2007 Acura MDX - Introduction

OVERVIEW

The original Acura® MDX®, produced from 2001 to 2006 model years, broke new ground in the emerging luxury SUV segment. Now, the all-new 2007 MDX takes its predecessor's best qualities and radically expands them, pushing performance and sophistication in the luxury SUV segment to new levels. Benchmarked against some of the best performance SUVs in the world and tuned on the Nurburgring racetrack in Germany, the new MDX clearly establishes itself as a driver's SUV. Outfitted with Acura's tenacious Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD™) system and an available sport package with Active Damper System, the MDX yields a combination of handling and comfort that is truly on the cutting edge.

The 2007 MDX is equally daring in its styling and thorough in its safety and environmental responsibilities. Included as standard equipment is the largest array of passive safety features in Acura history. The MDX's class-leading 300-hp VTEC™ V-6 makes as much power as some competitive V-8s, yet delivers ultra-low emissions and excellent fuel economy. Inside the 7-passenger interior, the MDX offers thoughtful luxury and an unmatched range of advanced available technologies, including the Acura Navigation System and AcuraLink™ Satellite Communication System with real-time traffic and a spectacular 10-speaker Acura/ELS Surround™ Premium Sound System.

Altogether, the all-new 2007 MDX embodies Acura's commitment to performance, luxury, quality and style, together with parent company Honda's global mandate for safety and environmental care. The 2007 MDX is the sixth Acura project to be designed and engineered in the United States, including the 1997 CL, 1999 TL, 2001 CL, 2001 MDX, and 2004 TL, and several award-winning Honda products.

POWERTRAIN FEATURES

  • 3.7-liter, SOHC, VTEC® V-6 engine
  • 300 horsepower @ 6000 rpm SAE net*
  • 275 lbs.-ft. of torque @ 5000 rpm SAE net*
  • VTEC® (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control)
  • 2-piece, dual-stage magnesium intake manifold
  • 5-speed automatic transmission with Sequential SportShift
  • Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD™)
  • EPA estimated mileage of 17/22 mpg (City/Highway)
  • CARB-Certified LEV-2 ULEV

*All horsepower and torque specifications reflect revised SAE J1349 net calculations.

BODY & CHASSIS FEATURES

  • Unit body structure with extensive use of high-strength steel
  • High-Intensity Discharge (HID) low-beam headlights
  • MacPherson strut independent front suspension
  • Multi-link independent rear suspension
  • Torque-sensing, variable power-assist rack-and-pinion steering
  • 18 x 8J aluminum-alloy wheels
  • P255/55R18 104H M+S all-season tires
  • 4-wheel anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist
  • Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with traction control and Trailer Stability Assist
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • 5,000-pound tow rating
  • LED tail lamps and Center High Mounted Stop Light
  • Heated outside mirrors with reverse gear tilt-down and integrated LED directional signals

INTERIOR FEATURES

  • 7 passenger (4+3) seating
  • Driver-oriented cockpit
  • Driver's 10-way power seat, including power adjustable lumbar support
  • Electronic tilt and telescoping steering column
  • Two-driver custom memory system
  • Front passenger 8-way power seat
  • Heated front seats
  • Tri-Zone automatic climate control system with humidity control and filtration
  • 253-watt Acura Premium Sound System with AM/FM tuner, 6-disc in-dash CD, MP3, WMA changer and 8 speakers, including 8-inch subwoofer and XM® satellite radio
  • Auxiliary jack for personal audio devices
  • HomeLink® remote control
  • Multi-Information Display (MID) allows access to multiple electronic functions
  • Smart Maintenance
  • Adaptive and flexible cargo space with multiple configurations
  • HandsFreeLink® wireless telephone interface is compatible with many Bluetooth mobile phones

SAFETY FEATURES

  • Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure
  • Side impact door beams
  • Impact-absorbing crumple zones (front/rear)
  • Driver's and front passenger's dual-stage, dual-threshold airbag Supplemental Restraint System (SRS)
  • Driver and front passenger's dual-stage knee bolsters
  • Driver's and front passenger's side airbags with front passenger Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS)
  • Side curtain airbags for all three rows with rollover sensor
  • Front active head restraints
  • 3-point adjustable-height front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters
  • 3-point seat belts at all seating positions
  • Automatic Locking Retractor/Emergency Locking Retractors (ALR/ELR) (driver has ELR only)
  • LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) child-seat mounting system for the second-row seats

Technology Package

  • Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™ and rearview camera
  • AcuraLink™ satellite communication system with real-time traffic
  • 410-watt, 10-speaker Acura/ELS Surround™ Premium Sound System with multi-format 6-disc in-dash CD/DVD-audio changer, AM/FM tuner, and XM® Satellite Radio
  • GPS-linked, solar-sensing, tri-zone, automatic climate control system with humidity control and filtration

Sport Package (in addition to the Technology Package features)

  • Active Damper System
  • Perforated premium full-grain leather seating surfaces with high-damping front-seat cushion foam
  • Exclusive alloy wheel design
  • Auto-leveling Xenon HID headlights
  • Textured metallic accents on radio, cupholder and shifter escutcheon

Entertainment Package (available with Technology or Sport Package)

  • DVD Rear Entertainment System with wireless headphones and remote control
  • 115-volt power outlet in center console
  • Heated second-row outboard seats
  • Remote power-operated tailgate

MARKET SUMMARY

MDX has been very important to Acura, accounting for about 30% of the division's sales since the vehicle's introduction as a 2001 model. Equally important, the original MDX attracted buyers from competitive luxury makes including BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus, starting new relationships for Acura.

The new 2007 MDX competes in the Mid Premium CUV (Crossover Utility Vehicle) segment. Over the next five years (2006-2011) this segment is expected to grow 3.5%.*

*Global Insight, April 2006

TARGET CUSTOMER

Focus groups with luxury customers were conducted in Seattle, Detroit, Chicago and Los Angeles. These cities were carefully chosen to explore how customers use their SUVs in cold climates, in areas that are traditional domestic-vehicle strongholds, and in areas known for their trend-setting character.

Early in the study process Acura also benchmarked performance SUVs such as the BMW X5 - and polled their owners, typically successful professional families with school-age children - to ensure that the new MDX would meet and exceed its performance. Satisfying these highly discriminating customers means that the 2007 MDX would be well positioned to attract a wider group of potential buyers.

The original MDX appealed to luxury customers. In the new MDX, added performance and handling capabilities boost its appeal for performance enthusiasts, while the luxurious and functional interior continues to satisfy the needs of traditional luxury customers.

ENGINE & POWERTRAIN

With a displacement of 3.7 liters, the 2007 MDX features Acura's largest and most powerful V-6 engine. Developing 300 horsepower and 275 lbs.-ft. of torque, the MDX's output is competitive with many V-8 engines - without the fuel-economy penalty that some V-8 engines suffer. To widen the powerband and improve emissions and fuel economy the engine has VTEC® (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control), a dual-stage intake manifold, and an electronic Drive-by-Wire Throttle System™. EPA estimated mileage of 17/22 mpg (City/Highway) and a large 21-gallon fuel capacity mean the MDX also has a greater cruising range. The MDX is also designed to meet the latest CARB-Certified LEV-2 ULEV emissions certification.

A 5-speed automatic transmission with Sequential SportShift is designed to satisfy the most performance-oriented drivers. Tuned on the challenging Nurburgring circuit in Germany, the Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD™) system likewise provides handling precision that sets a new benchmark for SUVs. SH-AWD™ "actively" varies the torque distribution between front and rear axles - then between the left and right rear wheels - to provide the maximum grip under all driving circumstances. Operating seamlessly and automatically, SH-AWD™ overdrives the outside rear wheel up to 1.7% faster than the front wheels to help the vehicle "rotate" around a corner.

BODY & CHASSIS

The 2007 MDX sets new standards for Acura from styling, engineering, handling and safety standpoints. Its dramatic styling utilizes large surface areas, sweeping curves and decisive angles. Longer, wider and lower (and with a longer wheelbase) than the original MDX, the new dimensions create a more athletic appearance.

The 2007 MDX maintains the same weight as the 2006 MDX, proof of the hard work that engineers invested to keep mass out of the new vehicle in spite of added feature content. Contributing to this is widespread use of high-strength steel, as well as aluminum and magnesium. In addition, the Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) unit body structure is intended to bring new levels of front crash safety to the MDX.

Befitting its position as Acura's flagship SUV, the MDX is equipped with High-Intensity Discharge (HID) low-beam headlights, a dramatic array of Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) in the tail lamps and center high-mounted stoplight, and exterior mirror-mounted turn signals. The new grille also reflects a fresh look for the MDX. Careful aerodynamic tailoring reduces drag noise and high speed dynamic stability.

The 2007 MDX has an all-new chassis to complement its 300-horsepower VTEC® V-6 engine and Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD™). Engineers targeted the BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne when developing the MDX chassis, and then tested and refined it at the Nurburgring circuit. The Active Damper System, available in the Sport Package, has proprietary fully active dampers that adjust to road conditions on a real-time basis - in less than five milliseconds (0.005 sec.). The MDX is also at home off-road, where its excellent engine torque, responsive suspension, and generous ground clearance enable it to cross-step through rough terrain with aplomb.

For family recreation, the new MDX tows as well as it goes. With its 5000-pound towing rating, standard trailer pre-wiring, high-capacity radiator with twin cooling fans, ATF cooler and Trailer Stability Assist, the MDX needs only a dealer-installed hitch and wiring to tow a substantial trailer.

INTERIOR

Acura reinvented the MDX's luxurious interior for 2007 while adding to its appeal as a "Driver's SUV." The cockpit environment is focused on the driver, and features a host of technologies to make driving simultaneously more rewarding and relaxing. The interior styling and functionality perfectly coexist with a driver's cockpit that features a 10-way power seat including power-adjustable lumbar support for the driver, electronic tilt and telescoping steering column, a 2-position custom memory system, and a Multi-Information Display (MID) that allows access to multiple electronic functions.

The interior design is as dynamic and contemporary as the exterior, with a "4+3 seating" concept that luxuriously hosts four passengers in the first and second row seats, while also offering comfortable accommodations for three additional passengers (one in the second row and two in the third row). The front passenger enjoys an 8-way power seat of their own, while everyone on board will appreciate the MDX's Tri-Zone automatic climate control system and new 253-watt, 8-speaker Acura Premium Sound System with multi-format 6-disc in-dash CD, MP3, WMA changer, AM/FM tuner, and XM® Satellite Radio. An auxiliary jack for personal audio devices is also included. Standard convenience features include HomeLink®, Smart Maintenance, and adaptive and flexible cargo space with six configurations. Included in the available Entertainment Package is a power tailgate, the first on an Acura SUV.

SAFETY

A new Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) unit body structure, plus several new passive-safety technologies, help bring the 2007 MDX to the next level of safety. ACE™ more evenly distributes collision forces and helps maintain the integrity of the passenger cabin in the event of a severe frontal collision. The MDX is also less intrusive to smaller vehicles in a head-on collision thanks to a special frame member located below the front bumper that's designed to engage the front bumper of smaller vehicles. The 2007 MDX meets two newly upgraded federal safety regulations, FMVSS 208 and FMVSS 301, which will begin to be required for the 2007 model year.

Also new are active head restraints and dual-stage knee bolsters for the driver and front passenger. The driver and front passenger are protected by dual-stage, dual-threshold airbag Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) and side airbags with front passenger Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS). Occupants in all three rows of outboard seats are protected by side curtain airbags. A rollover sensor adds a further level of protection.

The 2007 Acura MDX continues its "Safety Through Innovation" with pedestrian protection features such as a deformable aluminum hood and hood hinges, and breakaway windshield-wiper pivots.

MANUFACTURING QUALITY

Honda of Canada Manufacturing in Alliston, Ontario was chosen as the assembly plant for the new MDX. A special dynamic quality-control process will be used to ensure the highest possible level of attention to detail for every MDX produced. After assembly is completed, each MDX will enter a special Acura Quality line. The ability to immediately respond to the smallest quality issue positions the MDX to excel in quality - and in customer satisfaction.

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