As we hammer the 2009 Acura TL down some of Malibu's most challenging canyon roads, the big sedan is handling itself well. It carries enough speed through the corners to make us a little nervous, but the lack of tire squeal makes it clear that we're far from pushing its limits.
Jamming this TL into a hairpin doesn't upset it either. The brakes scrub off plenty of speed and the transmission executes perfect, rev-matched downshifts. When we flat foot the throttle on the way out, the newly optional Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system puts down all 305 horsepower of the 3.7-liter V6 to the pavement without a single chirp of the tires.
When we finally hit leisurely traffic on Pacific Coast Highway, the TL returns to luxury sedan mode. The cabin goes silent, the transmission smoothly sifts through the gears and the suspension soaks up everything short of a sinkhole. We're not surprised, as this is the classic Acura formula