The handsome new cockpit-style interior has an intimate, driver-oriented feel, resplendent in luxurious materials like the hand-stitched, leather-wrapped steering wheel- all assembled with great attention to detail. The TL has more usable space than its predecessor by every important measure, too. In all, the TL interior seamlessly satisfies the conflicting demands of both sport and luxury performance.
Three key words drove the TL's interior design: emotional, personal, and elegant. Emotional in its dramatic interior shapes, and the personal feeling of the interior space. Personal in the connected, tactile sporting feel of the controls. Elegant in the fit and quality of fine interior materials.
The TL's interior designers looked to the wrap-around cockpit design of powerful pacific coast cruiser power boats for inspiration. The flow of the TL's door panels into the instrument panel, then into the center console, echoes the same sort of personal, purposeful cockpit feel.
The TL's new interior capitalizes on the space efficiency afforded by the architecture of the car's completely new unit-body design. The redesigned five-link rear suspension allowed the rear passenger's hip-point to be moved 10-mm rearward, opening up legroom front and rear. With a 16-mm-lower cabin floor, but the same overall vehicle height, interior spaciousness has been enhanced, and specially engineered door structures allow increased interior space even though overall width of the new TL is actually 15 mm less than before.
Relative to its prime competition, the TL is significantly roomier, and offers more usable interior space, with room for five occupants.
To complement the TL's dual sporting/luxury mission, its standard power front seats have unique design features. Careful attention was paid to the stitching patterns in the upgraded, U.S.-sourced leather seating surfaces to ensure comfort over long periods of time. The supple, contoured seats with dual-density backrests provide an enveloping feel, but offer sufficient width for continuing comfort on long drives. To allow the driver to capitalize on the new TL's elevated handling limits, firm side bolsters provide solid support during high-lateral-g cornering.
Both front seats have heated.bases and backrests; the driver's seat is eight-way power adjustable, and the passenger seat offers four-way power adjustment. All five seating positions in the TL are equipped with three-point safety belts.
A highly accurate micro-processor-controlled instrument cluster keeps the TL's driver informed via a complement of analog instrumentation with illuminated pointers. The large diameter tachometer face includes a bold LCD digital indicator to track gear position when the transmission is in its semi-manual SportShift mode.
Specially selected materials line the TL's interior, and lend the car an appropriately upscale ambiance. The instrument panel and door armrests are made with a special molding process that creates a softer-feeling surface with a uniform surface grain; the sides of the center console are backed with soft foam to cushion the passengers' legs. Wood grain accents on the door panel and edges of the console warm the look of the interior.
Air Conditioning and Heating
Careful analysis of the prime competition led to the development of a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC) for the TL that offers significantly faster temperature correction of the total passenger cabin. The TL's automatic system has a new compressor and larger evaporator, and is assisted by solar glass which reduces the heat load on the interior. In tests under hot ambient conditions, relative to the Lexus ES 300, the TL's front passenger area cools to a comfortable target temperature 15% sooner. And with the improved flow afforded by the TL's adjustable rear seat vents positioned on the rear of the center console, the rear passenger compartment reaches a comfortable temperature a full 30% earlier than the Lexus.
With a new quieter blower unit, higher air-flow and an aluminum heater core, heater performance is similarly ahead of the prime competition. In cold ambient conditions the TL's front foot well temperature reaches the warmth target 15% sooner. The front to rear temperature differential is narrowed as well, meaning that rear seat passengers aren't left out in the cold.
A passenger compartment air filtration system traps dust and pollen particles down to eight microns.
Acura Navigation System
The latest generation of the Acura Navigation System is the only factory installed option available on the well-equipped TL. Like the system in the 3.5RL, the TL's unit uses Global Postitioning System (GPS) data recieved from satellites, as well as its own inertial guidance system, to precisely pinpoint the location and velocity of the TL. When asked to guide the driver from one location to another, the system provides both audio and visual cues, helping the driver to find the proper address quickly and easily, and with minimal distraction. Verbal instructions such as "keep right," or "Next exit on the right" give the driver the basic direction, and a visual LCD moving map with a directional arrow, located high on the center console, provides detailed information on street names, turning instructions and driving distances. Geographic data is stored on a hard disc, making it easy and economical to program the system for a new location, or to update mapping information. The navigation system also provides information and directions to local restaurants, theaters and points of interest.
The latest evolution of the Acura Navigation System, available only in the TL, incorporates many improvements to the system that make it even easier to use, and more versatile. The new larger, six-inch-wide color LCD display now has a picture-in-picture capability, so you can see the "big picture" map and get detailed turning instructions simultaneously. The new system will also display your current position at any time, and a balloon function instantly shows the address of any location you select on the map. You can also search for selected points of interest simply by inputting its phone number. The touch-screen display can also be used to provide manual control over the TL's automatic air conditioning operation. The voice guidance control now has 11 different volume settings and automatically mutes the adio entertainment system front speakers momentarily when direction commands are given.
All freeway networks and major metropolitan areas in the U.S. are mapped by the system, with highly detailed information on anyone of seven regions loaded into the Navigation System by Acura dealers. The TL' s on-board database is updated annually (or when the car relocates to a new region) at no charge to the owner for the first two years. For the third year and thereafter, the owner pays a minimal charge for annual updates.
With 180 watts of clean sound, the TL's standard Bose audio system has the power and quality to satisfy critical listeners. Built by Alpine, the large-format head unit has intuitive rotary knobs to control the most-used functions. It has built-in CD, cassette and AM/FM functions, and can be coupled with a dealer-installed trunk-mounted 6-disc CD changer that's available as an option. A printed antenna mounted in the top area of the rear window, eliminates the need for a traditional mast antenna.
A total of five Bose-engineered, fixed equalized speakers are located throughout the interior. A 6.5-in. diameter speaker is positioned in each of the four doors, with a 9.0-in. neodymium woofer mounted in the parcel shelf, driven by a devoted 100-watt amplifier.
Power Glass Moonroof
Another standard feature on the highly equipped TL, a new, improved glass moonroof with tilt-up and sliding action can be used to increase interior ventilation, or open fully for open-air motoring. Its thin, efficient design is a contributing factor in the TL's abundant head room.
Multiplex Data Bus
CPU-controlled functions in the TL such as the various warning systems, illumination intensity, intermittent wipers, power windows, the remote control security system, auto headlight system and more are divided among three separate CPUs. Communication among the CPUs is via a multiplex data bus, which requires considerably less wiring.
Comfort and Convenience
Offered in just one trim level,with a remarkably short options list, the TL has a formidable roster of standard comfort and luxury features.
Here are some of the more notable items:
- Overhead sunglass storage compartment
- Large cupholder in the console with a removable liner for easy cleaning
- Illuminated two compartment center console, with internal power port and hidden storage area
- Padded center armrest slides fore and aft for comfort
- Soft-touch instrument panel and interior panels
- Glove box has a damper-controlled door and interior light
- 4-disc CD storage tray built into dash (when not equipped with navigation system)
- Trunk opening switch on driver's door panel and main switch in glove compartment
- Sliding sun visor extensions
- Illuminated driver's power window switches
- HomeLink ™ remote system operates three different devices
- Speed-synchronized intermittent wipers
- Dual cupholder built into rear fold-down armrest
- Security system with remote keyless entry
- Automatic day/night rearview mirror
- Lockable trunk pass through
- Amenity boxes for small items in front passenger-side door
With the more compact dimensions of the TL's new multi-link rear suspension, the trunk volume has increased in size from 13.8 cu. ft. to 14.3 cu. ft. A wide opening and low lift-over height eases loading and unloading. A lockable flip-down pass-through door to the passenger compartment expands utility further, when carrying long objects. A cargo net with multiple attach points makes it easy to restrain cargo. The jack is in a closed compartment on the right side of the trunk, with a tool box positioned nearby. A storage compartment is positioned on the left side of the trunk. A convenient hook just above allows plastic grocery bags to be secured in place. A tether with hook allows the trunk floor to be secured in the raised position for convenient access to the spare tire.
Acura Interior Accessories
Along with a full line of exterior accessories for the TL, Acura dealers also offer wood accents for the TL's interior. A genuine Burlwood shift knob and wood-grained meter panel complement the TL's standard woodgrain accents on the sides of the center console and door panels.
Omnidirectional Collision Safety
The TL is engineered as a total safety package with features designed to help in accident avoidance, to help protect the passengers in the event a collision is unavoidable, and to provide excellent security from theft or vandalism.
The best form of safety engineering is the type that prevents an accident from occurring in the first place. On that front, the TL brings a variety of technologies to bear.
The following safety features assist in accident avoidance:
- Standard traction control
- Standard ABS disc brakes
- Improved steering linearity
- Improved maximum lateral cornering adhesion
- HID headlights for improved visibility
- Automatic day/night rear view mirror
- Electrically heated side-view mirrors
- Speed-synchronized windshield wiper system
- 298.3-degrees of outward visibility
Should an accident prove unavoidable, the TL protects its occupants with carefully orchestrated crash energy attenuation strategies developed on a super computer. The strength required to meet worldwide safety regulations was designed into the TL from the earliest stages of its development. In frontal impacts, straight-section frame box rails with large cross-sections feed impact energy directly into the main frame structure, without the need for stiffeners at changes in cross section. To exceed now 2002 Federal head-impact safety regulations, the TL's interior has energy absorbing roof-pillar garnishes and roof lining designed to help reduce injury to the occupants.
To better deal with offset-impact energy, reinforcements are placed at the roof side rails, side sills, A-pillars, and front and side frame members.
To protect against side impacts, the B-pillars are stiffened, a substantial cross member runs transversely across the floor pan, a tubular brace connects the two A-pillars inside the instrument panel, a bulkhead is positioned at the back of the passenger cabin, and the rear doors have special catcher mechanisms to restrict intrusion into the passenger compartment.
The doors have special reinforcements for side impact; twin side impact beams are placed in the front doors, with single beams in the rear doors. All four doors have a stamped steel stiffening structures at the tops of the door panels, as well as impact absorbing door lining pads positioned near the occupants.
The TL's key crash protection technologies are:
- Dual airbag supplemental restraint system (SRS)
- Side-impact protection
- Rear door catchers to restrict intrusion
- Door panel stiffening structure
- Door lining pad structure
- Highly efficient energy-absorbing roof pillar garnishes and roof lining that exceed 2003 Federal head-impact safety regulations
- Built-in child seat top tether anchors
- 5 mph bumpers
Personal security is another critical aspect of overall safety. With an immobilizer system that employs a special ignition key with a built in transponder, the fuel injection system is immobilized unless the proper key is inserted in the ignition switch.
Security technologies built into the TL are:
- Immobilizer igntion lock
- Theft-deterrent security system
- Tamper-resistant door latches
- Central door locking
- Security system with remote keyless entry