2001 Acura 3.5 RL -- Introduction

The Acura 3.5 RL is the flagship sedan of the Acura lineup. The product of an intensive research and development effort in which every nuance of the interface between driver and car was examined, the 3.5 RL luxury sedan takes Acura to a new level of comfort, performance, refinement and human engineering. At the same time, the 3.5 RL delivers an engaging driving experience with the confident handling, immediate response, advanced safety engineering and high levels of performance Acura drivers have come to expect.

Dramatic improvements in comfort, ergonomics, noise, vibration and harshness and performance have made it the quietest, smoothest, most refined Acura ever built. The 3.5 RL is a world-class luxury sedan, competing with the likes of the Mercedes E Class, BMW 5 Series, Audi A6, Lexus GS 300/400 and LS 400, and the Infiniti Q45.

The 3.5 RL is powered by the largest engine with the most torque ever produced in an Acura sedan. The 3.5-liter V-6 engine develops its peak torque at an extraordinarily low 2800 rpm, giving immediate throttle response, authoritative acceleration and the on-demand power typical of a big-bore V-8, but with the light weight and packaging efficiency of a V-6.

The 3.5 RL comes in one fully equipped trim level, with a long list of standard luxury amenities including the HomeLink remote control system, heated front seats and door mirrors, leather trimmed interior, power moonroof, Acura/Bose" Music System with six-disc CD changer and automatic day/night rearview mirror. The RL also features Acura's highly sophisticated Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) system as standard equipment.

In 2001, the 3.5 RL receives carpeted floor mats standard and an emergency trunk opener. The only factory option for the RL is the DVD-based satellite-linked Acura Navigation System with coverage of the continental U.S. and more than 37 million points of interest.

The Acura 3.5 RL is designed to provide:

  • An unprecedented level of comfort along with top-rank driver and passenger amenities
  • The smoothest, most compliant ride of any Acura ever built, balanced with predictable, sure-footed handling and the security of a Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) system
  • The concept of "human linearity" taken to new heights; the subjective feelings and intuitive responses of drivers and passengers have been given top priority in all major engineering decisions
  • A torquey, highly responsive V-6 engine that gives the immediate acceleration, low-rpm power and overall performance typical of a V-8, but with the lightweight packaging efficiency and fuel economy of an advanced V-6
  • A subtle, roomy, "open-feeling" interior design along with a state-of-the-art Acura/Bose music system and other top-rank amenities
  • Air conditioning and automatic climate-control
  • The strongest, most rigid sedan unit-body structure in Acura history, using a high percentage of two-sided galvanized steel for excellent durability and corrosion protection
  • A high level of sophisticated safety engineering, including dual front air bags with a dual stage passenger's air bag, driver and front passenger's side air bags with occupant height and position sensors in the front passenger's seat, front seat belt pretensioners, front-door hip and shoulder pads and advances in interior padding, and Xenon High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlights
  • Bold exterior styling, using a prominent grille and high, wide "shoulder lines" for a distinctive Acura look and feel, coupled with excellent aerodynamic performance with an emphasis on low levels of lift, predictable handling in gusty conditions and low wind noise at high speed

The Acura 3.5 RL is available exclusively as a four-door sedan in a single trim level featuring a full complement of standard luxury features and amenities.

Every 3.5 RL is equipped with an all-aluminum, 3.5-liter, single-overhead camshaft V-6 engine with four valves per cylinder, producing 210 horsepower @ 5200 rpm and 224 lb-ft of torque @ 2800 rpm. Direct ignition, Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) and a three-stage Variable Induction System enhance drivability, low-end response and overall performance. A balancer shaft is used to eliminate primary couple vibration, resulting in extremely smooth engine operation at any rpm. The 3.5 RL meets stringent LEV (Low Emission Vehicle) standards.

A four-speed, electronically controlled automatic transmission is standard. "Grade Logic Control" software is used for improved acceleration and reduced gear "hunting" while driving uphill and to enhance engine braking on downhills. A gated shifter is used to give the driver a more intuitive sense of shifter position.

The 3.5 RL features a front-wheel-drive powertrain design for lighter weight, enhanced packaging efficiency and handling stability. Four-wheel independent double-wishbone suspension ensures optimum balance of precise handling and luxury ride quality. Special low-friction joints and dampers provide improved ride compliance while hydraulic bushings are used in the rear suspension for reduced road noise. Four-wheel disc brakes with ventilated front rotors provide excellent stopping, and an Acura-designed four-wheel ABS is provided as standard equipment. The RL also features a sophisticated Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) system that's specifically tuned to enhance the cornering and acceleration performance of the powerful front-wheel drive vehicle.

The unit-body chassis of the 3.5 RL is engineered for excellent bending and torsional rigidity for improved handling precision, a more solid feel and optimal isolation of undesirable noise and vibration.

An available satellite-linked Acura Navigation System employs GPS and gyroscope locating systems to provide audio and visual guidance. The DVD system has 14-times greater data capacity to speed route calculation time, while the big new seven-inch liquid crystal display (LCD) unit is mounted in the upper section of the center console for easy viewing.

The 3.5 RL comes equipped with an unusually long list of standard luxury features, including an interior trimmed with soft leather and burled Tendo-camphor wood; an acoustically tuned eight-speaker Acura/Bose Music system with AM/FM stereo, cassette and six-disc trunk mounted CD changer; a HomeLink remote control system; automatic climate control system; heated front seats; slide and tilt moon roof; rear-seat pass-through with ski boot; power tilt and telescope leather-wrapped steering wheel; power seats, windows and door locks; a two-program memory system for driver's seat, steering wheel and mirror positioning; auto on/off HID headlights; 16-inch cast-alloy wheels; remote keyless entry and security system; and an anti-theft electronic vehicle immobilizer system.

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