When it comes to luxury and comfort, you can’t go wrong with either the 2020 Acura MDX or the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE. The sumptuous MDX offers plenty of room and a wealth of safety and driver assists. The GLE is all-new with some pretty significant upgrades.
Both feature extremely comfortable rides offering advanced all-wheel drive and two potent powertrain options. But which is the better value?
The 2020 Acura MDX
Sure, the name “Mercedes-Benz” is synonymous with luxury, but have you taken a look at the latest Acura MDX? The team at Kelley Blue Book did. They liked it so much they gave it their 5-year Cost to Own Award for 2019 based on its reliability, reputation, and resale value.
The MDX offers you a choice of two athletic powertrains. The standard engine is a 3.5-liter V6 engine. It gets 290 hp paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. The MDX Sport Hybrid offers a 3.0-liter V6 engine and an electric motor. The hybrid powertrain has a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and gets 321 hp.
You can get Acura’s Super-Handling all-wheel drive with any model aside from the Sport Hybrid. It’s an impressive setup that enhances grip in all weather conditions and offers a fun ride.
There are three rows in the 2020 Acura MDX. Some find the interior lacking and not as swanky as some of its peers. The KBB team found the dual-screen of the infotainment system to be a little distracting.
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE
What could be more opulent than the all-new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE with its upscale cabin and cutting-edge technology? It has some off-roading chops too to go along with its impressive performance and solid safety features. You can even get massaging seats if you like.
A top-ranking luxury midsize SUV according to U.S. News, the new GLE has some fun new surprises in its fourth generation. “Hey, Mercedes” engages the new user interface in the latest GLE when you climb into a truly luxurious cabin done up in top-shelf materials. The panoramic sunroof is 50 percent bigger too. Unfortunately, the third row of seats isn’t larger.
Like the MDX, you get two engine choices. The standard is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine that gets 255 hp. There’s also an available 3.0-liter supercharged inline six-cylinder engine that puts out 362 hp.
The new GLE has an impressive new suspension. The E-ABC (E-Active Body Control) is a new intelligent suspension. Combine that with the Road and Surface Scan that analyzes the road for you using cameras, and you’re ready for almost anything. While navigation is standard on the GLE, some driver-assist technologies like adaptive cruise control and lane-keep assist aren’t.
Who does it better?
Both luxury midsize SUVs offer great engine choices, awesome AWD configurations, and comfortable rides. The team at KBB favored the 2020 Acura MDX for its standard V6 engine, high reliability and resale value, and its lower price.
The MDX is customizable with a number of available packages. The top-shelf trim offers upgraded leather, USB ports for all three rows of seats, and a 360-view parking camera. Even the most expensive MDX model has a price tag to match the base model of many of its peers. While the Acura MDX doesn’t have high-octane engines like some of its fancy rivals, it still has an excellent balance of robust power and good fuel economy to offer.
The MDX might not be as luxurious as the GLE, but it has impressive fuel economy, lots of power, and dynamic handling. It also comes with a solid list of safety features. The MDX doesn’t have the GLE’s proud European lineage, but overall, it’s a better value.