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Acura RDX



  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    I think the best comparison you might hope to get is the Subaru Outback 2.5T versus the 3.0 H6 version of the same car. Both claim 250 hp and get 19-25 mpg. So, on paper, they're pretty much even. Comparing an Audi sedan to an AWD Subaru Wagon brings up all kinds of miss-matched factors which impact fuel economy.

    For performance purposes, the turbo model has more torque. However the H6 won't suffer from turbo-lag. Pick your poison.

    Most of my experience in turbo-powered cars comes from older models, but I generally prefer naturally aspirated engines. A good 6 cyl tends to get the job done with less drama.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    $39,500 is steep. But if you backtrack the hardware from $37,500, you get a base price of about $30,000. This price point is possible, but you can bet the vehicle will not have the same content as the TSX. To cut costs, they'd have to eliminate basic content and cut corners. For example...

    Eliminate 2 speakers from the audio set up, or make them cheap paper cone units.
    Make that driver's seat 6-way power adjustable instead of 8-way. (The passenger's would be manual.)
    Forget about memory seats.
    Eliminate the adjustable lumbar support.
    Eliminate the telescopic wheel adjustment.
    Eliminate SportShift.
    Give it an el-cheapo head liner.
    Cover the dash in either chintzy faux metal accents or poorly simulated wood.

    Stuff like that would probably get the price down to $30,000 for the base model. You'd still have a powerful engine, on a capable chassis, with a very high-tech AWD system. But the total package would be just short of class-leading. Kind of like an Altima.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    But that would mean the MDX would rise in price :(
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    I share your dispair, but that has always been a given. The RL is more expensive than the old 3.5RL. The TL is more expensive than the 3.2TL. The RSX is more expensive than the Integra. Each time a car is redesigned the price jumps a bit. The next generation MDX would probably have cost 2 grand more than the current model even without the RDX coming.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Which means for those of us interested, we can swipe a 2006 MDX at the year end closeout for a really good price.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Just to wade in on this discussion, I would pick the 6 any day. Smoother, quieter, more low-end grunt, less temperamental, less peaky, better reliability and durabilty.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    They could offer both engines.
  • I cant remember the last time Acura used 2 DIFFERENT engines for the same model. I capitalized different b/c I know someone out there is dying to correct me by saying that currently there is an RSX and and Type-S version, along with the previous generation TL and CL. Those are different engine setups, I'm saying that it has been a long time (if ever) that Acura has but two different cylindered engines in a car.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I didn't say V because Subaru uses an H. ;)

    This choice splits even the usually tight-knit Subaru family. There are fans of both camps.

    The turbo performs better, especially at altitude. It uses more gas, though, and has slight throttle lag (not much with a 2.5l with variable valve timing). The power is addictive so most people use it, and then pay at the pump.

    The H6 is slightly more efficient in real-world driving (forget EPA), and quicker throttle response. It's also smoother. It's not as quick in just about every situation (even low revs, because it's tuned for high revs).

    Pick your poison. There are trade-offs for both and no clear "better" engine.

    I'd put the H6 in a commuter/luxury car, the turbo in a performance car. So Acura's choice will be interesting, and likely determine the overall character of the RDX. Since luxury intenders would likely go with an MDX anyway, a turbo might be interesting to spice things up.

  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Acura used to offer a 2.5TL and a 3.2TL before 1999 (and after they dumped the Vigor name). But, yes, Honda/Acura seldom offers engine options. Right now only the Accord and Civic offer different displacements. Even so, the Civic variants are alternative fuel cars.

    The idea of Acura using both a turbo and 6 cyl is kinda warm and fuzzy, but not at all realistic. Right now, the best information points toward a turbo. The only drawback I see to that plan is what they might do with the CR-V, since it will be based on the same platform. A V6 could be tuned for both. Not sure how the mainstream mass market would react to a turbo CR-V.

    As for the notion that luxury-buyers are shy of turbos, I'm not so sure. I agree that V6 smoothness would have great appeal. It's not the American or Japanese way to build luxury. So, my first instinct is to agree.

    But, OTOH, the European players (Saab, Volvo, Porche, and Audi) have been offering turbo-charged cars for quite some time. Many of those brands have only done so-so with the turbo offerings, but it wouldn't be the first time Honda/Acura pulled off something the others could never accomplish.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    But Acura isn't really known for turbocharged engines. (Unlike Audi, Volvo, and Saab)
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    for SUVs prior to the MDX. Nor was Honda known for minivans prior to 1999. They weren't known for cross-overs until the 1997 CR-V. Acura wasn't known for supercars until the NSX. And they weren't known for luxury cars until the Legend.

    Wanna talk jet engines? ;)

    Anyway, the newness of Acura and turbo-power might cause speculation, but, for whatever reason, Honda/Acura has never had a problem with introducing new things. The effectiveness of the design is far more important than the speculation. If the RDX is good, people will laude over Acura for the turbo.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 70,682
    How about an NA engine for the new CR-V, and an upgraded turbo variant for the RDX?


    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Sounds good.

    will they build a RDX Type S?
  • jrynnjrynn Posts: 162
    I'm often amused by some of the posts on these boards. But since I'm sure they're all well-intentioned, if not necessarily well-informed, I'll just point out to other readers that perhaps it's best to take some of what you read here (including what I write) with a grain of salt.

    Right now, the best information points toward a turbo.

    I'd be curious to know where that "best information" comes from. I'm not aware of any Honda/Acura spokesperson suggesting that a turbo-4 is the direction they're headed with the RDX, and I don't know of any current or planned Honda/Acura offering in the US that uses a turbo-4. It would hardly be surprising if Acura -- like BMW with the X3/X5 or the 330/530-- used it's existing 6-cyl powerplant. (Unless the Acura engine is substantially larger and heavier than the BMW engine, it clearly can be done. And what's going to separate the MDX from the RDX buyer is going to be demand for space (esp. 3rd row seating) rather than engine size.

    OTOH, the European players (Saab, Volvo, Porche, and Audi) have been offering turbo-charged cars for quite some time. Many of those brands have only done so-so with the turbo offerings, but it wouldn't be the first time Honda/Acura pulled off something the others could never accomplish.

    Say what you want about Saab, but Volvo, Porsche and Audi have hardly had "so-so" levels of success with their turbos. For instance, the best-selling Euro SUV in America is predominantly sold with turbos. Honda/Acura would hardly be leading the way.

    Maybe the RDX WILL turn out to be powered by a turbo-4. But I'd at least like to see the information sourced to a RELIABLE company source (if not directly then through a journalist with true industry cred.)

    And let's not get carried away with the Honda/Acura love. I think they make great cars. I have one now and I will be taking a close look at the RDX when it launches for all the reasons previously posted. But I don't think Acura is exactly breaking new ground here.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    If you wait for a reliable company source, the information will come out on the very day of the debut of the RDX at the auto show, and this thread would not even exist.

    We hear rumors and share them. A lot of times you see spy shots or hear rumors from people direclty or indirectly involved with the project, hence the discussions.

    Plus, keep in mind the "best information" often comes from a secret source, or even a source not mentionable due to Edmunds rules (no links to competing sites).

    So while you're being very idealistic, to say the least, the rest of us will continue to enjoy sharing the rumors and discussing the uncomfirmed possibilities and the pros and cons of each.

    Have a nice day.

  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    If you read the entire conversation (lots more posts to amuse you!), you'll see that I have been consistently describing all information on the subject as simply rumors. When I wrote, "the best information", I was referring to rumors from people who actually have a clue and get some insider information from time to time. I make that disctinction because there are gobs of other rumors out there based only on what some people "think" will be coming.

    For the source of those rumors, try the articles section at TOV. (I think Edmunds will allow me to say at least that much.) If it makes you feel any better, the concept RD-X shown at the auto show last year was powered by a four banger.

    As for the success of Audi, Volvo, and Saab, only Audi has had real success here in the US. And a large number of the cars they sell are naturally aspirated. If you look at sales of thier turbo-powered models alone, the picture does't look so rosey.

    Lastly, I don't recall anyone saying that Acura is breaking new ground. Other than to say that the RDX is new ground for the Acura line-up.
  • So I was browsing the web and found this european Honda. Does anyone else see the resemblance? Please post!

    I think the FR-V and the RDX might be twins (or based on each other). I also think that the RDX pictured here is almost exactly what you are going to get. Take for example the 2004 TL. The top photo is of the concept car, the bottom is of the production car.

  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    The FR-V (aka Edix) is based on the global small car platform. It replaced the old Stream in the UK and Asian markets. That's the same platform used for the Civic, Element, and CR-V. Being an MPV, the need for interior space is important. So the chassis most closely resembles the Element. It just has more traditional rear doors.

    About the closest thing we have here in the US is the Mazda5.

    Sorry. For my part, I don't see any physical resemblance. It looks like a combination of the Odyssey and the Civic Si hatchback. I mean, there are a few shared styling cues, but no more than I could count with other Honda models.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I see them from different angles.

    FR-V is a small platform made roomy, taller especially. Looks very space efficient.

    RDX looks wider, more squat and sporty. It's hard to explain but it seems like a smaller vehicle built on a bigger platform.

    Vague, I know. Sorry. :)

  • I hope Acura breaks with tradition and puts an engine tuned for regular gas in the RDX product.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    According (pun not intended) to the Acura exec who showed the concept RDX, the vehicle is based on a new light truck platform.

    Maybe new means completely new from the ground up. Or maybe it just means a platform which has not been used for trucks before. The general consensus is that it will be a new variant on the Global Mid-Size car platform (Accord, TSX, TL, etc.).

    Personally, I'm thinking/hoping it will most closely resemble the TSX underpinnings. That chassis has far more performance potential than the Civic/RSX platform. Real Time Racing chose the TSX for their race cars (they still have one or two RSXs). Wining the SCCA Manufacturer's Championship kinda validates that choice.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Sorry, I see no resemblance whatsoever. However, I do see a hint of X5 in the C pillar and rear window, and the belt-line!
  • Why not go with the V6 hybrid featured in the Honda Accord Hybrid?

    3.0L 255 hp (05 version) 232 ft/lbs torque.
    Regular Unleaded gas

    The accord hybrid weighs 3501 lbs. EPA 29/37 MPG so configured.

    For comparison, the heaviest CR-V weighs 3494... and 181 inches long.
    MDX weighs 4500 lbs, 188 inches long.

    RD-X is "7 inches shorter than MDX"... per Edmunds RDX Future Vehicle page... which puts it roughly equal in length to the CR-V... give it a wider track, more features, noise insulation, heavier engine, transmission, larger wheels/tires etc, lets push up the RD-X about 4000 lbs.

    I think the Accord Hybrid V6 would be a good match... perhaps they'll tweak the base V6 or update the IMA and improve the 232 ft/lbs torque. Mileage might not contend with EPA estimates for Mercury Mariner (31ish MPG), but could still be at/above 30 on the highway.

    I'd be a buyer of this configuration at $33k without Nav.

    Full disclosure: I owned an '04 FX35 with the Sport 20"s... 280 HP/270 ft-lbs Torque... 189 inches, 4110 lbs (RWD). 17/23 MPG... I paid roughly $36k for a nice Sport-Touring RWD version sans nav... but when gas hit $3 I was hurting. City MPG often at/below 15...

    A Hybrid RD-X at $33-35k and 25+ MPG could re-set the agenda for Lux/Sport SUV's.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That's my guess. They can't get enough batteries.

    And while hybrids are hot now, they still make up a tiny percentage of the market. This might limit the audience.

  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    While a hybrid would be a good option, they couldn't get away will selling only that one configuration. Costs are too high... Market is too small. They'd need a more traditional engine, as well. That almost doubles the costs of production.

    This is supposed to be a relatively low volume vehicle to begin with. So they've got to make money on every unit they sell. Hybrids don't do that. Honda can't afford to build a loss-leader on this platform.
  • Interesting... I remember one of the limiting factors for the growth in things like laptops and cell phones was battery life, and battery availability.

    Supply problems!

    Volume would help, but they need substantial capacity, and batteries are needed for everything, these days. Good investment, probably.

    That Honda V6 Hybrid, with variations, could be used in lots of Honda/Acura vehicles as an option, provided they can get the supply issues worked out. There is enough demand, even at premium prices, for the variant.

    What's the latest on RD-X launch date? Anyone actually pre-order or reserve one at a dealership?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Toyota has a capacity issue and the NEC Lamilion technology caught their eye. Next thing you know, they've purchased an 8.7% stake in Fuji Heavy Industries (who also owns Subaru) from GM to be first in line for all that supply of batteries.

    Right now hybrids use NiMH but pretty soon they'll be using Li-ion batteries like the ones FHI makes.

  • rihoopsrihoops Posts: 91
    I'm tired of guessing about this %$#^ car. I bought a TSX because I was so tired of waiting for it to come out. If it is overpriced for a honda product, it won't sell because of the glut of MDX's on dealer lots.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Take it easy, consider a switch to decaf. :P

    Acura is happy, you bought one anyway! The new model wouldn't have the discounts, and next time you're shopping again they might, so no biggie.

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