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Discussion Starter #1
Off the top of my head,

The new pilot either leapfrogs or matches the MDX in so many ways that it makes it difficult to find a compelling argument to stick with the MDX. What could possibly come in a future redesign that separates the two? It seems like Honda and Acura are sharing features and r&d to the point where the product is the same. Will there be any differentiation in the future? Can Acura afford to do so? Where is the brand direction going?

New Pilot

-20" rims
- 9 speed automatic transmission with electronic gear selector and 280hp vcm direct-injection j35
- 5 usb ports with 4 quick charging capability
- Blu ray player
- Panoramic roof
- Illuminated 2nd row entry buttons
- Auto walk-away door locks
- Reversible and adjustable-height storage lid
- I VTM 4 all-wheel drive with torque vectoring ratios and hydraulic clutch packs that match sh-awd
- All the same Honda sensing tech
 

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Ive been around Honda and Acura for a while (1986 Legend, 2000 Accord, 2003 TL that we still have) and honestly this is the first time Ive seen Honda not just inherit stuff from Acura as their "next gen" vehicle

Its nice that the Pilot will get some stuff that the MDX doesnt have, but Im definitely not a fan of the exterior look of it.

I imagine at some point the MDX will be available with all the same stuff....the only question is if it will be for a refresh or a completely new model. We already know the '16 won't have the features, so could they be showing up in '17 or '18? Or would they just hold off until '19 (is that when the next redesign is due?)

We are seriously looking at the '16 MDX but Id hate to spend all the $$$ and find out the Pilot really is better and/or the '17 MDX will get all the new stuff.
 

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The electronic and safety tech is appearing in many vehicles from many manufacturers and is becoming a commodity and expected feature and ultimately many of them will even be mandated by the government.

I think the Acura MDX, as well as premium brand versions from other manufacturers that have both a premium and somewhat less than premium version of the same vehicle (ex: think QX60/Pathfinder, a number of Lexus/Toyota offerings, etc.) will need to distinguish itself in various ways. For the MDX I think (hope) it comes in terms of performance, i.e. faster, better handling, and higher end/quality materials.

New intros, like the Pilot, will sometimes leapfrog the premium brand offering in terms of some features/tech, but the premium should catch up and surpass I'd expect.

I haven't read any head to head comparisons of the Pilot vs the MDX as far as 0-60 times, handling, quietness, etc. but this is where I'd expect to see some differentiation - more so than in the tech/safety features.
 

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Happens every time. I'm pretty sure the Honda and Acura execs are aware of it.

If all the car buying peoole based their decision on value, then everyone will be driving minivans, camrys and corollas or civics.

Before this Pilot, there was the Crv vs the RDX, Accord vs TLX etc. so it's not out of the normal for Honda to do this.


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There is certainly a difference.

Acura has nicer materials/finish, jewel-eye headlights, SH-AWD (worth quite a bit of money more than VTM), more hp/faster, better handling, better ride, quieter, more refinement inside the cabin.

You also get the Acura level of service and a big one: 4 year warranty instead of 3 years. Huge in my books.
 

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There is certainly a difference.

Acura has nicer materials/finish, jewel-eye headlights, SH-AWD (worth quite a bit of money more than VTM), more hp/faster, better handling, better ride, quieter, more refinement inside the cabin.

You also get the Acura level of service and a big one: 4 year warranty instead of 3 years. Huge in my books.

All true. Those were the factors why we chose the MDX over the Pathfinder, Pilot and Odyssey. And the same reason (except the Jewel Eyes and SH AWD) on our recently bought 2015 RDX over the CRV Touring.


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I wish I could agree with on the "nicer materials/finish, better ride, more refinement inside the cabin". I cancelled a '16 awd advance because the first and last criteria did not live up to the luxury standards (compared to some luxury brands). I was 99% set on the MDX, thinking I could live with what I knew, but after seeing so many MDXs on the dealer lot including my special delivery one, I was very bummed out on the high percentage of fit/finish issues, plain non-luxurious interior (I even had the car for a few days and try to live with the interior shortcomings such as the horrific infotainment controls, low resolution screens, functional yet nothing special IP), and not very good ride quality for imperfect road conditions where Acura still needs lots of work to isolate/quiet bumps. From what I've seen so far without testing driving it, the new Pilot has a nicer looking luxurious front interior, better, nicer infotainment system, available panoramic sunroof, comparable AWD, comparable safety features, usable third row. The Pilot may not handle as well nor look as good but it represents more value. And that may eventually hurt MDX.

There is certainly a difference.

Acura has nicer materials/finish, jewel-eye headlights, SH-AWD (worth quite a bit of money more than VTM), more hp/faster, better handling, better ride, quieter, more refinement inside the cabin.

You also get the Acura level of service and a big one: 4 year warranty instead of 3 years. Huge in my books.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The fit and finish and choice of materials are becoming a challenge. The pilot has more acoustic glass than the MDX. What is to stop it from being quieter? This sort of play makes it more of a competitor. The materials are shared in terms of leather where they once were separate and the MDX body panel gaps are inexcusable. The new ILX and RDX rims do not belong on a luxury product. The only thing I can think of is that those choices are cost-efficient in order to add all the sensing technology. As was said, we have a really low res backup camera and laggy infotainment systems. Cars are becoming more tech oriented while customers more discerning and unforgiving. These types of mis-steps can cost a brand market share - especially when mistakes are locked in for 5 years due to the nature of updates. Other brands can update software over 3g / 4g? We better add carplay and android auto at the very least. I would love to see a materials cost breakdown as a replacement camera for a smartphone is $6 - $12 and can't be much more expensive than the one in the MDX. Or maybe that's the problem - the lowest cost is the primary driver in equipment selection. As much as I like the MDX, I don't want to see its reputation slip. That can be hard to fix. I actually prefer competition and don't want Honda to hold back if they can dominate the market but I do want to see Acura do something better in the luxury space.
 

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I wish I could agree with on the "nicer materials/finish, better ride, more refinement inside the cabin". I cancelled a '16 awd advance because the first and last criteria did not live up to the luxury standards (compared to some luxury brands). I was 99% set on the MDX, thinking I could live with what I knew, but after seeing so many MDXs on the dealer lot including my special delivery one, I was very bummed out on the high percentage of fit/finish issues, plain non-luxurious interior (I even had the car for a few days and try to live with the interior shortcomings such as the horrific infotainment controls, low resolution screens, functional yet nothing special IP), and not very good ride quality for imperfect road conditions where Acura still needs lots of work to isolate/quiet bumps. From what I've seen so far without testing driving it, the new Pilot has a nicer looking luxurious front interior, better, nicer infotainment system, available panoramic sunroof, comparable AWD, comparable safety features, usable third row. The Pilot may not handle as well nor look as good but it represents more value. And that may eventually hurt MDX.
I'll agree on some points, but I will not agree that the pilot has a nicer interior. The pilot has the same type of styling as the MDX (you can see the same themes), but it uses more cheap plastics and less soft-touch materials. That becomes even more apparent in the second row.

I will agree that the interior quality could be a bit nicer in the MDX - the plastic on the shift console is not that great, but the rest is soft touch and very nice. Fit and finish is good inside. With the Tech package and up, you get the Milano leather which is a VERY nice quality leather. Can't get it in the Pilot.

And VTM AWD is not even close to SH-AWD, so I disagree that it is comparable. The infotainment does suck, but the MDX is now 3 model years old... the pilot is not even out yet... that is how things work for Tech - things aren't upgraded to the newest tech every year. They are done on new generations or Mid model refreshes.
 

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Referring to the pilot interior... Are you taking about the current one or the upcoming 2016?

I'm a stickler for interior materials and was fairly impressed with the 16 MDX... But have read differing views on the interior of the 16 pilot. Some say it's great others say it's still meh, albeit less meh than the 15
 

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And VTM AWD is not even close to SH-AWD, so I disagree that it is comparable.

I'd love to read a technical comparison of the two systems... But I'm guessing there's not enough info on the new i-VTM4 available to know the actual differences yet.

In the Temple of VTEC pilot ride video, they compared the two systems favorably and mentioned the similar component lists... But I'm sure they were half-guessing.

Around 1:30 on this video:
http://www.vtec.net/articles/view-article?article_id=1235828
 

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I'll agree on some points, but I will not agree that the pilot has a nicer interior. The pilot has the same type of styling as the MDX (you can see the same themes), but it uses more cheap plastics and less soft-touch materials. That becomes even more apparent in the second row.

I will agree that the interior quality could be a bit nicer in the MDX - the plastic on the shift console is not that great, but the rest is soft touch and very nice. Fit and finish is good inside. With the Tech package and up, you get the Milano leather which is a VERY nice quality leather. Can't get it in the Pilot.

And VTM AWD is not even close to SH-AWD, so I disagree that it is comparable. The infotainment does suck, but the MDX is now 3 model years old... the pilot is not even out yet... that is how things work for Tech - things aren't upgraded to the newest tech every year. They are done on new generations or Mid model refreshes.
Are you referring to the interior of the NEW pilot or the existing one?

Ive read differing "reviews" on the interior of the upcoming Pilot. Some say its great, some say its meh...albeit less meh than the existing model.

Im a stickler for decent interiors, and of the few vehicles Ive looked at so far (QX60, Q50, TLX, Avalon), the MDX seems to have the nicest. I would be very interested to see if the Pilot interior is equal to or at least a little better than the MDX, at a lesser price to boot. Just not sure I can wait for the new model to come out (our 03 TL has some high cost issues to resolve, or trade it in)
 

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They cheapened the MDX by offering FWD only models...and the minivan styling still doesn't suit me...
 

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They cheapened the MDX by offering FWD only models...and the minivan styling still doesn't suit me...
Have you ever made a post that wasn't negative to the 14+? Why don't you go back to the first gen forum? Oh ya that's right - they didn't buy into your negative childish bull**** either.
 

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I'd love to read a technical comparison of the two systems... But I'm guessing there's not enough info on the new i-VTM4 available to know the actual differences yet.

In the Temple of VTEC pilot ride video, they compared the two systems favorably and mentioned the similar component lists... But I'm sure they were half-guessing.

Around 1:30 on this video:
The Temple of VTEC - Honda and Acura Enthusiasts Online - Articles - Question: 2016 Honda Pilot First Drive Video
My apologies, did not realise that there was a new VTM4 system... it looks like the i-VTM4 does do left-to-right distribution of torque. So I guess that gap has closed a bit, although I'm sure there is still an edge to the SH-AWD system.
 

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Off the top of my head,

The new pilot either leapfrogs or matches the MDX in so many ways that it makes it difficult to find a compelling argument to stick with the MDX. What could possibly come in a future redesign that separates the two? It seems like Honda and Acura are sharing features and r&d to the point where the product is the same. Will there be any differentiation in the future? Can Acura afford to do so? Where is the brand direction going?

New Pilot

-20" rims
- 9 speed automatic transmission with electronic gear selector and 280hp vcm direct-injection j35
- 5 usb ports with 4 quick charging capability
- Blu ray player
- Panoramic roof
- Illuminated 2nd row entry buttons
- Auto walk-away door locks
- Reversible and adjustable-height storage lid
- I VTM 4 all-wheel drive with torque vectoring ratios and hydraulic clutch packs that match sh-awd
- All the same Honda sensing tech
You forgot 3rd row air conditioning vents!!!! Nice!!!
 

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My apologies, did not realise that there was a new VTM4 system... it looks like the i-VTM4 does do left-to-right distribution of torque. So I guess that gap has closed a bit, although I'm sure there is still an edge to the SH-AWD system.

Agreed... The smart bet would be to use common components (lower cost) but tune and set up better on the mdx (differentiation).
 
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