|Acura's new design language is producing bolder looking cars than in the past, though not everyone loves the new corporate grille. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)|
Then the team in charge of the TL (the RL's less expensive baby sibling) got their hands on many of the goodies, leading some critics to complain that the RL doesn't offer enough extra to justify the price difference between the cars. Is it a fair criticism? Well, before we get to that, let's look at the RL on its own merits.
At first glance, Acura's restyling of the 2009 RL is polarizing. While the most generous description of the previous RL would be that it was relatively classy looking and inoffensive, the '09 retains the class but now has attitude. Acura's new design language is creating cars with chiseled lines and bold features, and to my eye it works better in the RL than in some of Acura's other models. Not everyone likes Acura's prominent new corporate grille, but it appears to sit a little lower on the RL's nose than on other Acuras, with character lines to either side. This makes it a touch less prominent (especially on a light-coloured car like our Alberta White Pearl tester) and therefore better looking. The RL is a tad longer than the TL (4,973 mm vs. 4,966 mm) and a tiny bit taller (1,455 mm vs. 1,452 mm), but is actually not as wide (1,847 mm for the RL vs. 1,880 mm for the TL). <Read More>