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With AWD and trans cooler, max towing is 5,000 pounds. Be warned that some have complained of nuisance transmission noises caused by the cooler on the 9 speed models (2016+).

I have a 2015 AWD with the 6 speed auto. A few weeks ago I towed 4,000 pounds about 450 miles. I was impressed with the MDX's performance, yes acceleration was reduced but it could still accelerate when climbing steep grades on the highway. If I dropped to 5th before a slight grade it wouldn't lose speed, steep grades required a drop to 4th.

Two downsides: the tongue weight combined with luggage in the hatch caused the headlights to blind oncoming drivers; I averaged 12.5 MPG On the highway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks NVAKeith
I have the same set up as you. I tow my boat (a little less than 3000lbs) several times per week pretty much year round but I live in North Texas so its flat. I have been impressed with the MDX towing capability. I don't notice the boat at all. I did get brakes with my boat so that helps in stopping but it has plenty of power for whatever I need to do.
I was just curious about the 2017 awd towing capability since there was so much early complaining about the 9 speed and the initial cost of the ATF cooler.
 

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I know this is an old post and I’m just browsing to see if anybody else is towing with their MDX. We bought a 24’ camper last summer that weighs less than 4K lbs dry. MDX towed it impressively and I like using the lane keep assist to keep the MDX in the middle of the lane.
 

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I know this is an old post and I’m just browsing to see if anybody else is towing with their MDX. We bought a 24’ camper last summer that weights less than 4K lbs dry. MDX towed it impressively and I like using the lane keep assist to keep the MDX in the middle of the lane.
Oh boy. I hope you're aware that "lane keep assist" isn't designed to deal with the complex dynamics of a trailer/tow vehicle combination. With that much sail hanging off the back, a gust of crosswind or "wake" from a truck can make things "interesting" in one heck of a hurry. You're responsible for keeping the whole rig within your lane, not just the nose of the MDX.
 

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4000lbs dry!? I think that may put your trailer weight over the 5000 lbs limit when loaded with gears.
Trailer dry weight usually does not include batteries, propane tanks, and any accessories such as mattress, air conditioner, awning...etc.

Also, the 5000 lbs limit is if you have only 2 (150 lb) occupants with only 15lbs of cargo per occupant.
 

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4000lbs dry!? I think that may put your trailer weight over the 5000 lbs limit when loaded with gears.
Trailer dry weight usually does not include batteries, propane tanks, and any accessories such as mattress, air conditioner, awning...etc.

Also, the 5000 lbs limit is if you have only 2 (150 lb) occupants with only 15lbs of cargo per occupant.
most cars are like that. They will state a trailer limit then in the fine print indicate to deduct from that the occupant and on-board-cargo weight. Two adults, three children, a dog, and baggage can easily approach 1000 pounds. Also - anyone who has ever had a trailer (with or without trailer brakes) wag the car when braking, or coming down a long hill knows how critical tongue weight is. That alone can limit the trailer size. A 5000 pound trailer should have about 500 pounds tongue weight. With Sh-Awd and 5 passengers the allowed tongue weight is 290 pounds which alone would limit a trailer to just under 3000 pounds gross. That means a 2500 pound boat and trailer, plus gear onboard.

http://m.acura.com/pdf/owners/2016/MDX/2016_MDX_Towing.pdf
 

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I subscribe to the 80% rule; the ready to camp weight of the trailer should not exceed 80% of the tow vehicle's ratings. With a light duty mall cruiser like the MDX I'd probably not want to exceed even 50%. Personally I've escalated my tow vehicle over the years to my current Ram 3500 diesel and it's made towing exponentially safer and less stressful, especially last night towing my toy hauler against a strong head/cross wind.
 

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I subscribe to the 80% rule; the ready to camp weight of the trailer should not exceed 80% of the tow vehicle's ratings. With a light duty mall cruiser like the MDX I'd probably not want to exceed even 50%. Personally I've escalated my tow vehicle over the years to my current Ram 3500 diesel and it's made towing exponentially safer and less stressful, especially last night towing my toy hauler against a strong head/cross wind.
well, 3500 series trucks are beasts in a totally different category, and it is designed to tow.
imho, MDX tows quite well within the specified weight limit.
It's the profile of the trailer too though. For light duty towing vehicles like MDX, having a shorter (height) trailer helps a lot.
 

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Anyone NOT experiencing issues with their 9 speed transmission and ATF cooler (MDX 2016-2018)? Anyone not hearing the knock/noise from transmission ?
I will tow a 2700 Jayco trailer (for one time only) and in doubt if I should or should not install the cooler due to knocking issue with 9 speed transmission some people reported earlier.
 

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My boat is 2300lbs dry and I took the cooler off because it absolutely ruined the vehicles's driving characteristics. At 3500lbs capacity with your 2700lb trailer AND only needing to tow it once there is NO WAY I would install it regardless of whether or not others have not had the knock.

...and to be clear, now that the cooler is off mine, it is more than the noise. The car drives a *little* smoother with it off. YMMV.
 

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Good question above. Have to wonder if the thicker cooler oil is the cause and not the actual cooler resistance.



Q - anyone who has put the hitch on a 3rd gen. Does it get in the way of the factory spare tire lift / carrier?
 

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Q - anyone who has put the hitch on a 3rd gen. Does it get in the way of the factory spare tire lift / carrier?
Nope. I dropped my spare down to make hitch installation easier, but once the install is done the spare lifts right back up and fits great.
 

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Anyone NOT experiencing issues with their 9 speed transmission and ATF cooler (MDX 2016-2018)? Anyone not hearing the knock/noise from transmission ?
I will tow a 2700 Jayco trailer (for one time only) and in doubt if I should or should not install the cooler due to knocking issue with 9 speed transmission some people reported earlier.
In case anybody still interested... I decided to install ATF cooler. I talked to a mechanic at my acura dealership who also drives 2017 mdx and he has ATF cooler as well. He convinced me there would be no problems, no knocking sounds or whatever with ATF cooler.

And he was right. I was exercising my 2016 MDX a lot and no issues. No knocking sound, no other sounds. Feels and drives as usual.
 

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In case anybody still interested... I decided to install ATF cooler. I talked to a mechanic at my acura dealership who also drives 2017 mdx and he has ATF cooler as well. He convinced me there would be no problems, no knocking sounds or whatever with ATF cooler.

And he was right. I was exercising my 2016 MDX a lot and no issues. No knocking sound, no other sounds. Feels and drives as usual.
Perhaps they have fixed it, but as recently as 5 months ago it was so much an issue that Acura paid me back for the unit, the install/un-install based on the fact that in their words there was no known fix. Glad it is working out for you, but mine did not make the knock for about 2000-3000 miles before it started.
 

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For others who have the cooler installed on new MDX I'd be curious to continue to hear their feedback regarding whether the new transmission coolers still make the infamous "knock" or whether it would appear Acura finally resolved this (which would likely mean a different part for cooler compared to ones that knock)
 

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Hi folks, I am sharing my experience, hoping that it helps somebody at this forum.
Yesterday in installed the ATF cooler on my 2017 MDX at the Acura Dealer in Barrie, Ontario, CA, I do not have installed the hitch yet, as I want to test the ATF cooler for at least a week before spending more money on it, just in case.
I have not driven it enough yet, but so far so good: I have not noticed any clunk or any change on shifting and for the moment the transmission is behaving exactly the same as before the ATF cooler installation.
It could be that the current transmission software solved the problem or it could be that my specific model was not concerned by the infamous clunky sound due to ATF problelm. :cool:

I will continue to test it this weekend and if everything continues fine I will complete the hitch installation at the dealer next week.

I plan to tow a 21ft travel trailer, the dry weight 3,400 libs but the GVWR is 4,790libs, to me it sounds kind of too close to the MDX maximum towing capacity, maybe I should travel with the water tank at just 50% of their capacity to keep limit the weight?

I am totally new at towing, I have never towed anything, does anyone with towing experience here has any comment or advice on what I intend to do?

Would that be too risky by being just about 200libs below its limit?

Thanks!
:rolleyes:
 
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