I gotta stop testing the REALLY nice vehicles, as really, how negative can you get about an Elite version of the 2012 Acura MDX? Okay, fine. It doesn’t have a lot of cargo space when you use the third row seating. THERE. Shocking.
The Acura is a lovely car to drive around and the Elite version gives you every bell and whistle you could dream about. It is a car made for driving. The MDX handles like a smaller sportier car, with the height and space of sports utility vehicle all wrapped up in a pretty package with a gorgeous interior trim. The 3.7-litre, SOHC VTEC® V-6 engine takes the challenge out of any road as does the all-wheel drive system. The MDX lets you kid yourself when driving this vehicle though. The automatic shift is set up more like a standard, so I could pretend to be a badass when driving it.
It is crucial to pretend to be cool when using this as a family vehicle. You can be cool while your children ride safely behind you, hopefully hidden by the tinted windows. If you are using it for the family, the car has the Latch system set up for three car seats in the second row and two in the third row. This time around, I set up the car seat on the 40 of the 60/40 split and let the other two kids either sit in the middle and other side of the 2nd row or squeeze into the third row. I was told that both positions were comfortable for them all. I think even the preschooler felt cool and they appreciated their own controls for the AC and of course the gorgeous DVD entertainment system.
I loved the hands free everything. From the Bluetooth system, XM Satellite radio, Song by Voice, USB, and a 15 GB hard drive to store all your favorite tunes. If it wasn’t hands free, it was at a simple touch of a button. I could warm or chill my butt, the car could remember how I liked my mirrors and seat positioned. The lights headlights were automatic too, and we loved the nifty ambient interior lights.
Safety is not forgotten with this car. If you are paying too much attention at being cool, this car will do its best to save your life. Front, side and curtain airbags, all-wheel drive, anti-lock brakes, stability and traction control, active headrests, tire pressure monitoring, and a rear view camera are all standard in the 2012 MDX. The Elite version I was testing also had the blind spot warning system and a ‘OH MY GOD SHE IS NOT STOPPING’ collision sensor that I was glad to not have to try out.
I felt comfortable and control in this car. The one thing that felt odd was the fabric or leather on the steering wheel. It had an odd texture that I suppose one could mitigate with cool driving gloves. The 2013 MDX Elite is running for around $63,400.