The ZDX is another in a growing class of coupe/sedan/crossovers, which combine the sleek lines of a coupe with four full doors in a vehicle of unlikely size. Introduced for 2010, the ZDX shares its platform, wheelbase, standard all-wheel drive and overall width with the MDX, Acura's largest model to date that accommodates seven in three rows of seats. The ZDX is a couple of inches longer than the MDX, its roof is a half-foot lower, and it seats five.
Acura describes the new model variably as a personal sports coupe, a four-door sports coupe and a crossover utility vehicle. The base ZDX comes well-equipped, and higher trim levels come in the form of option packages: the Technology Package and the Advance Package.
New for 2011
There are no significant changes for the ZDX's second season.
Like other models of its type, the ZDX is a squat-looking hatchback with short side windows. Acura's signature silver-shield grille is larger and bolder than ever. A panoramic glass roof gives the appearance of a broad stripe from windshield to tail when viewed from above. Exterior features include:
- Standard xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights
- Standard 19-inch wheels
- Panoramic glass sunroof
The ZDX seats up to five, but Acura's own description should set expectations for the backseat's roominess: The ZDX is "designed primarily to provide a means of freedom and escape for two adults and their cargo." The ZDX's backseat dimensions are closer to those of the MDX's third row than its adult-sized second row.
Standard features include heated, leather power front seats with driver's seat memory; a tilt/telescoping steering wheel; a leather-clad dashboard and steering wheel; and a six-CD stereo with XM Satellite Radio. The stereo inputs include an analog jack, a USB connector for controlling MP3 players and Bluetooth streaming audio. A backup camera, which displays its image on the rearview mirror, is standard equipment.
The optional Technology Package includes upgraded Milano leather upholstery, a navigation system with real-time traffic information and automatic rerouting, as well as weather information and maps. The navigation system's 8-inch screen also takes over display duties for the backup camera. Keyless entry and start are included in the package, along with a premium stereo. The Advance Package adds ventilated front seats, premium tricot ceiling liner material, a sport steering wheel and LED ambient lighting. Interior features include:
- Standard heated, leather power front seats
- Standard USB connector and Bluetooth hands-free connectivity
- Available voice-operated navigation system
- Available surround-sound audio system with 15-gigabyte hard drive
- Available solar-sensing automatic climate control
Under the Hood
The ZDX is powered by a 300-horsepower, 3.7-liter V-6 engine that requires premium gas. All ZDX models have a six-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. The transmission includes Drive and Sport modes, and it also offers sequential manual shifting via paddles on the steering wheel.
The optional Advance Package adds adaptive cruise control and an Integrated Dynamics System. Adaptive cruise maintains a set distance from the car ahead, and IDS adds a choice of Comfort and Sport settings, which adjust the adaptive-damping suspension and the assist level from the electronic power steering. Mechanical features include:
- 300-horsepower, 3.7-liter V-6 requires premium gas
- Six-speed automatic transmission allows manual shifts with steering-wheel paddle shifters
- Available adaptive cruise control
- Available active damper Integrated Dynamics System
- Standard all-wheel drive
The Advance Package option adds Collision Mitigation Braking System, which uses the adaptive cruise control's radar to watch the road ahead. In the event of a pending collision, it can warn the driver audibly and visibly, then by tugging the driver's seat belt and initiating braking. If a collision is imminent, it can initiate full braking.
Along with the required frontal airbags, standard safety features include:
- Side-impact airbags
- Side curtain airbags
- Antilock disc brakes with brake assist
- Stability control with traction control
- Active front head restraints