I picked up my first gen MDX back in 2001. I picked it over RX350, X5, and ML320 because it was best balanced against my search criteria: price, utility, performance. 4 years later, I picked second MDX after comparing it against the same competitors: RX350, X5, and ML350. Again, the same criteria: price, utility, performance. Neither of the 2 ownership experiences was perfect, but nowhere near what my friends described while owning BMW/MB, so I though I'd give Lexus a GO next.
Maybe if I picked up Japanese-built RX, I would be happier, but the one from Canada turned up to be nothing special, with its own issues. Glorified Lexus Service turned out to be just as good as Acura's (in my experience with 3 separate dealerships in Tri-State area), but almost TWICE EXPENSIVE.
I needed 7-seater SUV again, and after comparing GX, Q7, and GL (JX35 was not considered due to its boring looks and underpowered tran w/CVT) --> back to MDX #3.
To me, after 12 years, MDX still provides the most bang for your buck in mid-luxury SUV category. Due to discounts, we picked up top model and so far very happy with ADVANCE.
In 3-4 years, will be looking at MDX first, given the history... But dual tail pipes delete (or even tacked under the bumper) will significantly reduce my interest in it's favor... Just saying Acura!
2015 Acura MDX Advance w/ENT
2012 Acura MDX Advance
2010 Lexus RX 350
2005 Acura MDX Touring
2001 Acura MDX