A 10 percent drop in sales experienced by Acura in 2013 has led parent company Honda to form a new business planning and development group with the long-term goal of overhauling the brand’s identity.
Bloomberg reports Honda R&D Americas president Erik Berkman will be appointed as division manager of the new Acura Business Planning Office, whose top priority near-term will be to solve the issues leading to a combined 10 percent drop in sales of Acura’s sedan lineup. The drop not only overshadowed the luxury brand’s successes with the RDX and MDX SUVs, but prevented Honda from hitting their record sales goal in 2013.
Though Honda remains mum on how exactly the new division will operate, the automaker is readying the TLX — which will replace both the TL and TSX in June — to aid in boosting sales for 2014, as well as improving upon the entry-level ILX (reportedly, a more powerful engine is in the works), and unleashing the second-generation NSX from its home in Ohio come 2015.
Long-term, the brand may be overhauled to help establish its identity in the luxury market, as AutoPacific industry analyst Ed Kim explains:
Acura for many, many years has been a brand without an identity. They are good, solid, dependable, somewhat premium cars that don’t communicate any clear message about what they are. The best luxury brands stand for something.