2014 Acura MDX luxury crossover Drive Review

2014 Acura MDX this is a luxury 7 seat SUV going head-to-head with things like the BMW x5 and of course the audi q7 let’s hop in let’s walk around and take a look under the hood we have an all-new 3.5 liter direct injection v6 replacing the outgoing 3.7 liter engine produces 290 horsepower and
267 pound feet of torque and that sends

power to the either the front wheels
only or to all four wheels via an Acura 6-speed automatic transmission we have two 4555 our 19’s all the way around although accurate claims that rolling resistance is down 20% over last year’s model of course the interior of the MDX has been completely redesigned for 2014 and the interior style is instantly recognizable as an acura we move across you can see that we still have fake wood going on here unlike some of the competition that uses real wood most notably the Germans as well as the Infiniti JX we have an all new steering
wheel design as well this side over here

is audio and phone controls we have our
volume up and down we have our mute button our source button over here on this side we have our cruise control buttons we have our radar cruise control and this is our lane keeping assistance system we have an all new instrument cluster as well with a full color LCD going on in the middle our speedometer tachometer of course and our temperature and fuel gauges on the side we have our stereo typical Acura red power button here of course we have a tilt telescoping steering wheel that is available as a heated option in every MDX model working our way down the center console see we have our dual screen arrangement there are dual zone climate control our infotainment control knob DVD slot for the rear seat
entertainment system we have our little

cubby here with the power outlet we have
the shifter the IDs control button this controls your throttle as well as the effort required on your steering and in the center console you can see we have a very large and very deep multi-tiered center console going on here under that armrest we have a storage cubby that’s suitable for phones we lift that up you see we have a cover that slides to cover this very large center console now this is available because of course this is a front wheel drive biased vehicle which means the transmission is up there underneath the engine rather than right here between the seats like it would be in something like an x5 frat see comfort in the MDX is excellent for 2014 these seats have improved over last year’s model in terms of comfort as well

as articulation so we have a little bit

more range of motion going on in these seats than we had before although the passenger seat still doesn’t have the same range of motion as the driver we also get adjustable lumbar support it’s optional for the front passenger in the vehicle we have a tilt telescoping steering wheel with a decent range of motion as well now these seats don’t contort in the same number of million different directions as the bmw x5 with the sport seats of course but in this segment these are among the most comfortable seats that opt tested so far the MDX has always been an interesting vehicle because it’s a seven seat SUV but it’s not a full-sized SUV so it’s still a midsize SUV and that means that we have relatively small seats in the back and of course a much smaller cargo area than you’d find in a full-size seven seat SUV these middle seats are quite comfortable

and this year we get a reclining second

row seat even though that third row seat isn’t very large it is a lot easier to get in and out of it with an electronic actuated middle seat which allows easier entry into that third row seat once you’re back here you can see it is a little bit cramped I’m six feet tall and my head is touching the ceiling in this emergency back seat but it’s a great place to stuff your mother-in-law this camera angle ought to give you a better idea of what the rear seat in the MDX is like again my knees are about seven to eight inches up off this bottom seat cushion which means it’s going to be very tiring for adults on long car trips you could put kids back here for a decent amount of time though the MDX is wide enough even though it’s getting a little bit narrower in this generation to put two passengers in the back
without really brushing elbows compared

to the Infiniti JX or the now renamed

q50 we do have a bit more visibility back here between these rear headrests that’s great for the driver the third row and the second row now fold almost completely flat with one another it’s a decent change from the last version of the MDX allowing you to easily put larger cargo and slide it all the way into the MDX the MDX lacks the panoramic moonroof that’s available in a number of the competition but we do get this extremely wide aspect ratio rear seat entertainment system it’s all controlled by this detachable remote that comes down from the ceiling like this it has its own two integrated speakers to give the middle passengers slightly better audio you can also use the IR headphones that are easily tucked away right there in the seat back and then if we look down here in the center console you see we get the three zone climate control our particular MDX has the optional heated rear seats we also get an HDMI
input right here along with your regular

composite video input we also have wired
headphone jacks here and an AC power outlet available as part of a package in the mdx the cargo area in the 2014 MDX is larger than last generations MDX and it is a little bit more usefully shaped as well you can now fit larger items between these third row seat backs and the glass in the MDX we score 6 out of 10 points in our exclusive trunk comfort index because although this area is fairly nicely done and we do have an electric power tailgate it’s just not as big as some of the competition all models of the 2014 MDX have this dual screen layout for their infotainment and navigation system the navigation is not an option it’s standard in all 2014 MDX models and if you don’t care about
infotainment or navigation than just to

follow the instructions down there below
and skip ahead to the drive section button mineralization is what this screen is all about a cure has long been accused of having way too many buttons in the dashboard and they’ve concentrated their climate control and infotainment buttons into this temp screen that we still have this multi way toggle control stick here and above the screen we have a single slot CD player down below the toggle control we have the DVD player for the rear seat entertainment system let’s go over this screen first this touchscreen is where you can change audio sources we have am/fm XM satellite of course that single slot CD player the rear DVD we have an internal hard drive for storing music we have a USB interface and we have the USB iPod interface as well that uses your regular old Apple cable for your iDevice over here we have bluetooth streaming audio we have that rear video input the Avery HDMI input Pandora aha and auxilary now unlike some other infotainment systems this setup does not require you to have a specific app although it there is an accurate link app for your iOS device you don’t have to have that to use Pandora all you have to have is the Pandora app one quirk that I find with this system if we go over to the iPod interface here you can see that right here we have our album
information we have the particular track

here and then we have a more button you
might think that more would be to try and navigate around your device but that’s not it you can use this button here and you can move through various albums on your iDevice or your USB device same interface is used for both but you can’t just search for something on your device you can go forward backward tracks with that now that’s what that upper screen is for so if you want to browse playlists or actually interact with playlists on your device you have to is this upper screen in order to do that the one nice feature however is that unlike other systems honda systems allow you to directly navigate your music on your iDevice right here as you can see so you can actually browse your playlists well it’s connected to this system it doesn’t lock you out like certain other products do down here at the bottom we have our climate control information so you can see it gives you a little red or blue indicator there when you go up and down temperatures over here is where we control our heated or cooled seats there’s also an auto mode which automatically turns on your heated or

cooled seat with the climate control if

your climate control is in Auto you cannot independently turn on or off your heated or cooled seats they’re only linked with that auto mode you can also control mode manually you have your air-conditioning sync you have your fan control your recirculation rear seat climate control which is an option in the MDX our model hazard of course can be controlled that way and of course the heated and cooled seats are available for the passenger as well middle seat can get an optional heated seat but the cooled seat is an option package in the MDX the eight-inch navigation display screen higher for the dash operates very much the way it used to so we have our navigation we have our phone interface we have our info interface here where we have trip computer information accurate link messages etc you can also see traffic incidents we have the front audio control here and this is where you would actually browse playlists rather than using that touchscreen so here you can actually select our artists albums playlists genres etc from your USB device or your iPod you can also click
and control the rear audio system using

the same control screen and of course
that same joystick knob in the dash the navigation system has also been improved for 2014 although it looks very similar to the last generation MDX system this system now includes local street traffic information so if you’re in an areas you can see here over on on this little side of the display here if we move across you can see that this is a local street even though it is labeled Oregon 219 this is just a small street and we do have traffic information displayed on this screen as well no if you can see that in the video but it is green on that screen and the previous generation product and most entries in this segment only display traffic information at the freeway level the system should be very familiar to you if you’ve used any Honda or Acura products in the past we have this large screen up here for the navigation and that can always display navigation while you’re you know doing something with your audio system down here on this touchscreen the only problem with that is that they didn’t go that extra step further and actually allows you to change playlists artist genres
etc on this touchscreen here although I

do like the fact that they allow you to
browse those playlists directly on your USB or your iDevice on the road the acceleration from the MDX is about the same as it was from last year and that’s because despite the slight power reduction weight is way down in this model it’s about 250 pounds lighter than last year’s model which is a significant improvement when you consider that this vehicle is longer and has a longer wheelbase than the outgoing MDX that light kerb weight and an all new for 2014 front-wheel drive only model of the MDX really pay dividends when it comes to the fuel economy we get 28 miles per gallon on the highway in that new two-wheel drive model we’re told which is a six mile per gallon improvement over the old MDX that’s also one mile per gallon better than the all-new qx60 hybrid which is essentially the j35 hybrid Infiniti has been renaming their models and the jx35 crossover which is a seven-seat crossover has now been relabeled the qx50 and that’s a decent amount better than the qx50 with its 3.5 liter v6 and the CVT and again as I said one mile per
gallon on the highway better than the

qx60 hybrid qx60 hybrid will however get
25 miles per gallon in the city and that’s a decent amount better than this MDX actor puts a heavy emphasis on the driving dynamics of the MDX and that’s no different for this new 2014 model a cure claims of course they tested at the Nurburgring and it was faster on the Nurburgring than the old MDX model not that that really matters to most buyers but what might surprise you about the all-wheel-drive MDX is that they’ve deliberately tuned it to try and compensate for the front heavy nature of this vehicle this is again a front-wheel drive biased vehicle by nature of course we have the engine up there it’s transversely mounted and it uses Honda and Acura straggler old 6-speed automatic transmission now in order to try and compensate for that front of the drive nature what they’ve done is they’ve added their super handling all-wheel drive system now unlike the all-wheel drive systems available from Volvo from Cadillac from Lincoln and pretty much everybody else this system actually can send more power to the rear wheels than those other systems and what it does to do that is it uses something called an acceleration device and all that really means is that the axle ratio in the back has is different than the axle ratio in the front so that means that if it’s locked together then rear wheels are actually spinning
slightly faster than the front wheels

and that means that you actually send

more power to the back than to the front that’s very unique in this segment in addition this system can also shuttle power left to right across that rear axle the car can also send power left right across the front but it uses the brakes to do that also what they’ve done for this model is they’ve gone for a different stability control system that’s completely active and acts even system that’s completely out danger of you know you’re running into a tree or a pole so when you’re entering a corner the system starts to activate and it breaks specific wheels to help the car feel more settled more composed in the corner and it feels very good actually it works very very well in this vehicle it’s not just accelerating out of the corner which has always been something that super handling all-wheel drive has done for you this is different this actually makes your in corner feel and entering the corner feel improved versus something like a Volvo xc90 which is front heavy and doesn’t have any of these newer electronic gadgets to improve handling actor hasn’t announced pricing for the 2014 MDX yet so stay tuned we’re just going to post a little note right here in this video in just in the YouTube feed and of course right here across the video with that price information when that comes out but Acura has told us to expect the two wheel drive MDX for 2014 to start slightly less than the current MDX and of course the MDX wants completely

optioned out to top over slightly above

the current MDX which is quite logical when you think about it there are a decent number of new electronic goodies available in this car from the new lane departure prevention and lane departure warning system the course we have the pre-collision braking system available in this car we have improved sound options we have a standard subwoofer we have standard active noise cancellation we have thicker glass thicker windows to prove the noise isolation in this car that brings us neatly to competition of course we have that jx35 which of course has just been renamed the qx60 and in competition I find the jx35 s interior to be a nicer place to spend my time it definitely has a more luxurious field in this car of course it has real wood and that’s not something that you get at any price in the Acura MDX I think that’s largely because Infiniti has a nicer parts bin to pull from things like the QX 65 qx56 I should say in the m56 X are a decent amount more expensive anything in the Acura brand lineup and so they’re just nicer parts that they have the ability to pull from whereas these parts are shared with some of the less expensive Acura models in the market on the flip side the jx35 is nowhere near as fun to drive as this car the CVT just sucks a little bit of fun out of the car the driving dynamics just aren’t there doesn’t handle as well as this car it’s a little bit louder out on
the road and there’s definitely a power

deficit when you compare it to this all

new 2014 MDX there’s also the lexus rx350 of course but i don’t really consider that true competition because of course it’s not a 7 seater it only has five seats there however we’ve been told that because these are sort of the emergency seats that a decent number of cross shops occur between the RX as well as this MDX in that that lineup the arocs is just a lot softer I don’t like the way that it drives I think that it’s interior like the infiniti is a bit nicer than this MDX even in this redesigned model and even considering the Rx’s interior isn’t exactly a spring chicken but the driving dynamics just aren’t there the RX is definitely a front heavy car it plows when you enter a corner even in all-wheel-drive mode doesn’t have the sophisticated electronics or that all-wheel drive system that’s able to send more power to the rear so out on the road this is an awful lot more fun to drive and you get those extra seats in the back the audi q7 is possibly more natural competition for this although the q7 is a little bit larger it’s also considerably heavier so before you get swayed by that twin-turbo v6 available in the audi q7 keep in mind it’s almost a thousand pounds heavier than the Acura MDX we of course have the Buick Enclave which delivers a lot more value compared to this MDX it’s a decent amount cheaper even in its current guys we expect that to continue with the new model so you might want to check out

that Enclave

it’s not going to be quite as much fun
to drive as the MDX again because we don’t have the fancy electronics trying to compensate for that front heavy nature but still GM’s new front-wheel drive platforms in their crossovers do handle very well they have very good feel they handle very well out in the road and of course you have that value proposition from Buick in my area of the country the majority of the x5 purchases are the twin turbo v8 x5 and those just can’t compete with the Acura MDX they’re just a lot faster they have a strong roof wheel drive bias in the vehicle they handle a lot better than the MD they are considerably more expensive however and that is something that you’d expect from BMW so on that front you can call the mdx value a value proposition to that but it’s it’s more apples and oranges in my mind we have a lot more comfortable seats going on in the x5 they’re a great deal more comfortable more adjustable than this car you have that sport bucket which allows you to adjust the contour of the seat back angle we have power thigh extenders we have anti fatigue seats we have you know a wider variety of electronic gadgets and goodies going on in the x5 as well but again you do pay for it so that x5 is going to be quite a bit more expensive we of course have that Volvo xc90 and that xc90 does sell in very small numbers but I’m including it in this video mostly because xc90 shoppers might want to consider something like this MDX and I do like Volvo models but I have to admit that the xc90 is getting really long in the tooth and it’s something that should have been replaced a long time ago Volvo’s chosen to really hobble

the engine options in the xc90 there’s

no more v8 model available you know we have a front-wheel drive model available much like this one but the fuel economy just isn’t as good there isn’t quite as much room as some of these modern SUVs either the MDX just seems to be an all around better value than that xc90 until final pricing information is released closer to the July availability date of the MDX at your local dealer it’s difficult to have a final opinion on the MDX I do like the way that this car drives much better than the gij X or the Q X 60 or whatever it is that Infiniti is going to call that car but I don’t find the interior to be quite as nice as that JX interior this this car is a little bit smaller than the Audi q7 not quite as nice on the inside either the course doesn’t have that same brand recognition that Audi gets either but it is a better value proposition as long as the pricing stays fairly in line with the current model compared to the alexis RX 350 this is an excellent option I would rather have this than the rx of 350 it’s just a nicer model all the way around and while that RX Hybrid does get excellent fuel economy 28 miles per gallon on the highway is very good for any crossover vehicle and in real world situations I wouldn’t expect that RX 450h to get that much better fuel economy than this empty that’s been our quick look at the 2014 Acura MDX

Leave a Reply 0

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *