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Tips on buying an MDX

6529 Views 42 Replies 26 Participants Last post by  srpbep
I'm starting the process for buying a 2002 MDX, and I have a few questions.

1. Should I put deposits down with multiple dealers?
2. 3 dealers have already quoted me MSRP, are they telling the truth, or will the price somehow go up when the vehicle comes in?
3. Should I get dealer accessories, or are there sources for this stuff elsewhere. (I've read the ski rack threads)?
4. Any tricks on getting a quicker delivery? I've been told there are slots open for June or July?
5. Anybody from Minneapolis have any local dealer horror stories, or recomendations?

Thanks in advance for any help....

BTW, this looks like a great board.

Plymouth, MN
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Welcome to the forum


First, welcome to the forum. Hopefully you will find it as incredibly useful and fun to hang out here as many of us have.

Many people do put down deposits at multiple dealers -- as long as they are refundable, there is no problem. You might be better served by just getting a list of all dealers within a reasonable driving distance off of the website and start making some phone calls. As a lot of people do put down multiple deposits, sometimes waitlists end up shorter than quoted. Also, as you would expect, the more flexible you can be with color, the shorter your wait time will be.

If you haven't found a dealership to test drive it, you should do so. Also, be sure to check the dealership ratings off of the home page:

There weren't too many ratings for MN.

With any dealership you put a deposit down on, they should specify a price of MSRP on the order sheet. There is no reason to pay more.

Some dealerships will deliver a little faster, but they may have more options than you want, or charge over MSRP.

While you're waiting, frequent this site to determine what options you want. When you order, you will have to decide whether you want the touring, and whether or not you want the Navigation system. Beware that many people on this site love their MDXs, and may have more options than the average owner.

Other than the touring and navigation, all other options are dealer-installed. With the exception of a complicated option accessories (maybe wood steering wheel or towing package), you should be able to install all options yourself easily and save a bundle. This whole site orders all accessories from Tim at All of his prices include freee shipping, and if you compare to the prices on, you'll find you'll save a ton.

Good luck!
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davegood -- Thanks for the welcome. I frequent a board very similar to these for my other car. It's full of very serious and dedicated owners, and is tons of help. This board looks similar.

I test drove a 2001 a few months ago. I'm going to test drive a 2002 with my wife this weekend. I've alread talked to the three local dealerships. They all give me pretty much the same story. I want to order a non-touring, non-navigation model, and then put a few accessories on myself.



I typically prefer OEM parts/accessories [usually seem to work better, fit better, last longer, etc.]. Just ordered a bunch of stuff for the new MDX [molding, cargo mat, cargo cover, separation net, etc.]. The Acura accessories all seem well made, went in easy, fit really well, ......

The ONLY place to buy them [not opinionated am I] is from Tim at After looking at the site, give Tim a call at 888-729-5257 and he will answer any questions you have. Their prices are great, he probably has everything in stock [shipped my order immediately], and they pay the shipping. Only complaint that I have is that I couldn't order the MDX that way!! :) :) :)
I looked at Tim's website. The prices are outstanding. Are these items OEM? If so, he'll be getting an order from me.

Yeah, they are real Acura OEMs, and Tim is just too good :) You should wait to see his level of service, you will start to wonder if these kind of folks still exist.

When I bought mine last year, I was quoted MSRP. Until I finished the paperwork, I was waiting for them to spring some hidden charges on me, but everything was aboveboard and I paid exactly what he told me I would the first time I looked at the car. In fact, when I placed the order, the price of the towing package had gone up, but since he had quoted me the lower price he stuck with it saving me $200.

I have, however, heard from this site of some really scummy dealers that have all sorts of hidden charges. Hopefully you'll find a good dealer in Minnesota. I think "Ghost" is near the twin cities. Maybe you can find out where he bought it and what his dealer experience was.

I've bought several options from Tim. All genuine Honda/Acura and he is great to work with. Good luck!
I have sent ghost a message because I saw that he bought his MDX at Buerkle Acura here in Mpls. He seemed to have good things to say about them. They're located about 2 miles from my work.

I just got an email from another dealer that he has a black on black w/touring available next month. I'll have to pass on the black color.

I'll make sure that when I put my deposit down, that the price is fixed, and no wanted dealer options allowed.
wckrause said:
... I'm going to test drive a 2002 with my wife this weekend. I've alread talked to the three local dealerships. They all give me pretty much the same story. I want to order a non-touring, non-navigation model, and then put a few accessories on myself.

Make sure you consider the navigation seriously since it is not an item that you can add after you get your car. On this forum, I found some folks turn out wanting the navigation after they bought the non-navi MDX. Good luck to your wait..
Buerkle Acura

[sliding in late...]

Nice to see another Minnesotan on the boards - I wonder where the rest of them are?

I've had a good experience with Buerkle Acura - the day I bought it was the first day I'd seen one live and in person (hey, it's a 160 mile drive down there..), so I ended up spending the good part of the day with the salesman, a young fellow named Jeremy. They were great, really knew the ins and outs of the car. And of course, we have to haggle about the price - at that time it was MSRP, period. We did haggle a bit on my trade-in, which I really didn't want to drive back, and they managed to up it the cost of an accessory.

Two odd things - in the period of 6 months after purchase, we got three parking tickets on the car we traded in! (No doubt it wouldn't start for the new owner :) - apparently Buerkle didn't do some of their homework.

And I couldn't get them to install the hitch package I bought from Tim (whom they accused of selling under wholesale!!). But all in all I've been happy with the shop there - a clean operation and generally good guys.

OK, more than you wanted ta know - good luck Bill! :D
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Put my deposit down

I put my deposit down at Buerkle Acura for a Silver MDX. Delivery in July (hopefully sooner).

No nav, no touring, no dealer options, $35,180

I may put another deposit down at White Bear Acura.

Thanks for your help

Found 2002 No Wait!

I got my new 2002 MDX on Tuesday with no wait.

I have a 2-week old son and he was fussy at about 5 am, so he and I surfed the internet and let Mom get some sleep. Just for kicks I went to Yahoo cars and typed in MDX, and a local dealer had one on the lot!

I drove it that day, did the paperwork on the spot, and the sales man brought it to my house after they installed a few accessories and had it inspected for my state. It couldn't have worked out better. I dealt with Steve Dorfman at Rosenthal Acura in Maryland.

For those of you wanting an MDX but don't want to wait, check in with dealers once a week. Also check It is linked into many dealers' inventories so new deliveries show up there. I'd suggest you call whenever you see new deliveries. I was offered two MDXs that way (wrong color and trim). Who knows, you might call when someone else backs out on the car they ordered.

Good luck on your search! I've only had mine a few days but my wife and I are thrilled with it.
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Landshark bites the big one!! Congrats!
We got our 2001 MDX at the dealership in Bloomington (MN). MSRP. No surprises.
Bill...glad you started this thread as I hadn't seen anyone else from Minnesota except Ghost and figured he got his somewhere near Duluth.

I put $500 down in early November on a 2002 Mahogany basic at Buerkle. Like Ghost ... Jeremy was the salesman. Seemed like a really nice guy.

I was told no later than May but hopefully sooner. Was also showed 'the list' of people waiting for their MDXs. There were supposedly 75 on there who had all put deposits down. I'm not sure how closely they follow that list though as I was offered 2 different MDXs within a couple days of first looking... but I hadn't totally made up my mind yet so I held off. Probably shoulda snapped one up right then! With the snow falling tonight, I'd love to have it in the morning!

Good luck with your wait. I'll be interested to know how your experience turns out!
They are discontinuing Mahogany in March, you better make sure your dealer has one on next months allocation. If not, I would do some calling around now to other dealers.
RGWomack, what are they replacing Mahogany with, or are they?
Bill - Welcome to the board. Given your topic, you are in for a ton of responses I'm sure. I just picked up my MDX a week ago last Friday. I'm in the Atlanta area and I was being quoted 60 - 90 day waits. We did put in deposits a a couple of dealers but be careful, some dealers do not allow them to be refundable (and I can't blame them). We were quoted MSRP from every dealer in the state of Georgia and about the same wait time. HOWEVER, I found a dealer in Jacksonville Fl (6 hrs south) who on December 10th said he could get the car (Beige Touring/Navi) by Christmas. I said great and asked to place the order. When I did, he quoted MSRP + $1,000. I scolded him pretty bad for charging above MSRP and shared that I felt this wasn't right and was not interested. After a couple of days he agreed to sell the car at MSRP and it actually turned out to be a pretty good transaction. The car arrived the day after Christmas but got stuck in port until the teamsters decided to come back from their holiday!

About options. I too was trying to choose the right ones. First, the two factory only (touring and Nav). While I believe they are both worth the money, they have different value. The touring package mainly added "upscale" features to the car. My wife gave up a mercedes S420 for this MDX (we are doing the t-ball, soccer, kids friends stuff now) and we really wanted our new "truck" to feel like a luxury car. The Nav system is a whole other story. We have used this EVERYDAY since we bought the car. The features are tremendous from finding restaurants to looking up addresses based on phone numbers, this is truly a useful product. I travel a lot on business and had fallen in love with the nav systems you can get in Hertz rental cars. My wife "anti-technologist" couldn't understand why anyone would need more than a map until .... Last summer she was in a wedding in Southern California. In four days we had to be in 4 different cities we didn't know (dinners, wedding, reception, etc). I rented a car from Hertz with a nav system and it was spectacular. Not only did it lead us to or destinations via the quickest route, but it displayed remaining ETA, mileage and the like. After that trip, a Nav system because my wife's #1 decision criteria in choosing an SUV.

Dealer added options. One suggestion ORDER FROM TIM !!!. Tim can cut your costs in half in some cases and has all of the installation instructions right online (not to mention there are numerous threads on this site discussing installation). I ordered the running boards, wood dash, and gold packages to be dealer installed before I found this board. While I am happy with all of the options, I could have saved almost a thousand dollars ordering from Tim and installing myself.

Sorry for the length but as I am sure you can tell, us MDX owners are pretty passionate about our X's!

Welcome again to the site. :cool:
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KBD431 -- I appreciate your inputs about the Nav system. I hadn't really even considered it, and was completely unimpressed with its performance on my test drive. The road (an interstate highway) that we were driving on wasn't in the nav database, and it showed us driving through an empty field. The salesman said that the road has to be older than 10 years old or else it won't be in the database!!! He didn't know anything about future updates to the database.

For the type of driving that I do (more commuting, less traveling), it's just not something that I think I'll use that much. But, if I'm offered an MDX with nav earlier than my July delivery date, I'll certainly consider it.

As for the touring package, I'm moving up from a Ford Windstar, so the base MDX is plenty "up scale" for me. I'll get a few items from Tim (cargo liner, floor mats, etc).

Now, all I've got to figure out is how to get a canoe and a kayak on the roof.
KBD431 ~

That's really a well-stated, informational post. It will help many out!

Like it's been mentioned so many times before, if you're willing to possibly do a little traveling and/or calling outside of your "local area", chances are you will find an MDX. Especially if you are not locked-in to one particular color.

I didn't even know the MDX existed 'til last month. That's when we went auto-shopping (while others were doing their Christmas shopping ;) After falling in love with the MDX, the "Acura games" began (forced options and or MSRP+). :mad:

I used to be a Honda owner and travelled 150 miles to buy my cars because the dealer didn't jerk us around. I applied the same concept to Acura dealers. I went to the Acura website and started doing dealer searches. Nearly all dealers can be contacted directly via Acura's site.

I emailed them, specifically stating what I wanted (White/Touring/MSRP only) and told them that if they had it, to contact me. My phone started ringing off the hook. I did have a few contact me saying that they could have the car I wanted by the end of December but, most of them were the dealers that were forcing options and wanted me to buy on impulse. Especially since they turned down a CASH deal if they were willing to sell it at MSRP! :confused:

Thanks to this board and the gentleman that posts his allocation, it's obvious that NO dealer is going to get something that he doesn't already know he has coming. :D

Another dealer called me and told me he had the car I wanted, coming in in January. I went there, signed the purchase order and it is coming in this week. Less than 30 days to MDX ownership is GREAT!
:D :D :D

There are some good dealers out there, you just have to be willing to find them.
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