At this week's 2018 New York Auto Show, Acura debuts its all-new 2019 RDX with fresh styling, new technology, a new powertrain and available Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD).
At the core of the 2019 Acura RDX is a new body and chassis architecture, with more than 50 percent of the body structure composed of high-strength steel. The wheelbase has grown by 2.6 inches, increasing passenger room as well as cargo room behind the rear seats — up 3.4 cubic feet from last year's model — with more underfloor trunk storage.
Powering the 2019 RDX is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, not unlike the one found in the Honda Accord. The V6 is no longer offered, but that doesn't mean a drop in power since the four-cylinder engine makes 272 horsepower (down only 7 horses from the V6) and a stout 280 pound-feet of torque (up 28 lb-ft from the V6's 252 lb-ft). Putting that power to the wheels is a 10-speed automatic transmission, and enthusiasts can rejoice as 2019 marks the return of Acura's SH-AWD to the RDX. This newest iteration can now send up to 70 percent of the torque to the rear wheels and 100 percent of that to either the left rear or the right rear wheel.
The front suspension is now a MacPherson strut setup with fluid-filled compliance bushings, while the rear suspension gets a five-link setup with a stabilizer bar and fluid-filled bushings. Adaptive dampers will be available as an option.
The 2019 Acura RDX's cabin undergoes another dramatic makeover, drawing bits of inspiration from the Acura NSX and receiving a thorough injection of technology. Even the seats have been redesigned, built from a lightweight high-strength steel frame. All RDX models will get a panoramic moonroof, and trim options include brushed aluminum, stainless steel, faux suede and open-pore wood. Acura also offers its ELS Studio 3D audio system as an option, packing 710 watts and 16 channels, with four ceiling-mounted speakers.
New featured technology starts at the windshield with an optional 10.5-inch full color and interactive head-up display. There's also a new 10.2-inch dash-mounted HD display, a new natural voice recognition system, Apple CarPlay compatibility and 4G LTE Wi-Fi. Perhaps the biggest news is the inclusion of a touchpad control. Known as True Touchpad Interface, the surface is slightly concave and mapped one to one with the display, which Acura says is a world's first in a driving environment. So a touch on the interface will correspond to the same location on the display, which could be revolutionary or controversial — we'll have to wait and see.
Acura's suite of active and passive safety technology is standard in the 2019 RDX. It features collision mitigation braking, forward collision warning, road departure mitigation with lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, low-speed follow and lane keeping assist.
Acura will also offer the 2019 RDX in A-Spec trim, which includes the addition of gray 20-inch wheels, a unique lower front fascia and gloss-black accents for the grille, side sills, windows and taillights. LED foglights, larger exhaust tips and, of course, A-Spec badging are also present. A-Spec interiors feature red or black leather-wrapped sport seats with faux suede inserts, a stitched leather steering wheel rim, metal paddle shifters, and a satin-finish instrument panel with red illumination.
Pricing has yet to be announced, but expect the 2019 Acura RDX to start in the upper $30Ks when it goes on sale later this year.