Used 1997 Acura CL

1997 Acura CL
List price range
1997 Acura CL


  • This is one luxury car that won't leave you sitting at your mechanic's garage. Based on the stupendously reliable Honda Accord, the CL should run for miles and miles.


  • This car looks a little too much like a Honda Accord to be seriously regarded as a luxo-coupe.
Acura CL years

Used 1997 Acura CL for Sale

Acura CL 1997 2.2 Premium 2dr Coupe
233,945 miles
Used 1997
Acura CL
2.2 Premium
Shockley Honda
24 mi away
ListNot Listed
View Details

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

The Legend is gone. The Vigor is gone. The Integra will be departing soon. Acura is in the midst of an image makeover of a scale that hasn't been seen since Chrysler was resuscitated after its near-fatal plunge into mediocrity. Yup, Acura is a new company. Oh sure, the traditional Acura quality is still there, as are first rate ergonomics and design. The change occurs with the model lineup and the type of cars Acura is offering.

Acura feels that splitting their models into very distinct, function-oriented categories might be what is needed to breathe life into their sales charts. The new CL fits into this scheme by offering performance and luxury that is a step up from the Integra coupes, without the frumpiness of a larger sedan. The CL's target market is aging boomers who are experiencing life-without-children. No longer needing that five-door wagon or monstrous minivan, these empty-nesters are supposed to rediscover the joys of coupe life.

Well, there are worse places to go for a midlife crisis. Acura's 2.2CL offers spirited performance with its 145-horsepower VTEC engine and double-wishbone suspension. The 16-inch wheels and antilock brakes provide sure footing when pushed to the limit, and the variable-assist rack-and-pinion steering is communicative without being harsh. The unit-body construction used in the CL, combined with the rear-wheel arch extenders and strut tower bar, creates a car with little flex and twisting over most surfaces.

Unlike American personal coupes that are often overly flashy with blinking gewgaws and too many buttons, or German coupes, which are Spartan to the point of monasticism, the CL's interior effectively blends efficiency with luxury. Niceties such as a standard CD-player and remote keyless entry are well appreciated. There is adequate seating for four, although back seat passengers will feel a bit pinched in the legroom department if they are over average height.

The sheetmetal on the CL is attractive, but it does little to distinguish this car from its plebeian sibling, the Honda Accord. This brings us to our main concern about the CL. Prices for the base Acura 2.2CL start at around $22,500. Prices for the top-of-the-line Honda Accord EX coupe, equipped with the same engine, antilock brakes and a leather interior, top-out well under $23,000. All of the things we like about the Acura are present on the Honda. In our humble estimation, the Star Trek-looking "A" on the hood of the Acura 2.2CL doesn't warrant a $1,000 price hike over the very competent Honda Accord.

1997 Highlights

Like many Acura products, the CL is based on a Honda platform, in this case the Honda Accord. The CL's sights are aimed squarely at BMW's 3 Series coupes.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Acura CL.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

My beloved CL 3.0
I sold my Acura CL 3.0 in March of 2015 to buy the new more practical Honda CRV EX-L. I bought this car new in 1997 and didn't realize how much I would grow to loved it, until it was gone. At 198,500 miles and 18+ years it was time because I felt it was becoming less dependable, and much bigger repair bills were on the way. The day I bought it I walked into Acura to buy the 4 cylinder 2.2 CL with cloth seats, and drove away with the much more powerful six cylinder 3.0 CL, with heated leather seats, lots of other goodies, and the super cool alloy wheels. It was a blast, and I'm so glad I did it. Best looking interior I have ever seen in a car. Even now! Great job Acura &Honda. I still see this car around town from time to time. They guy who bought it from my mechanic loves it, but he doesn't take care of it like I did. The last time saw it parked on the street, I had never seen it so dirty. Today I am still glad that I went out and bought the new 2015 Honda CRV. It makes a lot more sense for me in this time of my life. BUT.......... if then I had extra parking space the old Acura it would probably be sitting in it, right next to my new Honda CRV. I hope I never miss another car like I did this one! As of November of 2017 I still miss my old Acura but I do find the CRV be be very practical in many other ways. Even though it only has 15 less horsepower, it does not have near the get up and go of the old sexy beast.
1997 Acura 3.0CL Premium
Iv bought my CL back in 2003 with 43,000 miles, its now 2008 and i have about 121,000 miles on it, the car is definitely fun to drive, the J30a1 3.0 liter VTEC engine produces great power in such a light car, the only problems I ran into were alternator at early age, battery, starter other than that the EGR valve was replaced through an Acura check engine light recall. I now have 121,000 and my transmission has begun to slip on me.
Absolutely the very best!
It took no thinking when I asked my family at the dinner table, of all the cars we have ever had what is or was your favorite one? The Acura 2.2CL by far!!! In fact it has come time to sell the car and I cant even talk about it with out! (true story) :/ Anyway if your considering buying one BUY IT! I guarantee you will be 100% HAPPY! Yes I said guarantee...! YOU WILL, NO JOKE! Have a wonderful day...
13 Years & Still Going Strong
I brought this car brand new in March of 1997 and it has proven to be the best purchase I have ever made. Talk about reliable! And even close to 13 years old the pick-up on this car is great and still just as fun to drive. Even after purchasing a new car last Fall still hanging on to it. Many offers to buy so that won't be an issue when I am finally ready to let go. GREAT car!
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Features & Specs

22 city / 28 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed manual
145 hp @ 5500 rpm
22 city / 28 hwy
Seats 0
5-speed manual
145 hp @ 5500 rpm
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
200 hp @ 5500 rpm
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
200 hp @ 5500 rpm
See all Used 1997 Acura CL features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1997 Acura CL
Used 1997 Acura CL Overview

The Used 1997 Acura CL is offered in the following submodels: CL Coupe. Available styles include 2.2 2dr Coupe, 2.2 Premium 2dr Coupe, 3.0 Premium 2dr Coupe, and 3.0 2dr Coupe.

What's a good price on a Used 1997 Acura CL?

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Which used 1997 Acura CLS are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 1997 Acura CLs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Acura CL for sale - 2 great deals out of 5 listings starting at $23,008.

Find a used Acura for sale - 12 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $8,659.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura CL for sale - 5 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $20,902.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura for sale - 10 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $14,633.

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Should I lease or buy a 1997 Acura CL?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Acura lease specials
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