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2019 Acura RDX A-Spec -You’ll Want To Put A Ring On It

2019 Acura RDX A-Spec -You’ll Want To Put A Ring On It

The last Acura RDX I drove was the 2017 model. I drove 300 miles in one direction with my girlfriend and drove back with a fiance. That car’s performance was flawless albeit unremarkable. For 2019, Acura introduced its third-generation RDX. It’s more beautiful and more comfortable. We took this one to San Antonio to watch our friends tie the knot. Thus forever solidifying a link between nuptial processes and Acura’s RDX in my mind. 



For the 2019 model year, the RDX got a makeover. Up front, there’s a much larger grill opening with a massive Acura emblem floating in the center. I think it works. The  A-Spec trim offers 20″ shark gray wheels. They look fantastic under the platinum white pearl body color.  The aggressive body styling and dual exhaust hint at the A-spec’s performance-tuned suspension.




It’s red! While the color may not be for everyone, the execution is undeniable. For those folks looking to make a more subtle statement, the A-spec also comes in black. The build quality of the seat covers is above average even for a luxury car. There’s lovely red decorative stitching.  Seats are firm. After hitting tons of traffic and taking six and a half hours to get to San Antonio, my hind parts were tender. Over time the seats may break in, but how often do we really spend that much time behind the wheel?


I didn’t love the trackpad. Not because it’s an especially bad example of one, but because they’re impractical. My opinion must be the minority though because these things are popping up in everything from Acuras to Aston Martins. I think rather than the distracting trackpad technology which mimics a laptop, manufacturers should implement touch screens within easy reach of the driver.


Under the cargo area, there’s a clever storage arrangement. Sadly, there’s no spare tire, not even a donut. Just an air pump and some good-luck goo. The second row seats can be folded down to create an open cargo space to haul all sorts of stuff.


Under the hood, a turbocharged 2.0 liter four-cylinder churns out 272 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque and it makes a nice noise doing it. The exhaust note when the V-Tec kicks in is particularly agreeable, so my foot found the floor more than often than a less childish foot would have. It’s not terribly fuel-efficient. In the 800 plus miles I put on the car, it averaged 21 mpg according to the trip computer. Most of these were highway miles, some in excess of 85 mph. I bet this car is capable of better mileage with a different driver. 



After arriving in San Antonio the groom lamented to me that the water pump failed in the 60s Ford Galaxie they chose as their getaway car. I immediately volunteered the shiny white Acura.  IMG_78562

After a lovely ceremony and reception my wife, the A-Spec and I had the distinct pleasure of sharing the couple’s first car ride as man and wife. I think white lace sets off the red interior nicely. Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Murphy!



In my previous article about the RDX, I concluded that it would be a nice car to buy your mom. Two-row, mid-sized, luxury SUVs are definitely aimed at moms.  I think the newest iteration of the RDX broadens its appeal. I also think it’s the best looking option in its class. This car with these options will set buyers back $46,895. That’s not cheap, but this is a luxury SUV that really ticks all the boxes. Its Honda heritage is bound to make it reliable. The ride and performance are gratifying and the looks are exceptional. All that and you still beat the Lexus RX 350 sticker by nearly $13,000. That’s what I call value.


2017 ACURA RDX AWD – A Car You’d buy Your Mom

2017 ACURA RDX AWD – A Car You’d buy Your Mom

At the end of January I had the opportunity to take the 2017 Acura’s luxury-compact-crossover, the RDX, on a 600 mile road trip. This meant spending plenty of time behind the wheel getting to know the car. The car has a subtle, inoffensive, and distinctly Honda feel to it.

The inside of the RDX is smartly trimmed in leather. The heated front seats are power adjustment. There are loads of controls on the steering wheel for everything from the cruise control to the stereo and what information is displayed around the gauges. Thankfully, Acura did not go the way of Honda and eliminate the volume knob on the dash in favor of a touch screen slider. The trusty knob remains in its location, at the top left of the stereo display as the good lord intended.

This car’s suspension is dialed in for comfort and on the interstate it shines. The ride is quiet and the radar cruise makes long drives a pleasure. The 3.5 liter V6 hauls the car up to 60 in 6.2 seconds which is not too shabby for its class. The car features blind spot monitoring, which is a good thing because there’s a terrible blind spot over the driver’s left shoulder. There is a sport mode, and there are paddle shifters, but let’s be honest, they’re of little use.

Yes, the paddle shifters operate the six-speed transmission, but the response time is not exactly snappy. This car doesn’t invite drivers to push the limits. And that begs the question, why install them at all? Our all-wheel drive model had an EPA estimate of 27 mpg on the highway. The best the trip computer showed during the trip was 22.

The steering isn’t what I would call lively, but it’s certainly not bad. This isn’t a car for carving up winding roads. In fact, on the curvy mountain roads in Arkansas, there was more body roll than is desirable. But hey, it’s comfortable luxury cruiser, not a sports car. It’s a grocery getter for those who appreciate being surrounded by quality materials and insulated from the nastier elements of driving. It’s classy, understated and inoffensive.

Aesthetically, this car is unlikely to set anyone on fire. It’s not shouty, and if you’re looking for something nice but a little stealthy, this may be a good option. Up front, nestled on either side of the shallow v-shaped grille, are Acura’s signature Jewel Eye headlights. They’re an array of LED lights focused through specially designed lenses that spread the light wide and even. In profile, the side glass creates a nice arc beginning at the windshield, curving up and back to the rear pillar. The rear lift is tidy and reflects the geometric theme featured on the front of the car.

For its class this car is priced competitively. The interior is nice and quiet for long trips, and the car has plenty of room to haul some luggage. There’s nothing ground breaking about the latest RDX. It’s not a game changer, but it doesn’t feel tired either. It’s just a nice car. It’s the kind of car you’d buy for you mom if you had 45 grand lying around and it happened to be her birthday.