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Discussion Starter #1
So I was nearly 100% onboard for the 2017 MDX, until I joined this forum. It seems like there are many risks noted on the new transmission and loss of build quality, as well as interior design changes that have me ready to jump ship ( eg, 9 speed trans issues, misaligned body panels, and missing shift knob/ergonomics).

A friend introduced me to the 2016 Mazda cx-9 signature which I was shocked to find very appealing for the quality and look that gave me much of what I was looking for in the 2017 MDX. To top it off I was expecting to see a similar MDX price, but it was $10k lower. This is comparing both top models, Signature vs Advance.

I think the Mazda is lacking in air-conditioned seats and pano roof and some horsepower, however the interior is very comparable. Also, I have no idea of their reliability or track record but was impressed with what I experienced.

In conclusion, we've been Honda/Acura owners for decades because of reliability and quality. If that has changed, as many posts on here claim, it's hard to pay the extra money for a brand name.

I want to be convinced I'm wrong, please help.
 

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Mazda is more of a commuter with no soul but comparably equipped and good quality
Acura is more of a sportier drive and better top end but you pay more for that "Sportier" dynamics.

Choose your poison.
 

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Mazda's cars lately have been praised for engaging dynamics, and CX-9 is no different. The new Miata received a lot of praise from enthusiasts. Also, the car is beautifully designed, and reliability at Mazda has been very good since the Skyactiv. IMO it's a choice worth considering.

The turbo 4 is the only drawback IMO. Same knock against XC90. Also, do take into the consideration of 1st year model, but I expect it to be far better than XC90.

I don't think 2017 MDX has panoramic roof.
 

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I had a Mazda once, never again. I would never recommend owning one. Im not saying you should 100% buy the MDX, just keep looking would be my suggestion.
 

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It has been my experience, if you have doubts, believe in your gut instinct. Lots of $$$ involved when you have doubt. Get what you REALLY want.
 

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So I was nearly 100% onboard for the 2017 MDX, until I joined this forum.
Keep in mind people join forums because they have problems or are looking for advice. People don't join to praise a vehicle. They may join and then buy a vehicle and post how much they like it but its extremely uncommon to join a forum simply to rave about a purchase.

I personally would never own a Mazda. Too many friends with issues. 3 years ago the CX-9 was a deathtrap in the small overlap test. I'm sure the new one gets all the safety ratings etc but that's just one example of how recently they sucked.

And then there is resale value. Lighting your money on fire is probably smarter than buying a new Mazda. :D
 

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I had a Mazda once, never again. I would never recommend owning one. Im not saying you should 100% buy the MDX, just keep looking would be my suggestion.
Keep in mind people join forums because they have problems or are looking for advice. People don't join to praise a vehicle. They may join and then buy a vehicle and post how much they like it but its extremely uncommon to join a forum simply to rave about a purchase.

I personally would never own a Mazda. Too many friends with issues. 3 years ago the CX-9 was a deathtrap in the small overlap test. I'm sure the new one gets all the safety ratings etc but that's just one example of how recently they sucked.

And then there is resale value. Lighting your money on fire is probably smarter than buying a new Mazda. :D
Mazda used to partner with Ford, but from several reputable car reliability review sites, the data suggest that Mazda is among the tops now in quality and reliability since the divorce from Ford and implementation of Skyactiv.

For car buying, one should think about sample size - it's more important to look at evidence, rather than experience. One person's one good experience with Land Rover and one bad experience with Lexus are just one data point, no matter how emotional that may be.
 

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It seems like there are many risks noted on the new transmission and loss of build quality, as well as interior design changes that have me ready to jump ship ( eg, 9 speed trans issues, misaligned body panels, and missing shift knob/ergonomics).
- Transmission: I haven't seen a single reliability issue posted here - i.e. where the tranny flat out failed and had to be replaced. Some people complained about the shift points early on but it appears that those complaints went away after a simple software update. I don't see any evidence of a tranny issue. As far as the driveability of the tranny - just check it out yourself on an extensive test drive that includes a variety of conditions and see what 'you' think. Disclaimer - I have a 2014 with the 6 speed - not the 9 speed - just going from what I read here.

- Misaligned body panels: This is easily checked when you buy the vehicle. Just look at all the body alignment on the vehicle you'll end up with and see if it's acceptable to you. You won't end up with a vehicle with misaligned body panels if you spend about 2 or 3 minutes inspecting it first and don't buy one you find unacceptable.

- Missing shift knob: This will either bother you greatly or not at all most likely. It seems to me to be a silly reason not to buy a vehicle but to each his/her own. I have a 2014 that has the shifter, and I like it, but I have little doubt I could get used to the button method in no time at all regardless of my preference. One way or the other, just drive a vehicle on an extensive test drive and see how big of a deal this really is to you. Keep in mind that it seems to be the wave of the future so at some point you'll likely end up with a vehicle with a non-traditional shifter.

I think I just addressed your concerns and now you can buy an MDX if you want assuming it passes your own inspection. Don't rely too heavily in some of the comments on a forum like this - it represents way less than 1% of the MDX owners and tends to attract people talking about a problem or ranting with some enthusiasts as well and some perfectly balanced people like me. Draw your own conclusions where you can but do keep in mind certain objective information you can get from a foum like this - distinguish objective from subjective.

I'm not arguing for the MDX or against the CX-9 - they're both good vehicles as are many others. There's a plethora of vehicles that all seem to appeal to someone or else they wouldn't sell any. If you want to save even more money take a look at Hyundai. Regardless of what you think you might want don't skip the extensive test drive piece - it can immediately help you cross a vehicle off your list you thought you wanted and might put a vehicle in the final running you never thought would be there.
 

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I saw the 2017 model, but sorry the new grille is not a tasteful design (really can't compare to XC90 or CX-9). For a 2016 you should be able to get significant discount. And, don't forget: SH-AWD. Others don't have it.

I'm surprised that CX-9 came out as a 2016 model. I have been monitoring Mazda for the last 3 years. When released in the spring, all the other recent Mazda models came out as the next Model Year (CX-5, 6, 3). If it were up to me, I'd get a base CX-9 AND a Miata :).
 

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Mazda's cars lately have been praised for engaging dynamics, and CX-9 is no different.
Taking only quotes on performance:

MotorWeek said "the CX9 has numb steering and lacking dynamics"

AlexOnAutos said that "the MDX is superior in Handling and Power than the CX9"

ConsumerReports said "power comes late and the driving is boring"


Basically all Reviews I've seen comments badly on the Mazda CX9 performance..
They all praise the CX9 other strong points but make no mistake the MDX is the DRIVERS choice.

If you don´t care about driving spirited on winding roads or feeling the VTAK Kick in then by all means the Mazda is your choice.
BUT If you are a Driver Enthusiast that don´t want to lose dynamics by driving a soccer mom CUV then the MDX has little to no match in the segment.
 

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I have driven Acura's for the last 10 years but over the last 4 or 5 I feel the quality of the Acura has gone down. I also have issue with a company who likes to use the word Normal operation when a customer has a problem. I have about 5 of those Normal items on my 2015 MDX. Not that the items are car stopping or reliability issues but they are annoying and takes the enjoyment of the car out of the experience. When a dealer has seen a problem so many times that they tell you they are waiting on a fix from Acura and their hands are tied until that time comes you start to lose loyal customers because of your long time to get the problem fixed. With all that said, I don't know where you go for the perfect car because I really don't think one is made but its how you handle the customer that really counts.
 

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I usually go by Car and Driver, its first drive says "In that real world, the CX-9 is smooth and charismatic. Few drivers will push a CX-9 very hard, but it handles admirably with nicely controlled body roll and light but accurate steering... and is more entertaining and rewarding to drive than the rest of the three-row herd." That is, compared to the mainstream brands.

Obviously MDX will beat CX-9 in performance due to the V6 and SH-AWD, but for most people it doesn't matter much (the same way that most Camry drivers don't give a damn about the 10 Best awards that Accord has been getting every year).
 

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I think all this is interesting how we call these three-row SUV's. That 3rd roll is useless as far as I am concerned unless you have small children but we want to make sure we get in the 3 roll class of SUV's.
 

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I think it is a very nice complement to Mazda to be considered in the same conversation with Acura as an 3rd row SUV alternative. Not sure if I would want to purchase the most expensive home in the cheapest neighborhood compared to the cheapest home in an expensive neighborhood. The CX-9 will take a serious hit on depreciation for the upper models. A 20k-25k low miles 14 MDX tech/adv might cost the same and provide a better value than a brand new CX-9? Not sure if the same discussions are going on Lexus or Infiniti forums. If you don't need the power (towing or hwy speeds), want/need the extra room+3rd row, better handling than a mini-van, and wanted more unique styling; I can see how the Mazda would be a interesting choice over domestic SUVs/mini-vans and imports like pilot, odyssey, highlander, quest, etc...

I wish they would of made it a small displacement V-6 turbo(s) instead of an I-4t; but, we still have 1-3 gens of improvements for the CX-9 see what comes next. The more Mazda pushes ahead, the more Acura needs to do for the 4th Gen MDX to stay ahead.
 

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I think all this is interesting how we call these three-row SUV's. That 3rd roll is useless as far as I am concerned unless you have small children but we want to make sure we get in the 3 roll class of SUV's.
Most people buy such cars to haul kids. Pretty rare to haul 7 adults.

If Odyssey has AWD, I would have tried really hard to convince my wife for such a vehicle. That thing carries so much more stuff.
 

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That 3rd roll is useless as far as I am concerned unless you have small children but we want to make sure we get in the 3 roll class of SUV's.
The third row works fine for transporting adults on the occasional restaurant or similar trip and beats taking 2 cars. I've been told by the ones who have sat back there for the jaunts that it's fine for that purpose. I'm always the driver so I haven't ridden back there but I sat back there and I think it's usable for the purpose I mentioned. It wouldn't be very comfortable for a long haul but a 10-30 minute drive to a restaurant or to the beach with adults seems to be fine. It definitely adds utility even for use with adults and when it's not being used the space adds more room in the way back.

The third gen 3rd row seat is definitely more usable than the 2nd gen MDX where it was very difficult to get in and out and it didn't have the adjustable 2nd row seat like the 3rd gen has. It's one of the reasons I didn't buy a 2nd gen MDX.
 

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^ I literally don´t fit in the (2G) 3rd row.. If I sit there I cannot pull the middle row back in its place because of my knees.
But when I carry my nephews it comes pretty handy, I went to a road trip with my brother entire family (Wife, 3 kids) so it was full 7 seat capacity so we didn´t need a second car. If I had bought the RDX instead that would not be possible.
 

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The third gen 3rd row seat is definitely more usable than the 2nd gen MDX where it was very difficult to get in and out and it didn't have the adjustable 2nd row seat like the 3rd gen has. It's one of the reasons I didn't buy a 2nd gen MDX.
The added functionality and ease of use for the +14 MDX 2nd and 3rd row is a big plus compared to the 07-13 MDX. I also have to take the friggen oversized 2nd row headrest off and figure out where to store them and the 2nd row doesn't fold flat on my 11 MDX. I only need to do this maybe every other month; but, I can see it being frustrating if you needed to do this every other day.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Mazda is more of a commuter with no soul but comparably equipped and good quality
Acura is more of a sportier drive and better top end but you pay more for that "Sportier" dynamics.

Choose your poison.
Not sure if you've seen the 2016 Mazda CX-9 parked next to the 2017 MDX, but the Mazda is clearly sportier and sexier in my opinion. Also, not sure if you've driven both, but there is plenty of soul in both vehicles. The new Mazda CX-9 reminds me a lot of what the 1st Gen MDX did for it's time.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Mazda is more of a commuter with no soul but comparably equipped and good quality
Acura is more of a sportier drive and better top end but you pay more for that "Sportier" dynamics.

Choose your poison.
Mazda's cars lately have been praised for engaging dynamics, and CX-9 is no different. The new Miata received a lot of praise from enthusiasts. Also, the car is beautifully designed, and reliability at Mazda has been very good since the Skyactiv. IMO it's a choice worth considering.

The turbo 4 is the only drawback IMO. Same knock against XC90. Also, do take into the consideration of 1st year model, but I expect it to be far better than XC90.

I don't think 2017 MDX has panoramic roof.
Thanks for the correction, its seems like no pano roof on either.

The turbo 4 is very fast around town with plenty of torque for the type of daily driving that we do. It's actually very fun and handles well. Forget you're in a larger vehicle.
 
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