A Closer Look at the 2020 Acura RDX
The 2020 RDX from Acura leans heavily on performance and style. The RDX has an attractive exterior, a sporty interior and thrilling acceleration.
Before you look at a Benz or a Beamer, have a look at a luxury crossover from Acura. It’s not quite a budget crossover, not quite a full luxury crossover either. The 2020 Acura RDX is something in between.
Packages Instead of Model Trims
There are four packages that bundle Acura’s amenities and features for the 2020 Acura RDX. The A-Spec package has distinctive exterior features and a premium sound system. The Advance package focuses more on the interior of the RDX providing a special wood trim, heated and ventilated seats, and a surround view camera for added safety and security.
The Technology package has a mixed catalog of features. There’s a navigation system, premium sound system, leather seats, and enhanced safety features like parking sensors and blind spot detection. The Standard package offers the equivalent of a well-equipped base model vehicle. It has Apple CarPlay integration, panoramic moonroof and a rearview camera.
Below is a video from Car Confections that provides more insight.
The RDX looks like something a superhero or a Power Ranger would drive. It’s sharp and angular. The 2020 Acura RDX is available in 8 different exterior colors. Most of them are metallic or pearl, but the Canyon Bronze Metallic paint especially highlights the RDX’ striking contours and angles.
The A-Spec package takes on a black and red theme that dips heavily into the sporty bag. It has the look of an Aston Martin, but for way less coin. Acura usually takes a more subdued approach, but the 2020 RDX has a dramatic exterior style, especially with the A-Spec package 19-inch wheels and the right paint coat.
The powerplant of the 2020 RDX is a 2.0 Liter, turbocharged VTEC four-cylinder engine. It’s capable of achieving 272 horsepower and 280 pound feet of torque. The engine is managed by a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Yet, you can use a manual mode with the steering wheel paddle shifters for an even more thrilling driving experience. Standard models come with front wheel drive, but there is a super handling all-wheel drive set-up that can be equipped with any package.
The VTEC turbo applies heavy torque at low RPMs, giving the RDX a tremendous initial burst of acceleration. In fact, this is basically the same engine that’s in the Honda Civic Type R.
A large control knob in the center console toggles the different driving modes. Comfort mode will ease the transmission and steering response while Sport and Sport+ create the urge for the powertrain to hustle through lanes.
The 2020 RDX is a luxury crossover. So, the RDX with a Standard package still comes equipped with a highly sophisticated interior. It has a leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated seats, and push button start/stop.
The interior isn’t especially spacious, but it makes the most of its design and layout. Buttons and controls are easy to locate and operate and the rear bench is 60/40 split folding.
For a point of comparison, the 2020 Acura RDX has 40 inches of headroom in the front and the BMW X3 has 41.1 inches of headroom for the driver. However, the RDX excels over the X3 in all other comfort zones like hip and shoulder room.
The Advance package equips the best interior amenities on the RDX. It comes with heated and ventilated leather seats plus GPS-linked climate control. The natural olive ash wood panelling elevates the RDX to the level of a premium luxury sedan from Mercedes-Benz or BMW.
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The technology inside the RDX luxury crossover from Acura
You get a 10.2 inch display screen in the center console of the 2020 Acura RDX. It stretches out across the dashboard with a wealth of features. As the name suggests, the Technology package bundles all of the most desirable tech features for a modest uptick in price.
The navigation system works like a top, but you can skip it with Apple CarPlay. There’s a navigation feature in there, as well.
Also, the infotainment interface is overly cumbersome. It has way too many sub menus and the touchpad controller just adds an unnecessary layer of input.
There’s a learning curve to using it properly but try not to take your eyes off the road while driving.
When it comes to safety, the RDX has stellar numbers from its crash tests. In fact, the IIHS rates the 2020 Acura RDX a Top Safety Pick+. You get a full complement of air bags on any model along with a host of electronic stability control features.
That’s to be expected when you’re creeping above $35,000 for a vehicle. Blind spot monitoring and surround view camera are available, but not on the base model version of the RDX.
The 2020 Acura RDX comes handsomely outfitted with the Standard package and has a starting MSRP of $37,600 with front-wheel drive. It’s one of the highest rated crossover vehicles on the market. The exterior style of the vehicle is distinctive, and the 3D front grille is certainly eye-catching.
Unfortunately, the final price tag is unlikely to stay in the high 30s as you begin to add packages and features. Acura puts the most sought-after features just out of reach for the base model and it would be quite tempting to go for the Technology or Advanced package plus all-wheel drive instead.
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That would put the price at $47,000. For that price, the 2020 Acura RDX doesn’t quite outshine its rivals. You must put it in a different category when comparing it to the X3 from BMW or a Mercedes-Benz luxury crossover.
All that said, the 2020 Acura RDX is so damn fun to drive. The accelerator responds with a punchy throttle and the all-wheel drive version has curve-carving abilities.
If you can resist the urge to equip its best features, then the RDX and its entry level luxury amenities and nimble powertrain would be a great addition to any garage. You’ll love the punchy acceleration and handling.
You’ll enjoy driving it around the city and it’s sure to turn more than a few heads along the way.