2010 Acura MDXEnlarge Photo
The basics: A 300-horsepower, 3.7-liter V-6 engine coupled to a new six-speed automatic with paddle shifters and standard all-wheel drive
Price: $44,000 and up
Fuel economy: 16/21 mpg
Rating: 8.6 out of 10
The 2010 Acura MDX has plenty to recommend, from its big, strong V-6 engine and six-speed paddle-shifted automatic transmission to its "super-handling" all-wheel drive system. The drivetrain has a lightness and quickness that's not matched in this class. The same holds true for handling--the MDX's road behavior is more carlike and makes it feel smaller than the MKT and others. Its subdued looks are highlighted by a dashing walnut dash and ambient lighting this year. Passenger room and comfort remains a strong selling point, along with five-star safety and a reputation for durability. The MDX's sound system now indexes music and responds to voice controls, too.
However, the MDX's downsides--it's a bit smaller overall, with an less accessible third-row seat--are paired with some unwelcome changes. Its vaguely Toyota RAV4-ish looks get a new grille that reminds editors of a bottle opener. The cabin's adorned with lots of buttons that control lots of complex features like navigation and stability control. The MDX demands premium unleaded gasoline and still lags behind in fuel economy. And the updates for 2010 have turned its steering loose and overly light. A USB port for MP3 coupling is unavailable on the base model, a stupid omission for a brand that leverages a tech-friendly image.
TheCarConnection's Bottom Line? The 2010 Acura MDX has found ways to improve—though the new grille, steering feel, and USB/Bluetooth omissions are out of character.