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2013 Acura RDX Photo
8.0
/ 10
On Performance
USED PRICE RANGE
$18,980 - $33,995
On Performance
The new V-6 engine replaces laggy turbo torque with smooth and linear power that highlights a well-handling chassis.
8.0 out of 10
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PERFORMANCE | 8 out of 10

Expert Quotes:

Everything that made the last RDX so fun to drive—the turbocharged four-cylinder engine, torque-vectoring “Super Handling” all-wheel drive, and excellent steering—has either been tweaked or replaced.
Car and Driver

The V-6 delivers brisk acceleration, although the shift quality from the six-speed automatic is occasionally a little jarring.
Automobile

The ride is smoother and softened thanks in part to a longer wheelbase, with a suspension that feels far more predictable and controlled, while the steering is weightier and more precise.
AutoWeek

Lacking in that turbo thrust, it’s still more than enough power for a vehicle like this.
AutoGuide

Acura's new "Motion-Adaptive" electric power steering system provides quick response to steering inputs and works with the RDX's traction-and-stability system to prompt — yes, prompt — the driver to correct his steering in order to successfully negotiate a turn, say, on a slippery road.
Kelley Blue Book

Once ahead of the game--perhaps too far ahead--with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine in the RDX, Acura has made an about-face, offering only a 3.5-liter V-6 engine in the 2013 model.

The new engine is actually more powerful and more efficient, despite being a larger, normally aspirated V-6. While it gives up some of the torquey low-end feel of the previous turbo engine, as well as the sudden surge as boost builds, it's a much smoother, quieter, and more luxury-oriented combination. The six-speed automatic transmission offers slick and easy shifts, though it will hesitate on multiple-gear downshifts when sudden acceleration is requested. Steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters come standard.

In the corners, the 2013 RDX is less brittle and harsh than its predecessor, but it also exhibits more initial body roll. Once that first bit of roll has started, however, an ingenious new double-piston design engages, increasing damping force and making for a surprisingly capable crossover. Steering isn't perfect, being a bit over-light and vague at lower speeds, but it weights up nicely as speeds rise.

The all-wheel drive system for 2013 is no longer of the SH-AWD variety, but a simple automatic biasing system that delivers torque to the rear as front wheel slip is sensed, or as the angle of ascent changes.

Braking force is reduced with a new system that also shortens pedal stroke, and while it makes around-town driving easier, it takes away some of the feel and modulation in sportier driving.

Conclusion

The new V-6 engine replaces laggy turbo torque with smooth and linear power that highlights a well-handling chassis.

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