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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. We just sold our '18 GX 460 back to the dealer, and are left with only one car, which is '19 MDX Advance. Since our '19 MDX does not have any accessories (i.e. roof racks, tow hitch), I was planning to buy and install them. Now, I called a local Acura dealer here in Seattle for a quote on a 3500 lb tow package that includes a tow hitch + harness, and the quote came back: $496.47 for tow hitch, $213.18 for harness, and $590 for labor. That's a bit high for me, and I was wondering what everyone paid for their tow hitches? We're thinking of taking the car for road trips this summer. Also, I was quoted $306.45 for crossbars, but found OEM cheaper online ~ $200-ish.
 

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2015 MDX
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174 Posts
A few years back I picked up the hitch + harness for $440 from acurapartsforless.com and installed it myself. So I’d say shop around. If you are set on having the dealer install it maybe they will at least price match the part for you.
 

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2019 Acura MDX SH-AWD w/Tech
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Installation is super super easy if you are capable, for both the hitch and harness. I bought both as well as the transmission cooler and installed all 3 and saved a ton of labor costs. Not sure if that’s a thing for you but I’d heavily consider it.
 

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2017 Acura MDX Tech FWD
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I'm considering on adding a tow hitch on my MDX depending on where I take delivery of my next vehicle, but you should call up your local Honda dealers and other Acura dealers to see how much they will quote you for the job. I honestly believe $600 in labor is alot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Installation is super super easy if you are capable, for both the hitch and harness. I bought both as well as the transmission cooler and installed all 3 and saved a ton of labor costs. Not sure if that’s a thing for you but I’d heavily consider it.
Yep, all comes down to - I'll probably try it myself. The dealer wants an arm and a leg. A "3500 lb package" is $1200 all together with hitch, bumper cover, harness and labor. I can get all the parts online for around $500 or less.
 

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2019 Acura MDX SH-AWD w/Tech
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Yep, all comes down to - I'll probably try it myself. The dealer wants an arm and a leg. A "3500 lb package" is $1200 all together with hitch, bumper cover, harness and labor. I can get all the parts online for around $500 or less.
If you need any help, ask here. If you can lower the spare tire, you can install all of it. It helps to have a 2nd person lift the hitch in place and hold it while you thread the bolts too. Also, a good tip is to thread the bolts by hand first before attempting to install the hitch. Just to make sure the welded nuts are still in good shape. One of my 4 wasn’t and I had to hit it with pb blaster and let it sit overnight.
 

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2018 MDX SH-AWD Tech package
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The only special things you will need is one metric socket and a 1/2 inch drive torque wrench. Other than that basic hand tools is all you need. Having an extra person on hand makes lifting the hitch in place much easier.
 

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I did the install last year myself on an 16 Mdx sh-awd. Got the parts from AcuraPartsForLess.com, even with shipping it was cheaper to get it from them than my local dealer. The biggest challenge I had was the weld nuts were full of rust and dirt. I bought a cheap set of brushes that attach to a drill and went to town with on blaster. It took about 2 to 3 hours to get the threads cleaned. I could have used a thread chaser but none of the stores around me had the right size.

Since we did not plan on towing anything other thank bikes, I chose not to install the harness.

if you are comfortable with using a few tools and want to give it a shot, I would say go for it.

lastly, I asked a local shop and they said they would install it for $125 if I brought them the part. There are also a few videos on YouTube where they show the install, so take a look.
 

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Just as a couple of reference points. I've self-installed two different receiver hitches on two different MDX's. I did a Curt aftermarket hitch on my '17 Tech, and the OEM hitch on my (current) '19 Advance. I did both by myself with no help. The aftermarket one was much easier since you could lift one side up and hand-start the bolts, and prop the other side up with a box or something to hold it close to in-place. It's mostly awkward and a second pair of hands would help.

The OEM one is much tougher - since you first replace the lower trim piece on the rear bumper (real easy to do btw), and THEN feed the nose of the hitch thru the opening in the new trim piece, and THEN bolt the receiver to the body. Given the weight of the hitch, I was really uneasy trying to rest all the weight of the hitch on that thin plastic piece in the trim opening while I tried to maneuver the rest of the hitch into the bolting position. I ended up using 2 floor jacks and a box to hold things in place and then bolted it up. An extra pair of hands would have dramatically reduced the install time.

As others have said, make sure the welded nut threads in the body are clean and not rusted. I installed both of mine when each vehicle was new, so that wasn't an issue. if you struggle to hand thread the bolts (I'd try this first before even putting the hitch in place) you need to prep the nuts first . The last thing you want is to wrestle with the hitch and not get the bolts to work :)

Good luck!
andy
 
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Any mechanic can install a hitch and for more specialized installs an RV shop deals with hitches all the time. There's no need to pay expensive Acura shop prices to do something as basic and simple as installing the hitch, even if you don't want to install it yourself.
 

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I did the OEM part install for our '14 Tech in my driveway several years ago. No problems. I tried the Curt hitch but it arrived in a box that appeared to have been through a war. Hardware was incomplete, paint was in bad shape, and I didn't like the way it stuck out below the rear bumper fascia. I think I didn't like the wiring harness solution they offered but its been a while. Ordered the Acura OEM hitch online and it was easy to install. I keep vehicles forever so I wanted what I wanted since I'd be living with it for a long time. This spring I installed a Redarc hidden brake controller (eTrailer) for our popup camper. All you see is the knob and I mounted it through one of the switch blanks in the dash. It was plug and play ready.
 

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Hi everyone. We just sold our '18 GX 460 back to the dealer, and are left with only one car, which is '19 MDX Advance. Since our '19 MDX does not have any accessories (i.e. roof racks, tow hitch), I was planning to buy and install them. Now, I called a local Acura dealer here in Seattle for a quote on a 3500 lb tow package that includes a tow hitch + harness, and the quote came back: $496.47 for tow hitch, $213.18 for harness, and $590 for labor. That's a bit high for me, and I was wondering what everyone paid for their tow hitches? We're thinking of taking the car for road trips this summer. Also, I was quoted $306.45 for crossbars, but found OEM cheaper online ~ $200-ish.
Found one at my local dealer a few months back...told them to hold it, I'm on my way. Picked it up and on the way back, had my local car repair shop install it for $150....just like they did for my Toyota.
 

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I bought the Acura parts online and did it myself. It was pretty easy. Dealer wanted $2000 for the hitch (parts and labor) without the wiring harness for lights/brakes. This was back in 2015.

Acura one looks pretty sweet compared to the aftermarket ones, IMHO.
 
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