2019 GMC Acadia vs. 2019 Lexus RX Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The RX Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the GMC Acadia’s middle seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Lexus RX Series doesn’t offer comfort guides on its middle seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Acadia are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The RX Series doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The RX Series doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

Both the Acadia and the RX Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the GMC Acadia is safer than the Lexus RX Series:

 

Acadia

RX Series

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

138

265

Neck Injury Risk

22%

42%

Neck Stress

162 lbs.

546 lbs.

Neck Compression

16 lbs.

135 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

112/392 lbs.

499/536 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

37%

53%

Neck Stress

152 lbs.

290 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

10/95 lbs.

403/259 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the GMC Acadia is safer than the Lexus RX Series:

 

Acadia

RX Series

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

44 G’s

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

14 inches

Spine Acceleration

33 G’s

44 G’s

Hip Force

673 lbs.

685 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

GMC pays for scheduled maintenance on the Acadia for 2 years and 24,000 miles. GMC will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance (up to 2 oil changes). Lexus only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the RX Series.

There are over 7 times as many GMC dealers as there are Lexus dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Acadia’s warranty.

Engine

The Acadia’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 2 more horsepower (310 vs. 308) than the RX 450h’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6 hybrid.

As tested in Motor Trend the GMC Acadia V6 is faster than the RX 450h 3.5 DOHC V6 hybrid:

 

Acadia

RX Series

Zero to 60 MPH

6.7 sec

7 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the GMC Acadia uses regular unleaded gasoline. The RX 450h requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Acadia FWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the RX Series Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (19.4 vs. 17.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the RX Series’ standard fuel tank (21.7 vs. 19.2 gallons).

The Acadia has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The RX Series doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Acadia’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the RX Series (255/65R17 vs. 235/65R18).

The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Lexus RX Series only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Acadia has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The RX Series doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Acadia’s wheelbase is 2.7 inches longer than on the RX Series (112.5 inches vs. 109.8 inches).

The Acadia SLT AWD handles at .82 G’s, while the RX 450h AWD pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Acadia SLT AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the RX 450h AWD (26.9 seconds @ .67 average G’s vs. 27.5 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

Chassis

The GMC Acadia may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 to 350 pounds less than the Lexus RX Series.

The front grille of the Acadia FWD 4 cyl. uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The RX Series doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Acadia uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The RX Series doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Acadia has standard seating for 7 passengers; the RX Series can only carry 5.

The Acadia has .9 inches more front headroom, 1.6 inches more front shoulder room, .5 inches more rear headroom, 1.7 inches more rear legroom and 1.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the RX Series.

Cargo Capacity

The Acadia’s cargo area provides more volume than the RX Series.

 

Acadia

RX Series

Third Seat Folded

41.7 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

18.4 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

79 cubic feet

56.3 cubic feet

Towing

The Acadia’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the RX Series’ (1000 vs. 0 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Lexus RX Series is only 3500 pounds. The Acadia offers up to a 4000 lbs. towing capacity.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Acadia is less expensive to operate than the RX Series because typical repairs cost much less on the Acadia than the RX Series, including $653 less for a water pump, $75 less for a muffler, $337 less for a starter, $6 less for fuel injection, $838 less for a timing belt/chain and $989 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

The GMC Acadia outsold the Lexus RX Series by 6% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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