Hybrid vehicles promise more than just better fuel economy. Besides just improving fuel-efficiency and helping you save some money at the pump, hybrid vehicles promise better performance and a more comfortable ride experience. To emphasize that point, Acura is taking the word ‘Hybrid’ and adding the word ‘Sport’ in front for its new Sport Hybrid lineup of vehicles. Instead of focusing on fuel economy, Acura is playing into the fact that hybrids offer better performance and is wrapping it all in a nice luxurious package.
The highlight of Acura Sport Hybrid lineup is the new Acura NSX. The supercar has given a new meaning of what is capable with a hybrid powertrain setup when it comes to true performance. The technology has now trickled down to the Acura RLX and the topic of our discussion today – the Acura MDX Sport Hybrid.
The Acura MDX has been one of the brand’s best-selling vehicles, so it’s only right that Acura takes the MDX to the next level with its Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive setup. Let’s take a closer look at the all-new 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid.
On the outside, the 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid looks just like the standard gasoline MDX. Recently redesigned for the 2017 model year, the new Acura MDX gets a slightly redesigned front-end that is highlighted by the Diamond Pentagon grille.
Overall, the exterior features a lower and wider stance. Some other changes include redesigned LED headlamps and fog lights, dual exhausts on the MDX Sport Hybrid models, and body color lower side sills and front/rear skid garnishes.
Acura seems to be following the “if ain’t broken don’t fix it” mentality when it comes to the exterior redesign of the new 2017 MDX – but the overall design has been slightly upgraded to look more upscale and more refined.
The 2017 Acura MDX sits on a wheelbase that measures 111 inches with an overall length of 196.2 inches. The height comes in at 67.6 inches while the width comes in at 77.8 inches.
Take a seat inside the new 2017 Acura MDX and things will feel very familiar when compared with the outgoing model – and that’s not a bad thing. The interior of the Acura MDX has always been a very luxurious and comfortable place to be. The only two new features you’ll notice on the 2017 Acura MDX are the optional genuine wood interior accents and the available second-row captain’s chairs. Other than that, the interior of the 2017 Acura MDX is one that we’ve come to know and love.
The 2017 Acura MDX comes with a strong list of standard features including leather seats with front heated seats, tri-zone climate control, keyless entry with push-button start, Bluetooth connectivity (phone and audio), a rearview camera, four USB ports, MP3/AUX connectivity, an 8-inch color display, and much more. Buyers can raise the bar with the Technology Package which adds remote engine start, navigation, rain-sensing wipers, HD Radio, and more. Other than the Technology Package, you can add the Entertainment Package for a rear seat entertainment system or the Advance package for some additional luxury and convenience.
Our test model came with the second-row captain’s chairs which are only available with the Advance Package – however, that does drop the seating capacity from seven passengers to six. Nonetheless, the second-row captain’s chairs are extremely comfortable and very pleasant for a long drive.
Interior dimensions-wise, the 2017 Acura MDX offers some of the best legroom in its class. Front row passengers enjoy a total of 41.4 inches of legroom while second-row passengers get 36.6 inches. The third-row gets a total of 28.1 inches of legroom. Cargo capacity comes in at a strong 14.9 cubic feet behind the first row and a whopping 38.4 cubic feet behind the second row.
Our test model, the 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD is powered by a 3.0-liter i-VTEC V6 engine that is mated to a three-motor hybrid setup. That allows it to produce a combined output of 321 horsepower with a maximum torque of 289 lb-ft.
The engine is coupled with a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission that allows this hybrid crossover to run from 0 to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds with a top speed of 110 mph. That’s right – we just said 5.8 seconds for a three-row crossover that weighs in at 4,400 pounds.
With the time spent we spent with the 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD, we were definitely surprised by the quick acceleration, smooth ride quality, and tight handling dynamics. Now, this isn’t a sports car, but it does make you feel quite confident under quick maneuvers and fast acceleration circumstances. The 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD also comes with a drive mode selector that allows you to pick between Comfort, Normal, Sport, and Sport+ settings.
Since this is a hybrid, you’re probably wondering how many miles you’ll get to the gallon. EPA-rated fuel economy comes in at 26/27 mpg* (city/highway).
Safety is another segment where the 2017 Acura MDX shines. Whether or not you’re going for the hybrid or gasoline model, each Acura MDX comes standard with adaptive cruise control, a rearview camera, road departure mitigation, lane keep assist, collision mitigation, and more. Those advanced driver assist technologies can cost you an arm and a leg with other vehicles, but Acura is really stepping up the game by offering it as a standard option.
A strong list of standard technology and safety features, a luxurious cabin, strong performance numbers, and great fuel economy figures make the 2017 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD a clear winner in our books. Prices for the 2017 Acura MDX start at $44,050** while the MDX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD starts at $51,960**. So, if you’re in the market for a three-row crossover for your family, make sure you visit your local AutoNation-affiliated dealer for a test drive today.
*Based on EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.
**MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.