1997 Acura TL

  • 1997 Acura TL Base Sedan

    Base Sedan

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      3.2L I5
    • MSRP
  • 1997 Acura TL Premium Sedan

    Premium Sedan

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      3.2L I5
    • MSRP
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  • Review

1997 Acura TL Review

Luxury and reliability in a sleek package.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 1997 Acura TL is an entry-level vehicle in the highly-competitive near-luxury sedan market. It puts more emphasis on balancing price, performance, and comfort equally compared to some of its competitors. As a result, it's a near-luxury sedan that's reliable, sturdily built, and sold at a decent price. It provides an excellent amount of power and performance that makes it a joy to drive.

The 1997 Acura TL does hold its own quite well in the competitive near-luxury sedan market, even when paired against cars that also try to balance performance and luxury without inflating the price tag. It might not be as prestigious as some of its better established competitors, but it's a well-built vehicle that will outlive many other vehicles.

The Range

Body Styles: sedan
Engines: 2.5-liter five-cylinder, 3.2-liter six-cylinder
Transmissions: four-speed automatic
Models: Acura TL 2.5, Acura TL 2.5 Premium, Acura TL 3.2, Acura TL 3.2 Premium

What's New

The 1997 Acura TL has no major changes to the design. It has largely remained the same since it was originally introduced to replace the discontinued Acura Vigor.


The 1997 Acura TL is a relatively large sedan, measuring 191.5 inches long with a wheelbase of 111.8 inches long. The larger body size is typical of near-luxury vehicles, since it allows a similar increase in the size of the cabin. However, within the near-luxury market, it's one of the smaller sedans available, with competitors regularly exceeding 200 inches in length. The styling is very conservative with crisp angles rather than smooth curves. While not unusual in this segment, it might not appeal to all interested drivers.


The 1997 Acura TL has many luxury features available as standard equipment, even in the base model, similar to most near-luxury sedans. Standard options on the base model include power seats, power heated mirrors, power windows, power locks, air-conditioning, automatic climate control, a cassette player, a CD player, and an AM/FM radio. The Premium models also add leather seating, leather trim steering wheel, power moonroof, and an anti-theft alarm system as standard equipment.

Performance & Handling

The 1997 Acura TL models provide excellent performance and handling. The smaller, 2.5-liter, five-cylinder engine still puts out a respectable 176 horsepower; meanwhile, the 3.2-liter, six-cylinder engine puts out 200 horsepower. It has good acceleration and a high-top speed, regardless of the engine it comes equipped with. Steering and handling are excellent, allowing it to nimbly move along the road under most driving conditions.


The 1997 Acura TL has dual-front airbags and four-wheel anti-lock brakes. These are fairly standard compared to other near-luxury vehicles but better than most 1997 passenger vehicles.

EPA Fuel Economy

Acura TL 2.5-liter five-cylinder: 18/23 mpg city/highway
Acura TL 3.2-liter six-cylinder: 17/22 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Luxurious interior
  • Good performance
  • Reliable design
  • Base engine is powerful

You Won't Like

  • Tight rear seat
  • Mediocre fuel economy

Sum Up

Luxury and reliability in a sleek package.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Audi A6
  • Infiniti I30
  • Lexus ES 300

See the New 2014 TL.

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