2006 Acura TL Review

Pros & Cons

  • Luxurious interior, long list of standard equipment, powerful V6 engine, slick-shifting six-speed manual, pleasant blend of ride comfort and fun, superb sound system.
  • Can't match the athleticism of some German rivals, V6 could use more low-end torque.
List Price Range
$5,000 - $9,900

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Luxurious, extremely well equipped and enjoyable to drive, the stylish 2006 Acura TL should be on your test-drive list if you're shopping for a sedan under $40K.

Vehicle overview

The 1999-2003 Acura TL was never the premier car in the entry-level luxury sedan segment, but we always counted this midsize sedan among our favorites. Particularly in Type-S form, it offered consumers an appealing blend of performance, luxury content and value. Sure, it wasn't as fun to drive or as opulently outfitted as its luxury competitors, but with a fully loaded price under $30,000 for the regular TL and right around $34K for the Type-S, it didn't need to be.

Still, Acura knew that it was missing out on customers who really did want a bona fide sport sedan and/or a true luxury experience. With the introduction of a redesigned Acura TL in 2004, the company made a serious bid for these customers. Inside the cabin, just about every feature anyone would want in an entry-luxury sedan comes standard, while the overall design and the materials used give up nothing to the Europeans. Peer inside and you'll find a shapely dash generously trimmed in real aluminum. Bright blue electroluminescent gauges recessed in three pods and blue backlighting throughout the cabin heighten the cool metal motif.

Unlike the previous version, the 2006 Acura TL leaves no doubt about its luxury sedan status: Most surfaces are soft to the touch and finished with upscale grain patterns that would be just as acceptable in an Audi or BMW. Meanwhile, firmer suspension tuning makes these Acura cars quite entertaining out on the road without compromising the nameplate's reputation for a smooth and accommodating ride. The 258-horsepower, 3.2-liter V6 offers plenty of power at any engine speed, and when paired with the excellent six-speed manual transmission, this midsize sedan is a blast to drive on curvy roads. If you plan to spend $30,000 to $40,000 on your next sedan, we'd suggest a visit to your local Acura dealership.

2006 Acura TL models

Standard equipment on the Acura TL includes 17-inch wheels and all-season tires, HID headlights, leather upholstery, aluminum trim, a 10-way power driver seat, a four-way power front-passenger seat, heated seats and a telescoping steering wheel. A 225-watt 5.1 surround-sound audio system that can play both CDs and DVD-Audio discs is also included, along with satellite radio, Bluetooth hands-free phone compatibility, steering wheel audio controls and a power sunroof. In addition, manual-shift TLs have front Brembo brakes and larger stabilizer bars. Among the few options are high-performance tires on manual-shift TLs and a DVD-based navigation system with an 8-inch touchscreen, voice recognition technology and solar-sensing technology that enhances the performance of the climate control system. Also worth consideration is the dealer-installed A-SPEC kit, which adds performance springs and shocks that lower the car about an inch, 18-inch wheels, an aero body kit, a rear spoiler, a sport steering wheel and special exterior badging. Automatic-equipped TLs also pick up the Brembo brakes when equipped with this package.

2006 Highlights

Other than a new tire-pressure monitor and altered engine management (for reduced torque steer), the Acura TL is mechanically unchanged for 2006. As with all 2006 Acura cars, there is a longer powertrain warranty for the TL. It now provides six years/70,000 miles of protection. New SAE testing procedures have dropped the TL's horsepower rating from 270 to 258.

Performance & mpg

All TLs come with a smooth 3.2-liter V6 engine. Horsepower measures 258, while torque comes in at 233 lb-ft. Transmission choices include a six-speed manual and a five-speed automatic. Fuel economy rates 20 mpg city/29 mpg highway with either transmission.

Safety

Standard safety features include four-wheel antilock disc brakes with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution and BrakeAssist, as well as stability control, seat-mounted side airbags for front occupants and side curtain airbags for front and rear occupants. In front-offset crash tests conducted by the IIHS, the Acura TL earned a top rating of "Good" and a "Best Pick" designation. In government crash tests, the TL received a perfect five stars for everything but front-seat side impacts, where it earned a four-star rating.

Driving

The 2006 Acura TL is entertaining to drive, thanks to its prodigious horsepower, but models equipped with the slick-shifting six-speed manual are the most rewarding on back roads. In city driving situations, however, the TL would benefit from a tad more low-end torque. The suspension manages to deliver both a comfortable ride and tight handling around corners. Enthusiasts will prefer the sharper reflexes and rear-drive layout of cars like the 3 Series, but in stock form Acura's driving dynamics are well balanced.

Interior

Inside, the Acura TL feels as luxurious as an Audi or Lexus. The cockpit has a stylish two-tone color scheme, aluminum inlays and an attractive set of bright blue electroluminescent gauges. Build and materials quality is excellent. Most surfaces are soft-touch, and the standard leather upholstery is quite supple. Bolstered front seats offer excellent comfort, and there's plenty of room for a pair of adults to ride in back. The sophisticated Panasonic audio system plays music through six channels when you load up DVD-Audio discs.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Acura TL.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Love at first sight but faded after the honeymoon.
Joe,09/09/2016
4dr Sedan w/Performance Tires, Nav System (3.2L 6cyl 6M)
This car had everything I wanted but came at a price. Performance, technology, and looked amazing. There are many known problems with this particular generation of the TL. Bluetooth stopped working and the replacement was pretty costly. Cassette adapter for ipod/iphone music got stuck in tape deck. Went through 2 batteries within 3 weeks and Dealership couldn't figure out the problem. Once I was able to pry the cassette adapter out the problem went away. Another known problem is the nav system. The unit in the trunk doesn't last and the replacement is about $300 now from Alpine. Once the trunk unit stops working you lose all the touchscreen capabilities on the display (ie AC control, radio control, settings, etc). You also lose the voice control for the radio unit. Voice control for making phone calls still functions as it is not tied to the trunk unit. Lastly, the dashboard problem. AcuraZine's website lists many people that have reported a cracked dashboard. Mine 1st cracked around the airbag border on the passenger side. At first I thought it was an airbag failure mode but upon research discovered I was seeing what many people were reporting. Shortly after this initial crack I started getting multiple cracks across my whole dashboard. Looks horrible. Exterior paint is still holding up but some of the plastic coating around the window edge is peeling. With all that being said I still enjoy the car but haven't got to utilize a lot of the technology for about 5 years now. I'm looking to get rid of it soon and most likely will not buy another Acura.
A very nice car
AN,12/19/2006
I bought the car for the sole reason I wanted a car that was reliable & would last me a long time since I'm the type to buy a car and drive it into the ground rather than lease it. I wanted something low maintenace and affordable. I did a lot of reseach into comparable makes such as the Infiniti G35, Volvo S60 and Lexus ES, and none could match the price for what you get with the TL. I didn't have to deal with option packages, everything I wanted was included standard for one low-price and it was under a brand that was known for reliability. It's both sporty enough where you can go cruising on a weekend yet, practical enough where you can run your daily errands, albeit in a bit more style.
BMW-Honda-BMW-Honda-BMW-Acura
dem3nted,03/12/2011
I've almost always have had a BMW or Honda product in my automotive stable. Most recently, I had a 1995 BMW M3. Loved the power and handling but hated the maintenance. I also leased a 2006 Honda Accord SE-V6 and owned a 2003 Accord EX-V6 with navigation. Both were very reliable and quick but handling was crappy and interior was blase'. Sheet metal seemed like aluminum foil. BMW's always seemed more solid. Recently, I purchased a 2006 Acura TL with navigation with high mileage for a paltry sum of money. I must say that it is in an entirely different league than the Honda. Quieter and better built than Honda. Really gives the BMW a great run for the money.
Great Choice!!
drfidler,03/07/2006
I did a ton of research and test drove several cars before purchasing my TL. I drove a BMW 325i, VW Passat, Saab 9- 3, and Lexus IS 250. I've always driven a Honda, and traded my Accord for my TL. This car is absolutely fun to drive, and has excellent power. It's hard to keep under the speed limit, and it is super smooth. My final decision came between the IS and the TL, and I chose the TL hands down. I'm 6'4", so comfort and room was important. I find the instruments to be easily accesible, and nicely trimmed. The seats are roomy and comfortable. There are hardly any blindspots, which is a plus for me! The IS, BMW lacked horsepower, plus much more $$$. The TL has everything!

Features & Specs

MPG
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
258 hp @ 6200 rpm
MPG
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
258 hp @ 6200 rpm
MPG
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed manual
Gas
258 hp @ 6200 rpm
MPG
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed manual
Gas
258 hp @ 6200 rpm
See all Used 2006 Acura TL features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 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
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Marginal
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2006 Acura TL

Used 2006 Acura TL Overview

The Used 2006 Acura TL is offered in the following submodels: TL Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (3.2L 6cyl 5A), 4dr Sedan w/Nav System (3.2L 6cyl 5A), 4dr Sedan (3.2L 6cyl 6M), 4dr Sedan w/Nav System (3.2L 6cyl 6M), 4dr Sedan w/Performance Tires (3.2L 6cyl 6M), and 4dr Sedan w/Performance Tires, Nav System (3.2L 6cyl 6M).

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Acura TL?

Price comparisons for Used 2006 Acura TL trim styles:

  • The Used 2006 Acura TL Base is priced between $5,000 and$9,900 with odometer readings between 71741 and185737 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2006 Acura TLS are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2006 Acura TL for sale near. There are currently 8 used and CPO 2006 TLS listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $5,000 and mileage as low as 71741 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2006 Acura TL.

Can't find a used 2006 Acura TLs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Acura TL for sale - 5 great deals out of 8 listings starting at $11,996.

Find a used Acura for sale - 1 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $13,780.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura TL for sale - 9 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $22,716.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura for sale - 6 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $18,504.

Should I lease or buy a 2006 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.

Check out Acura lease specials
Check out Acura TL lease specials