2012 Acura MDX Continues to Deliver Benchmark Performance, Comfort and Control
The award-winning Acura MDX luxury SUV continues to be the category benchmark for styling, performance and safety for 2012. Currently in its second generation, the MDX offers tremendous appeal thanks to a wide array of available technology features designed to make driving more enjoyable, more productive and safer.
The 2012 MDX continues to deliver eye-catching looks as a result of Acura's signature design front grille, a bold front fascia, a rear fascia with integrated polished stainless-steel exhaust finishers, sleek taillights with bright LED lights, and bold 18-inch diameter 5-spoke aluminum wheels. An available Advance Package (with items such as the Active Damper System and 19-inch 7-spoke aluminum wheels) further enhances handling while retaining the comfortable, quiet and controlled ride quality expected of a luxury vehicle.
Inside, the 2012 MDX treats occupants with leather-trimmed seats, a thick sport-style steering wheel with racing-inspired paddle shifters, bold design gauges and available ventilated front seats. In addition, a host of driver relevant technology is available including AcuraLink® Satellite Communication System, Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™, AcuraLink Real-Time Traffic with Traffic Rerouting™, and AcuraLink Real-Time Weather™ with radar image maps. Other available features include a full VGA 8-inch navigation screen, a rear view camera with three unique view choices, rear entertainment system with a full VGA color screen, an audio system with 15 gigabytes of dedicated hard disk drive (HDD) space for music along with USB port and AUX jack connectivity.
"Long considered the benchmark in its class, the MDX has always provided equal parts sport and utility," said Jeff Conrad, vice president of Acura sales. "Add in Acura's plentiful use of cutting-edge technology, and you can see why the MDX is so popular."
In keeping with Acura's leadership in the application of advanced, customer-relevant features, the 2012 MDX is available with an array of cutting edge technologies including Acura's unique Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and a blind spot information system (BSI).
The 2012 MDX uses a 3.7-liter V-6 engine that provides V-8 level power while retaining the size and fuel efficiency of a 6-cylinder engine. The 3.7L develops 300 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque to provide quick throttle response, outstanding low- and mid-range torque and excellent high-rpm power. To widen the powerband while simultaneously improving fuel efficiency, the 3.7L V-6 has the patented Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control (VTEC®) system applied to the intake valves, a computer controlled dual-stage intake manifold and an electronic Drive-by-Wire™ throttle system.
Internally, the 3.7L V-6 makes use of special heavy-duty components including a cast-aluminum cylinder block, high-strength crankshaft, heavy-duty connecting rods, high compression-ratio pistons, high-flow aluminum cylinder heads with integrated exhaust manifolds, unique long-reach spark plugs and other features.
EPA estimated city/highway/combined fuel mileage of 16/21/18 mpg* and a large 21-gallon fuel capacity mean the MDX is perfect for long drives. Like all 2012 Acura vehicles, the MDX complies with the latest EPA TIER 2 – BIN 5 and CARB LEV II ULEV emissions standards.
The 3.7L V-6 is coupled with a Sequential SportShift 6-speed automatic transmission that works with a special multi-clutch torque converter. With comparatively short gearing in the first five forward gears, acceleration is enhanced- while fuel efficiency and quiet cruising are optimized with a relaxed Sixth gear ratio.
The Sequential SportShift transmission offers two automatic shift modes, or can be operated fully manually via racing-inspired steering wheel paddle shifters. Grade Logic Control, Shift Hold Control, Cornering G Shift Control and Hill Start Assist make the 6-speed the most advanced automatic transmission ever offered by Acura. To support the MDX's 5,000 pound towing capacity, a front-mount transmission fluid cooler is standard equipment.
The MDX puts power to the ground through Acura's acclaimed Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ system. SH-AWD® is an innovative full-time all-wheel-drive system that uses torque vectoring to actively distribute the optimum amount of power not only between the front and rear axles, but also between the left and right rear wheels. With torque vectoring (and by selectively overdriving one outside rear wheel while cornering), the yaw moment of the MDX can be controlled throughout a turn which reduces understeer to greatly enhance handling precision and cornering ability. Working in conjunction with the MDX's standard Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with traction control, SH-AWD® provides enhanced power delivery and driver control whether it be on-road or off-road, in dry, rain, snow or ice.
When towing, special Trailer Stability Assist algorithms built into the VSA® logic help stabilize the vehicle after sensing oscillations of the vehicle or trailer. The MDX's SH-AWD® system is further enhanced with hill logic that automatically adjusts the front/rear torque distribution based on the incline of the road.
With an emphasis on top-level handling performance, MDX engineers targeted the world-class dynamics and driving feel of the top European SUV competitors. This led to the development of a long wheelbase platform and a sophisticated suspension system tuned at the famed Nürburgring race circuit in Germany
The MDX's 4-wheel fully-independent suspension makes use of MacPherson struts in front teamed with a multi-link rear suspension that is mounted to a rigid unit body structure with isolated subframes. The front suspension also uses unique hydro-compliance bushings that provide excellent ride isolation and chassis vibration control. The rear suspension features aluminum uprights to reduce unsprung weight for improved response, while special trailing-arm mounting points reduce body squat during acceleration.
As part of the available Advance Package, the Active Damper System gives the 2012 MDX an elevated level of handling precision designed to satisfy the most discriminating drivers- all while maintaining a smooth ride. The MDX's Active Damper System features special algorithms that provide two driver-selectable settings-Comfort and Sport-that tailor the suspension dampers for a more comfortable or more sporting ride.
Using "active" Magneto-Rheological fluid dampers and predictive computer algorithms, the MDX's Active Damper System can respond in as little as five milliseconds (0.005 sec.) to individually adjust the damping force of the shock absorbers ahead of actual body movements to provide improved transient handling, road isolation and body control.
The Comfort mode allows for a more relaxed driving experience by prioritizing road isolation and reduced passenger fatigue caused by road inputs, while the Sport mode prioritizes handling response and vehicle body control to allow for spirited driving with high levels of precision and vehicle composure.
For excellent stopping power and control, the MDX employs 13.0-inch diameter ventilated front brake rotors and 13.1-inch solid rear brake rotors along with anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist.
Attention to detail and supple luxury distinguishes the MDX interior from competitors. Generous use of Milano premium leather with the available Technology Package, excellent look and feel of interior trim materials, front seat headrests with excellent comfort, upscale leather stitching (such as the Lancia-style stitching on the steering wheel and shift knob), a thick steering wheel grip, and copious use of LED interior lighting make it clear that the MDX is focused on top tier luxury.
The MDX features sport contoured front seats with power actuated 10-way adjustability for the driver seat and 8-way adjustability for the passenger front seat. The second-row outboard seats mirror the style and lateral support of the front seats, giving the interior a unique feel that highlights the MDX's blend of sport and utility. Convenience and cargo features abound, including under-floor storage in the rear cargo area and a standard power-operated rear tailgate.
There are multiple configurations of the MDX's three rows of seating allowing for seven passengers, or enabling a maximum useable cargo volume of 83.5 cubic feet with center and rear seats folded. With all seats folded down, the MDX has a flat load floor that is perfect for hauling bulky items.
The MDX offers a formidable list of standard equipment including items such as a leather trimmed interior, power moonroof, power windows, leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel with racing-inspired paddle shifters, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with integrated rear view camera and a tri-zone climate control system with humidity control. Also included are numerous high-tech features such as Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® wireless telephone interface, a Multi-Information Display (MID) that allows access to multiple electronic functions and LED backlit instrumentation. Standard with the MDX is an 8-speaker, 253-watt Acura Premium Sound System that features an AM/FM tuner, in-dash 6-disc CD changer, WMA player, MP3 capability, XM® Radio and an auxiliary jack for the connectivity of personal audio devices.
An available Technology Package adds a range of advanced features designed to offer drivers increased connectivity to the world around them along with added driving enjoyment. In addition to using luxurious full-grain Milano premium leather for the seating surfaces, the Technology Package delivers the Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™ system that uses a full VGA high-resolution 8-inch color display positioned high up in the center of the instrument panel where it is close to the driver's line of sight. The display also works with a unique rearview camera system that offers three different rear view angles- normal rear view, wide angle rear view and a tow-friendly top view.
The navigation system includes AcuraLink Real-Time Traffic™ with Traffic Rerouting™ that can display continuously updated traffic information including freeway flow, incident, construction and weather related incidents in more than 130 major metropolitan areas. With data stored on a built-in 60 GB hard disk drive (HDD) media storage device, the MDX navigation system boots up and operates with impressive speed. AcuraLink Real-Time Weather™ with weather radar image maps is part of the Technology Package and includes other useful functions such as 1- and 3-day weather forecasts. The Technology Package also includes a GPS-linked, solar-sensing tri-zone climate control system that automatically adjusts the air temperature and fan speed according to the position of the sun.
A popular aspect of the Technology Package is Acura's renowned Acura/ELS Surround® 10-speaker Premium Audio System featuring a 410-watt Digital Sound Processor amplifier along with 15-gigabytes of built-in hard disk drive (HDD) media storage that allows the MDX owner to download and store about 3,500 songs** for later playback. The Acura/ELS Surround® premium audio system offers DVD-Audio, DTS™, CD, AM/FM radio, XM® Radio with Note function music reminder, Bluetooth® Audio, along with USB port and AUX jack connectivity.
The 2012 MDX is rich with cutting edge technology features including an Advance Package that replaces and goes beyond the previously available Sport Package. The Advance Package also includes the Collision Mitigating Braking System™ (CMBS™), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), blind spot information system (BSI) and the Active Damper System. Inside the cockpit, the Advance Package adds ventilated front seats with specially contoured seat foam covered by perforated Milano premium leather, a sport steering wheel with unique design racing-inspired paddle shifters on the steering wheel and textured metallic interior accents. On the outside, the Advance Package delivers 19x8-inch 7-spoke aluminum wheels and auto-leveling HID front headlights.
An available Entertainment Package includes a Rear Entertainment System (RES) complete with a DVD player, power folding full VGA 9-inch color screen (with 400-percent improved resolution versus the previous screen design), dual wireless headphones, a wireless illuminated remote control and 115-volt plug located in the center console.
In keeping with Acura's "Safety Through Innovation" initiative, the 2012 MDX provides excellent safety for its passengers, including the application of Acura's Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure.
ACE™ is an exclusive body design that enhances occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal crashes. ACE™ utilizes a network of connected structural elements to distribute crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle. This enhanced frontal crash energy management helps to reduce the forces transferred to the passenger compartment and can help to more evenly disperse the forces transferred to other vehicles in a crash.
In addition, a special frame member located below the MDX's front bumper is designed to engage the front bumper of a lower vehicle, allowing the bumper systems of both vehicles to attenuate crash energy more efficiently.
Numerous standard "active safety" features that help the MDX driver reduce the risk of collision include Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) along with an anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist. An additional active safety feature included in the available Advance Package is the Collision Mitigating Braking System™ (CMBS™) which helps the driver reduce the likelihood of a collision by alerting the driver to potential collision situations and activating the brakes if the system determines a collision likely is unavoidable.
Inside the handsomely appointed MDX interior, occupants will find advanced safety features including the latest generation of dual-stage, multiple-threshold airbags for the driver and front passenger. There are also knee bolsters, front seatbelts with an automatic tensioning system with integrated load limiters, side airbags for the driver and front passenger along with side curtain airbags (with a rollover sensor) for all outboard seat locations. Active front head restraints help reduce the likelihood of neck injury for front seat passengers in rear impacts and LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) mounting systems in the second row seating allow quick and convenient installation of child seats.
Developed by Acura designers and engineers in California and Ohio, and tested in the company's advanced safety laboratories in Raymond, Ohio, the MDX is assembled in Alliston, Ontario, Canada.
Like all 2012 Acura models, the MDX is covered by a comprehensive 4-year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty and a 6-year/70,000 powertrain limited warranty. Additional ownership benefits include Acura Total Luxury Care® (TLC®), which provides free 24-hour roadside assistance, concierge service and trip routing.
Acura offers a full line of technologically advanced performance luxury vehicles through a network of 271 dealers within the United States. The 2012 Acura lineup features six distinctive models including the RL luxury performance sedan, the TL performance luxury sedan, the TSX sports sedan and Sport Wagon, the turbocharged RDX luxury crossover SUV, the award-winning MDX luxury sport utility vehicle and the ZDX four door sports coupe.
For additional information, photos and videos of the 2012 MDX (or information on any Acura vehicle), please visit www.acuranews.com.
*Based on 2012 EPA mileage estimates. Use for comparison purposes only. Do not compare to models before 2008. Your actual mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle
**Approximate capacity based on an average size of 4.0 MB per song at a 128kbps bitrate