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2013 Acura RDX Review

The fun-to-drive 2013 Acura RDX has athletic handling, a potent V6, and a premium cabin. Its rank near the back of a highly competitive class owes to a good – but not great – reliability score and the well-roundedness of its competitors. 

Pros & Cons

  • Comfortable, roomy interior
  • Athletic handling
  • Strong yet efficient V6
  • Poor voice recognition system




Critics' Rating: 8.2
Performance: 7.6
Interior: 7.8
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.7
Safety: 10.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2013 Acura RDX Overview

Is the 2013 Acura RDX a Good Used SUV?

If you’re shopping for a previously owned luxury compact SUV, a used 2013 Acura RDX is a fine option. It offers the interior refinement, engine performance, and driving dynamics that put it on par with class rivals, but at a price that often beats the competition by a mile. Drawbacks are few and far between, though pricier rivals like the Audi Q5 and Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class do offer more advanced safety features.

Used 2013 Acura RDX Performance and Interior

The Acura RDX is equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 273 horsepower. A refined six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard; all-wheel drive is available. The V6 enables punchy acceleration and brisk passing power, yet not at the cost of fuel economy. The RDX achieves a respectable 20 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway; all-wheel drive models earn 19/27 mpg city/highway. The V6 operates smoothly, and little road, wind, or engine noise permeate the cabin.

When the 2013 RDX debuted, it earned praise for its stability and composure around corners. The steering is light yet responsive, and its strong brakes bring the SUV to a stop with command. The RDX’s suspension tiptoes the line between soft and sporty. Most road bumps are sopped up without fuss, though larger dips and potholes make their presence known. The RDX can tow up to 1,500 pounds when properly equipped.

Read more about RDX performance »

The Acura RDX seats five. Though it’s a compact SUV, its interior feels especially large and airy for the class. Up front, the RDX’s soft leather seats provide good comfort and support over long drives. The rear seats are plush as well, and two average-sized adults can fit comfortably. Two full sets of LATCH connectors allow you to secure child safety seats in the rear outboard seats. The RDX has 26.1 cubic feet of cargo space behind its rear seats and a roomy 61.3 cubic feet with these 60/40-split seats folded flat.

Acura equipped all RDX models with an infotainment screen, satellite radio, and keyless entry. Bluetooth is also standard, though you’ll want to check that your device will connect to the system properly. A navigation system is available. The RDX’s soft-touch interior plastics and padded surfaces give the SUV an upscale look and feel. The plethora of dashboard buttons sours that luxury appearance somewhat, though most of these controls are fairly user-friendly. However, the RDX’s voice recognition system operates rather slowly and relies too heavily on specific voice commands.

Read more about RDX interior »

Used 2013 Acura RDX Prices

The price of a used 2013 RDX ranges from about $17,200 for a base model to around $20,600 for models equipped with the Technology package and all-wheel drive. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

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We Did the Research for You: 27 Reviews Analyzed

We’ve researched 27 Acura RDX reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars for a decade, and our team has more than 75 years of automotive industry experienced combined. While we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to giving helpful consumer advice. To ensure our reviews remain impartial, we refuse expensive gifts and trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Reliable Is the 2013 Acura RDX?

The 2013 RDX has average reliability, earning a score of three out of five from J.D. Power.

See RDX reliability scores »

How Safe Is the RDX?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the RDX a 2013 Top Safety Pick. The RDX earned a score of Good, the highest offered, in all four areas tested. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration did not crash test the Acura RDX.

Acura offers the RDX with an available rearview camera. No other advanced safety features, like parking sensors or blind spot monitoring, are available.

See RDX safety scores »

Is the 2013 RDX the Best Model Year to Buy?

The 2013 model year is the best place to start if you’re shopping for a used RDX. Acura fully redesigned the RDX for 2013. There were no major updates until the 2016 model year, when a suite of optional safety features became available. Buying a used 2013 RDX will get you the same features as the 2014 and 2015 models, but often at a much lower price. The first-generation RDX – which spans the 2007 through 2012 model years – can’t match the overall refinement of the newer RDX model.

Compare the 2013, 2014, and 2015 RDX »

Which Used Acura RDX Is Right for Me?

The 2013 RDX comes in one trim. Standard features include a 5-inch infotainment screen, a CD player, AM/FM/satellite radio, USB and auxiliary audio inputs, Bluetooth, cruise control, keyless entry, push-button start, dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a moonroof.

An available Technology package adds a larger 8-inch screen and navigation system, real-time traffic and weather alerts, voice recognition, Pandora internet radio, a rearview camera, and a power tailgate.

You may want to consider a certified pre-owned Acura RDX. With Acura's CPO program, there is a one-year/12,000-mile limited warranty, and the original new-car powertrain warranty is extended to seven years or 100,000 miles. Acura CPO models must pass a 182-point inspection. Additional benefits may be available, so read Acura’s warranty page carefully. The model's original sale date determines whether or not it is eligible for the CPO program.   

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Acura certified pre-owned program »

2013 Acura RDX and Other SUVs to Consider

Which Is Better: 2013 Acura RDX or 2013 BMW X3?

The 2013 BMW X3 is the better luxury compact SUV. Its turbocharged engines offer superior performance. The X3 also has a nicer balance between ride quality and handling, plus more tech and safety features, like adaptive headlights. That doesn’t mean it’s the better buy, though. The RDX is a close runner-up in terms of interior refinement, and it tops the BMW in rear seating space. Used Acura RDX models typically cost much less as well. For many, these savings will make the “good” RDX a smarter buy than the “great” X3.

Which Is Better: 2013 Acura RDX or 2013 Honda CR-V?

The 2013 Honda CR-V and Acura RDX share the same vehicle platform. In fact, both are assembled at the same Ohio factory. At the end of the day, both are good SUVs … but if you can live without the V6 power or the Acura brand name, the Honda CR-V is the better buy. Not only are used CR-Vs less expensive, but they offer better fuel economy, superior reliability, and many of the same features.

Which Is Better: 2013 Acura RDX or 2013 Acura MDX?

We named the Acura MDX our 2013 Best 3-Row Luxury SUV for the Money. If you have a growing family and plan to haul lots of passengers or cargo, the MDX is surely the better option. The MDX seats seven, offers an extra 22 cubic feet of cargo space, and can tow up to 5,000 pounds. The MDX also rates higher for reliability and offers some safety features that the RDX lacks, such as blind spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control. The MDX’s larger size does come into play at the gas pump, though. With just a 16/21 mpg city/highway rating, it’s far less fuel-efficient than its smaller RDX sibling.

Compare the RDX, X3, and CR-V »


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