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We spent a week in the RDX, and found it to be sweetly quiet over all pavement and at all speeds, a result of attention and insulation. We also especially liked the lighting that brightens and dims progressively. Switches are illuminated in the dark, including the switches on all four doors. The RDX features theater dimming set by the driver to three speeds.
Acura leather seats are always clean, classy, and smooth, and the RDX is now all Acura. They fit well, with good ergonomics and bolstering, because Acuras corner well and are driven with spirit. The driver's seat has two-way adjustable lumbar. We ran a hard 200 miles down from Seattle during spring break in the rain, and the seats get an A for comfort and support.
However, the navigation and radio, part of the Technology Package, don't come close to an A. The navigation system was consistently inaccurate and hopeless with voice recognition (although, after our passenger repeatedly fooled with it while we were driving, the system did manage to find the nearest of 320 Big 5 sporting goods stores in the Northwest, and led us off the freeway and to the store); and the radio was difficult to tune, taking time and concentration off the road. It made us long for the simplicity, accuracy and clarity of the Volkswagen Tiguan.
The leather-wrapped steering wheel holds audio and cruise controls on its three spokes, as well as a button for the Multi-Information Display, along with navigation, voice recognition and more. Controls for standard Bluetooth are on the lower left corner of the steering wheel.
The MID window is located on the face of the speedometer, and shows temperature, odometer, average mpg, instantaneous mpg, range, tire pressure, average speed and elapsed time. We use range, or distance to empty, the most, and like with many information displays (exceptions include the VW Tiguan), we think it takes too many clicks to find it on the RDX. It's still better than the 2010 Acura ZDX that was like falling into Alice's rabbit hole to find how many miles to go before empty.
The RDX features a one-touch turn signal system for lane changes, as with an increasing number of cars. When the driver moves the lever just a touch, the turn signals flash three times.
The rearview camera is viewed on the 5-inch LCD display on the center stack. Solid yellow guidelines indicate the vehicle's width, but we found them to be unclear and weren't willing to depend on them if scraping a fender was a possibility.
With the Technology Package, you get an 8-inch display with three rearview camera angles: normal 130 degrees, wide angle 175 degrees, and downward at the rear bumper for close parking or backing up to a trailer. Also a new 360-watt 7-speaker audio system, with the works.
At the rear, the door openings are wide for easy access, and the legroom is an okay 38.3 inches. The 60/40 rear seats drop nicely with one touch, as they all should but don't. With the seats down there's 76.9 cubic feet of cargo space, a whopping 16.3 cubic feet more than before, and a best-in-class total interior volume, increased by 2.1 cubic feet. The power rear hatch is 48.8 inches wide, expanded by 6.5 inches.
If dual-zone climate control isn't enough, the Technology Package offers a GPS-linked, solar-sensing, automatic climate control system. The nav system determines the position of the sun and, using the solar sensor on the dashboard, the climate control automatically adjusts the heating and cooling inputs, fan speed, and vent position from side to side as to compensate for asymmetrical solar heating and maintain the set cabin temperatures. All we can say is: whew. Kind of like having your own house robot to draw the blinds and open the windows for you when it's too sunny in the room. We're fine with the standard dual-zone automatic climate control.
The Technology Package also includes internet radio interface and a SMS text messaging feature that works with certain phones and plans. It can read incoming texts aloud over the audio system, and allow the driver to reply without touching his phone, with one of six messages: Talk to you later, I'm driving; I'm on my way; I'm running late; OK; Yes; No. We'll resist the temptation to suggest more messages.