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2023 Acura MDX vs 2023 Hyundai Palisade
December 15 2022
2023 Acura MDX vs 2023 Hyundai Palisade

2023 Acura MDX vs 2023 Hyundai Palisade

The Acura MDX and Hyundai Palisade are two popular luxury SUVs. While they both have a lot to offer, they also differ in a number of ways.

The recently redesigned Acura MDX will carry over into the 2023 model year with minimal changes. All models now come with three years of AcuraLink Security and Remote packages, while all MDX SUVs include complimentary maintenance for the first two years or 24,000 miles — a new addition to the MDX's lengthy list of standard features.

In the other corner of the ring, the Palisade gets an updated look for 2023, including the new XRT trim with an attitude. A Wi-Fi hotspot is new to the list of features, as is a massage function for the driver seat and heated seats in the third row.

If you're considering buying one of these vehicles, read through this article as we compare the Acura MDX versus the Hyundai Palisade. You don't need to go through rigorous research anymore. We've done the legwork for you!

Pricing and Trims

Both the Palisade and MDX are luxury SUVs. The Hyundai Palisade starts at $35,250, while the Acura MDX starts at $49,550. They are both built by automakers that have been around for decades, which means their reputations are solid. Both offer great value — you get a lot of features for your money.

The Acura MDX is a midsize seven-seat SUV offered in six trim levels: MDX, Technology, A-Spec, Advance, Type S, and Type S Advance. The base and Technology trims have a front-wheel drive, while all other MDX trims come standard with AWD.

The 290 HP engine is available for the MDX, Technology, A-Spec and Advance trims. The 355 HP engine is available for the Type S and Type S Advance trims.

Hyundai offers five trims for the 2023 Palisade: SE, SEL, XRT, Limited, and Calligraphy. All trims come standard with a 291-horsepower V6 engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive can be added for $1,900.

Performance Specs

Acura MDX boasts a more powerful engine than the Palisade, with 290 HP @ 6200 RPM and 267 pound-feet of torque. This compares favorably to its Korean rival's power output of 291 HP @ 6000 RPM and 262 pound-feet of torque. The difference may not be huge, but it makes an impact on real-world performance — heck, you can feel the extra horsepower inside the cabin of the Acura MDX when you accelerate hard from a stop or climb up steep grades.

The MDX's 10-speed automatic transmission gives you a wide range of options to create the proper driving experience, while the Palisade offers an 8-speed automatic transmission that makes the most of its available power.

The Palisade has a much lighter curb weight than the MDX (4,389 pounds vs. 4,565). However, Acura's larger vehicle is faster off the line: 0-60 MPH takes 6.5 seconds, while Hyundai takes 7.3 seconds to reach 60 MPH from a standstill.

As for reliability ratings, the Acura has a much better record than Hyundai. According to J.D. Power's 2017 Initial Quality Study (IQS), it ranked third overall in most improved brands with a score of 19 PP100 (PP stands for problem per 100 vehicles).

Exterior Styling

The 2023 Hyundai Palisade has 18-inch wheels for its base model. It has a new front and rear bumper fascia, a new front grille, a new headlight design, and a new wheel design. In addition to these changes, more premium features are available if you upgrade to higher trim levels.

Meanwhile, the new MDX midsize luxury SUV comes standard with 19-inch wheels for its base model, but you can upgrade to 21-inch alloys if you prefer something bigger on your ride. Either way, they're designed to reduce drag and improve fuel efficiency while simultaneously holding cargo of up to 3,000 pounds for FWD and 5,000 pounds for AWD!

The Acura MDX’s front end is distinguished by its grille and headlights, with daytime running lights integrated into the lower air intake. This gives it a more sporty look than some of its competitors' cars while providing daytime visibility without blinding other drivers on the road. It also has LED taillights with auto on/off features. This means they'll automatically turn off when parked so that you don't waste battery power after dark.

Fuel Economy

The 2023 Palisade gets good fuel economy in its class, getting 19 mpg city/27 mpg highway with front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive models get 19/25 mpg city/highway. Comparatively, the MDX has decent fuel efficiency for a luxury midsize SUV. Front-wheel-drive models get 19 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway.

Interior, Cargo, and Seating

So what about cargo space? The Palisade can seat up to 7 to 8 passengers, while the MDX does 7. However, for maximum cargo capacity, the MDX somehow leaps ahead with 90 cubic feet compared to the Palisade's 86 cubic feet.

The Acura MDX's cabin is rich with high-grade authentic materials. It includes open-pore wood accents and a hand-wrapped leather dash with French stitching, emphasizing the premium craftsmanship of the MDX. While a hands-free power liftgate is available for both vehicles, the MDX has a hidden storage cubby underneath the rear cargo area.

Sound System

The MDX offers a 9-speaker premium audio for its base model. Then from the Technology Package to its Type S Advance variant, you can get 12 to 25 speakers over a 1000-watt audio system with an available ELS Studio 3D 32 Signature Edition that Grammy® award-winning producer Elliot Scheiner developed. The Palisade's base model only has a basic speaker system, and the Harman Kardon® premium audio 12-speaker system is only available from SEL upwards.

Both vehicles come standard with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™ for easy connectivity to third-party apps on your smartphone. You can listen to your favorite tunes by using these features with your music app of choice.


The Acura MDX vs. Hyundai Palisade competition is interesting in terms of technology. The MDX comes standard with AcuraLink® Connected Services, Head-Up Display, Wi-Fi Hotspot capability, and Wireless Charging.

Additionally, this vehicle comes equipped with tri-zone automatic climate control and a panoramic moonroof. It also features proximity keyless entry, a push-button start, and other convenience features such as rear parking sensors and Lane Keeping Assist System.

While the Palisade has many similar features in terms of technology, the MDX is the clear winner here. It has everything you could want in a luxury SUV and more!


Both vehicles offer smart safety features like parking, braking, and lane-keeping assistance. However, only the Acura MDX has the Surround-View Camera.

The Palisade and the MDX have safety airbags that protect you from any accidents. But with the MDX having the Acura Watch added into its amazing features, one can consider Acura's performance, reliability, and safety to be top-notch!

Bottom Line

In summary, the Acura MDX is a great car that's much more refined than the Hyundai Palisade. The MDX is a value-packed and classy SUV, and it's best suited to families who don't need or want high-end frills and don't plan on venturing off the beaten path. If you want a three-row luxury midsize SUV that's fun to drive, comes with loads of useful features, and has ample room for passengers and cargo, your best choice is the MDX.

Head to our product page to learn more about the new 2023 Acura MDX. If you want to view or test drive one, visit us at Davis Acura in Philadelphia or contact us at (215) 440-6074.