The Acura MDX is a midsize crossover SUV with all-wheel drive and a front engine layout. Closely related to the Honda Pilot, the MDX offers an upgraded interior, more powerful engine, and a number of luxury features not available on the Pilot. In the U.S. and Canadian market, the MDX offered a new body style to replace the Acura SLX, which did not sell well because the frame was based on the Isuzu Trooper.
The Acura MDX was introduced at the end of 2000 as a 2001 model. The initials MDX mean "Multi-Dimensional Luxury;" meanwhile, there are other MDX-esque vehicles in markets outside of the U.S. and Canada which aren’t under the Acura brand name. The North American MDX crossover SUVs are assembled in Ontario, Canada.
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About Acura MDX
Acura is one of the best selling luxury vehicles in the United States and in Canada. Acura is a branch of the Honda Motor Corporation and is the luxury line of Honda for North America.
The first generation MDX was available in the United States and Canada from 2001 to 2006. As a five-door, five-speed automatic SUV, it features Acura’s SOHC with VTEC engine, a V-6, 24 valve offering 240 horsepower in most models. The MDX has an automatic all-wheel drive system which detects and adjusts for slippery roads during acceleration. The MDX can be switched to full-time four-wheel drive at any time for steep hills and other rough terrain. During normal driving, the SUV is set for front-wheel drive.
Some of the 2001 and 2002 models reported some transmission problems. Acura made some changes to the transmission resulting in reportedly smoother rides in the 2003 models. The later models also have 265 horsepower compared to the original 240 ponies. Options include a voice-activated navigation system with reverse camera or a DVD entertainment system, but not both in the same MDX.
All of the MDX models from 2001 through 2006 have better fuel economy compared to other comparable vehicles like the Ford Explorer or BMW X5.
The concept for the second generation Acura MDX was unveiled at the New York International Auto Show on October 2006 and was released that same month in the U.S. as the 2007 MDX. The second generation is a complete redesign with a more modern, sleeker body, and a wider wheelbase. Safety features such as anti-lock brakes and anti-skid control are standard and the new MDX’s body structure is designed to absorb energy upon impact; however, rear visibility is decreased. The engine is more powerful, offering around 300 hp and great torque; acceleration is 0-to-60 in 6.5 seconds. The Acura MDX features a more advanced all-wheel drive system (AWD) with active rear differential.
The second generation Acura MDX, sold from 2007 to 2010, is available in three different packages. The technology package offers DVD satellite GPS navigation and real-time traffic updates, 410-watt surround sound, rearview camera, satellite radio, and a remote powered lift gate. The Sport Package has active suspension dampers to improve handling and the ability to switch to comfort/sport mode. This package also comes with five-spoke alloy wheels, leather seating, and several items from the Technology Package. The Entertainment Package has a flipdown LCD screen and two wireless headphones. This package can also come with items from the previous two packages or as a stand alone option.
First released in 2010, the third generation Acura MDX received a major upgrade in the form of a substantially redesigned exterior, a new engine and transmission, a revised chassis, and comfort and technology improvements. The 2010 model offers a 3.7 liter V-6 engine, improved fuel efficiency, and a six-speed automatic transmission. Lighter, 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels are standard. The MDX includes a new sport steering wheel with racing-inspired paddle shifters, available ventilated front seats, upgraded interior trim, richer simulated wood trim, a new full VGA navigation screen, a rearview camera with three unique view choices, a new rear entertainment system, and an updated audio system. Safety improvements include a new braking system, adaptive cruise control, and a blind-spot information system. The Acura MDX seats seven. Acura MDX Awards
In 2001, the MDX won the North American Truck of the Year Award, Best Luxury SUV and Sport Utility of the Year. In 2007, it was a top safety pick. In 2010, MDX ranked first for Luxury Midsize SUVs.