2008 Acura MDX SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Acura MDX SUV

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Acura MDX Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.7 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain All Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 300 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 15/20 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation Yes
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2008 Acura MDX

  • A seven-passenger luxury SUV that drives just like a sport sedan? Well, no, but the 2008 Acura MDX comes very close.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Exemplary handling, powerful yet relatively fuel-efficient V6 engine, high safety scores, stylish interior design.

  • Cons

    Fiddly center stack button layout, love-it-or-hate-it grille.

  • What's New for 2008

    After a full redesign last year, the Acura MDX heads into 2008 with no significant changes.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Love my mdx!

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

Best car I have ever driven. I came from a mini van and wanted something more sporty. Handling is great. Easy to parallel park. Turns on a dime. I love how it looks. Few things they should improve on: paint chips easily, bluetooth poor quality, navigation system needs much more updates, coin tray cover broke, running board separated, needs a right arm rest or higher console, a lot of wind noise unless you remove the roof rack, need a place to put my purse. When getting in the car I wish the seat would not advance right away; this makes it hard to get in. Had roaring noise in drivers front. We already had to replace the bearings!! Even with all this I still love the car.

Very nice rig

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

I now have over 30k miles and have had a good experience with this SUV. I've had a Lexus GX, ML 500 and this vehicle compares very well. Not as powerful but gets the job done very well. It handles awesome and once the rpm's are up there it rips. A bit anemic off idle though. I tow a snowmobile trailer and the dealer tells me I need new shocks which are covered under warranty thankfully. I'd recommend this vehicle.

Love it, love it, love

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

Looked at everything out there and the MDX won hands down. Ride is excellent, handling is great, sound system is incredible. Voice activation for almost everything you want to either control or get information on. A little temperamental with recognition of commands but if you're clear then it's OK. Blue tooth is great. Added chrome side steps, body molding and luggage rack. Black on black combination turns alot of heads. Acura doing great financing and going way low on pricing. First time I ever owned an Acura, will definitely consider Acura for other vehicle purchases. Lots of power in engine although premium should probably be used most of time.

A good all around suv

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

Had this SUV for 2 months now. I had more problems with customer service from the dealship than the vehicle. I did have the b-pillar plastic trims replace because they were bowing outward and the plastic trim on the side of the passenger side dash. The adjustable rate shocks are worthless. Comfort and Sport modes feel the same, very spongy.

Poor build quality

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

Bought this car two months ago, sport model with ent-package and other bells and whistles. Supposed to enjoy this luxury vehicle, but having nothing but troubles. Been back to the dealer repair shop multiple times to repair multiple defects. Distorted mirror, defect gas door, leather peeling off the steering wheel and roof molding loosening. Last weekend, the roof rack cap flew away while driving the car on highway. It is very poor detail work on this car. It will be seventh trip to fix gas door and roof rack next next week.

I bought another one

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Vehicle: 2008 Acura MDX 4dr SUV AWD w/Sport, Entertainment Package (3.7L 6cyl 5A)

Had an '06 MDX Touring that was totalled by a drunk driver. Looked around for something different but always came back to the MDX. Bought Sport model with navi and ent. Love it so far. Runs great (400 miles into it). Many compliments on style and looks. Very happy with purchase.

Full 2008 Acura MDX Review

What's New for 2008

After a full redesign last year, the Acura MDX heads into 2008 with no significant changes.


The term "performance SUV" comes very close to being an oxymoron. Really, if your number-one goal is performance, a big and boxy sport-utility is usually a poor choice to go about getting it. But for consumers who really like to drive, yet have certain constraints in their life that require an SUV (read: a family), such a vehicle can make a certain amount of sense. Enter the 2008 Acura MDX.

Acura's midsize luxury SUV was redesigned last year. As with the first-generation MDX, it's a car-based crossover SUV with V6 power and seating for seven. But the new model is considerably sportier. It's powered by the largest and most powerful V6 ever to grace an Acura (yes, including the NSX), giving it unparalleled juice and athleticism. With it, Acura promises V8-like performance while still maintaining respectable fuel economy.

On-road handling ability is also high on the MDX's resume. The ute benefits from a stiff chassis and an electromechanical all-wheel-drive system first seen in the RL sedan. This system, dubbed SH-AWD, can not only actively shift torque from front to rear, but also from side to side in order to maximize traction and stability in all situations. Actively controlled dampers are also available, and with them come two driver-selectable modes: Sport and Comfort. The default mode, in a nod to the MDX's mission, is the Sport setting.

Thankfully, there's still plenty of "Acura" to the MDX as well. The interior is attractively designed and solidly constructed, and one can outfit it with real-time traffic navigation and surround-sound audio. Technically, there's room for seven passengers, but the MDX works best seating four adults with the third row folded for cargo. That third row will handle small children, but like most midsize SUVs, it's for occasional use only.

Overall, the 2008 Acura MDX is a well-balanced midsize luxury SUV with solid sporting credentials. In its class you'll find other sport-oriented models such as the Audi Q7, BMW X5, Infiniti FX, Porsche Cayenne and Volvo XC90. In terms of performance, the MDX matches or bests the V6-powered versions of those models, while often undercutting them by thousands of dollars even when equipped with a full list of optional features. True, you could spend more for a competitor's V8 model and get a smidge of extra performance and prestige. But for meeting the oxymoronic "performance luxury SUV" goal while keeping a realistic budget, the Acura MDX is about as good as it gets.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Acura MDX is a midsize luxury crossover SUV. Base MDXs come equipped with 18-inch wheels, xenon HID headlights, a sunroof, power and heated front seats, driver seat memory, tri-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and an audio system with a six-disc CD/MP3 player, satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack. Three optional packages are available to provide additional features.

The Technology package adds a navigation system with voice recognition and real-time traffic, a surround-sound audio system, a rearview camera, premium leather upholstery and solar-sensing climate control. The Sport package includes the features of the Technology package, and throws in an Active Damper system sport suspension, special wheels and perforated leather trim. Finally, an Entertainment package can be had with either the Technology or Sport packages, and includes a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, heated second-row seats, a power liftgate and a 115-volt power outlet.

Powertrains and Performance

The MDX's sole engine is a 3.7-liter V6 rated at 300 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque. The engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with manual shift control, and power is directed to all four wheels through an advanced all-wheel-drive system. In testing, we found the MDX can sprint to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds. Fuel economy, with a 2008 rating of 15 mpg city/20 mpg highway, is average for this segment. When properly equipped, maximum towing capacity is 5,000 pounds.


Standard safety equipment for the MDX includes antilock disc brakes with brake assist, front seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, active front head restraints and stability control with a stabilizing feature for trailering. In government crash tests, the 2008 Acura MDX earned a top five-star rating in both frontal and side-impact tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the MDX a top score of "Good" for occupant protection in frontal offset and side-impact crashes. These crash-test performances are among the best in the MDX's class.

Interior Design and Special Features

With high-grade materials quality and a bevy of electronic features, the seven-passenger MDX's cabin is a comfy and luxurious place to be. We do have some quibbles, however. The center stack's button layout is complicated, and some drivers will take issue with the way the slim steering wheel falls to hand. Versatility comes via a 60/40-split-folding second-row seat and a 50/50-split-folding third row. The third row can be a little hard to get to, and its meager accommodations are for small children only. There are 83.5 cubic feet of cargo space available with the second and third rows folded.

Driving Impressions

For a three-row SUV, the 2008 Acura MDX does a fine job of driving like it's not one. On curvy roads, the MDX is an eager partner thanks to the SH-AWD. There's a sensation of the torque shifting from wheel to wheel during hard cornering, clueing the driver into the magic behind the electronic curtain, but it all happens so effectively that it's encouraging rather than distracting. Equipped with the Sport package, the MDX's two-mode dampers soak up the bumps when necessary and firm up when the pace quickens.

The 3.7-liter V6 isn't quite as smooth as we've come to expect from Acura's past V6s, but it's hard to argue about its power. Acceleration is a shade soft until the tach needle builds momentum, at which point the engine pulls with enthusiasm. Downshifting readily when the throttle is prodded, the MDX's manually shiftable five-speed automatic transmission provides transparent and smooth shifts.

Talk About The 2008 MDX

Read more about the 2008 Acura MDX

Gas Mileage


  • 15
  • cty
  • 20
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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