Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Acura TL Type-S 2007 Automatic



















- Got it for $384 over invoice. I probably could have saved maybe another $200 if I shopped around but it just wasn't worth the effort.
- you can read all the specs here:
http://www.acura.com/
http://www.roadandtrack.com/article.asp?section_id=31&article_id=4459
http://www.roadandtrack.com/assets/download/3car_dp.pdf.pdf
286hp, 0-60 in 5.7 but that's on the MT.
http://www.vtec.net/forums/one-message?message_id=635703&article_id=612494
0-60 in 5.7 on AT using paddle shifting, 1/4 mile in 14.2sec at 99mph.
- xm pricing planes
http://www.xmradio.com/whatisxm/plans-pricing.xmc
http://www.xmradio.com/navtraffic/get_nav.xmc
http://www.xmradio.com/navtraffic/market_coverage.xmc
$12.95 per month + $3.99 for xm nav traffic.
$9.95 for just xm nav traffic.
- community sites:
http://tl.acurazine.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=1
http://www.acuraworld.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=72
http://acura-tls.blogspot.com/
- I'm going to mostly comment on the technology and other gadgets in the car.
- carbon gray was our favorite color but unfortunately it's not available in type-s. Carbon bronze was a bit too "bronzey" for us so we just fell back to good old safe silver.
- The only options added were wheel locks and tinting. Everything else included was standard.
- Full nav (nice big screen) with real time traffic/construction/accidents, rear view camera when in reverse, leather, 5 speed automatic, sequential sport shifting (manual without the clutch), paddle shifters, moon roof, stainless steel pedals, 6 disc slot loading with mp3 support (cd-r/rw), dvd audio, dts, dolbpy prologic 2, 5.1 speakers (6 speakers total including a sub), xm (3 months free trial which was already activated and ready to go), homelink, auto dim rear view mirror.
- Several settings are tied to driver 1 or 2 based on the key used to open the car. This includes all the seat and mirror settings, options like when the doors auto lock/unlock, light dimming timers, and even all the stereo presets for fm and xm.
- The car really lets you customize a lot of options. Almost every automatic option there is also the ability to shut it off/go manual if you want.
- TPMS shows the individual tire pressure on the multi information display.
- Tires are "W" rated (168mph). I've read there is a speed governor at around 150mph.
- hands free lets you control pretty much everything including all apsects of the audio system, nav system, and a paired blue tooth cell phone. There's a pretty extensive vocabulary I need to learn. Also, a lot information is provided through voice. I feel like I need to play the Knight Rider theme with all this talking back and forth.
- There is no voice training needed. In fact I recorded a phone book entry with my voice, and my wife was still able to call it.
- Setting up the blue tooth phone was pretty easy. You go through a pairing process giving each phone pair a unique 4 digit code. You can pair up to 6 phones to the car. If more than one paired phone happens to be in the car you just hit a button and say "next" to cycle through each phone. You give each phone pair a name which you hear when cycling through phones.
- The phone thing came in more handy than I expected. Example: today we called Mommy at work while the kids were in the back. We could all talk and hear Mommy at the same time. The kids really got a kick out of it.
- With just a few button presses I was able to download the entire phone book from my cell phone (older sony ericsson t637) to the car. Then you can add voice names to the phone numbers you want to call by name. It all worked pretty well. You can store multiple phone books so multiple phones can be imported into the car.
- Voice quality going out was pretty good and the incoming voice was nice and loud and clear.
- mp3/wma support works quite well. It basically flattens the directory structure and then lets you navigate by folder/file. You can repeat/random by track/folder/disc. There is also a list view to let you easily browse folders and tracks. Long filenames are supported. Unfortunately mp3's burned to a dvd+r using UDF did NOT work. DVD-Audio is supported. Looking at the sampler disc I noticed it was just a bunch of vobs. I tried sticking in a movie dvd to see if it would play the audio but it didn't. CD-RW support is excellent. 80min 10X cd-rw worked perfectly. You can easily fit over 50 albums worth of music on 6 cdrw's. Resume on disc works when switching between other audio modes like fm/xm/aux and back to disc. It will pick right back up on the last disc/track/second. If you hit any of the disc buttons 1-6 then that it starts at the beginning of the disc. Resume is nice but I wish there was a true bookmarking feature.
- There is a standard stereo 1/8" mini jack at the bottom of the center console. There are holes to let your route the cable (you supply your own. 3 foot cable is good) out of the console with it closed. I love the aux jack which lets you use your own mp3 player (like my archos) though the placement of the jack could have been better.
- nav system is stored on a dvd9 and is pretty complete. You can pin lock all addressees (phone and nav) so in case somebody steals your care they can't just say "go home" and come knocking on your door. You can even speak the pin.
- Real time traffic works great and shows different colors on major freeways for the speed. Accidents and construction show up as icons or you can display them in a list.
- so far I've spent more time messing with the electronics than I've actually been driving the car.
- the paddle shifters are pretty cool. I've read that in manual mode the car will NOT shift you out of a gear unless you tell it to. That means you can red line it all you want. The only thing the manual says is the engine will start cutting out to you know prevent it from blowing up. I of course can't verify any of this since I'm still breaking in the car. The only thing it does automatically is shift down to first gear if you come to a complete stop.
- Oil change reminder is expressed by a percentage and this gauge takes into account the way you drive (stop and go vs highway) vs straight mileage.
- trip computer also computes range in miles you can drive based on fuel left and computed average mpg.
- volume is tracked independently for each mode so for example you can have aux at volume 25 and xm set to 7.
- has a feature (multiple levels of settings) where it will compensate for driving noise. The faster you go the louder your stereo, the slower you go the more quiet it gets. You can turn this feature off if you want. It's kind of subtle even on high setting but it does help.
- The real time traffic flow colors are sometimes a bit hard to see since highways are represented by red and so is very slow traffic. You have to look for that slightly different shade of red line next to the other red line which represents the actual road. You can still tell them apart with some effort at the max traffic level zoom. Any further out and it's just a bigger red line. The other colors like green and yellow of course show up fine.
-I like how the nav map background colors goes to an inverse of black when the headlights are on so it doesn't blind you as much. There is also a max brightness button that covers the entire dash plus nav that is great when you have the headlights on but it's not quite that dark yet (dusk or during a rain storm) so you still need all the displays to be bright.
- Setup my phone to work with AcuraLink which communicates with the acura server to send messages to your car through your phone over gprs (at least I think that's what it's for). I used the quick connect cingular MediaNet profile and verified the connection without issue. You can set it so it prompts you before connecting vs automatic. That way your car won't rack up bandwidth charges without you knowing. You can customize delivery options and setup service appointments at Acura Owner Link site.

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