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Acura MDX Accessories and Modifications



  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    Perhaps investigate an aftermarket DVD player first? They fit under the seat too, and then you still have the CD up front? I think decent aftermarket systems are about $1200 installed. What is the dealer cost?

    I don't know how they integrate aftermarket dvd sound into the stereo, but I imagine it isn't hard.
  • miksmiks Posts: 33
    Does anyone have any info/input on chrome rims for the MDX? I know it can be a fine line between classy and gaudy. Please help. I saw the silver with chrome rims on the floor at the dealership. Wow! It looked great, not cheap or gaudy. They said they send the rims out and have them chromed for the whopping price of $200 per rim. Are all rims dipped that are chrome? Is this a normal price? Upon close inspection they didn't look like they had been "dipped". One of my concerns is will they eventually start flaking? I know nothing about rims and would appreciate some assistance here. The rims were the ones that come on the touring and looked really great.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I like the rims on the touring edition. If you want chrome rims, maybe check and then sell stock/touring rims on ebay. You might even make a profit.
  • miksmiks Posts: 33
    Thanks, So not all chrome rims are dipped?
  • Does anyone have some info on possible 3rd party bike carriers that would work on the factory installed '03 MDX roof racks? I need to be able to put 4 bikes on the roof and the Acura accessory book's bike carriers only seem to allow a 2 bike maximum (and these seemed quite pricey besides).

    I checked out the Thule site, but it looked like they didn't have anything that would work with an existing factory installed rack. Any ideas?
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    Either a hitch mount? or trying to get thule/yakima bars mounted to the factory rack, and then you can add 4 of those specific carriers? The curve to the stock rack doesn't make it a great bike carrier. I am going to add a hitch ( and rear carrier for the MDX. The price is close to the same as a roof rack by the time you add it up. I can't decide if I want to do the trans cooling kit if I add a hitch? I need to call the dealer about that just to double check (not that you need it to tow bikes, but warranty issues could be in question).
  • mkligmklig Posts: 2
    You brought out a good point - the Acura factory rack is worthless. The problem is that neither Yakima nor Thule make a rack system that fits in the gutter to replace the Acura rack. Both companies make racks that use footings that anchor themselves in the top of the door for the MDX model. I windsurf and also am looking how to do something to make the factory rack work since (as sbcooke pointed out) there is that curve in the middle of the factory rack. If you look at the dealers book on accessories it pictures an MDX with side rails without cross bars for the luggage kit. I am wondering if this is the Oddessy rails and could they be placed on the roof instead of the MDX factory rack - if so both Thule and Yakima make cross bars to fit this and you and I could put bikes or anything else up there.
  • The acura's roof rack also has a very low weight limitation. I forget was it 150 or 250 lbs. Four bikes mounted to those rails may be pushing it a bit.
  • Thanks for the input and the link. I too was suspicious of a low weight limitation on the factory roof rack when the Acura dealer told me that only two bikes (with their Acura bike carriers) are permitted up there. But most decent touring bikes only weigh 40 lbs or less, so four of them would only be about 160 lbs. But before I risk 4 carriers, where do they publish the max load specs?

    In regards to hitch mounting, I asked the dealer at ordering time about the possibility of having the hitch installed without having to shell out the $1100 for the cooling system because I only wanted the hitch for a bike mount. He said they wouldn't install the hitch without the cooling system, so it seems like a warranty issue to me. I'm still tempted to install my own hitch for a bike carrier and possibly just use the roof rack to instead hold any future cargo box I may get for longer trips. But like sbcookie, I'm afraid of hitch warranty issues too.

    I'd really like to figure this out. I've been holding off on getting a bike rack until I settled on a new car (which I intend on keeping a long time).
  • 02 owner's manual says 165 pounds (75kg) on the rack.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    Thule's rating is 150 lbs. I put more than that up there. Also, bikes are what? 20 lbs? 4 should go up there fine, except for actually fitting them up there.

    I am probably going to get the kit from and do it myself, the hardest part seems like taking the bumper off. I just hope I can get them to separate the hitch from the cooling additions, so I can get mine from
  • lenijlenij Posts: 18
    those inquiring about the dvd entertainment on the mdx (which was installed in my '03 mdx touring nav):
    * first, you have to check with your dealer the screen size of the dvd monitor that you want installed. i never checked mine, and found out it was a bit small (maybe less than 6" diag.). they carry the Audiovox brand.
    * the dvd player is placed under the driver's seat, and can be operated with a remote control that you just point to an infra-red device mounted on the driver's side pillar just above your head to play or operate the dvd.
    * the remote operates both dvd and vcr, wherein the latter is placed under the floor of the cargo area. you can operate both the dvd and vcr at the same time, and can watch either one of the movies played "interchangeably" in both players (but not at the same time).
    * another remote is used to operate the dvd monitor itself. there are two (2) wireless headsets that they provide with the dvd system.
    * the 6-disc in-dash cd player remains. in fact nothing is changed in the dashboard, even with the navigation system.
    * i was told at the dealership that the dvd navigation system player can only read the acura dvd mapping sotware. i never tried using a dvd on it.
    * the bug deflector i purchased in one of the acura accessory internet store really looks great and fits easily and nicely.
    * i just purchased the sunroof visor at, and it fits fine.
  • designruler - we have an 03 with nav/dvd, and our kids (15,12,7) and their friends all love it. We got the two wireless headsets, and purchased one more ( was way low compared to dealer cost), and they can see the screen easily from all seats, including 3rd row.

    We've found it very easy to use; there are dual controls for front seat(parents) or middle seat. We can divert sound to DVD without stopping our music use in the front - perhaps aftermarket can do this to, but it is an easy switchover, and makes us all happy!

    CDs work in the DVD, which is great for the MTV effect. We had such a pleasant 600 (each way) mile drive recently, with all passengers well entertained and happy! If there is a downside to the factory DVD, it is the lack of VCR capacity. Someone posted a message re:VCR to DVDR transfer without answer. We are looking into this too.
      Our origional vehicle's delivery stalled and we ended up buying our current vehicle with dvd as an unnecessary add-onn, but now wouldn't own a family vehicle without it. The nav is incredible, too.
  • I've just ordered a 2003 MDX (touring model). I also plan to order some accessories from 'Hondaaccra World'. My question concerns replacing the standard shift knob with the 'burlwood' knob. How does one change the knob? Are there threads so that it just 'screws off', or is it a more complicated process. Thanks for any advice.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    The shift knob just screws off. It takes some elbow grease to do it (don't use tools) but is easily done. is a great place for accessories. Good prices, excellent service.
  • Thanks for the info.
  • I've ordered a 2003 MDX (touring model), which should be delivered early next month. To prevent 'door dings', I plan to have the dealer install the 'side moldings'. Only trouble is, I haven't seen one car with the moldings. The MDX brochure and other pictures of the SUV that I've seen are minus the accessory. I wonder if that's because the moldings detract from the appearance of the SUV. Any comments would be appreciated. Thanks.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    What color vehicle did you order? We can probably link in a picture with moldings installed.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I don't like the look. Especially the wheel well covers. They have a cutout around the gas tank lid. I think they match body colors now, which they didn't before (or at least I think not) which would improve the look. When I was shopping I saw both a black and white model with grey didn't look good.
  • I have the door moldings on my MDX, I think it actually gives the SUV more detail. Looks kind of plain without it. For picture of MDX with moldings, go to and build one with moldings or go to, they have a picture of it.
  • I've ordered the 'nighthawk black pearl' with 'saddle' interior. Thanks for the responses - I'll check out
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817

    The owner (Casique on another system) also has on the vehicle the moonroof visor, the FormFit (not Acura) front deflector, a clear bra, and running boards.
  • Thanks very much for the photo. I like the look of the moldings, and will order them.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    fyi, sells the moldings for around $112 including shipping. Self-installation is quite simple, Acura includes paper templates to align to the top of the door and tape, which then provides the edge to align the molding with.
  • sumasar1sumasar1 Posts: 3
  • sumasar1sumasar1 Posts: 3
  • hoover94hoover94 Posts: 5
    The factory RES is only available on the Touring model with or without Navigation. The other option is to have an aftermarket unit installed.
  • leonardzleonardz Posts: 2
    We are about to get a used 2002 MDX (I hope). If we do, we were hoping to get a backup sensor. In Canada they are about $1100.00 (in Canada), installed and with taxes.

    1) Are they worth it? I have never driven a car with one, so it is hard to measure the ebenfit.

    2) Are there good 3rd party alternatives to the Acura installed one? Any benefits for the Acura one over a third party sensor?

  • Have had two cars (both Jaguars) with back-up sensors. At first thought it would be just a toy, but discovered after using it that they are very helpful, especially when there are low objects behind the car. I don't care for the TV camera type on the Navi version of the 03 MDX because one must look in the opposite direction of travel to use it, but it does show what is back there and is a great help. Much prefer the aural warning sensor type.

    The aural system that Acura has costs about $500 in kit form from Acura parts. It is an involved installation that requires removal of the bumper cover and some interior trim, so if you are not very handy working on cars it is best left to the dealer to install. The cost, including installation, is similar to the amount a body shop would charge to repair a scraped rear bumper.

    After market kits cost less but usually don't have sensors on the corners of the bumper. They work, but it appears from the sensor locations the factory designed kits have better corner coverage. I have a three sensor after market kit (factory designs usually have at least four sensors) for my PT GT
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    Some MDX owners have successfully installed the Poron backup sensing system on their own. It did not require removal of the bumper and they routed the wires through, using the reverse lamp socket.

    My understanding is that it is relatively inexpensive but effective (under $200 for the system hardware).

    Supposedly you can buy extra sensors from Poron to improve your coverage. There is a version that provides voice and beeps through a speaker, or a version that provides a distance display plus beeps.

    I can't vouch for how it performs against the Acura system or other backup systems. Realistically, no one's run a good comparative test.
This discussion has been closed.