Short supply -- forever??
I really believe that Acura will have a nearly impossible time dealing with their backlog.
The different vehicles that they can churn out of the Canada & Alamaba plants are (will be) in high demand for as far forward as anyone can see...
The people who need minivans will continue to grow. Ody will just add features to win more "converts". The price edge that other makes have on the low-end is somewhat false, as even the biggest fans of GM, Ford or Mopar/Mercedes would readily admit that the Ody drives better, is quieter, is just as roomy.
The Pilot should be a blockbuster -- winning over all but the hardest core buyers of "non-luxury" SUV shoppers. Ford, GM, Isuzu, Mitsu, all should be running scared.
The MDX "availibility" is truely telling. For comparison visit any luxury SUV showroom. Near me there are Range Rover dealer, a Lexus Dealer, a BMW & a Mercedes store. There are dozens or RRs ready for delivery. Ditto on RX 300. Pretty much the same on the MLs. There are about 8 X5s. The Acura dealer has exactly 3 MDX -- and all are spoken for!
The 2003 MDX would have to have several things happen to relieve the supply situation:
(in no particular order)
a huge price increase -- if the MDX entered into 50K territory it would hurt sales
another plant or portion of a plant -- currently the capacity at Canada & Alabama is about 300K. If the MDX production were doubled it would help relive the short supply.
newly improved or all new competitor -- the RX 300 could get bigger & more powerful, so could the ML-class vehicle. I don't think VW/Porsche are currently targeting the MDX size class, but they could. Caddy( and most others) have ZERO credibility among MDX target buyers...
economic carnage -- apparently enough techies in WA got out in time to live VERY comfortably even with the dot com explosion. If things get mid-1970ish in terms of interest, unemployment & gasoline then luxy cars will be hurt (along with damn near the whole planet...)
While waiting for a 2003 might make sense if you need/want to save up and/or wait for possible enhancements, I cannot believe that any of the above situations are likely enough to happen that 2003 supply will be signficantly better than 2002. Horrifyingly, I suspect that MANY of the 2001-2002 owners would be first in line if the xenons & more power were part of the 2003 -- you'd be competing with buyers who are trading up a one or two year old MDX! Acura could easily up the price of the 2003 to mid 40K and still offer the 2001-2 buyers GREAT trade-in value. This is the Lexus/M-B/BMW pricing/certified-used strategy , and it has been increbily effective...