Thursday, September 20, 2007

Redefining Acura in 2008

"Our goal is to move Acura into a Tier 1 luxury brand," John Mendel, who was promoted to executive vice president of automobile operations of American Honda Motor Co. this year. "Next year at this time, you will have a pretty good idea of the direction we're heading," Mendel assures. "You will not see a big bang — as if suddenly it was this and now it isn't. Rather, you'll start to see vehicles roll out in the 2008 calendar year with not so much styling differences but technology and philosophy differences." Mendel notes the new RDX and redesigned MDX hint at the future direction of Acura. Mendel would only say that as with all future Acura and Honda models, more distinction will exist between the Honda Accord, upon which the TL has been based, and the new TL. "If you like what we did with the Accord, wait till you see what we do with the TL," he said. Acura recently opened its first U.S. design studio and now has separate R&D operations in Japan.


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