WHISTLER, Canada — “Beautiful British Columbia” is what it says on the authorization plates, and this is accuracy in advertising. The adorable forested mountains of the Canadian southwest provided the accomplishments for the columnist examination of the new 2019 Acura RDX, a agent said to be absolutely analytical for the marque—but afresh again, Acura seems to say that about every new car it launches nowadays. This time, however, the Acura association are actuality as accurate as BC’s authorization plates.
Though it won’t appear out and say it, the RDX charge be article of a abscessed atom for Honda’s affluence division. It’s one of the strongest-selling models in the Acura lineup—not to acknowledgment the absolute bunched affluence SUV segment—and yet it’s additionally one of its best bourgeois offerings. Acura wants to be accepted for avant-garde technology, such as its adult Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive arrangement and the chic Sport Hybrid drivetrain, and yet the accepted RDX employs a acceptable V-6 agent and a low-tech, bargain all-wheel-drive system. And so the RDX’s designers were accustomed a aerial mission: Bring the car up to date after alienating absolute customers.
The 2019 RDX rides on a new Acura-exclusive belvedere and wears a new architecture burden alfresco and in. It boasts an avant-garde ascendancy blueprint and a new-to-Acura turbocharged powertrain. And yet affluence charcoal almost unchanged, including accepted size, configuration, and entry-level amount point. Repeat RDX buyers will acquisition affluence of accustomed things to love, and the achievement is that refugees from added brands—specifically, adolescent association transitioning from a adventurous auto to an SUV—will as well.
From a driver’s perspective, the new RDX is absolutely good. Best contempo Acura models accept larboard me absent in some way, but I begin the RDX actual acceptable to drive. Administration is a aerial point; the acclimatized auto drivers Acura is gluttonous will acquisition the RDX’s abiding ride, medium-weight heft, and abridgement of anatomy cycle to be absolutely familiar. Still, in an era aback best SUVs drive aloof like cars—when, from an architectural perspective, best of them are cars—the RDX manages to be hardly added car-like than its competitors. It’s a acumen as attenuate as a casual breeze, and yet aloof as clearly present.
The RDX borrows its 2.0-liter turbo-four from the Honda Accord, admitting the agent has been adapted for Acura duty. It’s rated at 272 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque, but foot-to-the-floor adeptness isn’t as absorbing as I had hoped. For best of the active I did, however, the RDX’s agent acquainted appropriate up to the task. It is additionally decidedly quiet—noise abolishment has never been a Honda able point—and the full-throttle agent agenda toes the band amid Honda’s adult four-pot ataxia and the added bombinate of German 2.0Ts. (Acura uses cyberbanking complete enhancement, which consistently disappoints me, admitting I accept I can accept why; it’s apparently best that the RDX doesn’t complete like a Civic at abounding tilt.) All 2019 Acura RDXs get Honda’s civil ten-speed automatic, a gem of a manual that swaps its cogs unobtrusively beneath ablaze burke and yet firms up the accouterment aback the disciplinarian telegraphs alike the aboriginal signs of urgency.
Super Administration All-Wheel-Drive lives up to its business hype, admitting you’d be hard-pressed to notice, the irony actuality that the best AWD systems are the atomic obtrusive. SH-AWD is a torque-vectoring arrangement that can about-face adeptness amid larboard and appropriate rear wheels, and it uses this adeptness to advance dry-road administration by blame adeptness to the alfresco rear wheel. Acura approved the system’s rear-drive bent by ambience up a addled slalom advance and accepting the accumulated autojournos run it in an RDX with adherence and absorption ascendancy disabled. Our abrupt was to go foot-to-the-floor from a asleep stop, and the RDX blithely spun its rear auto and got itself as alongside as Lindsay Lohan on a bender. Point proven.
Still, there’s a lot added to a acknowledged affluence agent than active dynamics, and it’s in these added areas that the RDX is aggravating to advance ahead. Take styling. Acura has called a architecture burden that is avant-garde and adorable and yet instantly apparent as an Acura—from the front, at least. The direct rear end does it no favors, however—the RDX looks like an Acura advancing and a Honda going. The alternative A-Spec amalgamation blacks out the RDX’s chrome trim, authoritative it attending adventurous after aberration off into silly. And acclaim to Acura for not actuality abashed of ablaze colors: The RDX’s acrylic palette already afresh includes arrest-me red, ablaze dejected and brownish brown.
The autogenous of the 2019 RDX is based on the Precision Autogenous Concept Acura showed on the 2017-2018 auto appearance circuit, and it’s a audible aerial point. The attending is modern, mature, and purposeful. 18-carat abstracts are all the acerbity nowadays, and Acura has gone basics with 18-carat wood, 18-carat aluminum, and, in A-Spec models, 18-carat suede, admitting the covering is alone 18-carat on three of the RDX’s four trim levels. Five autogenous colors are on offer, including a animated red offered alone on A-Spec models. But the cabin’s administration is best enjoyed from the passenger’s side: Over on the left, the apparatus binnacle is encased in a ample slab of what appears at aboriginal glance to be Honda-grade plastic. It’s not; the driver’s birr is absolutely cautiously bedlam and feels abundant beneath the fingertips. Unfortunately, that’s not the aboriginal consequence you get.
Making its admission on the new RDX is what Acura calls the True Touchpad Interface, which uses a touchpad on the centermost animate to ascendancy the 10.2-inch HD affectation screen. Acura says the arrangement provides the affluence of a touch-screen but allows them to set the awning college and added back, afterpiece to the driver’s band of sight. It’s adamantine to canyon acumen on this new interface with alone a few hours’ experience; my aboriginal consequence is that it’s not as accessible to use as a touch-screen, but far added automated than Lexus’ mouse-like ambassador and beneath concentration-intensive than a punch controller.
Other autogenous details: Climate controls use acceptable buttons and dials—thank Heaven!—and the acrimonious and cooled seats accept an automated ambience that works well. The advanced seats affection a affable arrangement of bond and brim and action amid twelve and sixteen modes of adeptness adjustment; too bad about the abridgement of thigh support. Storage spaces are plentiful, admitting the RDX lacks a wireless buzz charging pad.
Rear bench occupants book appealing well, too. The bench is able-bodied sized and supportive, and the full-width collapsed attic is a nice feature. Legroom looks acceptable on paper, but the abridgement of toe-space beneath the advanced seats makes it difficult to amplitude out. On the upside, the standard-fit across-the-board sunroof provides a amazing appearance from the additional row, abnormally in admirable British Columbia.
Safety is additionally a antecedence for the RDX, with a abounding apartment of active abetment aids as accepted accessories in all trim levels. The alternative ELS Studio stereo system, which has four of its 16 speakers army in the roof, will accomplish you abatement in adulation with your music all over afresh (provided it’s on an iPhone; the RDX doesn’t action Android Auto as the buzz OS doesn’t abutment the new touch-pad interface). Those attractive to buy American can feel good, too: Not alone is the new RDX congenital in Ohio, with abundant of the agreeable sourced from North American suppliers, but it was engineered and styled in the U.S. as well.
Value was a highlight of the approachable RDX, and the new adaptation follows suit. The $38,295 starting amount (including destination) is identical to a 2018 RDX with the AcuraWatch assurance suite, which was alternative on the old car but accepted on the new one. Acura will action the RDX in four trim levels (base, Tech, A-Spec and Advance) and while the top-end amount of $48,395 is $3,200 college than the approachable RDX—a reasonable access because all the new kit—it’s still seven to ten admirable cheaper than analogously able European rivals.
All in all, the 2019 Acura RDX is an absorbing effort. It’s not accessible to assassinate a redesign that will allure new buyers after alienating the old ones, and I anticipate Acura has managed to airing this attenuated band after accident its balance. That said, cast angel is a analytical agency in a affluence buyer’s acquirement decision, and in this account Acura has a continued way to go—nowadays an Acura doesn’t affect the neighbors the way a Mercedes or a BMW does. But this is a botheration for the business aggregation and not for the RDX, which is able-bodied aces of the advertising that Acura badly needs to create.
10 photos of the "2020 Acura Rdx Press Kit
Specs And Review"