Have owned this car since Christmas, 2008, it's now heading into Christmas 2010, so two years. I can say that it has been a truly pleasurable experience... The car is quick, agile, comfortable, gets 30mpg (!, surprised) and reliable...has the tech package which is VERY useful, and has a huge WOW factor...my fiance likes the car much more than her Lexus. This is my third Acura, the first, a 1999 model, was the best car that I had ever owned up until that time, the second was a 2002 (all TLs) pretty much like the first, and this 2009 model is fantastic... The only problem that I've had was with the driver's seat bolster wearing prematurely...worth the money spent...
This car is not a sports car. It's a sedan that accelerates fast, comfortable and quiet to ride in. Having driven the 330i, decided it's no longer for my taste; the BMW demanded my attention at all times. One wrong move and the kidney grills head into the wrong lane. TL is more forgiving for daily driving. It just depends on what you want. My goal with the current purchase was fast, quiet and comfortable, plus solid reliability to boot. Styling is purely subjective, so say what you will about the TL styling, it's just an opinion and preference. Build quality is excellent compared to my previous cars, Lexus IS250, BMW 330i and 525i.
My 09 TL with the tech package is everything I wanted in a CPO Acura. I traded in a 2008 Audi A4 and wanted an upgrade to something larger and more spacious. The car drives great, handles awesome (without the SH-AWD too!) and has all the features of a BMW, MB or Lexus for a thousands less. I highly recommend you test drive a TL before making your next car purchase.
This car is one "Sexy Beast." Test drove both models several times. Previous 2001 CL owner and I have always loved Acura's (Honda's) approach, luxury from a different angle keeping performance, reliability, and quality in the mix. Performance is in the hand of the driver for the most part...I haven't notice a lag in acceleration nor any weird steering problems. Solid. Paying more doesn't equate to better. BMW's and Audi's and such still have folks fooled(along with media such as MT). I love the design for its daring non-cookie cutter non-euro ultra technical look. I'm a design engineer so the art-functionality looks appeal to me and evidently to the ladies, they swoon over it daily.
After 1 month and 2000 miles, this is now my favorite car of all time. Yes the ride is firm with the 19s and it is a tad bit thirsty on gas, but the total package is worth it. I found a '09 CPO TL Tech SH-AWD with 41K miles and it is rock solid. The handling is unbelieveable. I may not be able to toss it in a corner like a BMW, but the handling is rewarding on its own merit. The interior is amazing and the seats wrap around you like a glove. I can't wait to drive it each day!!
Tech Package (included with trim -- navigation system, real-time traffic, real-time weather forecasts and radar maps, rearview camera, GPS-linked and solar-sensing dual-zone adaptive climate control system, keyless ignition/entry, trunk spoiler, 10-speaker ELS surround-sound audio system with 12GB of digital music storage and DVD audio).
No matter how aggressively I tried to launch with VSC off, the TL never spun the front tires. A bit of a stumble at first, then it went. Crisp upshifts in "S" at redline. VTEC change-over less evident than in the SH-AWD car.
Medium-firm pedal got a little softer with each stop. Some dive, but always straight. (Brakes were smoking/smelling awful at the end of the acceleration test.)
On the skid pad, easy to perch on the brink of understeer all the way around. Very consistent, steering loads nicely and offers some info. In the slalom, very good turn-in and balance throughout. Only by the last two gates did the rear begin to walk around a bit. Tires began to give up after eight-plus runs.