I really like the 2nd gen 'V. In fact, if they were out last summer, I think I might have chosen one over the MDX. The three primary things I wanted that my 1st gen 2WD CR-V LX lacked was a sunroof, a bit more room and 4WD made by Honda (not Isuzu), and at the time the MDX was my only option. Most of the other stuff the MDX has is wonderful, but stuff I could probably have lived without. In fact, there are several things on the 2nd gen 'V that I wish were on my 'X. These are, in descending order of importance:
1) width. Sometimes I wish my 'X wasn't quite as wide. The ATV trails at the Ocala N.F. I used to enjoy in my old 'V are totally out of the question for the 'X
Even in the 'V it took very careful driving to avoid the jungle limbs on either side of the narrow trail. Also, my wife wants to get a Solara (much wider than her current car) and the thought of trying to fit both in my garage has me worried. I already have to perform minor gymnastic stunts to get out of my 'X when her car is in the garage.
2) pass through betwwen the front seats. My wife really liked this feature in our old 1st gen 'V as it allowed her to tangle with GG Jr. in the back seat. There's nothing scarier than watching your wife try to vault over the center console of the 'X (with her shoes on the leather seats) while driving 75 mph down the highway.
3) glass hatch that opens seperately from tailgate. I really missed this recently when I had to bring home my new lawn mower (a Honda of course
). In my old 'V, I had to take my old lawnmower up to the shop for repairs several times and all I had to do was roll it in and let the handle bars stick out the glass hatch. When I brought home my new one in the 'X, I had to tilt the mower up in the air in order to get the handlebars inside the tailgate. Then I had to drive with one hand and hold the mower with my other hand to keep it from hitting the leather seats. Of course, I probably could have just disassebled the handle, but I'm lazy.
4) Picnic table/fish tub. I never actually used the picnic table in my 1st gen 'V, but the area underneath (aka the plastic fish tub) was used for my custom 12" sub enclosure. This allowed for total stealthiness and unbelievably pure and clean bass as it was underground so to speak and perfectly centered. In my 'X, I had to have a box built for it and it takes up space in the back, is not stealthy, and just doesn't sound as good
As for the 10" factory Bose sub, I could never even tell it was working and even though I'm not a rapper, I HAVE to have excellent bass for my listening pleasure (I like drum intensive rock).
5) regular fuel. I still don't quite understand how the Oddy has the same hp on regular fuel, while I'm required (I think?) to burn premium
The 'V gets 22/26 mpg (auto EX) on regular fuel, so the fuel savings would have been substantial. The performance penalty is not that much. I've seen auto 2nd gen 'Vs tested at 8.9 sec 0-60, and 5 speeds at 8.4 seconds, which is only .1 to .4 sec slower than the 'X. In fact, one of the major reviewers (Edmunds, C&D or MT, can't remember which) tested a 5 spd 'X and actually did the 1/4 mile 0.1 sec quicker (at same mph) on a rain slicked test track than the 'X. Of course, the auto 'V was not as fast as the 'X, but still faster than the ML 320
6) cupholders. even though the 'X has 10 cupholders, I much preferred the cupholders in the 'V. The ones in the center console of the 'X are not much use IMO as they wind up behind my shoulder even with the seat all the way back. That leaves me with two behind the gear shift, which if they spill, makes a mess out of everything. In my old 'V, I had two that popped out of the dash that were great cuz if they spilled it would land on the floor mats below (great for fries). It also had two in the flip down center table that were very handy as well. That meant I had 4 very useable cupholders up front, unlike two just adequate cupholders in the 'X. Hmmm...with all the fast food I eat maybe I should have listed this one first
7) intermittent rear wiper. Not a big deal, and Acura has added this to the '02 'X. But I wish my '01 had it.
8) auto up driver's window. Again, not a big deal, but you'd think the 'X (which costs almost twice as much) would have had this feature found on the 2nd gen 'V. Not available for '02 'X either AFAIK.
9) rear windows that roll all the way down. This again is minor, but with my rear windows tinted as dark as they are, it makes it difficult for GG Jr. to see out the window when I roll them down.
10) full size spare. Again, not a big deal and several forum members have added this themselves. But I was rather dissapointed to learn about this considering that I like to go off-roading.
In EX trim, the 'V also has slide and tilt moonroof, 6 disc in dash CD, ABS, side airbags and sunglass holder just like the 'X, slightly better head and leg room, especially in the rear seat (but worse shoulder and hip room), slightly better ground clearance, and better approach and departure angles (but worse breakover).
What it primarily lacks compared to the 'X is lockable rear diff (not that necessary for the generally flat trails here in Fla), leather, 7 row seating (which I've rarely used), beefiness which helps safety and tow capacity, nav (which I don't have or miss anyway), climate control, dual zone cc, power seats, trip computer, homelink (but according to CR-V Engineer the Oddy unit will fit the 'V), and several other neat gizmos. The 'V also only has 72 cu ft of cargo capacity compared to the 81 in the 'X, but I think 72 would have been enough for my needs (especially with the seperately opening hatch), and compared to the X5 it's still huge
Anyway, this may sound blasphemous, but I'm wondering if I should have waited and just gotten the 2nd gen 'V instead. I LOVE the 'X, but for MY needs I think the 2nd gen 'V might have sufficed and I could have gotten a pair of top of the line waverunners for the money I would have saved
Plus I really like them in silver