Used 2003 Acura TL Sedan

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2003 Acura TL
List price range
2003 Acura TL

Pros

  • Excellent value, comfortable front seats, impressive power from the Type-S engine, long list of standard equipment.

Cons

  • Average interior materials, lacks the panache of some competing luxury sedans.

Used 2003 Acura TL Sedan for Sale

Acura TL 2003 3.2 4dr Sedan w/Navigation (3.2L 6cyl 5A)
118 miles
Used 2003
Acura TL
3.2
American Auto Mall
49.4 mi away
List$3,499
Est.Loan: $72/mo
Great Deal!Great Deal!
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Acura TL 2003 3.2 4dr Sedan (3.2L 6cyl 5A)
61,450 miles
Used 2003
Acura TL
3.2
Shell Motors
8.8 mi away
ListNot Listed
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Acura TL 2003 3.2 4dr Sedan (3.2L 6cyl 5A)
158,924 miles
Used 2003
Acura TL
3.2
ListNot Listed
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Acura TL 2003 3.2 4dr Sedan (3.2L 6cyl 5A)
277,509 miles
Used 2003
Acura TL
3.2
Bay Motors, Inc
55.4 mi away
ListNot Listed
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Edmunds' Expert Review

Jack-of-all-trades but master of none, the TL provides an impressive mix of luxury, sport and affordability.

vehicle overview

Introduction: Acura's torchbearer into the burgeoning near-luxury sedan market is the 3.2TL. Last redesigned in 1999 and updated rather frequently, the TL competes against a wide variety of vehicles, including the Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Lexus ES 300 and IS 300, Infiniti I35 and G35, Mercedes C-Class, and Volvo S60. Acura hopes to exceed what those cars have to offer while simultaneously keeping price in check.

Body Styles, Trim Levels and Options: There are two trim levels to pick from: the base TL and the high-performance TL Type-S. Both TLs offer near-luxury equipment without a hefty price, and you get more than just air conditioning and a smattering of leather on the seats. You snag lots of standard equipment, including a power sunroof, a 180-watt sound system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer, heated front seats, two-position memory system for driver seat and mirrors, steering-wheel audio controls, rear heat/air vents, a micron air-filtration system and high-intensity discharge lights. A super-simple DVD-based navigation system with a smudge-free touchscreen is the only option, and this year it also comes with OnStar, the vehicle communications service. In addition to these items, the TL Type-S comes with a more powerful engine, a sport-tuned suspension, 17-inch wheels and minor cabin trim upgrades.

Powertrains and Performance: The front-drive TL features a peppy 3.2-liter V6 that utilizes VTEC technology to produce 225 horsepower and 216 pound-feet of torque, while still getting 19/29 mpg in city/highway driving. The V6 remains strong in every gear, and it can scoot from 0 to 60 in under 8 seconds. The standard five-speed automatic transmission is quite user-friendly, thanks to a shift gate located close to the driver and an intuitive shift pattern for the SportShift sequential-shift manual function. Most people should be satisfied with this configuration, but for those who aren't, there's the Type-S. Thanks to special engine modifications, such as a dual-stage induction system, increased compression and performance-oriented camshafts and valves, the 3.2-liter V6 in the Type-S makes 260 hp and 232 lb-ft of torque. The five-speed automatic is still the only choice for this car.

Safety: The TL is equipped with side airbags; the front passenger seat has a system to prevent the side airbag from deploying if a small child or adult leans into the deployment path. Other safety items include traction control, antilock brakes and, on Type-S models, a stability control system. NHTSA has given the TL a four-star rating for front-seat side-impact safety and five stars for rear-seat side-impact safety.

Interior Design and Special Features: Inside, standard leather covers the comfortable front seats. Type-S cars also have deeply bolstered, perforated leather seats; a Type-S shift knob; and a metallic face instrument cluster. Though certainly functional, the TL's interior isn't as opulent as those of other cars in this class.

Driving Impressions: Both the TL and TL Type-S are satisfying to drive. The Type-S, in particular, is entertaining thanks to its prodigious horsepower. However, being a front-drive car has its disadvantages; the TL's handling isn't as dynamic as that of other rear-drive cars in this class.

2003 Highlights

For 2003, all TL models equipped with the navigation system receive OnStar as standard equipment.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2003 Acura TL.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Great car with a few exceptions
fever1,04/21/2014
As with most of the 2003 readings, my TL lost its transmission at about 90K. As the warranty was shot after 10 years I had to pay 3K+ for a new transmission, DON'T GO TO THE DEALER or you will pay 5K+ with a lesser warranty. The airbag sensor light went on and the dealer asked $650 to fix it, I figure I went most of my life without ever even wearing a seat belt until it was made a law, I can live with out airbags for awhile. So after 100K that about sums it up the major repairs. The comfort of the drive is the best I ever had, the engine is great; it can throw you back in your seat. Gas mileage is surprisingly good. The leather interior is average at best.
NO PROBLEMS AT ALL!!
1soccerfan,01/05/2012
I bought this car Sept 2010 with 110K miles. I drive at least 2,000 miles per month, this car has 141K now. 14 months and I've driven it 31K miles with NO PROBLEMS OR ISSUES. Oil changes and tires only. I drive my cars hard and I expect something to go wrong but the transmission shifts perfect and everything works perfectly. I go on 2-3 hour road trips at least twice a month with no worries. I trade cars about every 2 years and I have to say this is the best one I've had in a long time.
Great Car despite the tranny recall
sjonly,06/19/2013
I bought the car in a dealer's auction with 149 k. I learn about the transmissionrecall and was scare when the car would occasionally shake during gear shifting. Took it the dealer and they stated I needed another transmission asap. Went to my local mechanic and he state transmission is good just had a broken motor mount and fluid need to be flush. Car drove good ever since, I love the speed. I pass newer car with ease. I hit 90 on the road easily going to Atlanta. I would definitely buy one again. My car is till operating but I gave it to my girlfriend since she dented the doors and bumper in an accident.
Great experience with this car.
Bama Jiggs,08/21/2010
This is my wife's car. We purchased it in July 2003 new. I has given us service far superior to any car we have ever owned. (married 56 years). We returned it to the dealer for a recall on the transmission in 2005. Had the transmission serviced in 2009. The car now has 85,000 miles and still performs like new. On trips we average about 32 MPG. Seldom drive more than 65 MPH. Only problem is premium fuel.
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Features & Specs

MPG
17 city / 27 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
225 hp @ 5600 rpm
MPG
N/A city / N/A hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
260 hp @ 6100 rpm
MPG
N/A city / N/A hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
260 hp @ 6100 rpm
MPG
17 city / 27 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
225 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 2003 Acura TL Sedan features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    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
    Good

More about the 2003 Acura TL
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Should I lease or buy a 2003 Acura TL?

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.

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