If you’re in the market for a luxury crossover, you’ll want to put the 2012 Acura RDX on your short list. You might also be tempted by the shiny star badge of a Mercedes-Benz GLK350, but a comparison between the two reveals a whopping $11,000 price gap and other factors that favor the RDX.
Today’s luxury crossovers have taken over the roles of several different vehicles, but not all can handle these multiple roles as adeptly as the 2012 Acura RDX. Some people want a luxury crossover to replace a luxury/sports sedan. Others want a family vehicle with more performance and comfort than a mainstream sedan, and still others want a vehicle that’s an all-star player in all kinds of weather. A careful examination shows how the 2012 Acura RDX surpasses the respected Mercedes-Benz GLK350 in all those areas.
First consider pricing, which really demands a close look. The 2012 Acura RDX has an MSRP of $32,895*. That’s for the front-wheel drive model with Vehicle Stability Assist with traction control. The Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system adds just $2,000 to that.
The 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK350 rear-wheel drive model starts higher, at an MSRP of $35,880, and also offers an all-wheel drive system for an additional $2,000. However, the Mercedes GLK350 lacks numerous amenities that come standard in the 2012 Acura RDX including leather seating, a power moonroof, rear-view camera, power lumbar support for the driver’s seat, heated front seats, a six-disc CD changer and iPod® capability through USB.
You’ll even have to pay extra for an auto-dimming interior mirror in the Mercedes GLK. In the RDX, the mirror integrates a three-function HomeLink® universal remote (for garage doors, electric gates, etc.), which is another extra-cost option in the Mercedes. Once you add the options and packages necessary to bring the GLK350’s equipment level up to that of the $32,895 Acura RDX, you’re at close to $45,000. If you were in that range, Acura offers the larger, more powerful, more luxurious MDX for an MSRP of $42,930.
The next area in which the Acura roundly beats the Mercedes GLK is room. Rear-seat passengers enjoy 37.7 inches of rear legroom in the RDX, a significant 2.6 inches more than in the GLK. There’s more front and rear shoulder room in the RDX as well. When it comes to carrying things, the Acura RDX holds another advantage. The RDX offers 27.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind its rear seats to the 23.3 cubic feet in the GLK. With rear seatbacks folded, the Acura RDX again bests the Mercedes with 60.6 cubic feet of space versus 54.7.
Despite its longer overall length and roomier interior, the 2012 Acura RDX is about 230 pounds lighter than the Mercedes-Benz GLK. That advantage makes its presence felt at the gas pump where the RDX delivers an EPA-estimated 19 mpg city/24 mpg highway** to 16/22 for the Mercedes GLK. The lighter weight also contributes to agility in the Acura RDX, which inherits its sharp reflexes from the Acura family tree of sports sedans.
Speaking of reflexes, the 2012 Acura also inherits an important piece of high technology from other Acura models, the Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system (SH-AWD). This advanced AWD system will get you through the wet and slippery stuff, and it also boosts handling performance on dry roads, too. SH-AWD varies power distribution between the front and rear wheels and can also transfer power side-to-side at the rear wheels when cornering. That’s similar to the “torque vectoring” technology used by the world’s top sports cars, and it’s why SH-AWD contributes to outstanding agility.
The Acura RDX delivers very sporty performance from a high-tech 2.4-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine, compared to the heavier V6 in the Mercedes GLK. The extra weight of the Mercedes GLK essentially offsets its extra horsepower – 268 hp in the GLK versus 240 in the RDX. The RDX comes back with an advantage in torque with 260 lb/ft to the 258 lb/ft in the GLK. With its i-VTEC intelligent valve timing control and Variable Flow Turbocharger (VFT), the Acura RDX provides seamless and exhilarating engine performance.
Come in and see why the 2012 Acura RDX simply offers more of what you want in a luxury crossover.
*MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, $885.00 destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.
** Based on 2012 EPA mileage estimates. Use for comparison purposes only. Do not compare to models before 2008. Your actual mileage will vary, depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle.