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article details
Author Tuan Nguyen
Categories Editorial, TL
Create Date November 16, 2003 20:40
Last Update November 17, 2003 00:03
Cross-shopping Other Cars
I have been searching for a perfect vehicle for my family which would be practical, comfortable, reliable, safe, and luxurious enough for my wife as the primary driver and one that was sporty enough for me to enjoy at other times. While I'm obviously a Honda/Acura fan, I'm also a car enthusiast in general who keeps an open mind and will consider other options. I went to many automotive websites/dealerships and compared the features and costs of each car.

The BMW M3 SMG was a consideration as it had an automatic shifting mode for my wife, who does not drive a manual, while the advanced sequential shifter would give me the performance I like. The M3 had the luxury amenities, but the price and size were at opposite ends of the spectrum: the price was too high for me, while the size was too small. The M3's performance is amazing, but I already have an S2000 that gives me plenty of on-track excitement. This would be a great choice if I had (much) more money to spend and didn't care much about practicality.

We also considered the Infiniti G35 sedan and coupe before we knew of any information about the 2004 TL. In fact, I had even put down a deposit for the sedan, but the deal fell through when the dealer was not able to deliver on what they had promised me in writing. The G35 represents a typical car for a prospective TL customer to cross-shop against and is a competitive car. It is beyond the scope of this article to go into details about the G35 vs. '04 TL, but in my opinion, the G35 is a step above the 2003 TL Type-S, and the 2004 TL is two steps above the G35.

We also considered the BMW 330i, Lexus ES330, and Honda Accord EX V6 Navi. Each of these cars had their strengths, but compared to the 2004 TL, they fell short in the many criteria we personally had chosen for our car:

  • large enough to carry friends and children with a trunk space large enough to carry all their gear
  • above average gas mileage in the mid to upper twenties
  • great driver comfort with a good sound system and navigation system
  • high performance for merging with highway traffic and avoiding emergency situations
  • good safety features
  • high reliability
  • seats with enough range to properly seat my frame and my wife's frame (I sit very upright and require lots of lumbar support)
  • price under $37,000 with the options we wanted
While the above cars met some of our criteria, they didn't meet nearly as many as the 2004 TL did. In the end, it all comes down to your own personal criteria and to how much you are willing to spend. The TL fits all these requirements better than the other cars in my opinion and so we put our money where our mouth is and reserved a 2004 TL through the TOV Dealer Network.

Support the TOV by ordering your 2004 TL from a TOV Dealer Network Affiliate
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