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Acura's SUV has always had more in common with cars than with trucks. From its inception it had an independent suspension and a V-6 engine, with an upscale interior more appropriate for the city than the farm.
For 2010, the MDX gets some styling changes, notably a flattened nose and more vents in the fascia.
The MDX relies on a 3.7-liter V-6, good for 300 horsepower. It is not the most advanced engine in the industry and could be made more efficient through direct injection.
The MDX is laid out as a seven-passenger vehicle, with a third row that can accommodate two adults, although access requires a little climbing.
Acura fits its high-trim MDX with a magnetic suspension system. The driver can toggle the car between sport and comfort modes.
The MDX gets Acura's Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive system, which shifts torque between front and rear wheels as needed. It also shifts torque across the rear wheels, giving it sports-car handling.
With wood-grain trim pieces and nicely inset buttons, the cabin of the MDX has undergone an important refresh.
Where Acura used to have two separate buttons for two different voice command systems, the company has finally consolidated them with one button on the MDX's steering wheel.
Another positive update for the MDX is the inclusion of a six-speed automatic transmission, where previously the company topped out at five speeds.
The navigation system maps don't look particularly good, but they do show traffic information and can dynamically route around problems.
During route guidance, the system will read out the names of streets, which is helpful for complex maneuvers or when you can't look down at the map.
The navigation system includes a Zagat guide, making it possible to not only find restaurants, but to get some idea what they are like.
One of our favorite features of the navigation system is the database of scenic drives. Listed by state, it points out some excellent road-trip destinations around the country.
The cabin tech includes weather information, as a forecast for specific areas and as a severe weather alert map.
The Bluetooth phone system imports contact lists, making entries available on the LCD.
This interface for the onboard music library lets you pick music by album, artist, genre, and other categories.
Strangely, the iPod library menu uses a different format than the hard-drive library menu.
A new feature, Song by Voice, lets you say the name of an artist, album, or track on a connected iPod to begin playback.
Fully loaded, the MDX includes rear-seat DVD entertainment, with the screen that automatically folds down from the ceiling.
The rear-view camera includes distance lines, and three different wide angles, but there are no trajectory lines.