2008 Acura RL

Change Year or Vehicle
$5,743–$13,407 Inventory Prices
SAVE
Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
Compare
Back to top

Key Specs

of the 2008 Acura RL. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Combined MPG:
    20 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    290-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 (premium)
  • Drivetrain:
    All-wheel Drive
  • Transmission:
    5-speed automatic w/OD and auto-manual
  • View more specs

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Performance
  • AWD confidence
  • Side-impact and side curtain airbags
  • Visibility and quietness
  • Front-seat space and comfort

The Bad

  • Some cryptic controls
  • Backseat space
  • Visibility of optional navigation screen
  • Ride on rough surfaces

Notable Features of the 2008 Acura RL

  • 290-hp, 3.5-liter V-6
  • Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive
  • Increased coverage areas for real-time-traffic info areas
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Paddle-style gear shifters

2008 Acura RL Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview
Acura's RL luxury sedan is equipped with 290 horsepower, all-wheel drive and a host of standard luxury features. It competes with the Cadillac DTS, BMW 5 Series and Lexus ES. Little changed for 2008 besides an expansion to its real-time-traffic-monitoring coverage areas.

Acura calls the RL's drive system Super Handling All-Wheel Drive. It can apply as much as 100 percent of rear torque to the outer rear wheel in curves in order to enhance cornering and stability attributes and dry- and wet-weather traction. Up to 70 percent of engine torque goes to the rear wheels under full-throttle acceleration.

The RL has an optional Technology Package that includes active headlights that swivel up to 20 degrees to better illuminate corners, as well as a rearview camera and a navigation system with real-time traffic monitoring. A Collision Mitigation Braking System, Adaptive Cruise Control and Michelin PAX run-flat tires are also optional.


Exterior
Acura says the RL has a "wide, muscular stance" and that the "dramatically sloping hood leads down to an aggressive front fascia with angular headlight treatments." Aluminum is used for the hood, front fenders, deck lid, subframe and suspension. Riding a 110.2-inch wheelbase, the RL is 193.6 inches long overall, 72.7 inches wide and 57.1 inches tall. Alloy wheels hold 17-inch tires.

Interior
The five-occupant RL has an interior trimmed with wood and leather. A 10-speaker Acura/Bose DVD Audio system, XM Satellite Radio and an ...
Vehicle Overview
Acura's RL luxury sedan is equipped with 290 horsepower, all-wheel drive and a host of standard luxury features. It competes with the Cadillac DTS, BMW 5 Series and Lexus ES. Little changed for 2008 besides an expansion to its real-time-traffic-monitoring coverage areas.

Acura calls the RL's drive system Super Handling All-Wheel Drive. It can apply as much as 100 percent of rear torque to the outer rear wheel in curves in order to enhance cornering and stability attributes and dry- and wet-weather traction. Up to 70 percent of engine torque goes to the rear wheels under full-throttle acceleration.

The RL has an optional Technology Package that includes active headlights that swivel up to 20 degrees to better illuminate corners, as well as a rearview camera and a navigation system with real-time traffic monitoring. A Collision Mitigation Braking System, Adaptive Cruise Control and Michelin PAX run-flat tires are also optional.


Exterior
Acura says the RL has a "wide, muscular stance" and that the "dramatically sloping hood leads down to an aggressive front fascia with angular headlight treatments." Aluminum is used for the hood, front fenders, deck lid, subframe and suspension. Riding a 110.2-inch wheelbase, the RL is 193.6 inches long overall, 72.7 inches wide and 57.1 inches tall. Alloy wheels hold 17-inch tires.

Interior
The five-occupant RL has an interior trimmed with wood and leather. A 10-speaker Acura/Bose DVD Audio system, XM Satellite Radio and an OnStar communication system are installed. Acura's Keyless Access System does away with a traditional key for starting, locking and unlocking.

A wealth of standard features includes leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control and heated, power-adjustable front seats.

Working in conjunction with XM Satellite Radio, the optional real-time traffic monitoring system uses XM NavTraffic data. For 2008, AcuraLink expanded its traffic markets to 76 metropolitan areas. An 8-inch screen displays current traffic details, including flow, accidents and freeway construction. Drivers can then select the least-congested route. In addition, AcuraLink can relay maintenance and diagnostic information.


Under the Hood
Acura's 3.5-liter V-6 generates 290 hp and 256 pounds-feet of torque and drives a five-speed automatic transmission with paddle-style shifters on the steering wheel. All RLs have Acura's SH-AWD system.

Safety
Side-impact and side curtain airbags and an electronic stability system are standard. All-disc antilock brakes are installed. An optional Collision Mitigation Braking System uses a radar unit to measure distance to objects in front of the RL. If the system judges the distance to those objects is closing too quickly, it alerts the driver and, if necessary, applies brakes.

Driving Impressions
The previous RL was an excellent road car with a solid, heavy feel. That's still the case, but it's augmented by even stronger performance. A shortage of power is never a concern, and the automatic transmission shifts easily and promptly.

The ride is fine on smooth surfaces, but this sedan gets jittery on harsher pavement. Steering is firm and positive. The RL is extra-quiet but not eerily silent.

Space in the comfortable, supportive front seats is abundant, and snug bolstering holds occupants in place. Backseat space is less appealing, with marginal headroom and fair legroom and foot room. Trunk space is modest, but visibility is very good.

The RL's rich-looking dashboard sports instruments that are large and easy to read. Some controls, however, are cryptic or hard to find.

Real-time traffic information is a valuable feature, but trying to spot traffic indications on the video map screen is somewhat difficult. The map also washes out in sunlight and is excessively reflective.



Latest 2008 RL Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.9)
Performance
(4.6)
Interior Design
(4.8)
Comfort
(4.9)
Reliability
(4.8)
Value For The Money
(4.9)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

love it

by yanny from newark on July 26, 2018

This is the best dealer , i would like to thanks Amy for her help explain to us everything detail by detail , helps us to get approved for our suv Dream car . I really recommend this place to my ... Read full review

(5.0)

Nothing compares!!

by Michall J. from Long Beach, CA on March 11, 2018

I've owned Mercedes, BMW and Audi sedans and nothing beats the reliability, value and prestige of an Acura RL!! Best choice I've ever made. Don't waste your time buying anything else! Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2008 Acura RL currently has 4 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2008 Acura RL has not been tested.

Change Year or Vehicle

0 / 0 0 Photos
0 / 0

Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The RL received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker