2019 Acura MDX goes on sale from $44,300, beefier A-Spec version costs $54,800

The three-row luxury SUV brings upgrades for the interior and other enhancements

We already knew the 2019 Acura MDX would be available with an A-Spec sport appearance package ever since the model debuted at the NYIAS earlier this year, so now it’s time to look at the pricing.

Quite a lot, compared to a base front-wheel-drive 2019 MDX which starts at $44,300 (excluding $995 destination and handling). The beefier body kit is priced from $54,800, so the obvious question is what does Acura throw in for the extra $10,500?

For starters, the A-Spec model is available exclusively with Acura’s torque-vectoring Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD), which distributes up to 70 percent of torque to the rear axle and can deliver up to 100 percent of that torque between the rear wheels. As with other A-Spec models, the rest of the package includes mostly styling upgrades.

On the outside, the 2019 Acura MDX A-Spec gets 20-inch Shark Grey aluminum alloy wheels shod with low profile 265/45-series tires, an aggressive new front fascia, smoked headlights and taillights, bigger exhaust pipes, lower sills in body color, as well as gloss-black and dark chrome trim for the grille, window surround and rear tailgate spoiler.

The A-Spec sport appearance package also spices up the interior with sport seats trimmed in rich red or black leather with Alcantara inserts, contrast stitching, A-Spec gauges, sport pedals and steering wheel with paddle shifters, Alcantara door inserts, gloss-black trim, and an A-Spec door step garnish.

As for the rest of the 2019 MDX lineup, the SUV brings new interior design enhancements including an available Desert Olive Ash wood trim, high-contrast seat and door panel stitching, and contrasting front seat side garnishes. Equipment-wise, the front seats now feature standard 4-way power lumbar adjustments, while the Technology and Entertainment packages gain an updated second-row seat configuration for an easier access to the third row. Furthermore, the MDX with Advance Package adds matching wood center console trim.

On the outside, the 2019 MDX expands the color palette to a total of nine options, including four new available premium colors. The Advance Package gains 20-inch aluminum alloy wheels with a machine finish and Shark Grey accents, as well as body-color lower garnishes.

As with the 2019 Honda Pilot, the 2019 MDX brings an updated 9-speed automatic that offers smoother shifts and enhanced drivability, as well as an upgraded Idle Stop system that’s said to deliver quicker restarts and more seamless operation.

As before, the only engine choice is a 290-hp 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine mated to a 9-speed automatic, but that will change next month when Acura will introduce the 2019 MDX Sport Hybrid. The 2019 MDX with front-wheel drive has an EPA fuel economy rating of 20/27/23 mpg (city/highway/combined), while models equipped with SH-AWD return 19/26/22 mpg. The A-Spec is rated at 19/25/21 mpg.

READ MORE: If the MDX is too expensive, you can always downsize to an RDX

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