Speaking at a preview event for the next-generation Hyundai Genesis, Hyundai CEO John Krafcik defended his company’s decision to forgo establishing a seperate luxury channel for cars like the Genesis and Equus. While the rationale put forth usually revolves around the exorbitantly expensive pricetag for launching a new brand and an all-new sales network, Krafcik put it from another angle.
Though fans of the NSX may need to wait until 2015 to throw down the hammer with Tony Stark and Thor, most Acura consumers will get a chance to utilize the automaker’s new SH-AWD hybrid powertrain anchoring the 2014 RLX Sport Hybrid to the road.
The naturally aspirated engine has always been a cornerstone of Honda’s engineering philosophy, but the company looks set to abandon that in the near future, with a move to turbocharged engines happening by the end of the decade.
Late breaking news from Los Angeles – this month’s LA Auto Show will herald the debut of the RLX Sport Hybrid All-Wheel Drive, nearly a year after the front-drive V6 RLX debuted.
The Acura ILX has been derided as being nothing more than a gussied-up Honda Civic, an analogy that I too applied to the compact Acura when it first arrived. But then our own Brendan McAleer caused me to question my dismissal of the ILX. How many shoppers out there are willing to option-up a base model by 50% and don’t think twice about the fact their “limited” model looks just like the base model? All of a sudden the ILX, especially the 2.4L model we tested made sense to me. What was the revelation? Click through the jump to find out.
In a rather promotional feeling interview with Bloomberg, comedian and noted car collector Jerry Seinfeld discusses his growing relationship with Honda Motor’s Acura brand. Last year’s Super Bowl featured an ad for the upcoming revival of the NSX sports car scripted by Seinfeld himself, with a cameo from Jay Leno, riffing off of the two comics’ reputation as serious collectors. More recently Acura has become the sole sponsor of Seinfelds popular “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” webcasts. Jerry told the news agency that in general he’s not a fan of car advertising.
I enjoy your columns and thought I would get your input regarding what I should do with my current vehicle, a 2002 Acura TL 3.2. I purchased the vehicle new almost 12 years ago. The Acura has about 200,000 miles on it and is still on its third-transmission. As we all know, the transmission used on this vehicle was problematic but seems to be running okay. The car is very clean inside. (Read More…)
Kia has big plans for America. The Korean brand that was written off in the 1990s, and is best known for making inexpensive cars with long warranties, isn’t planning an assault on the mass market. Kia has bigger plans: compete head on with Lexus, BMW and Mercedes. Say what? Yep. By 2017 Kia promises they will be ready. Rather than leaping right into the market, Kia is dipping their toes into the murky waters of the near-luxury pool. In many ways the near-luxury segment is a harder place to compete. This segment is full of aspiring brands trying to move up (Buick and Cadillac), brands that are floundering (Acura), brands that are treading water (Volvo and Lexus’s FWD models ), brands trying to expand down (Mercedes with the CLA) and brands that have no idea what their mission is (Lincoln). Into this smorgasbord lands a sedan that managed to be the most exciting car I have driven this year and the most awkwardly named. Now that I have that spoiler out of the way, let’s dive into the Credenza. I mean Cadenza.
Breaking into the Luxury market isn’t easy. Toyota has arguably had the most success with Lexus, the only full-line luxury marque sold in America that isn’t German. Infiniti gave up on trying to go head-to-head with the S-Class and 7-Series when they ditched the Q, and Cadillac has yet to have a complete and coherent strategy. Meanwhile Acura started off strong with the Legend, created a competent E/5 competitor with the all-wheel-drive RL, and then things started to fall apart. Can the RLX bring the brand back?
Spending on plants outside of Japan and a decline of deliveries in that country led to a decline in Honda Motor Co.’s profits for the quarter ending June 30 (Q1 in Honda’s fiscal year). Net income was down 7% to 122.5 billion yen ($1.25 billion). The company still believes that it will meet its projections for a full year profit of 580 billion yen, a rise of 58% over last year. The weaker yen helps increase the profits at Honda, which is less dependent on the Japanese domestic market than Toyota and Nissan. However, sales in the U.S., up 7.1% to slightly over 400,000 units, lagged behind the overall 8.6% growth in that market. Honda picks it segments carefully it doesn’t have a strong portfolio of the pickup trucks and SUVs that are driving that growth. In Japan, Honda’s 2nd biggest market, sales dropped by 24% to 140,000 vehicles following the expiration of government subsidies for green cars. (Read More…)
Where do you find a clean, unmolested Integra Type-R in Toronto? In somebody else’s driveway.
Two weeks ago, Honda kind enough to throw open the doors of their museum in Torrance, California, which houses a collection of significant vehicles sold by the company. There’s something for everyone here, from the smallest N600 to the NSX, along with all sorts of detritus located in a secret corner of the warehouse space. Allow us to take you on a virtual tour below the jump.
The Acura TSX’s future has been in doubt ever since the debut of the smaller ILX, but more than ever, the rebadged European Accord appears to be living on borrowed time.
The RDX may have supplanted the MDX as Acura’s best-selling model, but Acura hopes to put the their mid-sized crossover back on top with the all-new 2014 MDX. To show us how they plan to do that, Acura invited us to Oregon to sample the new MDX for a day around Newberg. Even without the snazzy trip it’s easy to see that regaining the Acura sales crown shouldn’t be difficult. After all, the current MDX is Acura’s second best-selling vehicle and despite being seven years old (ancient in the auto biz) the MDX is still the best-selling 7-seat luxury SUV in America and the second best-selling mid-sized SUV/crossover period. How does one redesign success? Carefully.
When the NSX was last available for sale, the rest of the world knew it as a Honda product. But now that the next-generation NSX is intended to be a flagship for the Acura brand, Honda has run into a small problem – Acura doesn’t exist in much of the world.