2006 Acura RL

  • 2006 Acura RL Base Sedan

    Base Sedan

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      3.5L V6
    • MSRP
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2006 Acura RL Review

The 2006 Acura RL is worth a look if you want a luxury soul in a performance body that exudes confident value, but you may find the competition’s offerings are better equipped with high-end materials and impressive performance.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 2006 Acura RL provides the ideal combination of luxury and performance. Acura was able to turn the page on its rocky past through the release of the midsize TL and compact TSX, two capable premium sedans that offer value, performance, and luxury all in one package. In 2005, Acura unveiled the RL sedan, and it quickly became known as the ""shot in the arm"" that Acura needed.

The RL is powered by a 290-horsepower, V-6 engine with a five-speed automatic transmission that has shift paddles, so drivers can manually shift gears. It has all-wheel drive (AWD) and an Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) for a safe and secure ride. Technological devices, like the satellite-based traffic information and a voice-activated navigation system, complement the luxury-infused cabin in a direct response to the gauntlet thrown down by its competitors. In sum, the RL combines performance, luxury, and technology in one attractive, sleek package.

The Range

Body Styles: sedan
Engines: 3.5-liter V-6
Transmissions: five-speed automatic
Models: Acura RL 3.5 Sedan

What's New

The 2006 Acura RL features an optional Technology Package that includes a collision mitigation braking system, run-flat tires, and cruise control that automatically adjusts itself. This vehicle also has OnStar road assistance and a vehicle status monitor that gives you real-time updates on the car’s condition, and will alert you of any upcoming maintenance and required service. When the Society of Automotive Engineers changed their testing procedures in 2006, Acura responded by decreasing the vehicle’s horsepower from 300 hp to 290 hp.


The exterior standard features for the 2006 Acura RL include 17-inch alloy wheels, a remote-controlled sunroof, manual side window sunshades, and adaptive headlights that swivel in concert with the direction of the steering. Cargo capacity measures at 13.1 cubic feet.

The exterior of the RL is attractive, sleek, and sporty. The front of the car has a long, sloping hood and the integrated bumpers and headlights give it a smooth look. However, the keyless entry/ignition system is awkward to use.


The 2006 Acura RL is only available in the base trim, but it has a rich cache of standard features. Standard features include leather upholstery, power-adjustable heated front seats with driver seat memory, a ten-speaker Bose surround sound system, a voice-activated navigation system with real-time traffic information, keyless entry/ignition, and Bluetooth. The standard automatic climate control system uses satellite data to monitor the outside temperature and adjust the interior temperature accordingly.

The interior of the cabin is luxurious, spacious, and functional. It is crafted with high-quality materials and the leather upholstery has intricate stitch work. The wood trim is not overpowering, and it blends well with the leather. The center stack has a large dial that is used as the interface for the navigation system’s display, which is somewhat awkward to use. Acura has employed its Active Noise Cancellation System through the Bose sound system, a feature that effectively cancels out road and exhaust noise. The gauges are easy to read and the voice-activated navigation system is user-friendly.

Performance & Handling

The 2006 Acura RL has a standard, 3.5-liter, V-6 engine that produces 290 horsepower and 256 lb-ft of torque. The vehicle has variable valve timing and a variable flow exhaust system. The standard five-speed automatic transmission has a feature that allows you to shift to any gear you choose, whenever you want. This car can sprint from zero to 60 miles per hour in an impressive seven seconds.

The V-6 engine produces sufficient power and the acceleration is good, but competitors offer models that fare better in these important categories. The transmission shifts smoothly and almost seamlessly, even when using the paddles to shift manually. The all-wheel drive allows for greater confidence on the road, handling feels sure and responsive, and the seats are comfortable and supportive. The ride is smooth on even pavement, and you will only feel some bumps when traversing the roughest roads. Additionally, powerful brakes and a firm suspension make the car feel stable on winding roads.


Standard safety equipment for the 2006 Acura RL includes four-wheel anti-locking brakes (ABS), stability control, daytime running lights, an emergency trunk opener, child-proof rear door locks, side-impact door beams, front and rear crumple zones, seat-mounted side airbags in front, full-length side curtain airbags, and an optional collision mitigation braking system. The collision mitigation braking system consists of a radar unit inside the grille that automatically tightens seatbelts, slows the vehicle, and alerts the driver if it senses an impending collision.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Acura a rating of ""good"" for protection in frontal-impact collisions and a ""marginal"" rating for protection in rear-impact collisions. The National Highway and Traffic Safety Association awarded this car five out of five stars for protection in frontal-impact collisions, for both the front passenger and the driver.

EPA Fuel Economy

Acura RL Base: 16/24 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Long list of standard features
  • Optional collision mitigation braking system
  • Excellent handling
  • Voice-activated navigation system
  • Excellent interior materials
  • Excellent stereo system
  • Excellent all-wheel drive system

You Won't Like

  • Mediocre fuel economy
  • No V-8 engine available
  • Meager rear seat room
  • Keyless entry/ignition system is not easy to use

Sum Up

The 2006 Acura RL is worth a look if you want a luxury soul in a performance body that exudes confident value, but you may find the competition’s offerings are better equipped with high-end materials and impressive performance.

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