Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2014 Porsche CAYENNE VS 2014 Acura RDX Near Phoenix, AZ

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2014 Porsche CAYENNE

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VS

2014 Acura RDX

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Porsche Cayenne 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 RDX doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The Cayenne offers an optional collision warning system, which detects an impending crash through forward mounted sensors and flashes a bright light and sounds a loud, distinctive tone to warn the driver to brake or maneuver immediately to avoid a collision. The system also pre-charges the brakes to begin deceleration more quickly. The RDX doesn't offer a collision warning system.

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

Both the Cayenne and the RDX have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

The Porsche Cayenne weighs 546 to 1221 pounds more than the Acura RDX. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty Comparison

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The Cayenne’s corrosion warranty is 5 years longer than the RDX’s (10 vs. 5 years).

Reliability Comparison

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To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Cayenne has a standard 220 amp alternator (190 amp - Cayenne V8). The RDX’s 130 amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2013 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Porsche vehicles are better in initial quality than Acura vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Porsche first in initial quality, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Acura is ranked 6th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2013 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Porsche vehicles are more reliable than Acura vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Porsche second in reliability, above the industry average. With 26 more problems per 100 vehicles, Acura is ranked 8th.

Engine Comparison

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The Cayenne’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 27 more horsepower (300 vs. 273) and 44 lbs.-ft. more torque (295 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6. The Cayenne S Hybrid’s standard 3.0 supercharged V6 hybrid produces 107 more horsepower (380 vs. 273) and 177 lbs.-ft. more torque (428 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6. The Cayenne S’ standard 4.8 DOHC V8 produces 127 more horsepower (400 vs. 273) and 118 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6. The Cayenne GTS’ standard 4.8 DOHC V8 produces 147 more horsepower (420 vs. 273) and 129 lbs.-ft. more torque (380 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6. The Cayenne Turbo S’ standard 4.8 turbo V8 produces 277 more horsepower (550 vs. 273) and 302 lbs.-ft. more torque (553 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6.

The Cayenne’s 3.0 turbo V6 diesel produces 155 lbs.-ft. more torque (406 vs. 251) than the RDX’s 3.5 SOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Cayenne S Hybrid is faster than the Acura RDX (automatics tested):

Cayenne

RDX

Zero to 60 MPH

5.6 sec

6.3 sec

Quarter Mile

14.3 sec

14.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

95.7 MPH

93.9 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the Cayenne Diesel gets better fuel mileage than the RDX AWD (20 city/29 hwy vs. 19 city/27 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the Cayenne Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The RDX doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Cayenne Automatic’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The RDX doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Cayenne has 10.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the RDX (26.4 vs. 15.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the Cayenne’s brake rotors are larger than those on the RDX:

Cayenne

Cayenne Turbo opt.

RDX

Front Rotors

14.2 inches

16.5 inches

12.3 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

14.57 inches

12 inches

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

The Cayenne offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The RDX doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The Cayenne stops much shorter than the RDX:

Cayenne

RDX

60 to 0 MPH

106 feet

123 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the Cayenne has larger standard tires than the RDX (255/55R18 vs. 235/60R18). The Cayenne’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the RDX (295/35R21 vs. 235/60R18).

The Cayenne’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the RDX’s standard 60 series tires. The Cayenne’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the RDX’s 60 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Cayenne offers optional 21-inch wheels. The RDX’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The Cayenne (except Hybrid) offers active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride and offer greater off-road suspension articulation. This helps keep the tires glued to the road on-road and off. The RDX doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The Cayenne 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 RDX.

The Cayenne offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The RDX’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Cayenne’s wheelbase is 8.3 inches longer than on the RDX (114 inches vs. 105.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Cayenne is 2.1 inches wider in the front and 2.3 inches wider in the rear than on the RDX.

The Cayenne’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (52.3% to 47.7%) than the RDX’s (57% to 43%). This gives the Cayenne more stable handling and braking.

The Cayenne Turbo handles at .95 G’s, while the RDX AWD pulls only .77 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Cayenne Turbo executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 3 seconds quicker than the RDX AWD (24.8 seconds @ .81 average G’s vs. 27.8 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the Cayenne has a greater minimum ground clearance than the RDX (8.7 vs. 8.1 inches), allowing the Cayenne to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Cayenne Turbo’s minimum ground clearance is 2.65 inches higher than on the RDX (10.75 vs. 8.1 inches).

Passenger Space Comparison

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The Cayenne has .9 inches more front headroom and .8 inches more rear headroom than the RDX.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Cayenne’s rear seats recline. The RDX’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The Cayenne has a larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the RDX with its rear seat folded (62.9 vs. 61.3 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Cayenne easier. The Cayenne’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 25.5 inches, while the RDX’s liftover is 29.4 inches.

The Cayenne’s cargo area is larger than the RDX’s in every dimension:

Cayenne

RDX

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

36.2”/70.7”

32.8”/68”

Min Width

45.5”

41.7”

Height

35.5”

32”

The Cayenne’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the liftgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The RDX’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Ergonomics Comparison

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Unlike the driver-only memory seat and mirrors in the RDX, the Cayenne offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position (with optional power wheel adjuster) and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The Cayenne’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The RDX doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Cayenne’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The RDX does not have an oil pressure gauge.

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

The Cayenne’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The RDX’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Cayenne’s 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 RDX’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Cayenne to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The RDX doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

Consumer Reports rated the Cayenne’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the RDX’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The Cayenne offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The RDX doesn’t offer headlight washers.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Cayenne detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The RDX doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Cayenne offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The RDX doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To better shield the driver and front passenger’s vision, the Cayenne has standard dual-element sun visors that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The RDX doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

The Cayenne offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The RDX has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Both the Cayenne and the RDX offer available heated front seats. The Cayenne also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the RDX.

The Cayenne’s optional air conditioned front seats cool the driver and front passenger and help take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The RDX doesn’t offer air conditioned front seats.

Both the Cayenne and the RDX offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Cayenne has available rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The RDX doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Cayenne PDK offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The RDX doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

To help keep rear passengers entertained, the Cayenne offers optional rear seat controls for the radio which can play a separate audio source. The RDX doesn’t offer rear seat audio controls.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Insurance will cost less for the Cayenne owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Cayenne with a number “5” insurance rate while the RDX is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Cayenne is less expensive to operate than the RDX because typical repairs cost much less on the Cayenne than the RDX, including $684 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the Cayenne first among midsize premium CUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The RDX isn’t in the top three in its category.

Motor Trend selected the Cayenne as their 2011 Sport Utility of the Year. The RDX has never been chosen.

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