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2019 Acura RDX: What You Need to Know

US News & World Report - Cars logo US News & World Report - Cars 6/27/2019 U.S. News & World Report
a car driving on a road: 2019 Acura RDX© American Honda Motor Co., Inc. 2019 Acura RDX

The redesigned 2019 Acura RDX finishes in the top third of our luxury compact SUV rankings. The new RDX delivers on all fronts: It's spacious, enjoyable to drive, and loaded with technology.

The 2019 Acura RDX is ranked:

Is the Acura RDX a Good SUV?

Yes, the Acura RDX is an excellent SUV. Its turbo-four engine has more horsepower than many rivals' engines, and it delivers engaging performance. This Acura handles well and rides smoothly. Inside, the RDX provides plenty of space and looks great. The seats are comfortable, there are plenty of standard and available tech features, and cargo space is above average for the class. If all that weren’t enough, we named the RDX our 2019 Best Luxury Compact SUV for the Money because it has the best combination of quality and value in its class. We also named it our 2019 Best Luxury Compact SUV for Families because of its great combination of cargo and passenger space, safety and reliability ratings, positive reviews from automotive journalists, and available family-friendly features.

Should I Buy the Acura RDX?

As detailed above, there are plenty of reasons to like the RDX, including value. This Acura has a lower starting price than several competitors, which means that it offers plenty of bang for your buck. Still, the luxury compact SUV class features some outstanding vehicles; you may also want to check out the Audi Q5 and BMW X3.

Should I Buy a New or Used Acura RDX?

The 2019 RDX is redesigned, meaning it's the first model year of a new generation. The changes are plentiful. Gone is the V6 engine that powered the previous generation. Instead, the 2019 RDX has a turbocharged four-cylinder that's nearly as powerful and more fuel-efficient.

The 2019's cabin looks more modern and upscale than the previous model’s, and there's more cargo space behind the rear seats (though the 2018 RDX has slightly more total space). The new RDX also has more standard and available tech features, including a much larger infotainment screen, Acura's new True Touchpad Interface (TTI), a surround-view camera, lane departure warning, and a head-up display.

It is possible for you to save money by shopping for a used 2018 or older RDX instead (potentially thousands of dollars with the 2017 RDX, for example), but you won't get the benefits of the vehicle's redesign. If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2018 RDX review to help you decide if you can live without the 2019 model's upgrades.

We Did the Research for You: 16 Reviews Analyzed

Our car reviews include everything you need to know before heading to the dealership. We combine the opinions of the automotive press with quantifiable data like crash test results and reliability ratings to form a complete picture of every vehicle we rank.

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U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking vehicles since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. Our car reviews are objective. To keep them that way, our editorial staff doesn’t accept expensive gifts or trips from automakers, and a third party handles all the advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Acura RDX Cost?

The RDX starts at a little over $37,000. That's below the median starting price for a luxury compact SUV, though some rivals do still have lower base prices than this Acura. Fully loaded, the RDX costs around $45,500. The high-end price range for the class is roughly $35,000 to $88,000.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Acura dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Acura deals page.

Acura RDX Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Acura RDX or BMW X3?

The BMW X3 is known as one of the most athletic small crossover SUVs on the market, and it certainly handles well. It also gets slightly better gas mileage than the RDX, though the Acura has a more powerful base engine. The RDX also feels more upscale inside, offers a longer features list, and has a lower base price. Both SUVs have above-average cargo capacity and two rows of spacious seats. In the end, both are fine vehicles, but the Acura is the better choice.

Which Is Better: Acura RDX or Audi Q5?

The Audi Q5 comes standard with all-wheel drive and – like the RDX – delivers a driving experience that's enjoyable, but not the most athletic. The Acura's base engine is more powerful, but the Q5 offers a performance-oriented model unlike any RDX trim. Inside, these are two comfortable, upscale SUVs. Cargo space is similar, and both offer a litany of features. In a close matchup like this, you may just want to pick the less expensive option: the Acura.

RDX Interior

How Many People Does the RDX Seat?

The RDX seats five, and it does so in style. The seats are comfortable and supportive, and you won't feel cramped – even in the back seat.

RDX and Car Seats

The RDX comes with two full sets of LATCH child-seat connectors. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the RDX's LATCH system a Good+ rating (its highest rating) for ease of use.

RDX Interior Quality

This Acura impresses with its interior. It looks great and uses premium materials throughout. In fact, the RDX makes a decent case for having the nicest cabin in the class.

RDX Cargo Space

Compared to many other luxury compact SUVs, the RDX provides a good amount of cargo space. With all seats in use, you’ll get nearly 30 cubic feet – enough room to cart the family’s golden retriever around, with some space to spare. Fold the rear seats down, and you’ll get about 59 cubic feet of room, letting you haul large outdoor items. There is also an under-floor storage compartment for stowing valuables out of sight.

RDX Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

Standard features include a panoramic moonroof, Bluetooth, two USB ports, a nine-speaker audio system, satellite radio, a 10.2-inch infotainment screen, mobile hot-spot capability, Apple CarPlay, Siri Eyes Free, and AcuraLink. Available features include GPS-linked climate control, a 12- or 16-speaker ELS audio system, two additional USB ports, and navigation.

The infotainment system uses Acura's True Touchpad Interface (TTI) control system, which features a touchpad controller on the center console. There's a learning curve, but once you’re used to the system, you’ll find it more intuitive and user-friendly than some competitors' setups.

RDX Performance

RDX Engine: Plenty of Power for the Class

The RDX features a 272-horsepower turbo-four engine, which is more powerful than many competitors' engines. It never feels overmatched in any driving situation, and it even makes the RDX feel pretty quick.

RDX Gas Mileage: Pretty Good Numbers

The RDX gets slightly better fuel economy than some of its peers, earning 22 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. You'll save about $100 per year on gas in the RDX compared to the Audi Q3. However, the RDX will cost you about $150 more per year on gas than the BMW X3 and $100 more than the Audi Q5.

RDX Ride and Handling: An Enjoyable Drive

This Acura may not deliver sports-car-like handling, and some rivals offer a more supple ride. However, the RDX still handles winding roads better than many of its class rivals, and it absorbs road imperfections with little trouble. This makes it easy – and fairly engaging – to drive.

RDX Reliability

Is the Acura RDX Reliable?

The 2019 RDX earns an above-average predicted reliability rating of four out of five from J.D. Power.

Acura RDX Warranty

Acura covers the RDX with a four-year/50,000-mile limited warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

RDX Safety

RDX Crash Test Results

The 2019 RDX earned a perfect five-star overall crash test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named it a Top Safety Pick+, which is its highest honor.

RDX Safety Features

Standard driver assistance features include AcuraWatch and a rearview camera. AcuraWatch is a suite of active safety features that includes adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, road departure mitigation, and lane departure warning.

Available features include a head-up display, a surround-view camera, front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

Which Acura RDX Model Is Right for Me?

Every Acura RDX comes standard with a 272-horsepower turbo-four engine, a 10-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive. You can add all-wheel drive for $2,000.

As far as picking a trim, you only have one choice, but there are three major option packages (Technology, A-Spec, and Advance) that you can add to get additional features. The RDX with Technology package makes a great choice for most buyers; it adds some nice tech features beyond what comes standard, but it still costs thousands of dollars less than a fully loaded RDX.

Acura RDX Standard

The RDX Standard has a base price of $37,300. Standard features include a panoramic moonroof, Bluetooth, two USB ports, a nine-speaker audio system, satellite radio, a 10.2-inch infotainment screen, Apple CarPlay, AcuraLink, a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, road departure mitigation, and lane departure warning.

Acura RDX Technology Package

The RDX Technology package starts at $40,500. The Technology package adds Milano leather upholstery, GPS-linked climate control, a 12-speaker ELS audio system, two additional USB ports, navigation, front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

Acura RDX A-Spec

The RDX A-Spec has a starting price of $43,500. The A-Spec package adds ventilated front seats, a 16-speaker ELS audio system, and some performance and styling upgrades.

Acura RDX Advance Package

The RDX Advance package starts at $45,400. This setup includes just about every feature you can get in an RDX, including features like heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a head-up display, a surround-view camera, and more.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Acura dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Acura deals page.

The Final Call

The redesigned 2019 Acura RDX earns lots of praise, and deservedly so. Whether you want an athletic vehicle, a luxurious interior, or a lot of tech features, this small crossover delivers. That's why it finishes near the top of our luxury compact SUV rankings.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

Read the full 2019 Acura RDX review on U.S. News & World Report for more details, photos, specs and prices.

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