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    View Poll Results: Which generation RL?

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    • 2004 RL (1st-gen)

      9 36.00%
    • 2005 RL (2nd-gen)

      16 64.00%
    Results 1 to 24 of 24

    Thread: Which used Acura: 1st-gen RL (2004) or 2nd-gen RL (2005)

    1. Member BLK9GEN's Avatar
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      10-06-2012 08:54 PM #1
      So, in my searching for used 1st-gen Acura RLs, I have come across a few higher mileage 2nd-gen RLs also in my price range (approx. $10k). I would prefer to stay with an Acura based on prior experiences with the brand and should the need arise, the favorable reputation of our local Acura dealer. I've pretty much eliminated the TL from my search due to higher resale value and poor wear/condition of most used TLs I've seen. Either the owners are harder on these cars or they just don't hold up as well as their higher priced bother.

      Wants/needs (in order of importance):
      Reliable
      Comfortable/roomy
      Relatively anonymous (this car will be parked on the street in my downtown neighborhood so I don't want anything too attention seeking or flashy)

      The 2nd gen is obviously superior in many areas, but I do have concerns about reliability of a 1st model year new generation RL vs. the tried and true late model 1st gen RL. So, Car Lounge, what say you? Between these two choices which would you get, and why?

      1st-gen 2004 RL
      Mileage range of cars priced @ $10k usually varies between 75-95k
      Specs: 225 hp & 231 lb-ft/FWD/4-speed automatic/0-60: 7.5-7.9 seconds








      2nd-gen 2005 RL
      Mileage range of cars priced @ $10k usually varies between 110-120k
      Specs: 300 hp & 260 lb-ft/AWD/5-speed automatic/0-60: 6.5-7.0 seconds





      Last edited by BLK9GEN; 10-06-2012 at 09:10 PM.
      19-- Willys Jeep * 1989 Cadillac STS * 1991 Ford Escort GT * 1997 Honda Civic EX * 1997 BMW 528i * 1998 Honda CR-V EX * 1999 Acura 3.2 TL * 2000 VW Golf GLS 1.8T * 2001 Land Rover Range Rover 4.6 SE * 2002 VW Passat GLS 1.8T * 2002 Honda Civic EX * 2006 Lexus GS430 * 2006 Honda Pilot EX-L * 2007 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS * 2009 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 * 2010 Kia Forte Koup SX * 2011 Hyundai Sonata SE * 2013 Honda Accord Sport * 2014 Kia Soul

    2. Member Ross1013's Avatar
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      10-06-2012 08:58 PM #2
      2nd gen if you can swing it. You won't regret getting the newer car.

      This isn't an E39 v. E60 situation.

    3. Member BLK9GEN's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 10:28 AM #3
      Quote Originally Posted by Ross1013 View Post
      2nd gen if you can swing it. You won't regret getting the newer car.

      This isn't an E39 v. E60 situation.
      The right side of my brain fully agrees with you.

      However, the left side of my brain is uncertain. I still remember the 8 unscheduled service visits C&D's 2005 RL had: http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/...term-road-test
      Last edited by BLK9GEN; 10-07-2012 at 10:30 AM.

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      10-07-2012 10:32 AM #4
      The interior of the 1st looks so much better.

    5. Member BRZ's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 10:36 AM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by C4 A6 View Post
      The interior of the 1st looks so much better.
      I don't really mind the design of the second, but the 1st looks much more upscale, IMO.

    6. Member 2.0T_Convert's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 10:52 AM #6
      Newer car would be my choice simply because newer.
      Past rides:
      Volkswagen GTI
      Honda CR-Z
      Honda Civic Coupe
      Your mom's Ford Windstar

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      10-07-2012 10:53 AM #7
      The 2nd's have some electrical gremlins, the keyless go system isn't the most reliable and when it breaks it's expensive to fix and can leave you stranded (ask me how I know), and the xenon headlights (which turn left/right) would intermittently report errors with the turning feature. Not sure what brakes cost from 3rd party, but at the dealer they carried a premium over other Acuras. The SH-AWD system requires some additional maintenance compared with a FWD vehicle.

      I averaged about 23mpg with mine, 60/40 highway/city.

      Great driving car, not quite as quiet as a Lexus but much more fun to drive than the size of the car and demographic would lead you to believe. No fold down rear seat.

      I bought mine in 2009 w/ 64k miles for $13,200. It was a steal and I had an opportunity to sell it for a profit about a year later (with 85k miles), so I did, but sometimes I wish I had just hung onto it.

    8. Member Shomegrown's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 11:06 AM #8
      Quote Originally Posted by Ross1013 View Post

      This isn't an E39 v. E60 situation.

    9. Member Ross1013's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 11:07 AM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by Smoltz View Post

      I bought mine in 2009 w/ 64k miles for $13,200.
      omg

      to shomegrown

    10. 10-07-2012 11:10 AM #10
      I haven't driven the 1G, but the 2G is solid, 2005MY included.

      Is this a replacement or an addition to your current garage?

    11. Member BattleRabbit's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 12:32 PM #11
      1st gen looks much classier. Honestly, that alone would sell me on it. It's the difference of 1 year, so you really can't throw around age as a deciding factor... Just get the one you like better.
      1998 VW Golf Mk.III 5dr/1989 Saab 900 Sedan/1960 Porsche 356B T5/1980 Honda CM400E

    12. Senior Member
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      10-07-2012 12:39 PM #12
      Do the 3.5's suffer from the same oil burning issues that the 3.2's did?

      EVERY Legend from the generation prior to the 3.5 RL is smoking. Every one. I don't know what the issue is (other than I'm sure they all have galactic mileage on them) but I'd be concerned about that if the engines share that problem.

    13. Member Tiny4cyl's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 12:46 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by Numbersix View Post
      Do the 3.5's suffer from the same oil burning issues that the 3.2's did?

      EVERY Legend from the generation prior to the 3.5 RL is smoking. Every one. I don't know what the issue is (other than I'm sure they all have galactic mileage on them) but I'd be concerned about that if the engines share that problem.
      I think the Legends were C-series. The J-series debuted in the 1998 Accord V6 and of course the SH-AWD platform debuted with the 2G RL.

    14. Member BLK9GEN's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 12:53 PM #14
      In addition to our current cars, but possibly a replacement for my BF's car. He is working and going to school and can't afford a new car at the moment, and it would be nice to have a "spare" car for when his POS '95 Neon doesn't work and/or when my car is in for service. Not to mention, winter duty...it would be a plus to have a car I don't care about as much in terms of wear and tear from sand/salt on the roads.
      Last edited by BLK9GEN; 10-07-2012 at 12:56 PM.

    15. Member Ross1013's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 12:58 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by Tiny4cyl View Post
      I think the Legends were C-series. The J-series debuted in the 1998 Accord V6 and of course the SH-AWD platform debuted with the 2G RL.

    16. Member BLK9GEN's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 01:10 PM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by Numbersix View Post
      Do the 3.5's suffer from the same oil burning issues that the 3.2's did?

      EVERY Legend from the generation prior to the 3.5 RL is smoking. Every one. I don't know what the issue is (other than I'm sure they all have galactic mileage on them) but I'd be concerned about that if the engines share that problem.
      Hmmmm, good question. I will have to do some research on that, but yes, the 1st-gen RL/3rd-gen Legend used a 3.5l SOHC C Series engine w/o VTEC. The 3.5l is supposed to have forged components (crankshaft/connecting rods), but some of the parts are shared w/ the smaller 3.2l found in the 2nd-gen Legend. I'm sure much of the oil burning you are witnessing is a result of neglect and age.

    17. Member Mike!'s Avatar
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      10-07-2012 02:20 PM #17
      There's actually something I like about the looks of the older RL, but the drivetrain and features of the 2005+ car are worlds better.

    18. 10-07-2012 02:27 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by Mike! View Post
      There's actually something I like about the looks of the older RL, but the drivetrain and features of the 2005+ car are worlds better.
      if the OP can do it, swing w/e the difference is for the 06. Most if not all of the electrical shens from the first year model were gone by then.
      Quote Originally Posted by konigwheels View Post
      Wow, it amazes me that we have children in here that can't read a couple paragraphs. No wonder America's doing so well in education! Can't take the time to read, but sure can find the time to post. Self indulgence at it's finest.

      TL;DR should be banned and changed to ID;CR or I'm dumb, can't read.

    19. Member a2a4raddo's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 03:30 PM #19
      The 05 is a much better driver. better all weather capabilities, better technlology, quieter,smoother, and in general...more refined/polished. That said, the 03-04 RL is a larger car (actually, Acura's largest car built to date....not sure if the 2013 RL is larger though). It looks classier and feels softer inside....both the seats and the ride. They really are two completly different cars. I would suggest you drive both and see which you like better. The 04 will be cheaper to buy, cheaper to fix, and cheaper to miantain....just not as fun to drive and may or may not have a Nav system (all 05's hve Nav)....although...the Nav will be outdated either way.

      If you spring for an 05 try and find a 1 owner car with service records...or go with an 06.....as a lot of the small issues were taken care of by the time the 2nd model year came to be. The SH-AWD in the RL is also a better system then in other SH-AWD equiped Acura's.

      Acura did make an A-Spec suspension for the 05-08 RL if you wanted to upgrade the suspension to something even sportier.

      Personally, i would purchase a final model year of any given car rather then a 1st model year.

    20. Member LuckyDogg's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 03:45 PM #20
      05+ RL all the way.

    21. Member BLK9GEN's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 08:51 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by a2a4raddo View Post
      The 04 will be cheaper to buy, cheaper to fix, and cheaper to miantain....just not as fun to drive and may or may not have a Nav system (all 05's hve Nav)....although...the Nav will be outdated either way.

      If you spring for an 05 try and find a 1 owner car with service records...or go with an 06.....as a lot of the small issues were taken care of by the time the 2nd model year came to be. The SH-AWD in the RL is also a better system then in other SH-AWD equiped Acura's.
      It is my understanding that NAV was made standard on the 2004 RL. Please correct me if I am wrong. Granted, it will be dated as you said, but if I was overly concerned about that I wouldn't be looking at used cars since tech advances so quickly.

      Also, I'm curious to hear why the SH-AWD is superior on the RL vs. other Acura vehicles it is offered on. I was unaware they were different.

      Thx.

    22. Member a2a4raddo's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 09:44 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by jwaters943 View Post
      It is my understanding that NAV was made standard on the 2004 RL. Please correct me if I am wrong. Granted, it will be dated as you said, but if I was overly concerned about that I wouldn't be looking at used cars since tech advances so quickly.

      Also, I'm curious to hear why the SH-AWD is superior on the RL vs. other Acura vehicles it is offered on. I was unaware they were different.

      Thx.
      Edit: I think you are correct that nav became standard in 04....and then optional again in either 07 or 08 (forgot which year they introduced a base model and the previous years base became a Tech Package).

      I thought Nav was still the only option the RL had up untill the new model in 2005..but thinking about it...i don't think i have ever seen an 04 with out Nav.

      Here is wiki link on SH-AWD. Explains the diff. versions (RL's being most advanced). The SH Technology first appeared in 1997 on the Honda Prelude Type-SH which had the ATTS (Active Torque Transfer System) Diff. which would send 80% of powerto the outside front wheel when cornering. The RL'S SH-AWD accelerates the outside rear wheel when cornering in addition to being able to send 100% of power going to the rear to one side.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SH-AWD
      Last edited by a2a4raddo; 10-07-2012 at 09:53 PM.

    23. 10-07-2012 09:45 PM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by jwaters943 View Post
      Hmmmm, good question. I will have to do some research on that, but yes, the 1st-gen RL/3rd-gen Legend used a 3.5l SOHC C Series engine w/o VTEC. The 3.5l is supposed to have forged components (crankshaft/connecting rods), but some of the parts are shared w/ the smaller 3.2l found in the 2nd-gen Legend. I'm sure much of the oil burning you are witnessing is a result of neglect and age.
      Isnt the the C-series in the 2004 RL directly related to the NSX V6

    24. Member rbloedow's Avatar
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      10-07-2012 09:49 PM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by jwaters943 View Post
      It is my understanding that NAV was made standard on the 2004 RL. Please correct me if I am wrong. Granted, it will be dated as you said, but if I was overly concerned about that I wouldn't be looking at used cars since tech advances so quickly.

      Also, I'm curious to hear why the SH-AWD is superior on the RL vs. other Acura vehicles it is offered on. I was unaware they were different.

      Thx.
      IIRC, the RL retains the most advanced form of the system: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SH-AWD


      In the North American market, Honda introduced the original SH-AWD system introduced in late 2004 with the second generation 2005 Acura RL. Two other SH-AWD variants were introduced in late 2006 in the then all new 2007 Acura RDX[11] and the new second generation 2007 Acura MDX[12] Sport Utility Vehicles SUV. In late 2008, an improved version of the Acura RL SH-AWD was introduced in the significantly revised Mid-Model Change (MMC) of the 2009 Acura RL. This improved version provided earlier SH-AWD intervention (first gear vs second)[13] and more precise use of the rear differential electromagnetic clutch system to provide an improved limited-slip differential function.[13]

      Yet another version of SH-AWD was introduced in late 2008 with the fourth generation 2009 Acura TL.[14] The Acura TL implementation of SH-AWD is actually mechanically more similar to the SH-AWD layout in the Acura MDX and RDX[15] in that the rear differential is over driven at a constant 1.7% faster than the front wheels,[15] unlike the Acura RL, which, since its introduction in 2004,[2][16] added an acceleration device[17] which can over drive the rear wheels up to 5.7% faster than the front wheels.

      As of 2010 the Acura RL remains the only SH-AWD configuration with the variable speed rear differential acceleration device. The newly introduced 2010 Acura ZDX four-door sports coupe maintains a mechanically similar fixed 1.7% over driven rear differential configuration to the other Acura SH-AWD equipped vehicles

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