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Last post on May 30, 2007 at 10:42 AM
You are in the Lexus IS
What is this discussion about?
Acura TL, Lexus IS, Lexus IS 350, Sedan
#378 of 447 Re: TL vs IS350?? why waste time comparing [scottm123]
Aug 05, 2006 (11:06 am)
I was just funnin' ya, hard to tell from my post I guess. I was smiling as I typed. And I didn't think you considered the TL to be a POS...
To me, it's just that your posts sounded like you give more credibility to the few that have posted (and don't believe everything you read...!) of problems as opposed to the majority of TLers who post favorable reviews. And again, my TL hasn't been perfect. I've posted re: the dash and a rattle. But to me, very, very minor issues. But I guess with Acura/Honda's rep for quality (a la Lexus/Toyota) any imperfection is magnified...
Anyway, what a lovely dilemma you have! This is the joy of shopping for a new car. Whatever car ends up in your garage will be the best car for you! Both winners.
For symmetry in the Universe, you should probably get the IS as my wife drives a Lexus RX. That way, we'll each be Acura/Lexus families...
Keep us posted of your continued struggles and ultimate decision.
#379 of 447 Boston Globe: Acura describes 07 TL Type-S as ``sinister"
Aug 05, 2006 (12:26 pm)
Acura describes its 2007 TL Type-S as ``sinister," a word I've never associated with Honda's upscale division.
But the hot Type-S is surprisingly frisky, something I discovered during a day of driving it out of the woods of Pennsylvania and through the twisting back roads of neighboring Maryland.
I also found the base TL version to have the kind of oomph that not long ago would have been labeled high performance. Maybe that's because the new TL has the same horsepower as the old Type-S. In fact, it was powerful enough to make me wonder if the extra few thousand for the Type-S is necessary, except for those who want crazy power instead of just superb performance.
The TL in base form has a 3.2-liter V-6 engine that produces a hefty 258 horsepower and 233 lb.-ft. of torque. Upgrade to the Type-S and you get a 3.5-liter V-6 with 286 horsepower and 256 lb.-ft. of torque.
Expect around 23 miles per gallon from the smaller engine and about 21 from the more powerful option.
The standard transmission in each model is a five-speed automatic with a manual option that can be shifted with paddles on the steering wheel. In the Type-S, the engine is revved on downshifts (called ``blipping" in a race car) for smoother transitions while maintaining speed.
It is a transmission that truly let's you be in charge when you opt to go manual -- something many automatics with manual option do not allow.
As you might guess, Acura's target TL customer -- particularly for the Type-S -- is a male in his 40s with an income of $100,000 or more. That's not to say that other people won't be able to afford the car when it goes on sale in the fall. Acura is pricing its TL models at between $34,000 and $39,000.
The company calls the TL an ``entry premium" vehicle, something of an oxymoronic phrase. But I guess it somehow makes sense, since in recent years Acura has been selling more than 70,000 of the cars annually in the United States, making it the financial backbone of the company.
And though Acura officials at the press launch for the TL repeatedly referred to the ``sinister styling" of the Type-S, it is also subtle and elegant, with its broad slits of headlights, fog lights dropped into the lower fascia, a mesh grille bisected by a chrome crossbar, and a pronounced hipline running front to rear.
Actually, Acura has always been subtle. For example, only the rear ward flip of a spoiler, hot-looking wheels, and awesome-sounding quad tailpipes give any outer hint of what lurks beneath and inside the Type-S.
Inside, stainless steel pedals in the Type-S differentiate it from the base model, as do firmly bolstered, multi seamed bucket seats and carbon fiber treatments.
But safety is what Honda/Acura has been about (and look for the Koreans to push them into making stability control systems standard in even lesser models). The TL comes with antilock brake system, brake assist, stability control, air bags for front and side, and front and rear curtain air bags, as well as a front-end crash system that sends the force of an impact below and over the cockpit .
You also get an array of standard comfort features that include a moonroof, 17-inch wheels, speed-sensitive wipers, heated power front seats , a pass-through rear center armrest, and an advanced audio system.
The Type-S comes with better wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, carbon-fiber interior trim, noise cancellation, and other goodies.
The TL, in both forms, is meant to compete with the BMW 3 Series, Infiniti G35 cars, Mercedes C-Class, and Lexus ES 330. In both performance and interior quality it achieves that goal.
#380 of 447 TL v IS v TSX?
Aug 05, 2006 (6:57 pm)
I have read the string of discussion and must play devil's advocate. If one is to compare the IS250, it should be compared to its dimension and power Acura counterpart, the TSX. I had driven both the IS and TL. The power issue was not as pertinent to me because although the IS250 was significantly less powerful, the engine sounds sportier at all RPMs. The illusion of performance in the IS250 is pretty good.
I too was on the fence between the TL and IS. If you are still looking at the IS350, try sitting in all the seats. Trying to figure out where my legs go in the IS350 was the deal-breaker. Being 6'+ tall, I had a hard time finding where my legs go with the goofy hump along the right side of the driver's side foot compartment. This is where the AWD differential is housed in the IS250(also present with the auto tranny). Furthermore, putting a male adult of average stature in the back seat of the IS is simply comical. Sitting in the back seat with the front seatback in a normal position, I could not close the door as my knee was in the way.
If the only persons to use the back seats are children, the IS350 was a strong contender. BUT if you ever want to cart your buddies around town in the back seat, I would consider the TL as the more practical option. FWD vs. RWD, close call. Can you handle torque steer? All things considered, these are two beautiful machines.
Side note: The Acura TL had an optional A-spec performance package that tightened up the suspension tuning, brake upgrade, wheel upgrade, and body kit. If you find one of these, it gives the TL a slight edge on the IS regarding handling and aggressive appearance.
Aug 05, 2006 (7:11 pm)
Good post - right on the mark.
I would have bought the IS 350 - but I value service - a big part of service is actually having the darn cars in stock so you can buy one. The - they are selling faster than we can make them just does not hold up IMO. I spent close to 20 years running a manufacturing company - never had a customer say - glad you products are selling I will just wait a few months to get mine - OH - and BTW I have no problem paying more because YOU can't keep up with demand.
The reason Lexus is short of cars is because the want to be short of cars - its part of the business plan. Not a bad plan - it makes Toyota a pile of cash -
I still think the IS 350 is a better car than the TL - but it is thousands more & I would have had to wait MONTHS to get the car I wanted - just not worth it this time.
#382 of 447 Re: TL v IS v TSX? [slimjim2]
Aug 05, 2006 (9:59 pm)
" although the IS250 was significantly less powerful, the engine sounds sportier at all RPMs. The illusion of performance in the IS250 is pretty good"
Agreed. I also had the same thoughts when trying both TL and IS250. I bought the IS since I prefer the sporty look of the IS as versus TL's roomy cabin (front seats are good enough for me and my fiancee'). Acura has comfortable back seats but its body is little bit long and I don't think it looks sexy to me as compared to the IS.
#385 of 447 Re: TL v IS v TSX? [lexus_jn]
Aug 08, 2006 (4:45 am)
I have been in all of the seats in the IS and I agree that the rear seats are small.. very small, but I don't drive while sitting back there.
As for toting around full grown men.... Um... not that I do that.... but I do have the 7 passenger MDX in the garage if I ever decide to take that hobby up.
The back seats are plenty big enough for the little one.
As for the front seats, I'm 6' tall and I fit in the IS like it was built around me.... I absolutely love the fit and have found nothing that compares to it yet.
I'm more comfortable in the IS than I am in the MDX, which offers nothing in the realm of legroom.
I want a car that's a ton of fun to drive.
I want something that bums me out when I get to work and have to get out.
I believe that the IS is my car... but the TL is a very nice ride and I know that the $10,000 saved could be very well spent on other things, and I could still be happy.
I have a few more months to decide.
After seeing my friends new BMW M3... I gave those another look.
Why do they insist on nickle and diming us for things like leather and paint??? Oh well...
#386 of 447 Re: TL v IS v TSX? [scottm123]
Aug 08, 2006 (9:54 am)
BMW M3? If you're considering TL vs. M3, if you buy the TL then you could probably by a new Miata for fun with the money you save over the M3!!!
Ain't car shopping fun!!!
I'm waiting for the IS convertible myself...
#387 of 447 Re: TL v IS v TSX? [laurasdada]
Aug 09, 2006 (5:07 am)
I'm waiting for the IS convertible myself...
I got a feeling that the IS convertible is going to be ugly. That's given if Lexus really decides to produce them.