NHTSA — Power Train: Automatic Transmission Problems

2002 Acura TL (Page 5 of 9)

CarComplaints.com Seal Of Avoid Like The Plague

CarComplaints.com Notes: The 1999-2003 Acura TL has a known & widespread defect with the transmission.

Honda fixed some vehicles with a recall in 2004 by changing the oil cooler return line. To settle a class action lawsuit in 2006, Honda extended the transmission warranty on some of these Acura TL's to 93 months / 109,000 miles.

Now these vehicles are past the warranty limit, so buyer beware.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 1
Average Mileage:
40,890 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.

2002 Acura TL transmission problems

transmission problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Acura TL:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2002 Acura TL Owner Comments (Page 5 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #95

Nov 272004


  • miles


Sudden transmission downshift at constant highway speeds. Near miss multiple vehicle accident. Transmission scheduled to be replaced with rebuilt transmission.

- Prairie Village, KS, USA

problem #94

Nov 162004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles
I have a 2002 Acura TL type S that has two defective problems with the transmission. Two weeks ago, transmission was replaced due to a recall by Acura. Now it is slipping again. I have done extensive research on this problem and it seems to be quite major. I am scheduled to return the car to the Acura dealer on 12.1 to look at the problem again. However, I am concerned that this recurring problem with be quite probematic and has casued my car to now longer be a safe and reliable mode of (expensive) transportation. One issue of the recall is that the second gear can get hot and chipping and could cause the trans to lock up resulting in a crash. This is a major safety issue I am filing this complaint in the hopes that I can get some type of compensation for my vehicle and get a different one.

- East Norriton, PA, USA

problem #93

Nov 082004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,600 miles
In fall of 2002, my Acura TL type S starting having trouble shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear. It progressed from there by not shifting at all while accelerating or downshifting into a lower gear while driving 45-50 mph and causing the car to jerk. Finally, the transmission went out completely. I had to have it towed to the dealership where a new transmission was needed. It was fine for the next two years but I did notice it not shifting as smoothly as it had previously. In August 2004, the dealer informed me that a recall was placed on a part in the transmission having to do with 2nd gear. After this was replaced, my transmission was never the same. It began shifting very hard from 2nd to 3rd and then wouldn't go into gear. It would make a horrible grinding noise sometimes and the car would not go. The vsa lights and check engine light had come on also. This all starting occurring two days before our scheduled appt. With the dealer to have the car looked at. It had to be towed to the dealer (which is where it is right now as I type this letter) and it has to have a brand new transmission again! I am very concerned about this, especially since I have read all the other complaints other Acura TL owners have written and most have missed having serious accidents only by the grace of god. Something seriously needs to be done about this.

- Magnolia, AR, USA

problem #92

Nov 092004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,550 miles


Transmission down shifted into 1st at 40-45 mph. Could have caused crash in traffic.

- Biloxi, MS, USA

problem #91

Oct 302004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles
Acura TL-S 2002

- Cherry Valley, IL, USA

problem #90

Oct 032004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
Transmission failed, causing car to come to a complete jolting stop and causing the axle to break over the force of the stop. Dealer has stated this is common with 90% of all 2000-2002 Acura TL's.. manafacture defect.

- South Pasadena, CA, USA

problem #89

Oct 012004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles


Transmission failure. My vehicle will soon have its fourth transmission installed due to a manufacturer's defect. The transmissions have been replaced in the past under the extended warranty given by the manufacturer. However they are using reconditioned transmissions to replace the failed units.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #88

Oct 132003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles
The transmission failed on the highway. The vehicle was towed and the transmission was replaced.

- Deerfield, IL, USA

problem #87

Oct 022004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,150 miles
Transmission failure created a situation where there was a sudden loss of power due to gear slippage followed by the transmission slamming into gear causing the car to over accelerate creating a dangerous condition. The manufacturer has agreed to replace the transmission, but transmission failures with this model car are widely known. The manufacturer should recall these cars and replace the transmission before dangerous failures occur.

- Bend, OR, USA

problem #86

Mar 222004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,000 miles
Automatic transmission has been a major problem with this car. Already replaced once with approximately 35,000 miles. On my way to another one now. Transmission still not performing well. Had "oil cooler" recall performed. Still having problems. Acura needs to address this major safety issue now!

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #85

Aug 112004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 630,000 miles


My 2000 and 2002 Acura Tls have both had total transmission failure. Both experienced erratic shifting, flashing drive gear indicator, and finally complete failure in the 50 - 60000 mile range.

- Wooster, OH, USA

problem #84

Jul 032004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles
Automatic transmission hard shift from reverse into drive; slips from 2nd into 3rd and back. Acura has issued recall - dealer replaced trans with rebuilt unit. Dealer admits they are aware of documented cases where rebuilt trans installed to resolve issue have failed. Dealer recommended I meet with Honda district mgr, but admitted Honda has been unwilling to offer any other remedy than the rebuilt transmission.

- Clemmons, NC, USA

problem #83

Jul 282004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,037 miles
No sounds or signs were given when the transmission gave out on a newly acquired used Acura 3.2tl.

- Sugar Land, TX, USA

problem #82

May 152004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
I have a 2002 TL lease in November of 2002. Got my first new transmission at around 30,000 miles, in late September 2002. It downshifted on the freeway on the offramp to Acura oxmoor in louisville going 60 mph, then the engine revved and I couldn't stop it. I thought I was going to die. My now ex-husband insisted we lease the car and now I'm stuck with it in the divorce, it's over milage and in order to get the milage forgiven I have to buy it from them in November at an inflated price and with bad credit from my divorce. The trade in value has fallen $7000 since February. Oh yes, at 86,000 miles the second tranny has gone bad. This time it downshifted again while I was driving on a slick street in the rain. These transmissions fail with no warning. This is the thrid transmission and the car has lost all its value because it is a known problem I'm afraid to drive it.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #81

Jun 072004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,500 miles
Sudden downshifts while driving at normal highway speed causing extreme speed changes.

- Richmond, VA, USA

problem #80

Dec 132003

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,000 miles
I have a 2002 Acura TL, transmission failed after 34000 miles. I know Acura has a problem, but are they doing anything to fix it. I manage to keep the car steadily on the highway, doing 80 mph when it failed with my wife and son in the car. But I could lose control and hit other cars which I almost did. I know if it was my mom driving it she would have lost control of the car. They need to let us know if this car is safe anymore, at least I need to know.

- Woodhaven, NY, USA

problem #79

Jun 012004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles
I have a 2002 Acura TL type S, and it has had its transmission replaced approximately 8 months ago. Yesterday my check engine light came on, and I have taken it to the dealer. The dealership has notified me saying that a part inside the transmission has failed, and is now being ordered. The part will take a little over a week to come in. I find this to be ridiculous, to have to take my car in for transmission problems.

- Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA

problem #78

May 282004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,450 miles
Failure of Acura 3.2 TL-S transmission.

- Somerville, NJ, USA

problem #77

May 172004

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 27,000 miles
2002 Acura TL transmission failure with less than 27000 miles on the car. Acura repalced the transmission

- Cypress, TX, USA

problem #76

Nov 112003

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,000 miles
Transmission in an '02 Acura TL-S failed for the second time, this time on my way to to work. Dealer replaced the transmission, and when asked what reassurance I had this wouldn't happen again... the dealer stated they hadn't replaced any transmissions more than once... but they just had mine. The new transmission stills shifts inconsistently and most of the time harshly... especially under hard acceleration (1st - 2nd upshift).

- Loveland, OH, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?