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Hey guys I am looking to buy either a '16 or '17 (my budget) RDX, and try to decide which trims I should be looking for.. I am mostly buying it for my gf so safety features is kind of a big concern. I thought of the trim that comes with the Collision Mitigation Braking System but after some research I see a lot of potential problems with it.. so I am more leaning towards getting the Tech Package because it comes with the Blind Spot Information System ( I don't care for the Navi System and I heard it sucks). Is the BSI system and the Rear Cross Traffic Monitor worth the extra money or I should just go with a base model?

Regards,
 

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You do have the option to turn off some of the AcuraWatch features at anytime. I like the new features and leave them on. I get the occasional flash from the CMBS auto braking; but, never had it do a full panic stop from nowhere. I would let her test drive both versions of the RDX w/ and w/o Acurawatch to see if she will like the added safety tech (my wife loves having AcuraWatch).

The used vehicle market is red hot with higher than normal prices right now. I would test drive the tech level/year you want to see if you/she really likes it. I would even compare prices in a 1/2 to 1 day drive to see if other dealerships might give you a better deal. My local dealership was playing hardball until I showed them a cheaper price at another dealership for the same exact MDX and they price matched on the spot. A CPO RDX does a 182 point inspection and increases the 4/50k basic warranty to 6/100,000 miles and the powertrain goes from 6/70k to 7/100,000 miles.

Another minor "con" with Acurawatch is going with OEM glass if you need a new windshield. Getting OEM windshield glass and the Acurawatch camera needs to be calibrated afterwards is the best way to get the system up 100%. Some folks had issue with aftermarket glass. I would check on your car insurance for glass replacement coverage because it can cost +$1000 for OEM glass+calibration. Some had some issues with extreme heat and effecting the camera above the rear view mirror (overheated camera message). I live in the southwest with +100 degree F days 1/4 of the time during the summer and never had that issue. Other than that, zero maintenance or issues for any other AcuraWatch system.
 

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You do have the option to turn off some of the AcuraWatch features at anytime. I like the new features and leave them on. I get the occasional flash from the CMBS auto braking; but, never had it do a full panic stop from nowhere. I would let her test drive both versions of the RDX w/ and w/o Acurawatch to see if she will like the added safety tech (my wife loves having AcuraWatch).

The used vehicle market is red hot with higher than normal prices right now. I would test drive the tech level/year you want to see if you/she really likes it. I would even compare prices in a 1/2 to 1 day drive to see if other dealerships might give you a better deal. My local dealership was playing hardball until I showed them a cheaper price at another dealership for the same exact MDX and they price matched on the spot. A CPO RDX does a 182 point inspection and increases the 4/50k basic warranty to 6/100,000 miles and the powertrain goes from 6/70k to 7/100,000 miles.

Another minor "con" with Acurawatch is going with OEM glass if you need a new windshield. Getting OEM windshield glass and the Acurawatch camera needs to be calibrated afterwards is the best way to get the system up 100%. Some folks had issue with aftermarket glass. I would check on your car insurance for glass replacement coverage because it can cost +$1000 for OEM glass+calibration. Some had some issues with extreme heat and effecting the camera above the rear view mirror (overheated camera message). I live in the southwest with +100 degree F days 1/4 of the time during the summer and never had that issue. Other than that, zero maintenance or issues for any other AcuraWatch system.
I just bought a 2018 Certified RDX Tech package and love it. Don’t like not having apple car play but love everything else. Don’t miss the collision mitigation stuff- I’ve driven cars with it and it was more annoying than helpful.
 

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I can see the collision mitigation being helpful if you have multiple drivers, travel a lot to other metro areas, or even inexperienced teenage drivers in the home. Not so much if you are the only driver of the vehicle.
 

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I bought a 2018 RDX, base model (but with AWD), with 61,000 miles, and am extremely happy with it after 8 months and a winter in New England.

My cheap advice, for what little it's worth, is to go for less tech, not more. More tech equates to more to go wrong, and more expense when it does go wrong. All the sensors and computers are expensive, and as others have noted, the associated features are more annoying than helpful in most use-cases.

Re: the Tech package, have you ever driven a vehicle that shuts off at stop signs and stop lights? I find it to be the most annoying thing in the world. And you have to disable it every time you get in the vehicle. A hard pass for me.

Your phone will be superior to any onboard navigation system (in virtually any car, not just this one). BlueTooth is probably all you "need" to have hands-free operation and be safe on the road. The audio quality is "good enough", and if you need more, you can copy ultra-high-quality MP3s to a thumb drive and plug it into the media port under the center console.

Long-and-short: get the base model, but with AWD.
 

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I would also look at the 14 to 16 MDX in the base and tech trim. The MDX and RDX are very close in price in the used market. You might find even better deals if you are willing to travel outside your local area. I would test drive both the MDX and RDX at a minimum. The 14 MDX w/ sh-awd in base/tech trim would probably come out cheaper than a 16/17 RDX with the same tech level. The 14/15 MDXs came with a 6AT and upgraded to the 9AT for the 16-20 MDXs.

MDX Pros:
  • same 3.5L engine; but, 290 hp
  • similar city/hwy/combined mpgs
  • room for up to 7 (fits 5 adults very comfy)
  • can tow 3500-5000lbs (need trans cooler for 5000lbs of towing)
  • roof rails can take 165lbs
  • one of the best awd systems available for any SUV (sh-awd) for secure handling all 4 seasons
  • the always on sh-awd drives like a smaller vehicle because of the tq vectoring (very sporty SUV)
  • 6AT for the 14/15 MDXs and 9AT for the 16 MDX
  • 2nd row seats that slide and recline, way more cargo space in hatch
  • you can add a full size spare
  • only the 14/15 Adv models came with the full Acurawatch tech, optional on all trim levels for the 16 MDX
  • won't outgrow the MDX if your family increases

MDX Cons:
  • larger vehicle if you are tight on parking space
  • might be too much SUV if you are the only driver
  • very popular, will see more MDXs than RDXs if don't want to copy the crowd
 
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