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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone else had this? It's really apparent if I hammer the throttle and take the engine above 4500rpms. Not a super pungent odor, but definitely noticeable. Should I be checking CV boots, transaxle, stuff like that?

No I have not hit a skunk.
 

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The exhaust on these (and most Japanese vehicles) stink big time when you floor the pedal. It's usually more of a sulphur/rotten egg smell but maybe it smells like skunk to you? If you ever follow a Honda/Toyota that is accelerating hard you'll notice it. Most likely exhaust smell is getting into the cabin. If the windows are up/sunroof closed you shouldn't be smelling it so it's possible you have an exhaust leak somewhere under the cabin. I have some steep hills I climb and if the sunroof is open the smell gets sucked inside and is terrible. This has happened to multiple Japanese vehicles over the years really. The worst were my GX470 and Tundra which are V8's.
 

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Aren't there a couple of oval shaped, rubber plugs that are supposed to be located behind the the rear fender liners? Not in the fender liners, but in the chassis.
 

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Anyone else had this? It's really apparent if I hammer the throttle and take the engine above 4500rpms. Not a super pungent odor, but definitely noticeable. Should I be checking CV boots, transaxle, stuff like that?

No I have not hit a skunk.
This is totally normal. virtually every car on earth with a catalytic converter will do this under heavy acceleration. It will go away after a few repeat heavy pedal jaunts as you burn/blow off deposits in the cat.
 

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Agree with others. If you can find low sulfur gasoline this would help. Unfortunately finding sulfur content in the gas is difficult. USA is still in EPA Tier 2 sulfur standard (30 ppm) and we will switch to EPA Tier 3 (10 ppm) sometime in 2017 like in the EU Japan and Korea. There is small amounts of Sulfur in gasoline and at low temps it is adsorbed on to the catalytic converter surface. When you accelerate hard (sometimes going up a hill) the exhaust gas temp increases and sulfur releases and reacts to form hydrogen sulfide (egg smell). If your cat converter is bad you will smell this much more often.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The exhaust on these (and most Japanese vehicles) stink big time when you floor the pedal. It's usually more of a sulphur/rotten egg smell but maybe it smells like skunk to you? If you ever follow a Honda/Toyota that is accelerating hard you'll notice it. Most likely exhaust smell is getting into the cabin. If the windows are up/sunroof closed you shouldn't be smelling it so it's possible you have an exhaust leak somewhere under the cabin. I have some steep hills I climb and if the sunroof is open the smell gets sucked inside and is terrible. This has happened to multiple Japanese vehicles over the years really. The worst were my GX470 and Tundra which are V8's.
This is totally normal. virtually every car on earth with a catalytic converter will do this under heavy acceleration. It will go away after a few repeat heavy pedal jaunts as you burn/blow off deposits in the cat.
Thanks guys. I've never had this issue with any of my vehicles. Volvo 240, 740, 960, 850 R, Mercury Villager, Toyota Camry Hybrid...very possible there was another smell that was overpowering it (like gasoline and oil with the 240). I miss that car. Man it was a tank.

Agree with others. If you can find low sulfur gasoline this would help. Unfortunately finding sulfur content in the gas is difficult. USA is still in EPA Tier 2 sulfur standard (30 ppm) and we will switch to EPA Tier 3 (10 ppm) sometime in 2017 like in the EU Japan and Korea. There is small amounts of Sulfur in gasoline and at low temps it is adsorbed on to the catalytic converter surface. When you accelerate hard (sometimes going up a hill) the exhaust gas temp increases and sulfur releases and reacts to form hydrogen sulfide (egg smell). If your cat converter is bad you will smell this much more often.
I've only gotten under the vehicle once to scope things out, and that was just to check for any fluid leaks with a flashlight. Just bought it December 14th so it's fairly new to us. It occasionally does it when I'm giving it moderate acceleration, but keeping it geared up so it's not running over 3K rpms. Higher engine load, so that would account for the smell then.

I actually took it up to the 6,700rpm redline getting onto the interstate tonight. Haven't taken it past 5,500 or so. Definitely screams at that range and the smell was stronger and a bit different, so yeah it's gotta be the cat or possibly a slight exhaust leak at one of the flanges, which I'll check for. I've smelled every type of fluid leak there is, but this one was something I hadn't encountered before.

Thanks to all for the replies! Makes me feel a lot better.
 

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The exhaust on these (and most Japanese vehicles) stink big time when you floor the pedal. It's usually more of a sulphur/rotten egg smell but maybe it smells like skunk to you? If you ever follow a Honda/Toyota that is accelerating hard you'll notice it. Most likely exhaust smell is getting into the cabin. If the windows are up/sunroof closed you shouldn't be smelling it so it's possible you have an exhaust leak somewhere under the cabin. I have some steep hills I climb and if the sunroof is open the smell gets sucked inside and is terrible. This has happened to multiple Japanese vehicles over the years really. The worst were my GX470 and Tundra which are V8's.
This is totally normal. virtually every car on earth with a catalytic converter will do this under heavy acceleration. It will go away after a few repeat heavy pedal jaunts as you burn/blow off deposits in the cat.
Thanks guys. I've never had this issue with any of my vehicles. Volvo 240, 740, 960, 850 R, Mercury Villager, Toyota Camry Hybrid...very possible there was another smell that was overpowering it (like gasoline and oil with the 240). I miss that car. Man it was a tank.

Agree with others. If you can find low sulfur gasoline this would help. Unfortunately finding sulfur content in the gas is difficult. USA is still in EPA Tier 2 sulfur standard (30 ppm) and we will switch to EPA Tier 3 (10 ppm) sometime in 2017 like in the EU Japan and Korea. There is small amounts of Sulfur in gasoline and at low temps it is adsorbed on to the catalytic converter surface. When you accelerate hard (sometimes going up a hill) the exhaust gas temp increases and sulfur releases and reacts to form hydrogen sulfide (egg smell). If your cat converter is bad you will smell this much more often.
I've only gotten under the vehicle once to scope things out, and that was just to check for any fluid leaks with a flashlight. Just bought it December 14th so it's fairly new to us. It occasionally does it when I'm giving it moderate acceleration, but keeping it geared up so it's not running over 3K rpms. Higher engine load, so that would account for the smell then.

I actually took it up to the 6,700rpm redline getting onto the interstate tonight. Haven't taken it past 5,500 or so. Definitely screams at that range and the smell was stronger and a bit different, so yeah it's gotta be the cat or possibly a slight exhaust leak at one of the flanges, which I'll check for. I've smelled every type of fluid leak there is, but this one was something I hadn't encountered before.

Thanks to all for the replies! Makes me feel a lot better.
Were you able to resolve this? We have a 2013 with the same issue.
 

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Were you able to resolve this? We have a 2013 with the same issue.
The smell is nothing more than sulfur in fuel being burned and the catalytic converter not oxidizing it fast enough. If it occurs under heavy acceleration, it is completely normal and no cause for concern.

If you smell it during "normal" driving, it could point to either a rich running condition or a failing catalytic converter.

If it really bothers you, you could try switching fuel brands to a brand with less residual sulfur.
 

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It’s the body plugs missing from the mdx, they prolly fell out, just ask dealership about body plugs beside the two rear doors and they will know what to do and fix it. I think it’s like 100 dollars for labour.


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