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Acura Mdx Years to Avoid

Discover the luxury midsize Acura MDX Years to Avoid! Avoid costly mistakes by knowing which models have had issues. Click now for all the details!

This article aims to analyze the Acura MDX model history objectively. Specifically, it identifies the years to avoid when considering a used purchase.

By examining reported issues and customer complaints with data from J.D. Power, this study seeks to inform potential buyers about the models that have demonstrated notable problems over time.

The information presented herein is based on empirical data and expert evaluations. It is intended to assist consumers in making informed decisions regarding their automotive purchases.

Key Takeaways

  • Acura MDXs produced in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 should be avoided due to various issues such as total transmission failure, engine issues, and excessive oil consumption.
  • The worst years for Acura MDX are 2018, 2017, 2015, 2006, and 2003, with these years experiencing severe problems, including recalls, jerky acceleration, transmission failure, poor acceleration, uncomfortable seats, high cost of repairs, and engine problems.
  • The most reliable year for Acura MDX is 2008, with reported minor and inexpensive potential defects.
  • The best used years for Acura MDX are 2019 and 2012, with the 2019 model receiving high ratings for its smooth hybrid powertrain, superb acceleration, powerful v6 engine, and sporty handling.

Understanding the Acura MDX Model History

The Acura MDX has a model history that spans multiple years, with specific models to avoid due to various issues such as transmission failure, excessive oil consumption, and engine problems. It introduced multidimensional luxury with the tag of being a smart choice for families.

Ah, yes, the joys of revving an Acura MDX 3.5-liter V6 engine. It’s like playing Russian roulette with your hard-earned money. Will you get lucky and find a reliable gem? Or will you be stuck with a lemon that drains your bank account faster than you can say ‘excessive oil consumption’?

Let’s stroll down memory lane and explore some of the worst offenders in the MDX lineup.

First up, we have the 2001 to 2005 models. Total transmission failure seems to be their favorite pastime. Who needs gears anyway? Just roll down those hills and pray for the best! And let’s not forget about the early rumble strip noise and jerking accompanying these gems.

Next on our list is the 2010 model. Excessive oil consumption is all the rage here. Why worry about saving for retirement when you can spend it all on oil-level refills instead?

And who could forget about the 2014 and 2016 models? Powerful engine issues, transmission issues – they’ve got it all! It’s like a two-for-one deal on car problems.

Wide Range of Common Problems in Acura MDX Models

Common complaints in various year models of the Acura MDX include:

  • Acceleration issues
  • Severe engine issues
  • Automatic transmission failure
  • Faulty transmission control module
  • Torque converter failure
  • Malfunctioning climate systems
  • Stalling or lurching during light acceleration
  • Strange noises, including strange ticking noises
  • Excessive consumption
  • Engine troubles,
  • Faulty adaptive cruise control

Oh boy, where do we even begin with these problems? Acura packed all the fun into one package, calling it the MDX and its 267 lb-ft of torque.

First, let’s talk about the acceleration issues on the service bulletins. Who needs smooth and consistent acceleration anyway? It’s much more exciting when your car jerks and hesitates whenever you try to get up to speed.

And don’t even get me started on the excessive oil consumption. Who needs money when you can pour it into your engine?

The malfunctioning climate systems are just a bonus. Why have a comfortable car temperature when you can freeze or sweat to death?

And finally, let’s not forget the stalling or lurching during light acceleration. Nothing says ‘fun’ like feeling like your car is about to give out on you every time you try to move forward slowly.

So buckle up, folks, because this is just a taste of what awaits you in Acura MDX problems.

Now that we’ve covered some common problems with the Acura MDX, let’s look at how these issues stack up by year model regarding problem counts.

The Worst Years for Acura MDX Models

J.D. Power rated the Acura MDX,2018, 2017, 2015, 2006, and 2003 versions as the worst years for the model. The 3.7-liter V6 engine experienced significant issues, transmission failure, poor acceleration, uncomfortable seats, and exterior paint peeling.

Ah yes, nothing says luxury like a car that can’t get you from point A to point B without the entire transmission breaking down or giving you whiplash. And who needs comfortable seats anyway? Who wants to enjoy a smooth ride when you could be squirming in agony? And let’s not forget about the exterior paint peeling off like a bad sunburn. Because who doesn’t love driving around in a car that looks like it’s been through battle?

But fear not! The automatic transmission isn’t the only problem plaguing the previous models of the Acura MDX. There have been several reports of transmission fluid leaks as well. This made the Acura MDX suffer regarding reliability ratings and several other minor complaints. Although the less-than-reliable vehicle was not a complete failure, there are even more common problems that owners have had to deal with. So buckle up (but maybe not too tightly because of those uncomfortable seats…) as we dive into the next section and explore these delightful issues in more detail.

Now that we’ve captured some of the worst years for the Acura MDX models let’s explore the common problems plaguing this luxury vehicle.

Acura MDX Problematic Models by Year

According to reported data, the problem counts for the Acura MDX vary across different year models. Some years are as reliable as a rock, while others are about as trustworthy as a politician during election season. From transmission failures to excessive oil consumption, the MDX has had its fair share of issues throughout its lifespan.

But fear not, brave car shoppers! There is hope amidst this sea of problems. Models have escaped the curse for years and offer a relatively smooth ride. The 2006 and 2013 MDXs have shown minimal complaints and minor defects at higher mileage. It’s almost like finding a needle in a haystack!

On the other hand, some years should be avoided, like the plague. Take the 2018 model, for example. With five recalls under its belt and an array of issues, including uncomfortable seats and defective brakes, it’s more trouble than it’s worth.

Evaluating the Most Secure Model Of The Acura MDX

We must navigate transmission failures, oil consumption nightmares, and engine malfunctions to find the most reliable Acura MDX years. But fear not, for there is hope! According to our extensive research (and a touch of sarcasm), we have identified some shining stars amidst the wreckage.

The popular choice 2008 graces us with its presence, offering a broken timing belt as a delightful surprise. And let’s not forget the 2009 model, an excellent choice that generously gifts us with a drained battery at the mere mileage of 96,000. How thoughtful!

But wait, there’s more! The solid choice of the 2011, 2012, and 2013 brought us slight malfunctions with backup cameras and garage door openers. Because who needs those pesky features to work correctly anyway? It’s still an excellent option, considering the competition.

So there you have it folks – the crème de la crème of Acura MDX reliability. These models may have quirks and hiccups along the way, but they’re not suffering from total transmission failure or excessive oil consumption.

Now go forth and choose your trusty steed wisely. Or better yet, maybe consider exploring alternative options like an Audi Q7 or BMW X5. Just saying…

Worst Model Issues Of The Acura MDX

Transmission failures, poor acceleration, and defective automatic braking are prominent issues reported in specific Acura MDX model years. It seems that Acura outdid themselves with these fantastic features! Who wouldn’t want a car with a failed transmission, making you feel stuck in neutral? And let’s not forget about the poor acceleration that will leave you feeling like you’re driving a lawnmower instead of a luxury SUV. And who needs functioning brakes anyway? Defective automatic braking is just a bonus to keep things exciting on the road.

But fear not! These issues are only present in specific model years, so if you’re lucky enough to avoid them, you might have a decent driving experience. Just do your research and steer clear of those problematic years. Unless, of course, you enjoy the thrill of frequent breakdowns and expensive repairs. In that case, dive right into one of these faulty models.

Safe Years to Purchase a Used Acura MDX

The years considered safe to purchase a used Acura MDX include earlier models like the 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2015, and the most recent models from 2019 and 2020. These years have minimal complaints, a powerful v6 engine, and rare problems compared to their less fortunate counterparts. So why risk investing money on older models when you can cruise in style with these safer options?

  1. The 2006 MDX: Sure, it may have reported some engine problems and transmission issues. Who needs an engine that runs smoothly and gears that shift seamlessly? It’s all about the thrill of uncertainty!
  2. The 2009 MDX: Don’t let the drained battery at a measly 96,000 miles discourage you. You’ll need to shell out around $400 for a fix. No biggie! Who needs reliable starting power anyway?
  3. The most recent models from 2019 and 2020: No complaints reported so far! I mean, they’re practically brand new! And what better way to show off your impeccable taste than by owning the latest model?

Advantages Of The Best Acura MDX Model Years

Moving on from the worst Acura MDX model years, let’s now explore the best Acura MDX model years and their advantages. Brace yourselves, folks, because we’re about to dive into a world of luxury and reliability (as much as you can expect from an Acura).

First up is the 2019 Acura MDX. This bad boy boasts a smooth hybrid powertrain, superb acceleration, and sporty handling. It’s like driving a sleek sports car disguised as an SUV. And hey, it only had four recalls and 60 complaints reported to NHTSA. Not too shabby.

Next on our list is the 2012 Acura MDX. This baby comes with optional extras available for four out of five trims. Plus, it has spacious cargo space for all your junk… I mean valuable belongings. With just one recall and 66 complaints reported to NHTSA, this year seems like a pretty safe bet.

Let’s not forget about the 2007 Acura MDX. This second-generation beauty offers significant handling, power, safety, and aesthetics upgrades. Equipped with a powerful yet fuel-efficient V6 engine, it’s perfect for those who want to feel fancy while conserving some precious fossil fuels.

And last but not least is the 2011 Acura MDX. Ranked sixth out of nineteen cars in the Luxury Midsize SUV category (woo-hoo!), this gem delivers class-leading performance and a high-quality interior that screams, ‘I’m better than you.’ Zero recalls and only 63 complaints? Looks like another winner!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Some Alternative SUV Options to the Acura MDX?

Some alternative SUV options to consider instead of the Acura MDX include the Audi Q7, BMW X5, Infiniti QX60, Land Rover Discovery, and GMC Acadia. These vehicles offer varying levels of luxury and features for families needing a spacious and reliable SUV.

Can the Acura MDX Last for a High Mileage?

The Acura MDX can last up to 400,000 miles with proper maintenance. It is a reliable option for families and offers luxury features. Alternatives include the Audi Q7, BMW X5, Infiniti QX60, Land Rover Discovery, and GMC Acadia.

What Are Some Common Issues to Look for in Specific Acura MDX Models?

Common issues in specific Acura MDX models include transmission failure in 2001 and 2002 models, high oil consumption costing up to $6,800 to resolve, occasional stalling or lurching under mild acceleration, and slow acceleration with transmission slippage.

Are Any Trims or Packages in the Acura MDX Worth Seeking Out?

The Acura MDX has various trims and packages available. It is worth researching each option’s features and benefits and comparing prices and values to determine which trim or package suits individual preferences and needs.

What Should Be Considered When Determining a Budget for Purchasing an Acura MDX?

When determining a budget for purchasing an Acura MDX, factors include the desired model year, trim level, and mileage. Additionally, researching the average prices and comparing them to personal financial constraints is essential in making an informed decision.


In conclusion, some years, like the plague, should be avoided regarding the Acura MDX. These models have had their fair share of issues, from transmission failures to engine problems and excessive oil consumption.

However, fear not! There are also plenty of safe and reliable year models to choose from. So if you’re in the market for a used Acura MDX, stick with the 2006, 2007, 2008…you get the idea.

Trust me, your wallet will thank you later!

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