Acura has strong 2010, still figuring out how to become top-tier luxury

Acura ZDX

While BMW, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz continue to fight for the top spot luxury brand sales leadership in 2010, Acura has been doing all it can to grab some of the market. Honda’s luxury brand had a pretty strong 2010 with sales up 24 percent over 2009, nonetheless, the brand is still trying to figure out how to become a first tier luxury player.

The recession ended up knocking Acura ambition to compete with the big dogs way off course. The brand had to kill plans to offer a V8 engine and a rear-wheel-drive system, something that is needed to compete with German luxury brands.

Acura is still trying to figure out “who we are and who we want to be,” said Vicki Poponi, American Honda Motor Co.’s assistant vice president for product planning.

“The direction we were going became irrelevant within 60 days,” said Steve Center, chief marketing officer for American Honda, referring to the economic downfall in the fall of 2008. “We missed the window. We’ve had to reconnoiter. We had to go with our strengths.”

– By: Omar Rana

Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)