Last post on May 26, 2009 at 4:29 PM
You are in the Acura TL
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Acura TL, Honda Accord, Sedan
#37 of 1159 Maxima Vote
Jan 24, 2001 (1:05 pm)
I happened to be browsing this topic when I caught your post on "TL or Maxima"?
For what it's worth, I just turned 100,000 miles on my (Japanese built) 1995 Maxima SE (5-speed) and thought I'd repeat a post I made in the Maxima section last week:
Overall MPG = 24.13 (28+/- mpg at 70 mph)
Total service costs = $3,091 (taken to dealer every 7,500 miles through 75k; every 15,000 miles since; oil changed by me every 4,000 miles)
Original front brakes lasted 92,000 miles. Original Goodyear performance tires lasted 57,000 miles.
Major repairs = NONE - headlignt bulbs and windshild wipers about it.
Every indication is that this car is running stronger and looking better at 100k miles than my previous Toyota (Supra), Honda (Accord) and Acuras (Integra & Legend) did at 40k.
I don't know if current Maximas are made in the US or Japan, but my Japanese built one seems to have been a far better choice than the cheaper US built Camry or Accord I was considering 6 years ago. Not only has the car held up extraordinarily well, it's still fun to drive and as quick as it was brand new. I am likely to purchase a BMW 540i 6-speed later this year, but will probably keep the Maxima rather than trade it in just because of how well its treated me.
Good luck on your decision.
#38 of 1159 I want to trade-in my Accord for the TL,
Jan 25, 2001 (4:27 pm)
I have a 2000 Accord EX. I love it except the less power and big noice. I am thinking of trade in it for a new TL. Anyone can give me some idea, like how much should I pay extra for the upgrade?
Jan 25, 2001 (7:12 pm)
Thanks for the advice. I picked up my Maxima SE tonight (Sterling Mist w/ frost leather, 5-spd, Bose, and Comfort and Convenience pkg), and am absolutely psyched (largely because I ditched the Accord). The car is gorgeous and feels much more substantial and perky than my Accord.
Jan 26, 2001 (8:03 am)
How much did you pay for the Maxima? My guess is it stickered for $2-3K more than the top of the line Accord (adding the options you mentioned). You do get a few more things than an Accord has but you paid for it. The final price was probably closer to a TL than an Accord, unfair to compare.
Jan 26, 2001 (10:20 am)
I got the Max for ~$25.5 out the door (had to trade in the Accord so it is impossible to fix an exact value). I got a good trade-in value on my Accord as well.
My old Accord had substantially the same equipment, though the Max has features Honda did not offer to my knowledge (17" wheels, power passenger seat, premium stereo, manual tranny, auto-dimming rear view, external temperature indicator) and several standard features that were dealer add-ons on the Accord (stainless exhaust tips, fog lights, spoiler). Keep in mind, my Accord was a '98, and for all I know these things are available now.
I did not pay a destination charge and got the leather package (which also includes auto climate control) for way below invoice ($800) because I initially asked for cloth and it was unavailable. I was ambivalent about leather after the very stiff, vinylly leather on my Accord; the Max has much softer, more natural-feeling leather. I think the deal on the leather actually pushed me below invoice.
I honestly do not know how this price compares to Acura/Honda pricing, as I was so turned-off by my Accord that I would not have shopped these cars. It's too bad, as my previous experiences with Honda have always been great.
Jan 26, 2001 (1:40 pm)
Too bad you had the bad experience with your '98. It was the first year of the redesign so maybe that had something to do with it. As I understand it the only Japanese made Honda (except for the few Accords that are sent over) is the CR-V. I'm not so sure about Acuras but you are right about the TL (made in the same factory as the Accord). I have a Japanese built '89 Accord and recently purchased an Ohio made Accord. Pretty hard to compare the quality as the '89 is old but I am happy with the '01. If it performs half as well as the '89 I will be leaps and bounds above the majority of cars out there. Enjoy your Maxima (can't quite understand the new rear end treatment, but to each his own).
#43 of 1159 Japanese made Hondas
Jan 26, 2001 (10:20 pm)
In addition to the CRV, Hondas made exclusively in Japan are the Prelude, the Insight and the S2000. Most 4-cylinder Accords have their Engines/Transmissions etc., built in Japan. Most Civics too have their engines/transmissions built in Japan (25% Japanese componentry).
Among the Acuras, the 3.5RL and the NSX are built exclusively in Japan with 100% Japanese components. Cars like the 3.2TL/CL/CL-s/MDX are assembled in the US with items like the transmission etc, built in Japan(25% Japanese components).
Having said that, I would like to point out that a relative who has a 1989 Accord (built in the US including the Engine since the Vin# starts with a 1 for US) and a 1992 Maxima(built in Japan), feels that the Accord has been perfect during his ownership (not a single issue in over 12 years of ownership other than regular 3000 mile oil changes/wiper blades/brake pads) while the Maxima (also fanatically taken care of with 3000 mile oil changes)has been back to the dealer for a variety of issues, some of which were dealt with during the warranty period....he incidentally, is absolutely enamored with the 3.2TL after having ridden extensively in my TL (7 months of absolutely pleasurable ownership - including a 2500 mile trip with luggage and 4 people - with not even a hint of any fit-and-finish or any other un-pleasant issues - not even a squeak or a rattle anywhere).
Jan 27, 2001 (1:59 pm)
Missed out on the Acura Integras that are also made exclusively in Japan...
Jan 27, 2001 (3:02 pm)
Glad you are enjoying your TL. As I said previously, I have generally really enjoyed Honda products, but with my '98 I got the sense the bottom had dropped out in terms of quality.
Your relative's experience, taken in isolation, is interesting but ultimately probably not meaningful. My father had two Acura Legends, and now drives a Maxima GLE. One Legend was basically perfect until about 75K miles (he had sold it to his brother-in-law by then), at which time it needed major engine work and a transmission rebuild. The other Legend was OK with occasional minor problems; so far his Maxima (which is 6 years old now) has been perfect. I think both Honda and Nissan products are essentially very reliable.
In my case, I suspect the Accord would have run forever, but with an ongoing flow of spendy, minor problems like my seat, as a result of its very indifferent quality control.
While it might be fair to blame some of the quality issues on the fact that the Accord was the first year of a new model, the things that broke down on mine were all routine stuff (the driver's seat, the sending unit on the gas gauge, and the CD player all failed, and the interior had uneven gaps in the dashboard and door panels), and I would probably not have liked the car even if it ran perfectly, due to its excessive body roll and nose dive (combined, curiously, with a harsh and noncompliant ride), and laughably slow steering. I would not have enjoyed living with the car for another 200,000 miles assuming it lived that long (which seems fairly routine for Hondas).
I remain skeptical of the American Hondas. Keep in mind that mine was basically OK for 3 years or so (though not much fun to drive) before it began to fall apart, piece by piece.
Jan 27, 2001 (8:34 pm)
You are correct in that, anecdotal instances like these cannot be the basis for any sure-fire indications of how good or how bad a car (or product) is. Statistically significant figures like the ones published by Consumer Reports/JD Power etc., generally rate Hondas/Toyotas way above Nissan products.....your singular experience or mine might differ....
The following is an excerpt from Reuters:
"Japanese luxury automakers reclaimed the top three spots in a widely-watched survey for initial vehicle quality released on Thursday, while results for U.S. automakers were mixed and Korean brands fared the worst.
According to copies of the J.D. Power and Associates initial quality survey obtained by Reuters, Honda Motor Co.'s Acura division had the fewest number of defects per 100 vehicles during the first three months of ownership -- 91 compared with the industry average of 154.
Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus division finished second with 103 defects and Nissan Motor Co. Ltd.'s Infiniti ranked third at 107 in the survey of more than 47,000 owners of 2000 model-year vehicles by Agoura Hills, Calif.-based J.D. Power.
The Lexus LS400(assembled in Japan) ranked #1, The Acura 3.5RL(assembled in Japan) ranked #2, The Acura 3.2TL(assembled in US) tied with the Lexus ES300(assembled in Japan) for the third place, Mercedes Benz SL class (Assembled in Germany) stood 5th, Lexus GS series (assembled in Japan) stood 6th, Porsche 911 (assembled in Germany) stood 7th, Toyota Camry/Avalon/Corolla (all assembled in US) stood jointly 9th......and so on...Nissan Maxima(assembled in Japan) with an average of 112 defects/100 examples stood 23rd while the Honda Accord (assembled in US) with 113 defects stood 24th (pretty close to the Maxima), Lexus RX300 (assembled in Japan) stood 35th in quality and so on.....basically assembly quality depends on the rigorousness of the quality control procedures in place...if you have the same standards that you have in a Japanese plant, in a US plant, you would get a pretty comparable product...some bad examples are bound to come in regardless of point of origin since these products are mass-manufactured.