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2000 Acura TL

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starting MSRP

Key specs

Base trim shown


Body style


Seating capacity

192.9” x 56.1”


Front-wheel drive



1 trim

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

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2000 Acura TL review: Our expert's take

By Editors

I was in a sporting mood, so I headed for the District of Columbia. The city’s lousy streets are perfect for testing suspensions and vehicle maneuverability. I was driving the 2000 Acura 3.2TL sedan, a car that handles beautifully on smooth highways and winding back roads. I wanted to see if it had any funk.

That’s “funk” as in dance, jazz, motorized hip-hop. D.C. streets, with their potholes, dig sites and pathetic patchwork, have a way of upsetting cars and trucks. Vehicles lose their rhythm. They halt before dips, panic-brake at pothole edges and quiver nervously in the vicinity of cable digs.

Even drivers of mighty sport-utility vehicles pause before traversable cracks and ruts, which makes me wonder why they have those brutemobiles in the first place. It’s ugly, unbecoming.

So I wanted to see what the 3.2TL could do. It’s a nimble, rigidly contructed car equipped with a five-speed auto-manual (SportShift) transmission. You just shift the lever down, flip it to the left gate and work the gears without having to push a clutch.

In manual mode, you can keep the 3.2TL in second or third, which provides enough oomph for in-town acceleration and the right amount of control for getting around obstacles.

But if you still manage to drop a wheel into a crater, the car doesn’t go crazy. You remain in charge, thanks largely to a fully independent double-wishbone suspension system that smooths out the rough spots.

I entered the city from the Virginia suburbs, using the K Street corridor. There was a sense of anticipation as I crossed the Potomac River via the Key Bridge and took a right turn onto the Whitehurst Freeway, the last bit of decent thoroughfare before K.

On this morning, construction shut the right lane underneath an overpass, forcing traffic to lurch left. You don’t watch for turn signals in this situation — few people use them. You pay attention to vehicular body movement.

The 3.2TL moved precisely, darting to the left, avoiding a squeeze play from a minivan (of all things!) that tried to get between me and construction cones. It then moved smartly to the right after clearing the work zone.

The car looked cool in all that maneuvering, which made me happy. It was like being on a crowded dance floor with everybody watching. You want to make nice steps in that venue, keep the funk going, as if you know what you’re doing, as if the floor belongs to you.

The performance continued all along K Street downtown, where the 3.2TL moved with smarts and passion. A cab illegally entered the main street from a service road, causing several motorists to turn sharply. That was a close call, but the 3.2TL swerved nicely around that mess, too.

I returned to Virginia using another route, convinced that I had in hand the perfect compromise car — a family sedan with bona fide sports performance; a funky, urban dancer with a suburban face.

Nuts & Bolts

2000 Acura 3.2TL Complaints: The rear seats, again. Simply not enough room for wide bottoms. Does nimble necessarily mean skinny?

Praise: One of the best cars available for people who love to drive, which definitely includes me. Look, the 3.2TL was in my driveway along with a Jaguar XJ8 and a BMW X5 sport-utility vehicle, both of which are extremely nice rides. But I still drove the 3.2TL every chance I got. It’s total fun on the road.

Head-turning quotient: Another work of Republican design. Either that or it was penned by the same people who reworked Al Gore. Straight. Very straight. Very definitely PTA.

Ride, acceleration and handling: Triple crown. Not a single complaint here.

Engine: The 3.2TL was equipped with a 3.2-liter single-overhead-cam VTEC (variable valve timing and lift) V-6 that develops 225 horsepower and 216 pound-feet of torque at 4,700 rpm.

Capacities: T he 3.2T L seats five people (but seats four better). Cargo capacity is 14.3 cubic feet. The fuel tank holds 17.2 gallons (premium unleaded is recommended).

Mileage: Fair. About 27 miles per gallon in combined city-highway driving.

Price: Base price is $28,400. Dealer invoice is $25,596. Price as tested is $28,885 (without taxes and fees added).

Purse-strings note: The only option available on the 3.2TL is a navigational system for about $2,000. Compare with Lexus ES300, Chrysler 300M and Lincoln LS.

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.8
  • Interior 4.6
  • Performance 4.8
  • Value 4.6
  • Exterior 4.5
  • Reliability 4.4
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Most recent consumer reviews


Best Car I've ever owned !!!

Have 200k miles on it. Recently put 1300 miles on it in 24 hrs. The pickup is the best while merging on take off like a fighter jet! I love this car. Got it with 182k on it for 2 gran, 7 yrs ago. Best 2 gran I ever spent. Pls do the oil changes etc and you will not be disappointed. Recently bought a magnetic oil pan nut bolt for ten bucks from thing ever to replace loose treading on old one. Plan on keeping this car...forever!!!


1st car, very reliable.

Able to get me from point A to point B, Acura is a good company that last many years. Drives steady for long distance trips.


I've owned this 2000 TL for 19 years ,92k miles

Paint is shot, mostly from not protecting it, and dark color. Definitely shows the wear all around. But still a great car. Debating having it painted as I think it's good for a couple more years. Approx $750 for paint and rental car... it's 19yrs old... with the paint job it would probably be work $2500 on the high side. But I do love this car. Never any transmission issues that others have reported.

See all 31 consumer reviews


New car and Certified Pre-Owned programs by Acura Precision
New car program benefits
48 months/50,000 miles
60 months/unlimited distance
48 months/50,000 miles
Roadside assistance
48 months/50,000 miles
Certified Pre-Owned program benefits
Maximum age/mileage
6 years old and newer from their original in-service date, with 80,000 miles or fewer at time of vehicle delivery.
Basic warranty terms
2 years/100,000 miles
7 years/100,000 miles
Dealer certification required
182-point inspection
Roadside assistance
View all cpo program details

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