Choosing the best car in the compact luxury crossover market is now made even more bewildering because of the introduction of new models in this car category. The top two new models, the Acura and the Lexus will really tax your mind. It is very hard to tell which one is the best.
The latest Acura RDX has undergone a face-lift and will be sold as a 2016 model. However, its overall design remained unchanged from its previous 2015 model.
The Lexus NX, on the other hand, is slotted below the popular Lexus RX crossover and will be sold as a 2015 model. It comes in two versions, the turbocharged 4-cylinder and the hybrid. The car is equipped with a wide range of the latest equipment and gadgets.
The Acura RDX has already earned a remarkable 4 circles out five given by the J.D. Power’s Power Circle Ratings. This means it has a better-than average reliability. On the other hand, the Lexus NX is quite new and has not been rated by J.D. Power yet.
The warranty period of the RDX shows how the car manufacturer regards this model. It has a 50,000 miles or 4 years warranty from bumper to bumper, and 70,000 miles or 6 years of powertrain coverage.
But it is wise to wait for the J.D. Power’s evaluation of the NX in order to have a better comparison with the RDX.
The RDX is only available with one engine type – the robust 273 horsepower, 3.5 liter V6 engine which can achieve 20 miles per gallon in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. But with a front-wheel drive, these figures drop down to 19 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway.
The NX, on the other hand, is available in two engine choices – the standard with a 235 hp. 2.0 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder and a 194 hp. 2.5 liter hybrid 4-cylinder engine.
The standard engine can achieve 22 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway using front-wheel drive. For the AWD variant, the same engine can get 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.
The hybrid model has an alternative power source – the NX 300h electric car battery. It can return 35 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway using a front-wheel drive. For the AWD, it can get 33 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.
With regards to safety features, both the RDX and the NX provide excellent protection against collision. The NX was awarded an excellent Top Safety Pick+ rating by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). It is not yet tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The NX has a distinct advantage over the RDX with regards to safety equipment. Although the Acura RDX has all the standard safety devices, such as the standard backup camera, complete set of airbags and anti-lock brakes, it is not equipped with the latest safety gadgets.
It doesn’t offer any frontal-collision system, adaptive cruise control, rear cross-traffic alert and lane-departure warning system. All of these safety features are standard in the Lexus NX.
Considering all of these facts, it can be deduced that both cars offer equal crash protection. The NX provides more safety equipment to help you avoid getting into a crash situation. But when the safety features of the RDX are updated, the safety level of the two brands will be more or less equal.
When it comes to technology, the RDX appears to be ahead with all the basics tucked in. However, the NX even goes farther because of its new design. The NX is equipped with a new smartphone-based app accessible through its Enform system.
This system will enable you to control different functions of the car through your smartphone. The car also comes with adaptive cruise control which is not seen in the RDX. It also has LED lighting and ventilated seats that are not offered in the RDX.
Both cars have all the standard technology that you will need in a car, but the NX has more to offer. This element can play a part in their price comparison.
The prices of both cars are nearly the same. For the NX, the listed price is $35,000 while the RDX is quoted at $36,000. But as mentioned above, the NX has more attractive features than the RDX. These include the dual 8-way power front seats, Bluetooth Audio, LED headlights, Siri compatibility for iPhones and so forth.
And these are not only the advantages of the NX over the RDX. The NX offers a better gas mileage with its hybrid variant.
Follow Us on Facebook
Straight To Your Inbox
Get the latest Automotive news and performance tests straight to your inbox!