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.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
32,135 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.

2003 Acura TL brakes problems

brakes problem

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2003 Acura TL Owner Comments

problem #3

Sep 042007

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 96,400 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Acura TL. While driving about 0-35mph the vehicle began shaking and making a continuous loud noise. When the vehicle came to a stop, he had to restart the vehicle and it began shaking rapidly on three occasions. The reverse gear box and the transmission failed. He was able to drive to the dealer. The current and failure mileage on the vehicle was 96,400. The purchase date was unavailable. Updated 01-11-08. The dealer stated vibration when braking. Updated 12/12/07

- Annandale, VA, USA

problem #2

Sep 012003

TL 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5 miles
"yaw rate sensor" for the vehicle stability assist (vds) system may be improperly mounted. This can cause either of the front wheel brakes to be suddenly and firmly applied without warning for up to one second. A possible result is lost of control or rear end collision (brake lights are not activated). Improperly mounted sensor will also cause the vds to deactivate until engine restart, activate vsa system indicator warning light on the tachometer face, and set a yaw rate sensor diagnostic trouble code. Honda has started supplying yaw rate sensors with a locating pin which prevents improper mounting. But there is no indication that Honda has recalled to check those vehicles built or repaired with units lacking the locating pins. The unit is easily accessible to check for proper mounting. This problem pertains to 2003 & 2002 type-S versions of both the 3.2tl and 3.2cl models.

- Toronto, Ontario, OH, USA

problem #1

Jul 142002


  • miles
Consumer states while driving, a car suddenly cut into consumer's lane. Consumer turned the vehicle to avoid hitting the other car and used the brakes immediately. Vehicle span out of control, making 2 complete rotations and then hitting another vehicle. There was damage to both vehicles, but no one was injured. Consumer feels the ABS and tracking system failed to prevent the accident.

- Westfield, NJ, USA

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