Is the 2022 Acura MDX Worth Buying Over These Luxury SUVs?

As far as luxury midsized SUVs go, the Acura MDX has always been a formidable contender, offering both value and reliability. For the 2022 model, Acura has decided to push its flagship SUV even more upmarket. The MDX now features a completely redesigned exterior, luxurious interior, and plenty of available tech. As you’d expect, luxury isn’t cheap, and as a result, the MDX got a significant price bump. This is how it compares to some of its rivals.

Here’s what’s new in the 2022 Acura MDX

While the 2022 Acura MDX looks quite similar to other models from the brand, it features a brand-new chassis and body. However, under the hood, you’ll find the familiar 3.5-liter V6 developing 290 hp and 267 lb-ft. The only transmission available is a 10-speed automatic. Additionally, all-wheel drive is available for a price bump. While these powertrain components aren’t new, they are part of what made the previous-gen MDX so robust.

In terms of tech, the 2022 Acura MDX now features a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 12.3-inch center display. Aside from catching up with competitors from BMW and Audi, these additions modernize the cabin. Speaking of the cabin, the 2022 model gets a more upscale-looking set of seats and leather trim throughout. The result is that the MDX truly looks like a luxury SUV.

However, significant upgrades tend to come with a price bump, and the 2022 Acura MDX is not immune. According to Acura, the new MDX starts at $46,900 with front-wheel drive. Opt for all-wheel drive, and the price quickly climbs to $48,900. The top trim model, however, the MDX with Advance Package, starts at $60,650. For context, the previous-gen model started at $44,500, and the highest trim started at less than $60,000.

The Lexus RX is its closest competitor

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Coming from rival carmaker Lexus, the RX is perhaps the 2020 Acura MDX’s closest competitor. In terms of performance, the Lexus is also powered by a naturally-aspirated 3.5-liter V6, although the RX develops slightly more power at 295 hp. An eight-speed automatic transmission is the only available option, and all-wheel drive is optional. Where the RX truly has the MDX beat is in price. That’s because the Lexus starts at $45,070 for the base model. However, the top trim starts at considerably cheaper than the Acura at $51,200.

However, stats alone don’t immediately take the 2022 Acura MDX out of the conversation. While the MDX offers great tech features, such as a digital instrument cluster, the Lexus is stuck with a traditional analog cluster. Additionally, this fourth-gen RX has been with us since 2015, and it is undoubtedly beginning to look a bit dated both inside and out. As a result, it may struggle to battle with its newly introduced rival.

How does the Acura stack up one of BMW’s finest SUVs?

2020 BMW X5
2020 BMW X5 | BMW

To see just how good the 2022 Acura MDX appears to be on paper, let’s stack it up against Consumer Reports‘ highest-rated luxury midsized SUV. The 2021 BMW X5 starts at just under the highest specced MDX with a base price of $59,400. For this, you get a turbocharged inline-six engine developing 335 hp. Like with both the Lexus and Acura, the BMW offers an optional all-wheel-drive system, although it shoots up the price to $61,700.

Thankfully, even the base model BMW X5 features a digital instrument cluster and a sizable infotainment screen. However, be prepared to pay up extra if you want options such as leather upholstery, remote start, a heads up display, and driver assistance features. While some of these are optional in the Acura MDX and Lexus RX, they are offered for considerably less.

Regardless, it seems the 2022 Acura MDX is a formidable competitor for the best that Lexus and BMW can offer. Once it arrives, we’ll be able to see just how it stacks up in the real world.