"There are two vehicles that I know really, really well," Gary Evert says as we pitch the RDX into a downhill left-hander in Mount Tamalpais State Park north of San Francisco. "The RDX and the BMW X3."
There was plenty for Evert, the RDX's chief engineer, to learn from the X3, both from the BMW's achievements and its failures. For example, the X3's six-cylinder engines position it too closely in performance and price to the X5, so Acura decided to restrict its V-6 to the bigger MDX. The RDX instead gets Honda's first production-car turbo engine in the United States. Based on the 2.4-liter unit from the TSX sedan, the new turbo four produces 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque.
This engine is a winner, and its debut will prove to be a watershed moment for the hard-core Honda enthusiasts who can rattle off engine codes as easily as their birth dates. Turbo lag barely exists, power delivery is linear and strong, and fuel economy is estimated at 19/24 mpg city/highway. Our test vehicle's engine emitted a low-frequency drone when we decelerated, but Evert assured us that final production tweaks of the ECU would take care of that.... Read full article