Generations Timeline, Specs and Pictures
The second generation of the Acura CL was introduced in 2000 as a 2001 model.
It was based on the Acura TL platform and they were built on the same assembly line.
The Acura CL was initially launched to replace the Legend Coupe, but it was a completely different vehicle. While the Legend Coupe was based on the Legend platform, the CL was based on the Acura TL and it was almost the same car like the Honda Accord Coupe. In 2001, the CL received a complete change.
The headlights were bigger and the bumper was deeper. A streamlined bodywork with frameless windows and curved roofline from A to C-pillars were installed. It was the first Acura designed, engineered, and manufactured entirely in the U.S.
Unlike other personal coupe vehicles on the market, the CL featured a long list of standard amenities. While other European premium car-makers used to charge for every bolt and nut added to the car, the Japanese just installed them as standard. The navigation was a DVD-based model, with 48 U.S. states on the same disc. The leather seats and climate control were included as well.
For the technical department, Acura installed a 3.2-liter V6 engine mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission. Until 2003 it was the only drivetrain available. Later on, a 2.4-liter inline-four and a 6-speed manual were added to the options list.
Acura introduced the all-new CL model to the North-American market in 1997, aiming to replace the old Legend Coupe model on the premium luxury & sport market.
Being the first Acura model to be built entirely in the United States, the all-new CL was available with two trim levels - base and premium - and featured either a 2.2L 150-hp engine of a 3.0L V6 unit delivering 220-hp. The premium variant was discontinued in 1999 and all its features became standard on the base model, including leather upholstery and trunk cargo net. As a low point, the CL registered plenty of problems on the driver’s window.