Intrepidation

Acura TL Revealed

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SANTA MONICA, California — Images and specifications of the 2009 Acura TL made their way onto the Web today, ahead of Acura's planned debut for next week. Acura had previously released only a front view and preliminary information for the all-new fourth-generation TL.

The 2009 TL will be offered in two versions: front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive. This is the first time Honda's Super-Handling all-wheel drive will be available on the midsize sedan. The front-wheel-drive version gets a 280-horsepower 3.5-liter SOHC V6 engine, and the TL SH-AWD will use a 305-hp 3.7-liter SOHC V6. Both engines are mated to a sequential sportshift five-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters.

The 2009 TL also gets a completely revamped interior when it goes on sale this fall.

What this means to you: Mixed reactions from the press room here as we start to digest the TL's new look. — Kelly Toepke, News Editor

Source: Inside Line

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09.acura.tl.act.f34.1.500.jpg

09.acura.tl.act.r34.500.jpg

09.acura.tl.fint.500.jpg

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My opinion improves. :)

I still dunno about the rear fascia though...

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That grille is just so...ugh. I can't get over it. I really do prefer the '08 TL, I think it looks so much better. The interior reminds me of a blend of the RL, MDX, and Accord.

I really do love Honda's J-Series V6, however.

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Looks better in these photos, but I still prefer the current model. I love the roofline and wedgy rear of the current car...some of the details of the new one are pretty strange..don't like the front fascia or the grille, or the lights (reflectors?) set into the rear bumper---they look like an afterthought. And the poorly executed rear door cutline (the door upper (window frame) cutline and chrome trim aren't aligned). I am looking forward to seeing it in person, though.

Edited by moltar
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The side looks okay, but the front is still ugly, the grille is so massive, and the upcurved thin headlights make it look like an Asian kid with braces.

The rear, as expected from spyshots, looks like a mix of Aura and Civic, but it looks very busy.

The interior is nice, as is typical of Honda.

Overall, a C. It's average, nothing new or interesting, besides the gawdy grille. I like the current car better.

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Why am I laughing out loud... alone, infront of my computer? :

09.acura.tl.f34.500.jpg

Whole front clip looks like it's off another car.... another even uglier car.

Edited by balthazar
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Looks very nice, I'm liking this car. The tail lights still aren't quite fitting, but not bad. I can't wait to drive one of these, in black which should look 10x better.

What this means to you: Mixed reactions from the press room here as we start to digest the TL's new look. — Kelly Toepke, News Editor

Why do they always stick the "what this means to you" bits in at the end, with utterly meaningless dribble written in them?

The world will never know.

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And the poorly executed rear door cutline (the door upper (window frame) cutline and chrome trim aren't aligned). I am looking forward to seeing it in person, though.

I see what you mean, the door cut line is strange. Why didn't they make that last bit of chrome part of the door?

Oh well it certainly isn't bad. It could be much worse.....

10 e-cookies for the first person to guess what car this styling disaster comes from:

strangereardoorstyling.jpg

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What's so 'disasterous' about that? Certainly not awkward or weird... and basically, just about everything has these non-functional 'rear vent panes' these days; byproduct of too-short cars.

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OOPS! I missed this posting of the article. I have cut and pasted my comments from the other posting below:

I think the overall shape is not bad.

There are 3 things that I dislike about the exterior design:

1) The most obvious one is the grille. This totally ruins the front end design. Hopefully, Acura rethinks this grille design and extensively alters it soon (like the next model year would be ideal) or offers an aftermarket replacement that is considerably less hideous. I would prefer a grille with a metallic finish surround with a bigger "A" emblem in the center with horizontal bars extending from the center of the emblem. I know Acura is trying to do something to the exterior of their cars to make a statement and help the cars stand out, but this grille treatment is the wrong solution.

2) The arch over the front wheel wells that distort the side character line. Though this styling error is not nearly as offensive as the overly blingy shield grille, it does make the car appear as though it has already been in a wreck. My suggestion would be to eliminate the arch and have the character line run in a straight line from the edge of the headlights to the edge of the taillights.

3) The fakeout piece applied to the C-pillar to alter the appearance of the roofline. This styling "practice" is one of my major auto design pet peeves. Although it is less obvious here than in some other recent offenders (Chrysler Sebring, Mazda6, and Chevy Cruze), I still think it somewhat cheapens the overall design. I think I could live with this blunder more than I could tolerate the grille or the front fender arch.

Other than the items mentioned above, I sort of like the rest of the design. I think the decklid shape is interesting, though it does reduce the usefulness of the trunk by providing a smaller and awkward shaped opening.

The interior is nice looking and appears to be well finished.

I am not a big Honda or Acura fan, but I think this would be a nice midsize near luxury sedan if Acura would refine some of the design blunders (the shield grille and the front fender arch need to go). I seriously doubt if this car will draw new customers to the Acura brand or assist in moving Acura upmarket. I'm not even sure if it will promote loyalty among current TL customers or attract those who wish to upgrade from their TSX sedans. I have a feeling that the front grille might repel a lot of potential buyers.

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I see what you mean, the door cut line is strange. Why didn't they make that last bit of chrome part of the door?

Oh well it certainly isn't bad. It could be much worse.....

10 e-cookies for the first person to guess what car this styling disaster comes from:

strangereardoorstyling.jpg

Nothing wrong with that ('08 CTS). The CTS door upper/C-pillar is very well executed. There is no excuse for the nonsense of the door upper cutline of the TL, though.

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The fascias look terrible, the sides are ok, if pretty generic, and the interior looks very nice.

I see nothing wrong with the CTS's C-Pillar (or whatever car that is if it's not the CTS, but it appears to be)...

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The side looks okay, but the front is still ugly, the grille is so massive, and the upcurved thin headlights make it look like an Asian kid with braces.

The rear, as expected from spyshots, looks like a mix of Aura and Civic, but it looks very busy.

The interior is nice, as is typical of Honda.

Overall, a C. It's average, nothing new or interesting, besides the gawdy grille. I like the current car better.

+1

Chris

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Why am I laughing out loud... alone, infront of my computer? :

09.acura.tl.f34.500.jpg

Whole front clip looks like it's off another car.... another even uglier car.

Who said you were laughing alone?

Trust me, there are plenty of other people out here laughing with you.

Chris

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And actually, I find it interesting that even my friends that will only buy Japanese cars find this model Acura hideous.

Chris

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And actually, I find it interesting that even my friends that will only buy Japanese cars find this model Acura hideous.

Chris

I emailed a link to the article to two friends that own the current TLs (one an '04, the other an '06), they don't like the new one at first glance...one thought it was ugly, and the other immediately ruled it out because of the lack of a manual and the wierd styling.

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I emailed a link to the article to two friends that own the current TLs (one an '04, the other an '06), they don't like the new one at first glance...one thought it was ugly, and the other immediately ruled it out because of the lack of a manual and the wierd styling.

Not surprising since about 70% of the reactions on www.vtec.net are also negative. It's the same story as it was with the Civic, CR-V, TSX, RL, Pilot, Ridgeline... pretty much every new Honda product.

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I present the 2009 TL Type S in Electron Blue Pearl!

2009tl-chop.jpg

Hey! You got rid of that awkward arch over the front wheel well. This car is starting to look better.

Now, if you could only fix that hideous grille, we might be in business...

If Acura could change these two styling offenses, then the car wouldn't look so bad.

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That is a hideous looking car from every angle. Using the Accord interior with a bigger nav screen, a few more buttons and some metal trim doesn't make it a luxury car. Acura sales should keep on going down.

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