By KBB.com Editors
The arrival of the RDX signals the end of the party for BMW's X3 which, essentially, has had the compact premium SUV segment all to itself since its introduction for the 2004 model year. It won't be a two-vehicle category for long, however, as Acura expects the segment to grow by over 500 percent in the next five years. Combining sport sedan-like power and handling with the cargo versatility, high seating position and all-wheel-drive capability of an SUV, the Acura RDX figures to become many things for many people.
Delivering a convincing combination of performance and functionalitytopped off by a premium badge and numerous featuresthere isn't much not to like about the Acura RDX.
For true sport sedan driving dynamics you still have to buy a sport sedan.
While we've witnessed dramatic growth in the number of compact SUVs, sporty SUVs and premium SUVs, until now the only vehicle that delivered the virtues of all three was the BMW X3. The RDX also features Acura's first turbocharged engine.
Driving Impressions With its turbocharged engine, Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive system and fully independent sport-tuned suspension, the RDX indeed delivers acceleration and handling levels in line with some sport sedans. Responsive and eager...around town, the RDX will even charge curvy roads with deftness and confidencealthough it doesn't provide quite the same feel of integration between driver, machine and road as does the BMW X3. Like a sport sedan, highway ride is taut but comfortable. All in all, we enjoyed every mile spent behind the wheel of the RDX.
DVD-Audio Sound System
In addition to compatibility with "just about every type of current audio format," according to Acura, the RDX's optional DVD-Audio system delivers impressive surround sound.
Real-Time Traffic Information
As part of the RDX's satellite communication system, the navigation screen can display real-time traffic speeds and accident information, making it easy to see problems ahead and find the best way around them.
The athletic exterior design is complemented inside by sport-style seats covered in perforated leather, a sculpted three-spoke steering wheel and metallic trim. With or without the comprehensive Technology Package, the RDX's interior features a dynamic, high-tech ambience. One of the more functional features is a huge center console that's big enough to swallow a laptop computer. Most will find the back seat cozy without being cramped, while fold-flat rear seats extend the capacity of an already generous cargo area.Exterior
The RDX conveys its performance potential in the form of 18-inch wheels, a raked version of the familiar five-point grille, dual-outlet exhaust and a "turbo" badge on the back. HID headlamps are included as standard equipment.
The RDX's impressive standard equipment list includes a glass moonroof, HID headlamps, heated front seats, 18-inch wheels and a 360-watt sound system featuring an in-dash six-disc CD/MP3/WMA player, XM Satellite Radio, seven speakers and an auxiliary input for portable MP3 players. A long list of standard safety equipment includes front, front-side and two-row side-curtain airbags plus electronic stability and traction control systems.
A comprehensive technology package is the only available option for the RDX. The package consists of a navigation system with voice recognition and real-time traffic information, Bluetooth hands-free phone interface, GPS-linked solar-sensing climate control and a 410-watt, 10-speaker, six-channel audio system that features XM Satellite Radio and a six-disc CD/DVD-Audio player with MP3/WMA capability plus DTS and Dolby Pro Logic II processing. Surprisingly, the tech-savvy RDX doesn't offer keyless entry and start.
Featuring the first turbocharged engine to power an Acura (or Honda) automobile for sale in the U.S., the RDX's 260 pound-feet of torque is the most ever for a Honda producteven more than the dear, departed Acura NSX. Thanks in part to a sophisticated variable-flow turbo, the four-cylinder engine delivers the quick response and minimal lag associated with smaller turbochargers plus the high-rpm boost of a bigger turbo. The Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive system is able to transfer torque not just from front to rear, but also between the two rear wheels, providing both safety and performance advantages. Unlike the BMW X3, the RDX is not available with a manual transmission. The RDX has a maximum tow rating of 1,500 pounds.
2.3-liter in-line 4 Turbocharged
240 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/24
By Gman on Tuesday, July 01, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 26,800overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "A lot of car for the money and very fun to drive"
Cons: "Could be better gas mileage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This car drives like a sport car and handles wonderfully in traffic and the open road. Its not a economy car, however if driven normally I get 20mpg in town and 24 on the road at a steady 75mph. Plenty of cargo room with 61 cubic feet of space with the rear seats folded flat."
5 people out of 9 found this review helpful
By Dave on Saturday, May 24, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 59,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Paint, outer and interior looks, quickness."
Cons: "Premium gas, audio (radio )"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6
"My only beef is the audio and having to use premium gas. I understand on the newer cars this has been solved."
3 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By Dave on Thursday, May 15, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 58,800overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Cons: "GAS PREMIUM."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"My one problem is, this year rdx (first ) needs to run on premium gas and gets expensive, other than that it runs strong and is very quick. visual is great ( windows ). Yes, I would buy another Acura, this is my second."
1 person out of 4 found this review helpful
By acuragirl on Thursday, May 01, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 90,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Handling, reliability, excellent resale value"
Cons: "Cup holders, no trunk/hatch release"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"The older model Acura RDXs are excellent cars and Acuras are always a great investment. Even after leasing for 3 years, followed by a 4-year loan, I have more than $10K in equity in the car. Having the turbo and paddle shifters is a blast and the handling is more like a smooth sedan than an SUV. My only complaints about this model are the cup-holders - pretty lame - and the fact that there is no trunk/hatch release. Other than that this is a fantastic car."
4 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By Angiepants on Thursday, April 17, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 125,000overall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great Luxury car, all the fancy things"
Cons: "Bad turbo, bad mpg"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"HORRIBLE GAS MILEAGE. The overall design of theis car is great. All the bells and whistles at a great price. The engine design is horrible. A turbo on a 2.0 liter 4 cyl enginer is fine....if it were a car. The RDX is a rather heavy SUV, and the turbo gets used a lot to haul around such car. The turbo burns out very fast. I have already replaced the turbo and A/C. The turbo was 4k. The weight sitribution is mostly in the back, wo when you have a car full of people it drags and you can feel it. Therefore, turbo kicks in. I hear the newer models are 6 cyl and i am sure they have fixed the other flaws. However, this isn't acuras first rodeo, so I expected more. The gas mileage is horrible. I average 12 mpg. 19 if its downhil and someone is pushing."
7 people out of 8 found this review helpful
By jo on Tuesday, April 08, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 83,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "very responsive on the highway-like a sports car!"
Cons: "bumps are not handled too well-pretty rough ride!"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I am second owner and love the fact that it's a small SUV and the turbo gives it a LOT of pep (except for the fact that it uses premium gas)It handles great on the highway-like a sports car in the curves and hills!! Only downfall is that I live in the midwest where we have lots of pot-holes and bumpy streets because of snow, and it is a very,very rough ride at times! If it weren't for that-I'd keep it forever, because I love the way it handles and that it sits up higher than a car and is easy to get in and out of!"
1 person out of 1 found this review helpful