Firstly, I'm not claiming either vehicle is 'better'. However, I think the differences will be more than just styling and doodads
. Many people have commented that the driving experience is very different between the two vehicles. Some people have noted how the MDX handles more like a car rather than SUV. On the other hand, how Pilots drive more like a SUV.
You have repeatedly noted we needed to wait to drive the new Pilot because the vehicles are built on the same platform. I’m sorry, but I’m not quite sure how you hope the shared platform will affect the driving characteristics of the Pilot. It's true that we haven't actually driven the new Pilot yet, but I think it's safe to say that sharing the same (or similar) platform does not necessarily mean sharing the same driving characteristics.
The Pilot and MDX have traditionally shared
platforms; that notion is not new. That said, every MDX generation has been more performance-based compared to its cousin Pilot. For example, this video
shows a comparison of the last generation between the two. While the drag race times were very similar, both drivers commented that MDX was more fun to drive. See also TLX vs Accord and Integra vs Civic, etc
. They have shared or similar platforms, but different driving experiences.
While the vehicles might share or have similar platforms (even shared parts sometimes), Acura has traditionally tuned its counterparts for more performance. As noted in that earlier video, both vehicles essentially had the same engine but the output was fairly different. In addition, as you noted in one of your other posts, the SH-AWD and iVTM-4 systems are mechanically very similar but they are tuned differently. Here's a video
showing some differences in the same 2019 model year. Yes, the new Pilot will likely get the latest version of the iVTM-4 as the 2022 MDX did with its latest version of SH-AWD, but there will likely still be similar tuning differences between those systems.
As well, that shared platform will have different front suspensions. The MacPherson Strut front suspension in the Pilot
would also affect the driving dynamics compared to the front double-wishbone in the MDX. ..
I don’t want this post to come across as how all of the little differences make the MDX a ‘better’ vehicle. Rather, that those differences will likely result in a different
It is fair to say that final judgment should be reserved until after we get a chance to drive the new Pilot. However, if you’re hoping the driving characteristics will be the same
as the MDX, I think you’ll be disappointed. That’s not to say that the Pilot won’t be still fun to drive in its own right, though. It’ll just be different. Whether that difference in driving experience will be enough to dissuade potential customers from the Pilot will depend on the customer. We all have different wants/needs, and priorities. The new Pilot is an impressive vehicle.
When you do get at chance to test both vehicles, I would be interested in your thoughts on both of them.