Honda Pilot Drag Races Acura MDX, the Results Are Good
28 November 2019 - Autoblog
Just because two vehicles are based on the same platform and have the same engine doesn't mean their performance is identical.
Take the Honda Pilot and Acura MDX as an example, two really popular 3-row crossovers.
TFL is answering some of the silliest but most interesting drag racing questions in America right now, and we thank them for that. For example, we learned that Dodge Durango SRT really is the fastest of the bunch, but the Explorer ST can take it on with a really cheap tune. Likewise, the Golf GTI is much faster than the Jetta GLI, even though the sedan has the same 2-liter.
But getting back to the Honda-on-Acura battle, we have two similar crossovers. They boast a 3.5-liter "Earth Dreams" V6 engine with 280 horsepower in the Pilot or 290 in the MDX. It's just 10 hp, which could just be down the marketing people wanting to make sense of the extra $6,000 you have to pay for the Acura. However, the drag races reveal a performance gap.
The MDX walks way from the Pilot. Honestly, the acceleration shouldn't be that different, so maybe the SH-AWD really does do a better job. What's worth point out here is that these two are probably quicker than any non-turbo V6 3-row crossover, especially Toyotas and Nissans.
So the Acura is faster; end of the story. But not really, because the decision to buy a 3-row crossover needs to be based on other factors as well. Design is one of them, and there's no denying that the MDX went to design classes while the Honda was stuck home taking care of the baby.
The interior, on the other hand, heavily favors the Honda. It has a longer and taller body, so there's more space, plus the infotainment system is more modern. On the other hand, if you like red leather and dual exhaust tips, the Acura just does things for you.