ACURA RDX 2007
Acura blows it.
What's new for the 2007 Acura RDX: Brand new model.
Given the strong family ties between most Acuras, you'd expect the RDX to take all the best qualities of the MDX and squeeze it into a slightly smaller package. Well, they're both Acura-designed SUVs with strong performance, high technology, and almost the exact same features, but judging from the way things turned out, baby brother got some botched up DNA.
A lot of it comes down to Acura's decision to arm the RDX with a turbocharger. While this blower succeeds in squeezing 240 mighty horsepower from the RDX's little 4-cylinder engine, it also puts surges and spikes in the power curve that make the RDX annoying to drive, while also sinking fuel economy to about 19 MPG. Other problems include a too-busy automatic transmission and a stiff suspension that, while providing sporty handling, jerks everyone around too much. I also found the driver's seat to have an annoying bulge in the lower back.
But the RDX is comfortable otherwise. None of the other seats give anything to complain about, and the interior has all the rich detail found in more expensive Acuras. Get an RDX with the Technology Package (the only option) and you even get an awesome 5.1 surround sound stereo, a backup camera, and a perfectly designed navigation system with real-time traffic updates -- pretty nifty stuff for the RDX's mid-$30K price point.
Speaking of which, the RDX only has a handful of competitors, each with major deficiencies of their own. The Infiniti EX35 is cramped, the BMW X3 overpriced and less luxurious, and the Land Rover LR2 a piece of crap. Choosing between the Acura RDX and the others depends on which flaws you favor.