The 2012 Acura TL – Aggressive, Yet Elegant!

2012 Acura TL


We love the new 2012 Acura TL, and we know you will too!  The TL ranks #2 out of 19 upscale midsize cars as determined by US News’ ranking and reviews.  “It’s ideal for those wanting an athletic and aggressive car that nonetheless treats its occupants to a reasonably smooth ride and an accommodating interior with a generous assortment of high-tech features,” reports  Forbes Magazine.

Acura says that its fourth-generation TL is nothing less than the most exciting performance luxury sedan in Acura history and sets the benchmark for the future direction of the Acura division of Honda.

Competitors include the Audi A6, Lexus ES350, Lincoln MKZ and Volvo S60 & S80.  The TL offers exceptional value and above-average durability and reliability compared to its counterparts listed here. 

Performance:  It’s all in the details!

According to US News, test drivers say the TL’s base V6 is strong, quiet and quick, while the TL’s optional all-wheel drive is admired for its excellent grip in a variety of weather and road condition scenarios.   The Acura TL’s 3.5L V-6 engine blows away the competition with 280 hp@6200 rpm, and the torque also excels with 254@5000rpm and a compression ratio of 11.2, compared to an average 10.5 among others in its class.  The TL also includes paddle shifters as standard equipment, while the competition either offers them as an option or they are unavailable.

The 2012 Acura TL transmission teams with a new multi-clutch torque converter that not only reduces heat build-up during operations, but also allows for lock-up activation during a much wider range of driving conditions – which helps generate improved fuel economy.  As a result, city/highway fuel economy is now 20/29 mpg – an increase of 3 mpg in highway driving over the 2011 TL.  To further improve operating efficiency, the TL’s 3.5L V-6 engine receives a host of friction-reduction technologies while a revised air inlet system provides cooler air for both the 3.5L and 3.7L engines.   US News reports that test drivers love the powerful V6 engines in both TL trims. 

Sara Lacey, of, calls the Acura TL “mother proof.”  In its 2012 model, Acura softened the look of the grille, but she says that the redesigned five-seater still means business with its sharp, sporty looks.  She goes on to say that the base TL with front-wheel drive has a 3.5L V-6, and there’s a larger engine – 3.7L V-6 in AWD that makes it possible for Mom and Dad to have fun driving the TL when no one is looking!  “The rear seats are deep and supportive, and there’s plenty of legroom for the kids,” Sara says.

Auto reviewers are very happy with the 2012 Acura TL’s powerful V6 engine and handling.  They especially like the way it powers through curves and turns:

“The Acura TL occupies a sweet spot among all of those extremes – precise enough in steering (rack-and-pinion type) to go exactly where you point when you point it; gifted with a well-crafted suspension (front double wishbone, rear multi-link) that turns dips, curves and bends into a smile-laden joy ride; and blessed with a new six-speed automatic transmission that can be used as a manual to turn drives on especially steep and twisty roads into pure, unadulterated fun.”  – The Washington Post

 “The V6s in both the TL and SH-AWD are quiet and buttery-smooth at low engine speeds.  They’re equally impressive when you wind them out, too.  Both engines seem to thrive on being pushed to the redline, an easy thing to do when using the manual shift paddles.” – Inside Line

“Shifts are quick and crisp, and we love the way the transmission holds paddle-selected gears in sport mode, refusing to upshift at redline…” – Car and Driver

“Seat-of-the-pants, the TL feels quick, but test results prove this sedan can hustle.” – Motor Trend

“Brakes retard momentum right-by-gosh-now with not much pedal pressure.  Steering gives you the impression you’re actually controlling the car, instead of rotating a mysterious mechanism through a slushy medium.” – USA Today

“It still has the same wonderfully competent and stable chassis that makes it a sport-sedan stalwart.”   – Inside Line

We quickly came to appreciate Acura’s Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive (SH-AWD) system which is engineered to benefit both wet and dry-road traction.  It not only automatically distributes engine power between the front and rear axles as needed, but also between the left and right rear wheels to provide a sporty feel few AWD vehicles can match.  This so-called torque vectoring technology makes the 2012 Acura TL’s already quick and nimble handling feel like it’s on a turntable while making sharp turns at speed.” – Forbes

Comfort and Convenience

The Acura TL provides much more passenger room in the front seat than other cars in its class.  The TL also includes 2-memory driver-side seat adjustment as standard equipment, while for most competitors, this is optional or unavailable.  In addition, heated front seats and high-intensity discharge headlights are standard in the Acura TL.

“It exudes a cool, mature, composed demeanor that’s refined enough to serve as daily transport, but up for an occasional hilly backroad romp.”  – Motor Trend

“Those looking for a refined ride, a spacious cabin and a full helping of the latest bells and whistles will be well served by the base model TL, a strong competitor to the likes of the Buick LaCrosse, Hyundai Genesis and Lexus ES350.” – Edmunds

 “Inside, the…TL’s modestly redesigned interior is roomy, attractive and functional.”  – Forbes

“We found the front seats to be comfortable and supportive, with sufficient travel to suit long-legged motorists.  Rear seat room is plentiful for two adult riders – three in a pinch – with a maximum 36.2 inches of legroom.”  – Forbes

“The TL is the largest and roomiest sedan in its class and one of the few whose back seat can graciously handle long hauls with long adults.”  – The New York Times

“The navigation system remains one of the best, most intuitive units from any OEM.” AutoWeek

“The interior is outstanding.  It features an attractive design and appealing materials, including lovely brown perforated leather upholstery…” – Newsday


Acura is proud to report that its TL is one of only two cars that received the highest possible rating in the new small overlap frontal crash test.  Safety ratings for the Acura TL are the highest rating of “Good” by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  Optional AWD is good in wet and dry conditions.  Standard safety features include front-seat side-impact torso airbags, side curtain airbags, antilock brakes and electronic stability system.  Also available is a blind spot warning system.


The 2012 Acura TL 6-Speed AT has a base price MSRP of $35,905, which is over 10% less than the average MSRP’s of other vehicles in its class, including the Lexus ES350, BMW 335i, Audi A6 and the Volvo S80.  Residual values are high on Acura TL models at both the 36-months and 60-months points.  The vehicle’s reliability and standard powertrain warranty of 70,000 or 72 months are among the best in its class, bringing its total ownership costs down.

The proof is in the pudding:  What owners have to say!

Current Acura TL owners have an abundance of great things to say about their car!  In the interest of time, we narrowed it down to a few:

“Finally, my best car ever!  Great MPG average at 26, quick acceleration and handling, extremely comfortable interior.  I commute about 12 hours a week and this car makes my long drives a pleasure.  My favorite option?  The ventilated seats.”

“Best bang for your buck by far!  Quality power and mpg.  I am getting 24 miles in city and 32 on highway.  Quiet ride. Great sound system and lane guidance navigation.  Cooled seats are fantastic!”

“For the money, I don’t see how anything can beat a TL overall.”

“Would not buy another car in its class over the TL, not even if it was a gift!  I have owned several autos and without a doubt the Acura product has been the most owner and driver-friendly auto I have owned.”

“Had a 2001 Acura TL and that’s why I bought another.  I look forward to keeping this one 12 years or so…reliability is part of the game, and the TL has it.  Every bit of the car a Lexus 350 is with a better price.”

Test drivers have these comments:

“That was a lot of fun!”

“The blind spot feature is a great feature!”

“The head room:  I’m pleasantly surprised with it considering I’m 6 feet 5 inches tall!”

“The car is capable of a lot performance-wise”

“The TL is a solid car”

Schedule your test drive(s) today!

As we said before, we know you will love this car – so schedule your test drive today! Simply click below to schedule your test drive to see what a great driving experience the Acura TL would be for you!

Schedule Your Test-drive Today!

In the meantime, please share your questions, thoughts, and comments with us below.  We would be glad to discuss these with you as soon as possible!

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