Never Buy the Acura RDX if You Want Low Repair Costs, Consumer Reports Shows

by Gabrielle DeSantis

When purchasing a vehicle, everyone has different priorities. Some consumers want a car with style and a powerful engine, while others want one with numerous safety features and fuel efficiency. But most people want a reliable vehicle that won’t cost an arm and a leg at the repair shop. That’s why car shoppers should steer clear of the Acura RDX to avoid significant repair costs, Consumer Reports shows.

An overview of the Acura RDX

The Acura RDX, a luxury compact SUV, has been in production since 2006. It was initially based on the Honda CR-V, which remains a popular SUV for many American individuals and families. But it switched to its own Acura platform after its third generation came out in 2019. 

The latest model, the 2021 Acura RDX, is an overall decent SUV with responsive handling and a smooth ride, U.S. News reports. It also comes with many standard features, such as a 10.2-inch infotainment display, a Wi-Fi hotspot, HD Radio, voice recognition, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. Despite the long list of infotainment features, navigating its menus often feels like a chore

Starting at $38,400, the base Acura RDX provides a rearview camera, automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and other driver assists. One can opt to purchase more infotainment or safety features, and many come standard on higher trims, such as the Acura RDX A-Spec and Acura RDX Advance packages. 

Consumer Reports’ list of the most and least expensive cars to repair and maintain

RELATED: This Used Acura RDX Is the Best Luxury Compact SUV Under $10,000

Consumer Reports is a highly trusted and respected review site providing comprehensive analyses of vehicles and other major household purchases. CR’s recent “Least and Most Expensive Cars to Keep on the Road” takes a look at the annual repair costs of vehicles that are now 10 years old. 

Interestingly, the 2011 Nissan Leaf costs car owners virtually nothing to keep running, and it continues to be a vehicle with top reliability scores. The Honda CR-V is also one of the least spendy vehicles for maintenance, costing owners only about $300 per year. 

Unfortunately, not every car is cheap to maintain. The 2011 BMW 5 Series, for example, costs $1,200 annually to maintain, the most expensive by far. The Chevrolet Suburban fares only slightly better, with $900 yearly to keep running, and the GMC Acadia requires $775. 

Of course, these values are an average among owners who respond to Consumer Reports surveys. Maintenance and repair costs will vary widely among owners, depending on a huge number of factors. 

The Acura RDX ranks near the top of the most expensive SUVs to maintain

Those interested in purchasing an Acura RDX will want to take maintenance costs into account because this model is one of the most expensive to repair at the 10-year mark. Consumer Reports has given this luxury compact SUV inconsistent reliability ratings since it debuted over a decade ago. 

Despite some model years with excellent reliability ratings, such as 2016, others have been abysmal, such as 2020. One constant of the Acura RDX from Consumer Reports, however, is its low owner satisfaction ratings. These are based on the number of RDX owners who say they would definitely purchase the same vehicle again if they had the option. Apparently, not many people have agreed with that statement over the years. 

Overall, car shoppers looking for a reliable and cheap-to-maintain SUV should avoid the Acura RDX, according to Consumer Reports. 

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