Sweetening The Deal: The 2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC

Front 3/4 view of 2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC
The 2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC.
The overall goodness of the Acura MDX gets a significant sweetening for 2019.  When we wrote about the refreshed 2017 model in late '16, we pointed out the need for a new interior.  Acura has delivered that plus a first-for-the-MDX A-SPEC model.

Interior view of 2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC
2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC interior.
Put the two together, and it's a quantum leap from the shades of gray plastic that adorned last year's model.  Materials are better and colors seem a bit more upscale.  Go A-SPEC in red like our tester, and the colors pop.

The dash itself is pretty much a carryover, featuring an increasingly dated split-monitor setup in the center stack.  We'll apparently have to live with that until the all-new MDX, which would probably be in 2021.

As mean as A-SPEC makes the MDX look, it is a largely looks-only package.  The only performance connection is that you can only get A-SPEC if you say yes to Acura's SH-AWD (Super Handling All-Wheel Drive).  Handling might benefit a bit from the A-SPEC's lowered stance, but beyond that the package consists of half-inch wider 20-inch Shark Grey aluminum alloy wheels wrapped in low profile 264/45-series tires.

There's also an aggressive new front fascia, body-color lower sills, larger-diameter exhaust finishers, plus gloss black and dark chrome trim for the headlights, grille, window surround and rear tailgate spoiler.

Inside, the sport seats you see above are part of the deal, trimmed in rich red or black leather with black Alcantara inserts, high-contrast stitching, unique A-Spec gauges, sport pedals, Alcantara door inserts, gloss-black trim, a thicker-rimmed A-Spec-badged steering wheel with paddle shifters and an exclusive A-Spec door step garnish.

Rear 3/4 view of 2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC
2019 Acura MDX AWD A-SPEC.
Beyond that, you're building on a loaded MDX, which includes the Tech Package (navigation with voice recognition, AcuraLink, a 10-speaker ELS Studio Premium Audio system with HD Radio, blind spot information, remote engine start, rain-sensing wipers, power-folding side mirrors, LED puddle lights, rear cross-traffic monitor and front and rear parking sensors.

The engine is the same no matter which MDX you choose---Acura's tried and true 3.5-liter VTEC V6, making 290 horsepower.  It's not the most powerful crossover on the road, but it's also no slouch.  EPA fuel economy estimate is 19 city/25 highway.

We've always liked the MDX over the years and in all its trims.  The '19 A-SPEC just adds to that list.