2020 Mercedes GLS vs. 2020 Acura MDX

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

Your buying experience includes...

business_centerProfessional Staff
account_balanceSimple Financing
local_gas_stationFull Tank of Gas
local_car_washFree Car Wash

Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes GLS have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Acura MDX doesn’t offer pretensioners for the middle seat belts.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the GLS. But it costs extra on the MDX.

The GLS’ driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The MDX doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the GLS and the MDX have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available lane departure warning systems.

The Mercedes GLS weighs 1215 to 1669 pounds more than the Acura MDX. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

There are over 42 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Acura dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the GLS’ warranty.

Reliability

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the GLS’ reliability 15 points higher than the MDX.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are better in initial quality than Acura vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in initial quality. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Acura is ranked 24th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Acura vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 37 more problems per 100 vehicles, Acura is ranked 26th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Acura vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mercedes 7 places higher in reliability than Acura.

Engine

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLS 450’s standard 3.0 turbo 6-cylinder hybrid produces 72 more horsepower (362 vs. 290) and 102 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 267) than the MDX’s standard 3.5 SOHC V6. The GLS 450’s 3.0 turbo 6-cylinder hybrid produces 41 more horsepower (362 vs. 321) and 80 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 289) than the MDX Sport Hybrid’s standard 3.0 SOHC V6 hybrid. The GLS 580’s standard 4.0 turbo V8 hybrid produces 162 more horsepower (483 vs. 321) and 227 lbs.-ft. more torque (516 vs. 289) than the MDX Sport Hybrid’s standard 3.0 SOHC V6 hybrid.

As tested in Motor Trend the GLS 450 is faster than the Acura MDX V6:

GLS

MDX

Zero to 60 MPH

5.8 sec

6.2 sec

Quarter Mile

14.3 sec

14.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

97 MPH

94.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLS has 4.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the MDX Sport Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (23.8 vs. 19.4 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The GLS has 4.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the MDX’s standard fuel tank (23.8 vs. 19.5 gallons).

Environmental Friendliness

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Mercedes GLS higher (6 out of 10) than the Acura MDX (3). This means the GLS produces up to 23.4 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the MDX every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

For better stopping power the GLS’ brake rotors are larger than those on the MDX:

GLS

MDX

MDX Sport Hybrid

Front Rotors

14.8 inches

12.6 inches

13 inches

Rear Rotors

13.6 inches

13 inches

13 inches

The GLS’ standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the MDX are solid, not vented.

The GLS stops much shorter than the MDX:

GLS

MDX

70 to 0 MPH

166 feet

185 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

113 feet

121 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

For better traction, the GLS has larger standard tires than the MDX (255/50R19 vs. 245/60R18). The GLS’ optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the MDX (275/50R20 vs. 265/45R20).

The GLS’ tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the MDX’s standard 60 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the GLS has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the MDX. The GLS’ optional 23-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels optional on the MDX.

Suspension and Handling

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The front and rear suspension of the GLS uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the MDX, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The GLS offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Acura doesn’t offer an active suspension on the MDX.

The GLS has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The GLS’ height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The MDX doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

The GLS’ drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The MDX doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the GLS’ wheelbase is 12.4 inches longer than on the MDX (123.4 inches vs. 111 inches).

The GLS 580 handles at .90 G’s, while the MDX SH-AWD pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The GLS 450 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the MDX SH-AWD (26.4 seconds @ .7 average G’s vs. 27 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the GLS has a 2.8 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the MDX (10.1 vs. 7.3 inches), allowing the GLS to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The GLS Off-Road Package’s minimum ground clearance is 4 inches higher than on the MDX (11.3 vs. 7.3 inches).

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLS has 1.3 inches more front headroom, 1.9 inches more rear headroom, 5.3 inches more rear legroom and 6.5 inches more third row legroom than the MDX.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLS’ cargo area provides more volume than the MDX.

GLS

MDX

Behind Third Seat

17.4 cubic feet

15.8 cubic feet

The GLS has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The MDX doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the GLS’ second and third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The MDX doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the GLS’ liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The MDX doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Towing

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLS’ standard towing capacity is much higher than the MDX’s (7700 vs. 3500 pounds). The MDX’s maximum towing capacity is 3500 pounds.

While the MDX SH-AWD Sport Hybrid is not recommended to tow, any GLS can tow a minimum of 7700 pounds.

Servicing Ease

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The engine in the GLS is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the MDX. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Acura. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes fifth in service department satisfaction. With a 4% lower rating, Acura is ranked 6th.

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the MDX, the GLS has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position, suspension setting, power steering assist, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The power windows standard on both the GLS and the MDX have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the GLS is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The MDX prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The GLS’ power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The MDX’s power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The GLS’ rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The MDX’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the GLS has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The MDX doesn’t offer cornering lights. The GLS also has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the GLS has standard extendable sun visors. The MDX doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The GLS has standard heated front and optional heated second and third row seats, which keep the driver and passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Acura doesn’t offer heated seats in the third row of the MDX.

Optional air conditioned the front and second row seats keep the GLS’ passengers comfortable and take the sting out of hot leather in summer. The MDX doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats for the second row.

The GLS offers optional massaging front and second row seats, which keep the driver and middle row passengers. Massaging seats aren’t available in the MDX.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Mercedes GLS has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console and for the rear passengers. The MDX doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

The GLS’ Active Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The MDX doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the GLS is less expensive to operate than the MDX because typical repairs cost much less on the GLS than the MDX, including $4 less for front brake pads, $802 less for fuel injection and $133 less for a fuel pump.

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

How much is your car worth?

Get the best value for your car from an Asbury dealership.

Featured Videos