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2017 Acura MDX Review

The 2017 Acura MDX offers superb value, with top-notch safety scores and tons of standard features. However, a subpar predicted reliability rating and an awkward infotainment system bring the MDX down to a midpack ranking.

Pros & Cons

  • Balanced ride and handling
  • Excellent fuel economy
  • More standard driver assistance features than rivals
  • Cumbersome infotainment system
  • Less cargo space than 3-row rivals
  • Below-average predicted reliability rating

New for 2017

  • Refreshed exterior styling
  • AcuraWatch advanced safety features became standard
  • New hybrid model debuted




Critics' Rating: 9.4
Performance: 8.4
Interior: 8.0
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.6
Safety: 9.8
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2017 Acura MDX Overview

Is the 2017 Acura MDX a Good Used SUV?

For the most part, the Acura MDX is a good luxury midsize SUV. It’s an excellent choice for shoppers that desire an upscale 3-row SUV with a long list of standard features, but can’t afford pricier rivals like the 2017 Audi Q7. The MDX’s great combination of overall quality and value in the class is why we named it our 2017 Best Luxury 3-Row SUV for the Money.

The Acura MDX goes a step beyond offering sensible transportation by appealing to driving enthusiasts as well. Its V6 engine is powerful, and the MDX’s nimble handling makes it easy to drive for an SUV of its size. The MDX has above-average fuel economy, but commuters that want to trim their fuel costs further should check out the MDX Sport Hybrid, which we review separately. On the downside, the MDX’s below-average predicted reliability rating is a weak spot.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our Acura MDX review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from more than 38 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

At U.S. News & World Report, we rank the Best Jobs, Best Hospitals, and Best Colleges to guide readers through some of life’s most complicated decisions. We've been ranking and reviewing the Best Cars since 2007, backed by a team with more than 75 years of combined automotive experience. To keep favoritism out of the picture, we maintain a separate advertising team and decline expensive gifts and trips from car companies.

How Much Is the 2017 Acura MDX?

The average price of a 2017 MDX is $43,400, based on more than 400 listings on our site. Factors such as optional features, vehicle condition, mileage, and regional demand affect the actual listing price, so you may find prices as low as $36,500 or as high as $51,200.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2017 Acura MDX Cost to Own?

Over the course of five years, it costs $29,200 to insure, fuel, maintain, and repair the average 2017 MDX. Those costs are on the low side for a luxury midsize SUV.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New MDX?

When comparing the 2018 MDX with the 2017 model, the infotainment system update for 2018 is one major change to be aware of. Though it is still a two-screen setup – with an upper 8-inch display and a lower 7-inch touch screen – the interface is now more responsive and easier to use. For 2018, the MDX also adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which make entertainment and navigation functions considerably more convenient. You’ll have to pay only a little more to buy new. The $44,200 starting MSRP of the 2018 MDX is only $800 higher than the average price of a 2017 MDX. In this case, we recommend buying new instead of used.

Read about the new Acura MDX »

Few similarly priced luxury midsize SUVs score as high as a 2017 MDX, but the 2018 Lexus RX 350 is one of them. This 2-row SUV boasts an elegant cabin with a spacious second row, and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named it a Top Safety Pick. It also won our 2018 Best Luxury 2-Row SUV for the Money award because of its great combination of overall quality and value in the class. Pricing for the RX 350 starts at $43,740.

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How Reliable Is the 2017 Acura MDX?

The 2017 MDX has a below-average predicted reliability rating or 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about MDX reliability »

2017 Acura MDX Recalls

As of the date of this review, there are no recalls for the 2017 MDX.

See more information on Acura MDX safety recalls »

Which Model Year of the Acura MDX Is Best? 

The 2014 model year marks a new generation of the MDX, which includes the 2018 model. At first glance, it can be hard to find differences between the various model years. However, there are a few milestones to be aware of. For 2016, the MDX received a new nine-speed transmission and an improved all-wheel-drive system. The following year, a comprehensive suite of advanced safety features became standard. Acura also refreshed the exterior styling and added the MDX Sport Hybrid for 2017. For the highest level of front crash prevention, we recommend buying a 2017 MDX, which comes standard with a collision mitigation system. Alternatively, you could find the optional Collision Mitigation Braking System in 2015 and 2016 MDX models.

Compare the 2015, 2016, and 2017 MDX »

Which Used Acura MDX Model Is Right for Me?

The 2017 Acura MDX comes in only one trim level, which comes with a V6 engine and nine-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, but some models may have Acura’s Super Handling all-wheel-drive system (also called SH-AWD). Because the MDX comes nicely equipped from the start, we recommend the base model.

That said, shoppers wanting a swankier SUV could look for a model outfitted with an upgrade package. Each package includes all options in the package below it. Packages include the Technology package (navigation, HD Radio, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert), the Advance package (leather seats, heated second-row captain’s chairs, and a 360-degree camera), and the Entertainment package (9-inch rear-seat entertainment system).

See 2017 Acura MDX trims and specs »

What Does Acura's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Acura offers a certified pre-owned program for cars six years old or less and with fewer than 80,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Qualifying vehicles get a limited warranty that is good for up to two years or 100,000 miles after the four-year/50,000-mile new-car warranty has expired. Acura covers the powertrain for seven years or 100,000 miles. These CPO models must pass a 182-point inspection. Additional benefits are available, including roadside assistance and the first scheduled maintenance, so read Acura’s warranty page carefully.

Among luxury car manufacturers, Acura’s CPO program is about average, according to our research. You’ll find better programs from Lexus, Audi, and Infiniti.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the MDX?

The 2017 MDX earned Top Safety Pick+ (the highest designation) from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. It earned the highest score of Good in every crash test. Its standard collision mitigation braking system has the highest rating of Superior for front crash prevention. In National Highway Traffic Safety Administration evaluations, the MDX earned five out of five stars overall. It received five stars in frontal and side crash tests, and four stars in the rollover category.

Every MDX comes standard with AcuraWatch. This bundle of advanced safety features includes active lane keep assist, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control. Upgrades include blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and a 360-degree camera.

See MDX safety scores »

2017 Acura MDX Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2017 Acura MDX or 2017 Lexus RX 350?

If you only need five seats in your midsize SUV, consider the Lexus RX 350. Its spacious cabin grants more legroom for both front- and rear-seat passengers. The RX has one of the highest predicated reliability ratings in the class. Still, you should stick with the MDX if you typically haul a lot of stuff around, as it offers much more cargo space behind the second row of seats. If your budget is tight, you’ll appreciate that the Acura’s average price and ownership costs are lower than the Lexus’.

 Which Is Better: 2017 Acura MDX or 2017 Infiniti QX60?

The Infiniti QX60 and MDX both offer great value, so you can pick the one that best fits your lifestyle. The QX60 is slightly less expensive than the MDX, with a lower average price and lower ownership costs for select expenses (insurance, fuel, repairs, and maintenance). It’s also a better fit for larger crews, with an expansive third row and lots of cargo space. On the other hand, the MDX has nimbler handling and comes with far more standard safety features.

Compare the MDX, RX 350, and QX60 »

2017 MDX Performance

How Does the 2017 Acura MDX Drive?

The MDX feels lively and responsive to drive, with precise steering takes little effort. The MDX has controlled body movements and a comfortable ride. Acceleration is punchy thanks to a 290-horsepower V6 engine and nine-speed automatic transmission. However, the stop-start system hesitates to start the car at times, and the transmission occasionally hunts for the right gear.

Does the 2017 Acura MDX Get Good Gas Mileage?

The MDX gets 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway, which is slightly above average for a luxury midsize SUV.

2017 Acura MDX Towing Capacity

The MDX can tow up to 3,500 pounds with front-wheel drive, or 5,000 with all-wheel drive.

Read more about MDX performance »

2017 MDX Interior

How Many People Does the 2017 MDX Seat?

The MDX is a 3-row SUV that has room for up to seven people. In some models, a pair of captain’s chairs replaces the second-row bench seat, reducing capacity to six. The front seats are well cushioned, and the second row can slide forward and backward, depending on where you want more room. Still, legroom is in short supply for second- and third-row passengers no matter where you move the second row.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2017 Acura MDX?

In seven-seat MDX models, there are three full sets of LATCH anchors in the second row, and only two sets come in MDX models with second-row captain’s chairs. Both third-row seats come with a tether anchor. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the MDX the second highest rating of Acceptable for its LATCH system ease of use.

2017 Acura MDX Features

The MDX offers a wealth of standard features, including tri-zone automatic climate control, four USB ports, a proximity key, and an impressive bundle of advanced safety systems. However, the standard dual-screen infotainment system is a sore spot for the MDX. The complicated interface takes a bit of time to learn, and it requires using both the lower touch screen and neighboring buttons to make adjustments.  

See 2017 Acura MDX specs »

Read more about MDX interior »

2017 Acura MDX Dimensions

Acura MDX Cargo Space

The MDX has 14.9 cubic feet of space behind its rearmost seats. That’s not much room, though it’s typical for a 3-row SUV. Lay down the third-row seats and the Acura offers an above-average 38.4 cubic feet.

Acura MDX Length and Weight

The MDX is just over 16 feet long. Curb weight ranges between 4,001 and 4,292 pounds.

Where Was the 2017 Acura MDX Built?

Acura built the 2017 MDX in Alabama.

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