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Acura RDX

I saw the photo of the upcoming Acura RDX in the August issue of Car and Driver. They report that it will be powered by a 200hp 4-cyl engine with Honda's IMA hybrid technology. It will be a 2006 model year vehicle on sale in the fall of 2005.

I am hoping that this vehicle will come "loaded" (similar to the new TL and TSX) with a navigation option. I am guessing pricing will be a little higher than the TSX.

Has anyone heard anything more about this vehicle?


  • for those not familiar, the RDX will be a small SUV. It looks kind of like a cross between an MDX and a RSX. I also found it very interesting that the piece in C&D did not mention a non-hybrid option. It sounded as though the hybrid powertrain will be the only powertrain.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I thought it actually looks like a small RX330.

    I still have a sneaky suspicion that the rumoured upgrades on the '05 CR-V that people have been posting about will actually end up on the RDX (and not the CR-V). Just my speculation.
  • vcarrerasvcarreras Posts: 247
    the RD-X will not have the spare tire hanging off the back like the CRV and RAV4. Does anyone know? You can't tell from the pictures from Car and Driver.
  • I have this feeling that the Honda FR-V/Edix minivan that was just unveiled recently for the European and Japanese domestic markets will become the basis of the Acura RDX small SUV due about a year from now.

    If you've seen the original Acura RD-X concept car shown in 2002 and compared it to the Honda FR-V/Edix, note that the overall shape of both vehicles have a lot in common. This means the FR-V/Edix platform was designed to accommodate four-wheel drive in future models.

    In short, the Acura RDX will look very close to the shape of the FR-V/Edix, but will probably have a somewhat different front and rear end designs. It also portends that the successor to the Honda CR-V could also be based on the FR-V/Edix; the next-generation CR-V is essentially the FR-V/Edix but with a somewhat different rear end design.
  • on the RD-X.

    Autoweek is a little late since Car & Driver (August) has already shown pictures!
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    Latest rumors I read in the Toronto Star is that the next hybrid vehicle will be a hybrid Pilot. They also mention a smaller SUV will be introduced by Acura with no mention about it being hybrid.

    I just hope Honda/Acura will not make the RDX as a baby MDX like the bmw x3 is a baby x5. The RDX should not be sold as a MDX wannabe, but as a high performance hybrid SUV with a choice of a 6 speed manual . Such a vehicle would let Honda re-invent the high performance SUV market like BMW reinvented the high performance sport sedan market. This would be a bolder move for Honda versus introducing a baby MDX just because BMW is doing that with its x3(which by the way is selling below BMW expectations).
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Personally I think if Honda/Acura offers a CR-V sized RD-X but with a small V6, and TSX-level sportiness, luxury and amenities, and prices it under $39K CAD, they'll sell a boatload of them in Canada. I think there are a lot of people in Canada who wants Honda reliability and efficiency in an SUV, but think the CR-V is too economy-class, but the Pilot and MDX simply too big and thirsty and too soccer-momish.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    Honda/Acura offers a CR-V sized RD-X but with a small V6, and TSX-level sportiness, luxury and amenities, and prices it under $39K CAD.

    I agree. It could sell well in Canada. And most likely the USA. But would there be a 6 month waiting list? I dont think so.

    Why not aim higher. Since the RDX is a new vehicle, why not seek something more than a smaller version of an MDX. This vehicle may just cannibalize sales of the MDX as the BMW X3 is doing to the X5.

    It would be opportunist for Honda to take advantage of the hybrid craze. Introduce a smaller SUV based on the CRV that performs and gets better mileage than a RX400h and is significantly cheaper. The only unfortunate part of such a vehicle is that it would involve longer waiting lists than the Prius or Lexus RX400h.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Well. I think it'll sell well if it's priced at $27K USD, comes standard with a Hybrid engine, and has all the Acura luxury features.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I'm not sure if a "deluxe CR-V" would sell as well in the US, since they seem to mostly have appetite only for all things big.

    The problem with moving the RDX to far upmarket is that I'm not sure if the Acura brand can support it. Acura is not really regarded as an upper-echelon brand -- not mentioned in the same breath of MB, BMW, Audi, or even Lexus. You may hear comments such as "why would I pay that much for an Acura". That's the reason why I think the sales prospect of the new RL, with MSRP of almost $70K, is pretty dicey.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    I’m hoping that Acura RDX will be Honda’s first hybrid-only SUV with the more powerful version of IMA, along the lines that Acura RDX demonstrated couple of years ago. 220-240 HP in AWD format would be enough.

    If not hybrid, Acura should use (at least) a 3.0-liter version of the MDX 3.5 delivering 225 HP/220 lb.-ft with VTM-4. For anything less, CR-V works just fine.

    Dimensions: 5-seat (compact SUV)
    Price Class: $30K-35K
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Acura RDX is supposed to slot under MDX, not well above it. We're talking X3 competitor here. At about $35K (US) fully loaded, RDX would be a brisk seller.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "The problem with moving the RDX to far upmarket is that I'm not sure if the Acura brand can support it. "

    I am talking about a cheaper CRV based Acura not a premium priced Porsche Cayenne beater.

     "since they seem to mostly have appetite only for all things big."

    I dont know about that? Americans love the Prius and Mini as much as we Canadians love small vehicles. The key is to develop a vehicle that has exciting technology ,performance, handling and utility. Candadians and Americans would stand united in their quest to own such a vehicle as a hybrid RDX.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I know where you're coming from, but I wasn't thinking about a Cayenne beater either, but a X3 competitor. But even at that, IMO, if the RDX even approaches X3 2.5 prices, it (RDX) would have trouble selling, because...well...a lot of people won't buy an Acura if, for similar dough, they can get a Bimmer, even if the Bimmer is a stripper, relatively-speaking.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    IMO, if the RDX even approaches X3 2.5 prices, it (RDX) would have trouble selling, because...well...a lot of people won't buy an Acura if, for similar dough, they can get a Bimmer

    I couldn't disagree. There are plenty of intelligent buyers out there, more so in this price class ($30K-40K) than above it.

    X5 goes against MDX by the same logic that X3 would against RDX. What do you think about the former? MDX has hit its targeted market extremely well. I expect the same from RDX.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    Yes, an RDX based on your description could be a likely success as the MDX has been.

    But I have two reservations about the above statement.

    The key reason for the MDX's success, especailly during its intro years is its differentiation. Among premium German/Japanese SUVs it was the only one that had passenger volume for more than five. For larger familes, the MDX was a more exciting alternative than a minivan. Ofcourse today the competition is changing with the offerings from Volvo and the soon to be Subaru B9X.
    So what would be the key differentiator for an RDX vs. X3. Price! Unfortuanately at about CDN 39k there is so much competition out there: Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander(I was told by a Toyota sales rep that the hybrid version may sell for about CDN$40k)

    My second reservation about the possible success of a non-hybrid RDX is that the X3 is selling below BMW expectations. For many months I have seen a lot of compelling dealership clearance sales for the BMW x3. I have a friend who got a fantastic deal on his x3 3.0 . For BMW, it is pretty sad when you can get good deals on vehicles that were introduced just months ago(sad for BMW not the customer). I tried getting a good deal on my 99 BMW 323 shortly after its introwith little success.
  • Your opinion is obviously appreciated. The RDX may take a little while to find its niche.

    However, you're only about $20,000 off of the price of the RL. The MSRP of the 2005 Acura RL is $49,470 including destination. I do not believe the RL will have any impact on the RDX.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "However, you're only about $20,000 off of the price of the RL'

    70k Canadian dollars. We Canucks do not get paid in Greenbacks.

    Regarding Canadian pricing--if the RL was priced to today's CDN-USFX rate of 0.83 an RL would be priced as (49,470/.83)=59,600. In other words we Canadians are being ripped off compared to Americans. We have to pay 70kCdn$ for a car that would cost 59kCdn$ in today's exchange rate.
    On top of that Canadians pay 15% total sales tax. I am sure there is not a single State down south that has such a hefty sales tax.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    Maybe my expectations for an affordable hybrid RDX are a bit too high.

    On the website above, the NEwsweek article writes that the RX400h will sell for 52K US$.
    This is one helluva premium price over the non-hybrid version. Ofcourse Lexus will add luxuries to thee RX400h,but still the price for me is a bit steep.

    If future high performance hybrids turn out to be this expensive then I will re-evaluate my alernatives.

    Save fuel--buy a Prius or a Jetta TDI.
    High performance SUV---buy non hybrid versions.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    dewey hit the nail on the head regarding the MDX's success -- it offers passenger AND cargo room for a family which the X5 does not, but instead targets the sporty demand of the market.

    The RDX would have to use the same strategy, only in reverse. It will have to leave the utilitarian appeal to the Pilot, Highlander and others of that ilk, but instead offer X3-like performance, with above-average luxury, at a cut-rate price. It's a tall order. Maybe too tall? But they should be able to do it by raiding the parts bins of Honda's other models -- platform from the CR-V, the 4WD system from the MDX, and how about the 3.0 V6 from the previous generation Accord (a real jewel of a motor, IMO).
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,251
    "but instead offer X3-like performance, with above-average luxury, at a cut-rate price"

    bodble2, the market may be receptive to such a vehicle.

     Although maybe not for the previous generation 3.0 V6 Accord engine. The newest engines or gizmos are among the main causes of excitement for new vehicle buyers.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Not exactly.

    I made a point about MDX being comparable to X5, and RDX should be comparable to X3. While MDX and X5 compete in $36-45K price class, this is a class that is also served by some utilitarian behemoths. There is plenty of outside competition to be had, and MDX has held its own for 4-5 years.

    BMW X3 and Honda CR-V are virtually identical in size, at least on paper (pretty much like MDX and X5, run a compare on Edmunds, and you should see it like I did). There is a market for more utilitarian SUVs and not unlike the higher price class where MDX and X5 reside.

    What really is a tall-order, IMO, is the assumption that RDX will have to be as cheap as loaded CR-V. In fact, Ford Escape Limited treads into $28K price class!

    Acura RDX is likely to be placed in $30-35K price class. For the added premium, it is likely to deliver a lot more than CR-V can. How it fares against BMW X3, we shall see about that, but my bet would be that the story wouldn’t be much different between X3 and RDX than it is between MDX and X5.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I agree that 3.0 V6 is probably considered "dated technology", but I still think it is a gem -- smooth, rev-happy, powerful, relatively economical, and proven reliability. I love it in our Accord. For my money, it offers a level of civility unmatched by the 3.2 in my TL, or the Type-S motor in the CL-S that I traded. I would find it perfectly acceptable if using it enables Honda to cut cost, and price. Now, whether it's 195 lb-ft of torque is adequate for a 3500+ lb SUV with a AWD system is another story.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Accord's 3.0/V6 is rated at 212 lb.-ft and that is with regular grade gasoline. In at least one form, it is delivering at up to 228 lb.-ft with higher compression (11.0:1) which will warrant use of premium grade gasoline.

    For use in Accord, the engine is in slightly detuned form. For Acura, things can change. Just look at the difference between the 3.5/V6 used in MDX and the same used in Odyssey/Pilot.

    The MDX unit is tuned for stronger low/mid-range and doesn't give up at the top end either. If Honda follows the same formula on its smaller displacement version (the 3.0, the 3.2 and the 3.5 are essentially identical in architecture), 230 HP @ 5800 rpm, 220-225 lb.-ft @ 3500 rpm would be possible.

    This is the reason I quoted that 225 HP variant of the 3.0 would be just fine for RDX, especially if the curb weight can be kept in check (hopefully no more than 3800 lb).
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I'm trying to think of another SUV (midsize, not a behemoth) which offered the power, amenities and reliability of the MDX, and with 3rd row seating, at that price. The appeal of the MDX was (is) that it offers image-conscious soccer and carpool moms a 4WD alternative to the minivan. It is basically a 4WD Odyssey. I think the MDX had a monopoly for a couple of years. Now, of course, there are a bunch of direct competitors, including the 4Runner, Pathfinder, Highlander, Durango, and Honda's own Pilot, etc, all of which are comparable to the MDX in size, passenger and cargo capacity, and seating configurations.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I was thinking of the 3.0 in the '98-'02 Accord. The current 3.0 would work (I haven't driven it, so I can only heap praise on the old 3.0), but I figure if cost-saving is the objective, they could dust the mothballs off of the old 3.0. Wasn't the V6 used in the '96-'97 Accord from the old Legend?
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    The 95-97 Accord V6 was a patch work engine. In this case, however, J30A used in Accord is really an updated version of the J30A introduced with the 1997 CL and also used in 1998-2002 Accord.

    J30A shares its architecture with J32A (TL) and J35A (Odyssey, Pilot, MDX and RL). Until now, the RL used C35A which was based off the original "C25A" (later became C27A and eventually destined to be put in 1995-1997 Accord before it was put to rest).
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Wow, you know your engines! :)
  • ....It appears that the Acura RDX small SUV (note that this vehicle will be smaller than the MDX SUV!) will be derived from the Honda FR-V/Edix "tall wagon" that just went on sale in Europe and Japan recently. Think of it as an FR-V/Edix with a different nose, different tailgate design, NO staggered seating for the front passengers (only two in front), and likely a derivative of the K24 i-VTEC engine used on the TSX sedan.
  • l943973l943973 Posts: 197


    "Acura RD-X Concept Debuts at North American International Auto Show


    DETROIT 12/16/2004 -- The Acura RD-X Concept vehicle will make its debut at the 2005 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. This concept version of the upcoming Acura entry SUV, which will go on sale in 2006, combines the performance of a sports sedan with the versatility and utility of a premium SUV.


    Aimed at active urban professionals and packed full of performance and technology, the RD-X Concept is designed to knife through traffic on crowded city streets and carve up twisty mountain roads. It features aggressive styling, a wide track, bold fender flares and a unique wood and leather interior based on the feeling of an upscale loft apartment.


    Additional details on the RD-X Concept will be announced on Sunday, Jan. 9th at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. "


    additonal images available at ;archives=t
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