The rush to electrify has brought together some strange bedfellows, with the new Acura ZDX the latest progeny from the GM-Honda relationship.
Based on GM’s BEV3 architecture, the ZDX utilises the General’s Ultium battery technology, and will be built at a GM factory alongside the previously revealed Honda Prologue.
Although the platform and electric vehicle (EV) tech is all GM’s, the ZDX has a design that’s generally in keeping with the rest of the brand. The exterior’s clean and simple lines are carried through to the interior, and are a contrast to the more exuberant designs from Chevrolet and Cadillac.
Ahead of the driver is an 11.0-inch instrumentation display, and in the centre of the dashboard is a 11.3-inch touchscreen running the Android Automotive operating system with built-in Google Maps. Together the two screens boast 22 inches of display space, a far cry from the 33 inches claimed by the related Cadillac Lyriq.
Unlike GM, which will not offer smartphone mirroring with its upcoming EVs, the ZDX supports Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. An 18-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system is standard across the range.
Measuring the 5022mm long, 1956mm wide, 1636mm tall, and riding on a 3094mm wheelbase, the ZDX is around the same size as the Cadillac Lyriq and Chevrolet Blazer EV. All three vehicles, as well as the Honda Prologue, share the same wheelbase.
At launch the ZDX will be available in two trims: the A-Spec and the range-topping Type S.
The base version of the A-Spec has a single motor on the rear axle rated at 254kW. In the Lyriq, this motor is quoted as producing 441Nm. Equipped with a 102kWh Ultium battery pack, the RWD A-Spec has an estimated US EPA range of 523km.
There’s a two-motor all-wheel drive variant of the A-Spec, but Acura has yet to provide any details about this drivetrain, except to say it has a slightly lower 507km EPA range.
The range-topping Type S has a two-motor all-wheel drive system making a total of 373kW. The same system in the Lyriq has a torque figure of 610Nm.
All that extra performance means the 102kWh battery has a lower EPA range estimate of 463km. All ZDX models support DC fast charging up to 190kW.
While the A-Spec rides on 20-inch wheels with 265/50 all-season tyres, and has multi-link suspension at both ends, the Type S has 22-inch rims with 275/40 tyres, air suspension, adaptive dampers, and Brembo brakes.
In terms of safety, the ZDX will be the first Acura to be available with rear cross-traffic autonomous braking, and blind-spot steering assist.
The ZDX Type S will also be available with Hands Free Cruise. This seems to be a rebranded version of GM’s SuperCruise feature, which allows for a hands-free eyes-on-the-road driving on around 650,000km of highways across North America.
While the original ZDX was a crossover coupe based on the more practical three-row MDX. It bombed because it was, arguably, ahead of its time, but Acura is hoping the new, more conventionally styled model will find greater favour in the market.
Pricing for the ZDX A-Spec starts from around US$60,000 ($93,650), while the Type S begins at US$70,000 ($109,250). For comparison, the Cadillac Lyriq starts from US$58,590 ($91,500).