2016 Acura RDX: slightly improved, always competitive

The RDX was launched in 2006 in order to broaden the brand’s SUV luxury offerings. It targeted buyers interested by a more compact model than the MDX, which is bigger and more expensive. It featured a turbocharged engine, a first on our continent for Acura and even for Honda.

Despite undeniable dynamic qualities, irreproachable fit and finish and an upscale interior, the RDX was handicapped by a rough and thirsty engine, while its SH-AWD hardware made the vehicle more expensive without really being a strong purchase criterion. The second generation appeared in 2012 and fixed these weaknesses with the switch from a four-cylinder engine to a 3.5-litre V6, while the SH-AWD was replaced by a simpler, part-time system more or less similar to the one found under the Honda CR-V, with which it shared its platform.

Refinements for 2016
After three years on the market, this second generation model was due for some changes. The modifications aren’t spectacular, but allow this SUV to remain competitive. First of all, the 3.5L V6 was revised and gains six horsepower. This engine is very smooth and its reliability has been proven. The other modifications are mainly cosmetic, with LED daytime running lights and taillights. The 2016 Acura RDX also now benefits from the AcuraWatch safety system and its various technologies.

Perfect balance
As previously mentioned, the RDX’s silhouette is a simpler version of the MDX’s, as is the dashboard. Once again, designers opted for two display screens. The one on top has a cover so it doesn’t get washed out by sunlight, and houses the navigation system. The one on the bottom allows controlling the sound system, among other things. Obviously, fit and finish is flawless, the front seats provide good lateral support and the rear seats are adequate.

The V6 engine makes the RDX energetic, as it can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.6 seconds. The gear changes of the six-speed automatic transmission are quick, but the steering lacks feedback. On the road, the 2016 Acura RDX doesn’t have a sporty character, but offers a spacious, well-insulated and comfortable cockpit while adopting enjoyable and predictable road manners. And its price is very competitive in its market segment. Should we be surprised that its sales are rising?

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