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NHTSA — Engine Problems Notes: The 2012 Acura TL is showing an early trend of suspension problems, with owners reporting clunking or grinding sounds.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
19,683 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2012 Acura TL engine problems

engine problem

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2012 Acura TL Owner Comments

problem #6

Oct 152015


  • 39,500 miles


Excessive oil consumption has now led to 2 engine replacements (this is the cars 3rd engine, original plus 2 replacements). I have had 3 oil consumption test (Oct), all showing that there was significant consumption. The local Acura dealership (auto nation Acura of spokane (ana)), is unable of being trusted and incapable of any significant repair so I have been traveling to another Acura dealership over 700 miles away for honest and quality work (ana botched the 2nd Oct as they knowingly added oil right before my 2nd trip to the other dealer). Thankfully for me I check my oil every fill up as required by the Oct and mark it's level. Unfortunately for me, this negated the second test (even though it should a significant loss, ana of spokane denied topping it off). I then had to do the 3rd Oct, and in 3 days put the required minimum 1,000 miles required and returned to dealer 2. again there findings showed excessive consumption and put in the 3rd engine. Because the replacement time was longer than I could stay, I flew home. There are many forums out there with thousands of people having the same oil consumption issue. It is a manufactors defect with the J37 model engine (also used in many other Acura & Honda vehicles.

- Loon Lake, WA, USA

problem #5

Feb 042015


  • 3,000 miles
Engine has a pinging noise

- Gardner, MA, USA

problem #4

Feb 122014


  • 15,500 miles
2012 Acura TL sh-AWD tech. Began to notice that I was having to have my oil changed every 2,500 - 3,000 miles. Took it to different dealers to see what the problem was. Neither dealer could find a problem. In March 2014, several warning lights came on and the vehicle would not accelerate past 20 mph. I had it towed to an Acura dealership and was told I had no oil. No warning lights or error messages ever alerted me. Beginning of April 2015 (mileage was 33K), I started hearing a knocking noise from the engine between idle and 2,500 RPM's. again took it to the dealer. They said I had only a quart of oil. They put me on an oil consumption test. Just over a month later and 1,900 miles, my car was again oil less. No leaks ever discovered. I was told I was burning oil. 1 quart to every 500 miles. Took it to the dealership and Acura replaced the engine with a new one. While I was at the dealership I was told by the service advisor that another '12 TL was also getting its engine replaced for the same issue.

- Loon Lake, WA, USA

problem #3

Oct 012013


  • 30,000 miles


After owning my 2012 Acura TL for roughly 2yrs, I've become concerned with the engine workmanship. Acceleration seems to be at a loss between 30-45mph in between gear changes. It's almost as though the transmission doesn't know what to do. You have to either let up on the acceleration or increase your speed to avoid that annoying hesitation. The second problem is what I would describe as lifter/valve noise. The noise occurs when accelerating, intermittently though. Although it is embarrassing driving a vehicle that looks as good as the TL looks and have it sound like an old Chevy when you accelerate, I hate it. I took it to the dealer, they could not replicate the noise, of course. They told me the car was fine. I told them specifically I believed the noise was coming from lifter/valve. They told me it was probably poor gas selection. I explained to them I used the recommended premium octane/chevron. They had no answer. Lastly, my brakes are squealing, I told the Acura mechanic to please check my brake pads, he said they were perfectly fine and should not worry. He said the rotors develop a blue film over time, and the squealing noise is normal. I couldn't believe it, I am supposed to accept that annoying brake noise. This is not what I expected from Acura/Honda, is this bad workmanship or poor materials being used by Acura to keep costs down on manufacturing.

- Hacienda Heights, CA, USA

problem #2

Jun 262013

TL 6-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
I purchased my 2012 Acura TL in May 2013. In June I took in because it kept stalling while I was driving and more so when I stopped at a light and begin to accelerate. I kept taking it back for the same thing over the pass year and kept getting the same response.. we can find anything wrong with your car. The problem got progressively worse and in February of 2014, it stalled while I was driving and coasted and then picked back up. I took it back again and still they said they could not find anything wrong. Over the next few months again I took it back and still they could not find anything wrong with the car. While was driving on vacation to williamsburg va with my family at 65/70mph, the car jerked us about 3 times and then slowed down with no hope for acceleration, I tried to coast over to the side of the road meanwhile 2 cars almost hit me and are blowing the horn at me all while I am a nervous rec about the car. I told my husband this is it..this car is certified and has a warranty for 7 years 100,000 miles and at that point it had $50K miles and I was done.. I took my car back again on August 3rd with the same complaints and this time when I get a call its to tell me that I need a new transmission.. well I needed that last year when I first brought the car back when it was just a year old...I am not the only person with this complaint as I have read comments on other websites. But I have seen way to many of them to ignore this.

- Bladensburg, MD, USA

problem #1

Apr 022012

TL 6-cyl

  • 100 miles
Purchased my new 2012 sh-AWD Acura TL advance in March of 2012. The car had less than 100 miles when purchased and currently has 5K miles (January 2013). The car vibrates when driving at speeds between 40 and 80 mph. It feels like the tires are flat spotted or wheels are out of balance. The wheels and tires have been checked and confirmed by the dealer on 2 separate occasions as ok. The dealer classified this vibration as a "vehicle characteristic." I'm worried it is the sign of a major issue they don't want to deal with.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

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