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2010 Acura RDX -- First Drive -- Verdict

By Joel Arellano | December 17, 2009
Paragraphimage Solid. That word summarizes my feelings about the RDX. A solid, well-crafted, vehicle. You could see it during a walk around the crossover. From almost every angle, the RDx displayed a solid weight, a heft from the massive chrome faceplate to the near bulbous lift gate. Yet I never felt the RDX was overwhelming like its massive MDX sibling or the all-new ZDX. Honda/Acura did a fine job in lining both up the Honda CR-V and Acura RDX with the competition in the compact crossover segment. Inside, the RDX felt like a car, ala elevated like all SUVs. I noted the ease reaching the center stack controls and even the glove box from the driver's side; my recently drive with the 2010 TL made it easy to compare the two, space-wise. Speaking of space, I like the numerous compartments scattered within the RDX. The glove box could fit a hardcover novel (unlike the TL, which would barely fit gloves) while the center console compartment would swallow all but the largest of purses. Oh, and it's lockable. (Ladies, take note.) Paragraphimage Leather seating felt firm with enough bolstering for more spirited driving. Alas, I couldn't participate in such endeavors. While the steering wheel felt more mundane than the thick one found in the TL, the RDX version felt more surprisingly comfortable in my hands. I'd say it felt more "appropriate" for both a sporty and luxurious vehicle. The RDX roofline is tall enough that I never had to duck to slip into the crossover. This is surprising, since the exterior design gives the vehicle an almost coupe-like appearance. Rear seating was plentiful for a six-foot tall guy like myself, with a goodly amount of cargo space for groceries and the like. Acura vehicles well deserves their reputation as being technologically rich. My RDX came equipped with the Technology package which included navigation and rearview camera. The RDX is my second experience with such systems, and I have to admit it makes parking much, much easier. I had little trouble with the numerous buttons unlike many of my peers. My only suggestion, though, would be for Acura to place the navigation screen within some sorta "hood" mounting similar to the TL's layout. I found the latter especially usefully in shielding the screen from the omnipresent California sun while enhancing the image details. I admit, though, I had trouble with the voice command system. Paragraphimage Buttons and lids were dampened as per this luxury segment. I found the driving experience more on the mixed side. It all boiled down to that turbo-engine. The lag, while not significant especially compared to the older generation of turbo-charged engines, still took getting used too. Otherwise, I found the RDX was an excellent cruiser on the freeways. My take? A solid (there's that word again) upgrade for those looking for an alternative to Lexus and Infiniti. The RDX matches its competition feature by feature, then goes its own direction with AWD and the engine type. Paragraphimage
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Vancouver Dodge
Vancouver Dodge

Vivid description of the vehicle. The pictures are also very useful. I like the spacious compartment at the back. I really need it every time I load the my kid's stroller. It's a great family vehicle.