Last post on Nov 05, 2013 at 12:08 PM
You are in the Acura RL
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Acura RL, Sedan
#905 of 7386 News from Motor Trend
Sep 12, 2002 (7:34 pm)
Here is the entire review from Motor Trend on the 2003 RL:
"Benefiting from a host of upgrades for '02, Acura's senior sedan gains only new wheels, taillights, and minor trim changes to set off its comprehensively appointed '03 package. The RL's mechanical features include a 3.5L/225-HP SOHC VTEC V-6, electronically controlled four speed automatic transmission, double wishbone suspension, four-wheel dics with ABS, stability control, and front/front-side airbags. On the luxury front are leather upholstery, wood accents, a full complement of power assists, climate-control A/C, Bose audio, and OnStar. A DVD nav system and cargo net are the sole options."
And yes, Motor Trend lists the price as $28,980-$33,480. Be sure to take this magazine with you when you visit the dealer. Everyone will have a nice laugh over that pricing.
And I believe this is the first VTEC engine in the RL. Acura.com doesn't mention the 2002 having a VTEC. Perhaps the RL is sharing the TL's engine? It should have the Type S engine (IMHO).
Sep 12, 2002 (7:36 pm)
One thing I keep forgetting to ask, does anyone know what platform the RL is build on? As best as I can find out, it isn't shared with anything else Honda sells in this country. Is it used for anything in Japan? Would love to know if anyone has the 411.
Sep 12, 2002 (7:57 pm)
I've always found it odd that the flagship sedan doesn't incorporate the parent company's ubitiquious VTEC system.
Sep 13, 2002 (7:36 am)
Most everyone seems to be talking about new cars, but I figured I would post this as an FYI. I bought a 1997 RL in April with 96K on it for 13K. I just spent $2700.00 on it yesterday. The water pump and timing belt were due to be changed, plus the accessory belts and I had to replace the right front strut (as it was sagging) so I did the left one to. Also, my mechanic found that the crank shaft position sensor was about to fail, so another 200 for that. I really like the car, but parts are expensive. I have 103K on it now and I would like to get to 150K with another major outlay (plugs and trans/diff were serviced two months ago). The car is wonderful, but watch out for the maint.
#909 of 7386 $2700 repair bill
Sep 13, 2002 (8:48 am)
It is amazing how expensive the parts are for this RL. My insurance is much more than for my 2000 Odyssey because the parts are so much more. It irks me because they are sometimes identical to Honda parts but with a different part number. A flasher/turn relay is $75, The horns are about $50 each. BTW watch out if your differential pinion seal is leaking ($660). Fix it now or pay much more later if it blows and you need a new tranny.
#910 of 7386 rmnixon...
Sep 13, 2002 (11:23 am)
You paid $2700 for timing belt/water pump + 2 struts??? Ouch!!!! I just had the timing belt/water pump/belts replaced by my mechanic. Charged me $250 for labor and I bought all OEM parts online for just over $300.
#911 of 7386 A little advice please
Sep 13, 2002 (12:14 pm)
I own a 1998 Camry, it's been good to me since I purchased it used a little over a year ago, but I don't really like it. I purchased it to have some trouble free transportation while I was in a transition of having a kid, getting a degree, and got a job.
To make a long story short, I'm thinking of getting a White 1998 RL with 48K miles for 22k. Does this sound like a good deal? I want a car that makes my 1.5 hour a day (65 mi ) commute easier.
Any input will be greatly appreciated...
Sep 13, 2002 (12:53 pm)
The MDX has been upgraded to 260hp using the same 3.5L engine.
The 3.5L engine in the RL is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from the 3.5L engine present in the MDX/Odyssey. The 3.5L of the MDX/Odyssey is of the J-series of SOHC engines from Honda, which also includes the 3.0L engine of the Accord and the 3.2L engines of the TL/TL-s.
The J-series engines (3.5L of the MDX etc) are Transversely mountable engines with a 60 degree "V" angle. The 3.5L in the RL is a Longitudinally mountable engine with a 90 degree "V" angle. The 90 degree "V" angle is ideal in a V8 engine, while the 60 degree "V" angle is ideal in a V6. The 90 degree V6 needs bandaids like balancing shafts to quell vibrations.
Normally Automakers go for a 90 degree V6, ONLY when they need to make a V6 on the same production line as their V8 engines. For example, the Oldsmobile 3.5L DOHC engines have a 90 degree "V" angle, since they are built on the same production line as the Northstar 90 degree V8 engines of Cadillac. Putting balancers to quell vibrations is cheaper than building an entirely new production line. I wonder why Acura put a sub-optimal 90 degree V6 in the RL ? And not even providing it with Variable Valve Timing technology that Honda already employs in almost all other cars of theirs, leaving the RL engine, just a notch above such old school engines as the General Motors Pushrod engines ?? Strange, very strange...
#913 of 7386 hunter001
Sep 13, 2002 (3:57 pm)
I was also puzzled by Honda's decision to use its lowest-tech engine in its more expensive autos except NSX. Same applies to the auto transmission. But I guess Honda believes no matter what kind of engine and transmission they put into RL, the most they can sell is 40k-50k each year and not making a whole lot of profit. The solution? Don't bother with its improvement. This generation of RL came out in 1996 and there won't be a new generation till 2004 at the earliest.
Trying to keep its environment friendly image, Honda may not want to develop any V8 engines. And without V8 engines, I guess Honda would be extremely lucky if they can sell 40k/year in $40k+ range. I think Honda knows this and thus it isn't too eager to make improvements to RL.