Last post on Nov 05, 2013 at 12:08 PM
You are in the Acura RL
What is this discussion about?
Acura RL, Sedan
Oct 03, 2003 (7:27 am)
Actually, I think that entire review could be summed up with two sentences, "New cars are good. Old cars are bad." That's really all it's telling us. I don't disagree with the assessment of the RL, but the description of Acura's place in the market is weak.
For example: the author cites the RSX and TSX as the way things should be done. With the TSX, I agree. However, the RSX is not meeting the competition head-on like the Integra once did. The RSX is a great car, but other cars have become just a good. Later in his own article, he states that the RSX is not selling well (this is an example of what is good?).
Meanwhile, the MDX gets dumped on. Yet, MDX sales are doing just fine. While there is more competition, the MDX is holding it's own. Even with a less expensive Honda clone on the market, MDX sales are fairly strong.
The author also seems to have forgotten that the TL was a powerful sales machine from 1999-2002. Sales have fallen off in 2003, only because it is an older design.
His take on Acura history appears to be good for only two years. I bet that next year, this guy will tell us that the TL, RL, and TSX are what Acura should have been doing, while the RSX is a car from when Acura lost their way.
The review is accurate for the RL, but short-sighted for the brand.
Oct 05, 2003 (6:06 am)
It's been posted. Why not rebirth the Legend name?
Oct 05, 2003 (6:06 am)
the legend is a very remembered car... (so was the integra)
Oct 05, 2003 (7:36 am)
I, for one, am glad that the current RL does not wear the Legend nameplate over here.
#1556 of 7386 AutoWeek article
Oct 07, 2003 (9:11 am)
Thought this would be a good read before AutoWeek removes it. Its funny Honda seems to resists at all costs before moving to a larger engine. Remember when Hondas wouldn't budge on 4-cylinders in their Accords. Eventually, they caved in and put in a V-6. I see the same with Acura resisting to go with a V-8. How long do we have to wait before they cave in?
Acura works to move product mix upscale; V-8 power essential, critics say
By KATHY JACKSON | Automotive News
SEATTLE -- Tom Elliott is counting on the new Acura TL to help bring the division out of a sales slump.
Of the six largest luxury marques in this country, Acura was the only one to suffer a sales decline through the first nine months of the year. The TL, which goes on sale today, Oct. 6, can help.
Elliott, who is executive vice president of auto operations for American Honda Motor Co. Inc., predicts that the TL will help Acura set a sales record this year of 180,000 units. That would be an achievement. Acura's sales dropped 2.9 percent in 2002 and were down 2.2 percent through Sept. 30 of this year.
Some critics say Acura will never be a true luxury marque until it offers upscale rear-wheel-drive vehicles and V-8 engines. The TL runs counter to this theory - it's a front-wheel-drive car powered by a V-6 engine.
Critics argue that it will compete against vehicles such as the Nissan Maxima and Toyota Camry, rather than, say, the Lexus ES 300.
But Elliott says the market appeal of a V-8 is overblown. "I wouldn't say we won't do a V-8," he says. "It is one of the possibilities." But he admits that hybrids are the most likely route.
Elliott says Acura will decide how to increase power on each product in the next six months. "We're really close to making a decision on a hybrid," he says. Such a vehicle could be powered by a 300-hp engine in the front plus a 100-hp electric motor in back.
He also says the company is considering all-wheel drive, superchargers and turbochargers, but not rwd. But critics say a V-8 is essential.
Consider the slow-selling RL sedan, Acura's $50,000 flagship. RL sales were 7,557 through the end of September, down 27.8 percent from the same period in 2002.
The vehicle's 225-hp V-6 engine does not impress consumers, says Jim Wangers, president of Automotive Marketing Consultants Inc. in Vista, Calif.
"It's not so much the power but the image," Wangers says. "The price of entry in the luxury segment is a V-8, not a hybrid or a V-6. Hybrids are not accepted mainstream cars yet."
Says Daniel Gorrell, vice president for automotive of Strategic Vision in Tustin, Calif. "If they're going to be in competition with Mercedes and BMW, they need a flagship, and RL is not that. I don't see them being a serious luxury top-rung contender."
Undeterred by critics, Elliott is gradually moving Acura's product mix upscale. For example, the company is reducing production of its entry-level RSX, which debuted in 2001.
"The RSX is for young people, but we will limit the sales because we want to bring the brand up," Elliott says. "What we will do next is fix the RL. We want it to go upscale. It needs more power, more style. It will be totally redone, and part of that will be more power."
For the moment, Acura dealers are defending the company's product lineup. "There's no question that the TL is upscale and doesn't compete against Hondas," says Jerry Britain, general manager of Downey Acura in Downey, Calif.
Britain also doesn't think V-8s are necessary, saying that the Acura V-6s are reliable, reasonably priced and handle well.
"The other luxury brands are dramatically more expensive, and they don't really have more creature comforts," he says. "The only problem I have is that I don't have enough vehicles."
Oct 07, 2003 (9:40 pm)
Well I won't argue that the TL isn't a good car for its segment, possibly the best fwd luxury car going in that price range......but the RL gets gets its lug nuts handed to it by any every midsize luxury car going. They are in denial if they think anything else. It's the most ridiculous thing to read the back page of the new TL brocuhe and see the RL listed as the "flagship" with a 225hp engine when the TL has 270hp and more features, Acura has it bass-ackwards.
I await something truly spectacular to correct this for the 05' year.
Oct 11, 2003 (6:10 am)
I'd buy a hybrid luxury sedan!!!
#1559 of 7386 RL IS NOT 4 EVERYONE & HONDA IS NOT LEXUS.
Oct 15, 2003 (1:49 pm)
The only things I want in the new RL is sun shade, in dash CD, more wood trim, more pockets for storage, better cup holders AND BETTER GAS MILEAGE!
IMHO, the RL is the perfect family sedan for the individuals with children but are still too young at heart for a volvo wagon and aren't ready to unload the cash for the nicer luxury SUVs yet.
I know I bought mine cause it looks stylish, roomy, has just enough luxury options and is VERY RELIABLE.
I'm not racing a 5 series BMW from the stoplight in the city or pacing lexus 400 on the highway(which it does quite nicely). I think those who worry about 200hp vs 240 should look at the TL which is a sport sedan while the RL is more a touring Sedan.
#1560 of 7386 RL and TL....
Oct 15, 2003 (4:28 pm)
the TL is considered a Performance Touring Sedan
The RL is considered a Touring Sedan
The Infiniti I35/M45 are considered Touring Sedans
BMW 5-Series is a sport-sedan.
Too young for a Volvo wagon???? Audi will sell you an A6 or maybe an A4......
I'D BUY A HYBRID LUXURY SEDAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!