Last post on Nov 24, 2009 at 11:53 AM
You are in the Acura RDX
What is this discussion about?
Acura RDX, BMW X3, Car Buying, SUV
#185 of 327 Re: BMW may want to consider being afraid. . . [patentcad1]
Oct 27, 2006 (4:51 am)
I was reading along and starting (again) to consider drinking the kool-aid. Then I go to your assertion that "both are pretty damn nice - nice ENOUGH."
I fight (and I believe I am not alone) the concept of "good enough" or "good is the enemy of great" regularly (my company is in software development.)
The subject of reliability is growing in importance (for me.) Yet, my 2005 Audi A6 and my wife's 2005 X3 have been reliable. But, as you would correctly point out -- we have but put 25,000 miles on them.
I am a proponent of not driving a car beyond its warranty.
But, as I also assume you would correctly point out -- it is our money.
What I hope you want (what I hope we all demand, indeed) are cars that are both reliable and built to perform (in all ways) beyond "nice ENOUGH."
The Infiniti, alone as far as I can tell, knocks on the European's door in terms of the feel behind the wheel.
Reliability without great drivability -- isn't worth it (to me.)
For, to me, the German reliability is "good ENOUGH" considering the way they perform in all other aspects.
No, I am not willing to accept "good ENOUGH" with respect to drivability. And I do "demand" ever higher reliability -- and after 28 Audis, they continue to advance up the reliability ladder. For some, not fast enough (probably for most of us, in fact.)
But, we seem to have reached a point in automotive evolution where you can have:
1. Great performance and good reliability or
2. Great reliability and good (nice ENOUGH) performance.
Given those two black/white choices (and reality is certainly a shade of grey, I'll admit), well, I'll take door number 1.
I also stopped with the Japanese watches -- but, then again, they certainly "tell time" accurately enough.
There is just something about a Tag though that the Japanese haven't cracked either.
And, it is my money.
I will be, in 15 months, in the market again. I will look at both European and Japanese (and perhaps American) makes.
At this point, the Europeans still lead in every way that counts (behind the wheel) for me.
Takes all kinds.
#186 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [wwest]
Oct 27, 2006 (5:06 am)
The thing to remember is that the engine is always SOLIDLY coupled to the front differential, whereas any coupling to the rear wheels is always transient, or temporary.
Torque is coupled to the rear during acceleration and/or deceleration, but how long can either of those situations be prolonged?
With the rear driveline overdriven, a constant engine torque delivery to the rear on a high traction surface would soon result in driveline failure due to front/rear driveline binding/windup.
As with any full time/permanent AWD system, front AND rear axles are always coupled in SH-AWD. The extent of distribution depends on the circumstances. This includes cruising, straight line acceleration, acceleration around a corner, deceleration, detection of loss of traction and, in case of MDX, hill grade logic will send 70% of torque to rear axle during uphill starts as well as hill climb acceleration regardless of traction and for as long as the vehicle continues to climb.
BTW, the concept of overdriving wheels in SH-AWD applies only to the outer rear wheel during cornering, which makes sense for optimum traction.
#187 of 327 Re: BMW may want to consider being afraid. . . [markcincinnati]
Oct 27, 2006 (5:34 am)
Reliability without great drivability -- isn't worth it (to me.)
Me too! Hence my preference for Hondas/Acuras.
#188 of 327 Re: BMW may want to consider being afraid. . . [robertsmx]
Oct 27, 2006 (5:47 am)
#189 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [wwest]
Oct 27, 2006 (8:56 am)
It is given that RDX is front biased (I don't think anyone is disputing that) and it is logical to have tire-chains in the front.
I agree, using chains on the front wheels only is not a great idea (spin-outs). But I am yet to see any one using chains on AWDs. If one is really a big fan of chains (or on a rescue mission ) one may choose to use chains on 4 wheels.
As I said before, it may be a big deal when it comes to handling on dry pavements but there is not much of a difference on snow. If anything, RDX has an edge (a little may be) as long as you don't use chains.
#190 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [nobody3]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Oct 27, 2006 (9:03 am)
I carry chains in my FWD minivan in the winter but don't bother in the AWD wagon. Wwest and I have disagreed about the safety aspects of using chains before but I think the Montana snow he used to drive in was different from the Alaska snow I used to drive in.
And as Patentcad1 mentioned, it's the tires that count anyway.
#191 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [steve_]
Oct 27, 2006 (9:08 am)
If one had to use tire chains, ideal, of course, would be to put them on all four wheels. The second best option would be to put them on the front wheels (if the vehicle allowed only that, or one had only a single pair of chains). This allows for good grip on acceleration, good steering and good braking. But dealing with the rear end can be a challenge and part of it may be addressed by vehicle’s stability system (besides, not all traction is lost). And most of it will be handled by a cautious driver which would apply regardless of where the chains are fitted. Better yet, a set of snow tires would help immensely.
#192 of 327 Re: BMW may want to consider being afraid. . . [markcincinnati]
Oct 27, 2006 (9:37 am)
When you're done pontificating on the superiority of German Engineering (always capitalized of course) you might want to spend a week behind the wheel of an SH AWD Acura or an Infiniti sedan. The latter has actually beaten BMW's in comparison tests by leading car magazines. You can argue with those editors when you're done here. Easier said than done of course. I had one helluva time picking the RDX - waffled back and forth between the RDX and a Subaru Outback XT Ltd - very happy I settled on the Acura. But it was very tough specifically because you only GET 10 mins. behind the wheel of the cars you're interested in - when you really need several days or weeks. Which you only get to do if you're an editor Road & Track or Edmunds.
The assertion that Audi's and BMWs with 25K miles are 'reliable' is a head scratcher, but then I figure ALL cars shouldn't break before they have 50K miles or so. But then if I drove Euro brands I'd NEVER venture beyond the factory warranty.
In the meantime I'll try to figure out how you can ascertain the 'superiority' over a car you may have driven for ten minutes (if that). I drove Euro cars for 20+ years. Loved them even when some (Saabs) were total lemons. But I like my Acuras BETTER. In several respects. And that would INCLUDE the way they drive. I can assure you that I have at least as many hours behind the wheel of high zoot Euro imports as 90% of the participants on this board (dating back to 8 years as a full time Mercedes Benz sales rep from 1983-1991).
All of which is academic. ALL these dopey cars are WAY overpriced, including my RDX. I couldn't AFFORD the friggin X-3 if I wanted it. Luckily for BMW, Audi et al there are enough affluent Americans with enough cashish left after paying for the crack they smoke to buy those posh sleds. Somebody has to : ). I know: I used to SELL those silly cars to consumers like you and me.
Ach der lieber dude. Look at it this way. Those original Axis Powers (from WWII) are getting our greenbacks one way or another. Germany or Japan, same difference to a WWII vet...
#193 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [nobody3]
Oct 27, 2006 (11:03 am)
May be talking about winter driving on these vehicles is little off-track.
We have to keep in mind that all these enhancements are mainly meant for improving the handling and safety at high speeds on dry pavements (may be little wet). Winter driving is just a side benefit.
#194 of 327 Re: Just as I said.... [nobody3]
Oct 27, 2006 (11:30 am)
If you really mean "excessive" speeds on dry pavements then I couldn't agree more.
On the other hand if by "high speeds" you mean those typically encountered, legal or a tad beyond, on US freeways and highways then it is my firm belief that any modern day RWD or even a FWD would be more than satisfactory.
When I encounter adverse wintertime roadbed conditions my primary desire is to have the front "stearing" wheels dedicated to whatever lateral forces they encounter, period.
Of a secondary issue is the ability to move the vehicle forward simultaneously and if an AWD system can still meet that criteria then fine.
If the public at large never encountered wintertime, low traction roadbed, conditions, then there would be no need for RWD, let alone AWD or 4WD, and SH-AWD would not exist.
The Porsche C4 and the like would more than suffice for those that need the excitement of (TRULY) excessive speed on dry pavements.