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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new to the forum so bear with me.

I'm picking up a silver Pilot EX tomorrow, for MSRP.

I looked at the MDX and really liked it, however there was no way I would pay over sticker for it, or any other car.

After choosing the Pilot, I am curious why anyone would buy an MDX. (Obviously there are reasons, not trying to bash). The reasons I chose the Pilot are that it has more utility than the MDX. It carries more stuff and more people, and thats what an SUV is for. Its a bit slower, but I have a sportscar and thats where I care about performance, as long as my SUV is fast enough to get up the hills and onto the freeway then I'm fine (of course we all want horsepower though). I just see no reason why I would pay 8K more for a car that carries fewer people and has less cargo capacity.

So I am HONESTLY curious why you folks chose the MDX over the Pilot. Please don't take my observations as bashing or flame bait, I'm honestly curious.
 

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First of all, you took away one reason, you got the Pilot for MSRP! I've heard that's hard to do.
Personally, I like the interior of the MDX better, the overall body design better, having a shifter on the console, the fact I can give away more money to oil companies by running premium instead of regular gas (I'm giving you that one too!).

I think most of us that like the MDX better are looking at 60% sportiness, 40% utility.
Those that like Pilot better are looking at 60% utility, and 40% sportiness.

That's just my assessment.
Both are excellent vehicles. I am sure you will enjoy your Pilot! After all, it's based on a great vehicle ;)
 

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There are indeed equipment differences between the vehicles.

$8k more for a vehicle with less utility and people-carrying ability? Are you sure you did your research correctly? The difference is $4,220, not $8k, when you compare somewhat similar trim levels. And even then there are differences.

The Pilot has marginally more utility than the MDX but it's not exactly a big winner in this area. The MDX actually has a tad bit more space behind the 2nd row for cargo, though the Pilot has more cargo room with the 2nd/3rd rows folded. But a lot of that cargo room is from the higher vertical area, and you have to be careful about putting cargo up that high. As it is, the MDX's cargo capacity is quite high so it's not exactly lacking. As far as carrying more people, the Pilot can carry one extra small passenger in the third row. Not all folks need to carry 3 kids in the third row!

Probably the best utility advantage the Pilot has is a better roof rack. Then again, not everyone uses their racks either.

Most folks here did not pay above MSRP for their MDX either.

See this thread for more information on the differences:

http://www.acuramdx.org/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=5727

The Pilot's a fine vehicle, but, for my own buying priorities, I find it too plain in its styling, a bit too low on equipment for a $31k EX-L (e.g. no moonroof, no heated seats, no heated mirrors, plainer interior), and a tad too spongey in its handling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
First of all, you took away one reason, you got the Pilot for MSRP! I've heard that's hard to do.
I don't think it's that hard. Most of the dealers around here (Colorado) have at least one on the lot and have already gotten 5 or so, clearly the production is much higher than the MDXs are/were.

$8k more for a vehicle with less utility and people-carrying ability? Are you sure you did your research correctly? The difference is $4,220, not $8k, when you compare somewhat similar trim levels. And even then there are differences.
I'm comparing an EX (sticker just under 30K) to a Touring MDX (sticker just under 38K) . For me those are the options, a base MDX is only a tad more useful to me than a sedan since it has no roof rack.

On a related more humorous note (to keep things from getting too heated:) A dealer here that was asking 2K over sticker for a silver EX-L I had a great time with. Since I really despised car dealers I was happy to waste their time looking at the car, then test driving it, and once they said 2K over offering MSRP and walking when they said no. It felt really good.
 

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rtr said:
I looked at the MDX and really liked it, however there was no way I would pay over sticker for it, or any other car.

After choosing the Pilot, I am curious why anyone would buy an MDX . . .

So I am HONESTLY curious why you folks chose the MDX over the Pilot.
1. Did you test drive an MDX ?
2. Many of us paid MSRP for the MDX, and some were able to have options included in the deal.
3. Do you realize the Pilot is in it's maiden year of production (Good Luck)
4. Most important - the Pilot was created due to the pioneering efforts and overwhelming success of the MDX - be thankful for the MDX or you would be driving another Isuzu knockoff and paying for the privelige of having the 'H' logo on the sheetmetal.
 

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rtr said:
I'm comparing an EX (sticker just under 30K) to a Touring MDX (sticker just under 38K) . For me those are the options, a base MDX is only a tad more useful to me than a sedan since it has no roof rack.
Er, I'm afraid that doesn't make much sense. A base MDX is only a tad more useful to you than a sedan since it doesn't have a roof rack? And thus the Pilot EX (without leather) is comparable to the Touring MDX?

You can add the Touring's roof rack (such as it is) to the base MDX for about $130. I'd expect that with the roof rack in place, and the MDX's utility (passenger and cargo room), it'd be more than a tad more useful to you than a sedan! :D
 

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rtr said:
It carries more stuff and more people, and thats what an SUV is for.
To put a slightly finer edge on wmquan's reply (no offense William), the "carries more stuff" is directly attributable to the higher interior roof line (no moon roof) of the Pilot over the MDX. While this may *sound* appealing, it is practically unusable space. One would have to stack the rear cargo area to the roof to utilize the extra cubic feet - blocking the view through the rear view mirror and (without using a safety net) creating flying projectiles in the event of a sudden stop or abrupt lane change.

The "carries... more people" is more an effort of marketing than of engineering. The third row seat is all of .5 inch wider on the Pilot than on the MDX. While that may be meritous (if not terribly helpful) the changes made to the third row of the Pilot actually make it's third row LESS appealing. The change to the split of the seat (from 50/50 to 60/40) , and the introduction of the extra seat belt/buckle make it difficult for anyone OTHER than a child to find a comfortable position in the third row (please search on this forum and on edmunds for discussions of this issue). And yes, we find that we carry adults in the third row of the MDX as often as children - something we would be less inclined to do with the Pilot 3rd row.

Finally, the answer to your question is found in the the premise of the Honda/Acura nomenclature of starting the MDX line with a Premium model, and also offering a Touring. You have in effect a *Base* MDX (Base/Premium/Touring). You paid less and you get less - pretty straight forward.
 

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Re: Re: Why Choose MDX vs Pilot?

donsev said:

The "carries... more people" is more an effort of marketing than of engineering.
Excellent points, Don. Curiously, the "family-oriented" marketing of the Pilot has led to somewhat controversial engineering. The 60/40 split of the three-position third row is one example. Another example is the tuning of the Pilot's suspension -- softer (more comfortable) than the MDX, at the expense of sharpness of handling (and steering, apparently). The balance between ride comfort and handling ability is of course a subjective one -- e.g. an X5 favors even sharper handling than the MDX at the expense of ride comfort. Again, it's up to the individual buyer's priorities.

Another example is the Pilot EX's 2nd row. As you've observed on Edmunds, there are a lot of complaints about the comfort of the center of the 2nd row seating position. Quite a few folks have said that its comfort is unacceptable for an adult or a child that does not need a child seat/booster. The culprit appears to be the "children's activity tray" that folds out from the center of the seat. Apparently there's so little padding on it that it's uncomfortable when it's folded back into the seat. The MDX has a well-padded, smaller, standard armrest in the middle of the second row. As with most vehicles with such an armrest folded up, a passenger in the middle can often feel the "lump" of the armrest, but the MDX's center/2nd row position is at least acceptable.

Unfortunately, that's made a number of posters on Edmunds say that center/2nd row position of the Pilot EX is only for small kids.

This all said, the Pilot is an excellent vehicle (as is the MDX). It'll make a lot of people happy. In its target market, I'd only consider the Highlander and the Pilot, and make a decision based on priorities.
 

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The Highlander is not a bad vehicle, but remember, it carries around 300 lbs of additional weight in the optional 4 wheel version.
The standard VTM-4 in the Pilot and MDX is a 1/3 lighter, and has proven itself to be as capable, or more capable in on-road snow/ice conditions as verified by more than one auto review.
Plus 0 tire slippage under full acceleration anytime.
Also, you will not get a 3rd row seat.

And yes, the bimmer is a great handler for more money and less reliability.
 

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DaleB said:
The Highlander is not a bad vehicle, but remember ...

And yes, the bimmer is a great handler for more money and less reliability.
Heh, I wasn't trying to turn this thread into a Highlander vs. Pilot or MDX vs. X5 discussion.
 

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rtr said:
I'm new to the forum so bear with me.

I'm picking up a silver Pilot EX tomorrow, for MSRP.

I looked at the MDX and really liked it, however there was no way I would pay over sticker for it, or any other car.

After choosing the Pilot, I am curious why anyone would buy an MDX. (Obviously there are reasons, not trying to bash). The reasons I chose the Pilot are that it has more utility than the MDX. It carries more stuff and more people, and thats what an SUV is for. Its a bit slower, but I have a sportscar and thats where I care about performance, as long as my SUV is fast enough to get up the hills and onto the freeway then I'm fine (of course we all want horsepower though). I just see no reason why I would pay 8K more for a car that carries fewer people and has less cargo capacity.

So I am HONESTLY curious why you folks chose the MDX over the Pilot. Please don't take my observations as bashing or flame bait, I'm honestly curious.
It could be similar comparison as to whether to buy a Grand Marquis or a Lincoln Towncar. Both are same underneath but one is classier than the other and a personal preference. I would go for the little extra and get the MDX or Towncar in my case!
 

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To answer the orignal question. When most of here were looking at SUV's the pilot did not exist!!


I had no choice at the time. Although I still would have chosen the MDX...
 

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rtr said:




After choosing the Pilot, I am curious why anyone would buy an MDX. .

You should have asked this question before making your decision.

I did some research on the Pilot and decided that the MDX was better suited for our needs. Mainly because we wanted something upscale for our main auto. The MDX is a bargain as far as upscale, luxury SUVs go and that is why it is so difficult to come by. The Pilot is more of a value vehicle and that may be the best choice for many, just not for us. Things like the 8-way passenger seat, moonroof, and more luxurious interior and exterior were some of the reasons in choosing the MDX. For the few thousands more that we paid it was worth it in our opinion.

We have not bought a new vehicle for over 9 years and after that long we certainly were not going to settle for something that we did not think was a special vehicle. The Pilot is a good choice but not a special vehicle.
 

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Ditto

BaldEagle said:

. . . we certainly were not going to settle for something that we did not think was a special vehicle. The Pilot is a good choice but not a special vehicle.
Hit the nail right on the head, eagle . . . 'nough said !!!
 

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Comparison

Like comparing a real diamond to a fake one! It's worth a few extra bucks to get the real thing you won't be sorry in the long run. I believe this saying applies, Don't cut off your nose to spite your face.
 

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I was surprised to find out that the Honda dealer's gross profit margin on a Pilot is very slightly higher than what an Acura dealer gets for an MDX (based on a percentage of MSRP at initial sale).

$3,979.29 or 13.04% of MSRP for the Pilot
$4,479.23 or 12.91% of MSRP for the MDX
 

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Congratulations on your purchase ... may I suggest you join our sister PILOT site :D
 

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I think The Question Should Be "Why Buy the Pilot Instead Of The MDX?"

The local Honda dealer received 3 Pilots on June 1. He has sold one and two remain on his lot. He is asking about 2200 over MSRP ($33120), not sure what the one that actually sold went for.

The Acura dealer 45 minutes away from here has never had a MDX for sale on his lot. All have been sold prior to arrival.

I wonder why that person bought the Pilot instead of the MDX?
 

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Re: I think The Question Should Be "Why Buy the Pilot Instead Of The MDX?"

BaldEagle said:
The local Honda dealer received 3 Pilots on June 1. He has sold one and two remain on his lot. He is asking about 2200 over MSRP ($33120), not sure what the one that actually sold went for.

The Acura dealer 45 minutes away from here has never had a MDX for sale on his lot. All have been sold prior to arrival.

I wonder why that person bought the Pilot instead of the MDX?
It was probably a parent buying as a gift for their child!!
The parents drive the MDX for themselves!
 

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After weeks of research, sole searching and comparison shopping I was between the Pilot and the MDX.

I just today put down my deposit for a "Premium/Base" Havasu Blue MDX w/ roof rack for $399 and a full wood package for $600. (Adds more "wood" just about everywhere but the steering wheel...)

I paid MSRP for the vehicle, was not forced to get any options and was promised delivery in early September. I was concerned about whether the MDX was too wide for my garage so the dealer actually offered to go with me to my home with a Demo to see if it fit OK. My home is 15 minutes from the dealer. It fit fine. Although the MDX is 7.5" wider than my Maxima the doors are shorter so opening them was no problem.

The Pilot at $4000 less was tempting but it:
1) Looked too much like a minivan
2) The dealer would not let me test drive it
3) No sunroof
4) no heated seats (which I really like)
5) The column shifter
6) Shorter warranty
7) no auto-dimming mirror
8) was the first year of production and therefore subject to some bugs
9) I heard was a softer ride


And finally, the MDX was simply much nicer looking!

Can't wait to get it. I'll accessorize it gradually.

The Pilot needs to have sunroof and heated seats and be dressed up a bit more. If they do that and keep a $3000 difference it will be worth getting IMO.

The touring package is way overpriced. For $1500 I'd do it, not $2600. The Navvy was tempting but is of no real use to me and is again overpriced at $2000. For a $1000 I'd do it.

For the $4600 I'd just as soon by a motorcycle!
 
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