If you were looking to build a winning crossover SUV, it'd be hard to go wrong by offering a little more space for a little less money. Which, it turns out, is exactly what the 2017 Acura RDX delivers.
The compact RDX is an upscale crossover with seating for five passengers. Topping its lists of strengths is a quiet, spacious interior with plenty of room for a growing family. In fact, despite its compact footprint, its passenger cabin is on par with those of some larger midsize luxury SUVs.
Front seats offer good support and the elevated rear seat affords occupants a good view out the front and sides. There's enough head- and legroom for 6-foot adults to get comfortable in back, and it's even wide enough to accommodate three across, at least for short trips.
On the value front, the 2017 RDX is offered in a single well-equipped trim level with desirable standard features, including LED headlights and a power liftgate. There are three option packages, including the AcuraWatch Plus, Technology and Advance. Even loaded up with all those options, however, the Acura RDX isn't much more expensive than the base models of its luxury crossover competitors
When it comes to deciding how you want your RDX kitted out, it helps to know this: Acura does technology well. A good example is the AcuraWatch Plus option package, which bundles advanced safety features like a forward collision warning with automatic braking and lane-keeping alert with lane-keeping assist. The Technology package adds nice-to-have extras, including a navigation system and a blind-spot warning system with rear cross-traffic alert.
The Advance package builds on all of the above with front and rear parking sensors, auto-dimming side mirrors and more. In a curious twist, the standard display and controller knob on the base model, while not quite as easy to use as those on other luxury crossovers, is actually preferable to the optional dual-touchscreen upgrade.
Under the hood, the combination of a 279-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 and smooth-shifting six-speed automatic transmission gives the 2017 RDX especially lively performance. In fact, its zero-to-60-mph time of 6.5 seconds makes it among the quickest entries in the compact luxury crossover segment. Better still is the fact that EPA fuel economy estimates of 23 combined (20 city/28 highway) for front-wheel-drive models are comparable to those of several four-cylinder competitors. Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive offered as an option.
The RDX's suspension complements that powertrain with sharp handling that's nearly as good as that of its more performance-oriented European rivals. Steering has a light but precise feel to it that enhances the overall driving experience. Best of all, the impressive ride quality doesn't appear to suffer from this sporty bent.
Put all this together and the 2017 Acura RDX is a top choice among luxury crossovers. Let Edmunds help find the right RDX model for you.
Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.