With my 2004 Acura TSX lease ending on October 15th, we had not a moment to lose. It was time to find a new car to carry us through the next three years. I’ve been pretty happy with my TSX – enough to consider the newest model. The 2007 Acura TSX does not offer many improvements over the 2006, but it does have the an audio input jack, Bluetooth, and the wonderful nav system I’ve come to depend on. I thought traffic reports would be color coded on the screen, but that turned out not to be the case.
For grins, we decided to hop into the showroom’s 2006 Acura RL – a luxury class automobile, and the last on the lot. When the marketers say “luxury,” they’re not just talking about the ride. I can’t think of a more luxurious car for geeks than the Acura RL. It reminded me of the Millenium Falcon, with so many buttons and knobs – I didn’t know what to fiddle with first. Of course, Ponzi’s all about the outside of a ride – which this particular car had going for it, with the A-Spec Performance Package applied. Was it worth considering?
We asked to take a test drive “around the block,” taking it on a pre-determined course with the salesman riding shotgun. Smooth, quiet, comfortable – everything you’d expect. I wasn’t sure if I could feel the difference between the RL and my current TSX, though. The dealer was knocking close to $10k off this pimped mobile – to make room for the forthcoming 2007 RL. We could wait for the new model, pay the same amount, and get a car that looked far less finished – or take this one with a single addition (the rear-view / backup camera).
Ponzi and I left the location, driving away in our TSX. I could feel the difference immediately – and decided to, on the spot, drive the same course as we just had with the RL. The cruise felt constrained (not in cabin room, but in general maneuvering) – and I could feel so many more imperfections in the road. The difference, indeed, was night and day. The only thing the 2006 Acura RL was missing was an audio-in jack – but I wonder if there would be a way to add one?
Ponzi is a mean negociator – I’m glad she’s on my side. We returned to the dealership and started to talk shop. They really needed to move this car, and we used that knowledge to our advantage. We settled on a mutually amicable set of terms after a few “back and forths.” I will drive that 2006 Acura RL off the lot on Wednesday afternoon, after a few modifcations are completed.
The RL lease terms are fairly comfortable, and quite comparable what we had with Honda Financial Services and our TSX (including our monthly payment). I still don’t know if I can find a shop to add an audio-in jack, but… I’m wholly satisfied with our decision to go with this particular RL. Maybe I’ll name it “Vader,” since it has a black chassis?