New 2020 Acura RDX Makes Great First Impression

I had the chance to drive the 2020 Acura RDX A-Spec at the 2019 Texas Truck Rodeo earlier this autumn. Crossover SUV’s are capable, spacious, vehicles designed to try and do it all with plenty of head room. I do not like them, but I understand why they are popular. I understand why they come in various flavors to try and stick their nose in any vehicle class they can squeeze into: sporty, off-road, sub-compact, luxury, and hybrid. CUV’s are giving Baskin Robbins a run for their money.  Having said that… the 2020 Acura RDX is the first crossover SUV  I really enjoyed driving. That’s like a vegan confessing that they miss eating hotdogs. The A-Spec RDX is a sporty SUV that delivers premium performance with the latest safety tech, while staying under 50k.

The 2020 RDX is powered by a 2.0 turbo four cylinder engine. I know 2.0 turbo four cylinder engines are a dime a dozen these days, but the RDX makes good use of its 272 horsepower thanks to a 10-speed automatic making the RDX feel lively. It pulls from a dead stop with assertiveness as it accelerates from 0-60 in under 7 seconds (according to Car and Driver). The exhaust system does an excellent job of producing just enough noise to let you know you’re going fast.
The ultra suede red interior and dashboard in the A-Spec trim level makes you feel like you’re in a sports car…until you look back and see the second row of seats. Nevertheless, the 2020 Acura RDX A-Spec is fun to drive while still offering all the latest safety features one expects a premium CUV to have like: Forward collision warning, blind spot monitoring, adapted cruise control with lane assist, and side curtain airbags.

Prices start at 37k for the 2020 Acura RDX. The model shown in this review came with the A-Spec performance package ($3000 option), and Tech package ($3200 option) bringing the total to $46,795.

2020 Acura RDX A-Spec with SH-AWD

SH-AWD stands for Super Handling All-Wheel Drive. I’m not a big fan of that name because it sounds sarcastic and too simplistic for what is an otherwise a very complicated system.

This model is the top of line Acura RDX A-Spec with SH-AWD. This is Acura’s ‘Super Handling’ all-wheel drive system that works by dictating how much power each wheel gets depending on how the vehicle’s weight is transferring. For example, if you’re taking a sharp right turn SH-AWD will send 70% of the engine’s power to the rear outside wheel to help propel the vehicle through the turn safely . This system is designed to work even with the weather is sunny and dry. Under normal driving conditions SH-AWD sends 90% power to the front wheels to improve fuel economy.

The 2020 Acura RDX A-Spec made a great first impression by being a premium CUV that forced me to smile while driving. The RDX has the look, the feel, and the right upgrades to be a memorable CUV. I was pleasantly surprised by the RDX and look forward to finding out if this first impression can carry on throughout a week long review.