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2020 Acura MDX Hybrid Review

The 2020 Acura MDX Hybrid ranks in the bottom half of the luxury hybrid and electric SUV class. It has composed handling, but it’s held back by a subpar predicted reliability rating and a  cabin that lacks the refinement of more luxurious rivals.

Pros & Cons

  • Robust powertrain
  • Sporty handling
  • Poor predicted reliability rating
  • Cabin is less upscale than rivals'

7.7

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.8
Performance: 7.5
Interior: 6.7
Safety:
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.8 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
TBD
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the Acura MDX Hybrid a Good SUV?

Yes, the Acura MDX Sport Hybrid is a good luxury SUV. It shines on the road, thanks to its peppy hybrid powertrain and agile handling. Its biggest drawback is its below-average predicted reliability rating. While its cabin quality and cargo space are both fine, they’re outdone by some rivals.

Should I Buy the Acura MDX Hybrid?

As far as hybrids go, the Acura MDX is a decent choice in the luxury hybrid and electric SUV class. There are plenty of great options to consider though. The Lexus RX Hybrid is more fuel-efficient and more affordable, and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid has more cargo room behind the first- and second rows as well as better fuel economy. You might even consider the nonhybrid Acura MDX, which is a bit more affordable.

Compare the MDX Hybrid, RX Hybrid, and Highlander Hybrid »

Should I Buy a New or Used Acura MDX Hybrid?

Acura launched the MDX Sport Hybrid as an all-new model for 2017. Acura tweaked its dual-screen infotainment system for 2018, improving its responsiveness and adding standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There have been no major changes to the MDX Hybrid since the 2018 model year. Buying an older model will likely save you some dough, and for your money, you could get a better-equipped SUV in a higher trim.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017, 2018, and 2019 Acura MDX Hybrid reviews to help make your decision. Also check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts on used vehicles.

If you’re interested, you could also check out the nonhybrid Acura MDX.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 MDX Hybrid »

We Did the Research for You: 15 Reviews Analyzed

By researching Acura MDX Hybrid reviews, our hope is to provide you with the information you need to make car shopping a breeze. You'll find everything you need to know about this SUV in our comprehensive review. It combines concrete data (like fuel economy estimates, safety scores, and cargo space dimensions) with professional evaluations from 15 Acura MDX Hybrid reviews. This MDX Hybrid review incorporates applicable research for all vehicles in this generation, which spans the 2017 through 2020 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve been reviewing cars since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive experience. We also award the Best Cars for the Money, Best Cars for Families, and Best Vehicle Brands on an annual basis. To ensure our impartiality, a third party handles our advertising, and we don't accept expensive gifts from automakers.

How Much Does the Acura MDX Hybrid Cost?

The 2020 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid starts at $52,900. That’s a typical base price among rival hybrids. The Sport Hybrid with the Advance package, which is a fully loaded example, retails for $59,650. That's more affordable than the top trims of some competitors.  

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Acura dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Acura deals page.

Acura MDX Hybrid Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Acura MDX Hybrid or Acura MDX?

The Acura MDX is the gas-only version of the MDX Hybrid. As such, these two luxury SUVs are similar, offering the same cargo and passenger dimensions and two-screen infotainment system. The hybrid has a stronger powertrain, higher fuel economy estimates, and more standard features, but you’ll pay around $8,500 more for the hybrid version. The MDX Hybrid will save you around $300 in annual fuel costs over a front-wheel-drive MDX, so it would take a little more than 28 years to pay for the hybrid's added cost in fuel savings. Choosing between these two is a matter of taste and budget.

Which Is Better: Acura MDX Hybrid or Lexus RX Hybrid?

The Lexus RX Hybrid sits near the MDX Sport Hybrid in our luxury hybrid and electric SUV rankings. The Acura has nimbler handling and more cargo space, but the Lexus has a richer cabin and better fuel economy estimates. On top of that, the Lexus has a history of earning good predicted reliability ratings. Buying the two-row RX Hybrid will also cost you around $6,150 less than buying the MDX Hybrid. The three-row version of this Lexus costs around $2,400 less to buy than its Acura rival. Both SUVs are decent picks, but the Lexus is slightly better.

Compare the MDX Hybrid, MDX, and RX Hybrid »

MDX Hybrid Interior

How Many People Does the MDX Hybrid Seat?

The MDX Hybrid seats up to seven people. Available second-row captain’s chairs reduce the overall seating capacity from seven to six. Leather upholstery is standard, as are heated and 12-way power-adjustable front seats. One-Touch Smart Slide is also included, which lets you fold and slide the second-row seats with the push of a button, giving you easy access to the third row. Ventilated front seats, heated rear outboard seats, and a heated steering wheel are available.

The front seats are comfortable and supportive. Legroom is great in the first two rows, though headroom is a bit tight in the second. The third row isn't as cramped as some luxury three-row SUVs, but it's still best left for kids.

MDX Hybrid and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors in this Acura’s second row and a single tether anchor for each third-row seat.

MDX Hybrid Interior Quality

This luxury crossover has a classy cabin with some upscale materials, but it lacks the overall refinement of some rivals.

MDX Hybrid Cargo Space

The MDX Hybrid has 15 cubic feet of space behind the third row, 38.4 cubes behind the second row, and a total of 68.4 cubic feet with the second and third row folded. Those figures aren’t bad, but some rivals have larger cargo holds.

MDX Hybrid Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The standard infotainment system consists of two monitors – an 8-inch upper screen and a 7-inch lower touch screen. You'll also get Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, navigation, satellite radio, HD Radio, a 10-speaker stereo, voice controls, five USB ports, and Siri Eyes Free. A moonroof comes standard. Two additional USB ports are available.

Once you know which screen controls what functions, using the infotainment system is a fairly straightforward process.

Read more about interior »

MDX Hybrid Performance

MDX Hybrid Engine: Peppy

The sole powertrain in this Acura is a 3.0-liter V6 mated to three electric motors that produce a combined 321 horsepower and 289 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission is standard.

The Sport Hybrid accelerates swiftly, and the hybrid powertrain produces ample power for most driving situations. However, you may notice that power tapers off as you climb to higher speeds on the freeway. The transmission is smooth and responsive.

MDX Hybrid Gas Mileage: Decent

The MDX Sport Hybrid gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. That’s good for an SUV of its size, especially considering it has all-wheel drive. Among luxury hybrid SUVs, though, these ratings are not impressive.

MDX Hybrid Ride and Handling: Puts the Sport in Sport Hybrid

This vehicle provides a smooth and playful ride. Its well-weighted steering helps it tackle turns with confidence, and it has several drive modes to alter performance. Acura’s Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) is standard.

Read more about performance »

MDX Hybrid Reliability

Is the Acura MDX Hybrid Reliable?

The 2020 MDX Hybrid gets a below-average predicted reliability rating of 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Acura MDX Hybrid Warranty

Acura covers the 2020 MDX Sport Hybrid with a four-year/50,000-mile basic warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

How Much Does It Cost to Insure an Acura MDX Hybrid?

The cost of insuring an Acura MDX Hybrid will depend on a variety of factors, including your deductible, the level of coverage that you want, and the type of insurance that you choose. Your age, gender, location, credit score, and driving record can also have an impact on your insurance rates. Check out our car insurance guide to find the best policy for you.

MDX Hybrid Safety

MDX Hybrid Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave this luxury SUV an overall rating of five out of five stars, with four stars in the rollover test and five stars in frontal and side crash tests.

MDX Hybrid Safety Features

Standard safety features in this Acura include automatic high beams, lane departure warning, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert. Additionally, as part of the AcuraWatch suite of advanced driver aids, the MDX Hybrid features forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and a road departure mitigation system.

A head-up display and a surround-view parking camera system are available.  

Read more about safety »

Acura MDX Hybrid Dimensions and Weight

This SUV is about 16.4 feet long. It has a curb weight that ranges from 4,471 to 4,486 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Acura MDX Hybrid Built?

Acura builds the 2020 MDX Sport Hybrid in Ohio.

Which Acura MDX Hybrid Model Is Right for Me?

The MDX Hybrid's standard configuration is technically called MDX Sport Hybrid with Technology Package. There’s also an Advance package available to bolster its list of features.

We review the nonhybrid Acura MDX separately.

Acura MDX Sport Hybrid with Technology Package

The MDX Sport Hybrid’s base trim retails for $52,900. Its list of standard equipment includes a dual-screen infotainment system, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a navigation system, a 10-speaker premium stereo, satellite radio, Bluetooth, five USB ports, and the AcuraLink telematics system.

You'll also get perforated leather-trimmed seats with 12-way power-adjustment and heating for the front, tri-zone automatic climate control, GPS-linked climate control, remote start, proximity keyless entry, and a moonroof.

Several driver assist features also come standard. These include a rearview camera, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, rain-sensing windshield wipers, automatic high beams, and lane departure warning. The base trim also comes with the AcuraWatch suite of safety features, which consists of a collision mitigation and braking system, lane keep assist, road departure warning, and adaptive cruise control.

Acura MDX Sport Hybrid with Advance Package

The Acura MDX Sport Hybrid with Advance Package has an MSRP of $59,650. It adds ventilated front seats, heated second-row captain’s chairs, upgraded Milano leather seats, a heated steering wheel, two third-row USB ports, a head-up display, and a surround-view parking camera system.  

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Acura dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Acura deals page.

See 2020 Acura MDX Hybrid specs and trims »

The Final Call

The Acura MDX Hybrid offers nimble handling, a gentle ride, and a capable hybrid powertrain. While there’s a lot to like about the MDX Sport Hybrid, we suggest shopping around before making your decision. It’s held back by a subpar predicted reliability rating, and some of its rivals in the luxury hybrid and electric SUV class have nicer cabin materials and more cargo space.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "You wouldn't expect sporty handling or excitement from a three-row SUV, let alone a hybrid one. Yet the MDX delivers just that. You just might develop a tinge of excitement about this family hauler." -- Edmunds
  • "Derived from the excellent MDX luxury crossover, the 2019 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid ratchets up the excitement with a powerful hybrid system, a sport suspension and impressive fuel economy. With the same reputation for quality, value and dependability as the standard MDX, the Sport Hybrid ups the playfulness, thanks mainly to the hybrid's clever 3-electric-motor setup. … The hybrid design provides the MDX Sport Hybrid with superior road-holding abilities in all types of weather and adds 30 additional horsepower without sacrificing any interior space. Even the pricing is similar, with the hybrid a mere $1,500 more than the similarly equipped MDX Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD)." -- Autotrader (2019)
  • "With the addition of the new 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid, the luxury brand is stepping up its game and trying to attract a younger generation looking for a capable and confident vehicle. The MDX hybrid's quick torque delivery, good handling, and decent packaging set it apart without compromising any space." -- Motor Trend (2017)
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