Back on 2/16/04 I wrote a review when the car had 154k. Well, it now has 214K! It's getting a bit tired now, uses a bit of oil, leaks a bit of oil, bunch more rattles and sqeaks. HOWEVER you can't go wrong with a first generation TL!! Best car I have ever owned. I am in the process of looking to buy for another 96-'98 TL with say 100k miles. I'll be giving my TL to my oldest teenager. He loves the car.
Got this car with 135k on it for $4k and had no real problems till just recently. Ball joint on psgr. side is squeaking, and steering rack leaks p/s fluid (leakstop stopped it tho). No really BIG issues though! Wish I found a 3.2 (drove my friends one, BIG difference!), but the 2.5 is ok. Acceleration is a bit sluggish, but it is over 3k lbs. Proper maintenance keeps this bad boy running smooth. Just replaced the console with the 3.2 premium wood console. Made a world of a difference in the cockpit!
Exterior styling (shouldn't have changed it), tight turning radius, and the smooth ride. The cockpit is set up pretty nice too (just need more illumination to see what you're trying to adjust).
Make it quiet! Road noise is bad for a "luxury" car. Smoother shifting tranny would be nice too. Cheaper parts would be nicer. At least drop the price to 3.2 prices. Why is the 2.5 more expensive? A tilting sunroof would've been nice too.
Bought my 2.5TL in 2001 with 27k miles. Now at 145k miles and car still is doing fantastic! Service it every 30-45k miles and this car should run for a while. I have no complaints with this car and hope to get a new TL someday. Hopefully not for another 100,000 miles!
Reliability and overall quality. Has some minor issues that are common in the year/make/model, but nothing that has made me want or need to trade it in.
Owned four Acura over the years - all were great. Bought this TL and have put over 150,000 miles on it. Its a classy looking car w/o being over the top. Its amazing that the car is over 10 years old and people think its a newer model. Acura created a design with some legs on it - it stays contemporary looking well beyond the norm. Only repairs in the last 10 years is a new starter(very expensive $600) and new rear calipers. Everything else has been normal wear and tear maintenance.
Quality, Looks, Handling, exclusivity (you don't see these cars at every stop light)
The newer TL addressed my concerns: Quicker Throttle response, Larger tires, bigger brakes, and more power. Although I am not as excited about the new TL's styling - but that's personal preference.
Without a doubt, this has been the best car that I have ever owned. I now have 197,000 miles on the car. The only thing that I have replaced on this car outside of normal wear and tear items, is the radiator and fan unit. That's it! This was my first Acura but you can bet it won't be my last.