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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
i currently use a 2003 acura mdx, love it. over the years its mileage has been coming down significantly. i have seen it deliver 24mpg on hway and 20mpg in city but now in midwest winters its come down to 14 mpg, i guess the constant running heater affects the mpg significantly. during non-winter, i get 16.5 - 19.5 mpg for short (<10 m) commute.
i also had to get some routine maintenance and one off repair done that has averaged $150/mo for 2013. 2014 is looking like $150/mo maintenance as well. With gas, I am looking at $250-300 per month on the car. seems very high. low cost color copy at 55 printing
I dont want to spend enough $$ to get another MDX and the mileage on the new ones is no better. MDX is really good on space and I made good use of the space a number of times. Im really going to miss the space. All other 7 seaters seem to be in the same mpg range 17-24.
I would like to replace the current one with a family safe, good mpg, low maintenance, moderately luxurious, good space car / suv. any suggestions are welcome.
if you think my reasoning for replacing the mdx ($300/mo expense) is not valid, you can say so.
 

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The current low mpgs you have with your 03 1st gen would be the best mpgs you can get with the 2nd Gen MDX. The 2nd gen 07-09 MDX would be in the ball park in price range; but, it is also around the time you will start to see the same type wear/tear issues and repair costs as with your current 03 MDX.

If mpgs are a concern, I would skip the 2nd Gen 07-13 MDX and 1st Gen 07-12 RDX. Those models lean more towards performance and handling. I have both models and mid/high teens mpgs are the norms for me for commuter driving (high teens/low 20s on hwy at +75 mpg).

If you are already spending $300 per month and can still swing that, I would expand the search into:
  • Honda Pilot (high teens/low 20s mpgs)
  • Honda CR-V (current CR-V comes very close in space/size minus 3rd row as 1st gen MDX)
  • +13 Acura RDX (+22 city/+26 hwy)
  • +14 Acura MDX (+22 city/+26 hwy)
Not a guarantee; but, you would be trading a car payment for your current monthly maintenance cost.
 
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