver."
The all-new transmission is a proper three-pedal deal featuring uprated internals and a stiffer case, along with a new clutch system. Acura claims new gear synchronizers and a short-throw shifter assembly generate more accurate shifting with low shift effort. With Acura/Honda's history of sweet manual transmissions, we're inclined to believe the claims.
Aside from netting an 88 pounds weight reduction and a better weight distribution, the … Read more
The 2008 Acura MDX remains largely unchanged from the 2007 model, when we reviewed the then-new redesign and found it chock-full of tech options inherited from Acura's sedans, and with improved handling courtesy of similarly upgraded four-wheel-drive management. Back in 2006, the first-generation MDX had some unfinished first-generation electronics, but nonetheless impressed us with the breadth of its tech offerings.
Some minor feature additions are present on the 2008 model, which improve the overall tech experience, and its solid driving dynamics are still intact. But other luxury SUVs offer better performance, and we're ready to see Acura's … Read more
More automakers are offering iPod integration in their models, sometimes as a standard feature. With this type of integration, you can bring your iPod into the car, leave it in the glovebox or console, and access all of your music through the car's stereo interface, listening to your tunes through a full audio system. You can select your music by artist, album, genre, and playlist just as you would on your iPod. And the number of automakers offering this integration varies widely.
Of course there are BMW and Infiniti, but would you believe Ford and Hyundai, too? Take a … Read more
For the introduction of Acura's updated 2009 TL model, the company invited a number of automotive journalists to drive the car over some excellent roads in Marin, just north of San Francisco. Actually, we would be driving two very different cars, as Acura split the TL between a standard and performance version. The latter isn't the TL-S from past model years, but an all-wheel-drive version that Acura felt it had to develop because of bias against front-wheel-drive cars amongst enthusiasts, which all previous TLs had been. This performance-oriented TL is called the TL SH-AWD, and along with Acura's all-wheel-drive system gets a bigger engine than the standard TL. We got to drive both cars on some of our favorite roads, going up the coast on Highway 1, then coming back down on a series of winding country roads.… Read more
LOS ANGELES -- Acura will add a nameplate to its lineup in 2010 as part of an effort to become what company executives call a "tier 1 luxury brand."
"We will have an all-new vehicle," said Dan Bonawitz, vice president for corporate planning and logistics at American Honda Motor Co. By broadening the lineup, he said, Acura can compete more directly with rivals such as BMW and Mercedes. The new vehicle will be Acura's first addition since August 2006, when the RDX small crossover joined the lineup. Bonawitz would not give details but said the … Read more
Because of its solid and comfortable everyday driver demeanor, buyers of the new 2009 Acura TSX will probably opt for the five-speed automatic transmission, for ease of driving in traffic and urban settings. And that's unfortunate, because to appreciate Honda's capability to build truly efficient engines that deliver both economy and power, you just need to get the six-speed manual transmission.
Our TSX came with the manual transmission, and it made driving the car a joyful experience. Of course, the many cabin electronics didn't hurt either, if we discount the mass of buttons on the instrument panel … Read more
No longer a pocket rocket, the Acura TSX gets more size and more technology.