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The Acura RDX, which was completely new for 2007, receives a few minor changes for 2008. A Bluetooth hands-free system is now standard, along with a two-way driver's seat memory feature and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The available navigation system now incorporates data for Hawaii, and the real-time traffic function covers 32 new major metropolitan areas.<p><p>A new Polished Metal Metallic exterior scheme joins the palette of colors.
The 2008 RDX is powered by Acura's first-ever turbocharged engine--a 2.3L making 240 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. The engine uses a computer-controlled i-VTEC variable valve actuation, working in conjunction with a variable-flow turbo system. Shifting is done through a five-speed automatic with Sequential Sport Shift, which allows the driver to command shifts through paddles alongside the steering wheel.
An advanced all-wheel-drive system delivers power to the wheels on all RDXs. Called Super Handling All-Wheel Drive, it controls the distribution of power not only front to back, but also side to side. The system is tuned for high-performance, on-road driving conditions; it considers yaw control--a feature that few AWD systems have--and works in conjunction with the Vehicle Stability Assist system, a form of electronic stability control. The RDX also comes with side air bags for front occupants and full-length side-curtain bags for all outboard occupants.
The RDX seats five, and the back seat is split 60/40 and folds forward flat to expand the cargo area to 60.6 cubic feet. There are also various storage compartments throughout the interior, most notably a lockable, dual-level center console that's large enough for a briefcase or laptop.
A very long list of convenience and luxury equipment is standard on the RDX. Examples include a dual-zone climate control system, the Bluetooth HandsFreeLink system for cell phone connectivity, and a seven-speaker, 360-watt sound system with six-disc changer, MP3 compatibility, XM satellite radio, and an auxiliary input. There's only one significant option package on the RDX, the Technology Package, which adds a navigation system with voice recognition and real-time traffic information, a rearview camera system, the AcuraLink service allowing communication between Acura and the vehicle, and a ten-speaker, 410-watt surround sound audio system that was tuned by recording engineer Elliott Scheiner and can play DVD-Audio discs.