Aug 26, 2013
Reviewed By Erin Olson
Price as Tested $43,185: 3.7-liter SOHC VTEC 24-valve V6, 6-speed manual transmission with heavy-duty clutch and short-throw shifter, Technology Package
Likes

A delightful blend of luxury and sporty. I was comfortable, and yet I also felt like I was driving a car. Really driving a car, not just pushing some buttons. Speaking of buttons, the tech features were intuitive. And the hill start assist, oh, the hill start assist. Panic attacks about manual shifts on an incline are now a thing of the past. In the surprise department, when I popped the trunk to fill it with things (my favorite part of any trip), there was more space than I expected.

Dislikes

The exterior falls neatly into the “generic sedan” category. Gas mileage of 20 mpg in the city and 29 on the highway is comparable to a sedan I owned 12 years ago — consider my faith in progress shaken.

Verdict

I had a full-on love affair with this car. With most cars, even when I like them, there’s always the moment where I say, “This just wouldn’t fit my lifestyle.” For the TL, I’m willing to make compromises. Friends mistook it for a Lexus, and full-sized adults happily piled into the back seat. It took me everywhere I wanted to go and whispered sweet nothings in my ear. Weddings, dive bars, shopping malls and grocery stores. My TL and I can go anywhere, especially if a freeway is involved.

Fun to Drive
5.0 rating
Fun to Look at
3.0 rating
Overall Experience
5.0 rating
Stats