Pros: gas mileage, smooth quiet engine, 3rd row seating, comfortable interior.
Cons: non-negotiable price, long wait, road noise @ highway speed
I have owned the 2002 MDX for just about a month and have driven the truck just over 1000 miles. This is such an upgrade from my previously owned SUV. I traded in a 2000 Ford Expedition and have no regrets. Before purchasing the MDX a test drove the Lexus RX300, (too small) BMW X5 (way overpriced)& the Tahoe (great 8 passenger truck). The MDX is loaded with all the luxury items that you need and most are included in the base model MDX. I thought the touring package option was overpriced. It adds things like a tilt-down passenger mirror when backing up, a Bose stereo with CD changer,memory seats, power passenger seat, and a roof rack....adds about $2000.00...seems like a lot for just a couple of more features. I test drove the MDX with the navigation system ($2000.00) which worked great. It is a must have option for people who travel a lot or can not read a map.
Driving the MDX is like driving a small car. The handling is superb, the acceleration is good, and the controls are easy to find and use. The trip computer is located right in the center of the dashboard and it displays useful information about direction, outside temperature, and fuel economy. Speaking of fuel economy, I have been averaging about 19 MPG around town & 23 MPG on the highway which is slightly better than what is listed on the sticker. The trip computer also displays the current MPG while you are driving. The climate control system has an automatic mode that works great. No adjustments needed. The cooling and heating systems are quick to respond. The front seats are very comfortable and provide great support. The back seats are roomy enough for 3 small adults and the 3rd row seats are great for 2 very small adults or for kids. The 3rd row seats fold flat with little effort needed.
The things I do not like about my MDX purchase
1. The non-negotiable price really make the salesperson arrogant. When I went for a test drive a had to wait for the demo to return and while waiting the salesperson told me "you know that these sell as fast as we get them and they go for at least sticker price". I felt like walking out and buying a Tahoe which had over $6500.00 in savings.
2. Dealer installed options are discounted (WOW!!!) but the are still way overpriced. Things like running boards, roof racks, cargo cover, ect. are installed by the dealer. The are so proud to tell you that you get a (discount) on these items. They are so generous.
3. The premium gas requirement really offsets some of that great gas mileage. I have been told by other MDX owners that they put in the regular grade and still get the same performance. I still need to try that.
4. You can not open just the rear glass window. You must open the entire hatchback which can be a hassle.
I would recommend this vehicle to anyone who wants a luxury SUV that need extra seating at times and drives mostly on paved roads. This is NOT an off road SUV!! I would however recommend waiting for the 2003 model year to arrive, perhaps the demand will be meet in the upcoming year.