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Where is Honda taking Acura?

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  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Speaking of VTEC, it is virtually unavoidable to differentiate Honda and Acura in that regard because they will both continue to use a variation of the same (i-VTEC now, and may be A-VTEC in the future). Unless, Acura devises a technology of its own that isn't handed down to Honda.

    That said, I don't THAT sharing as an issue at all. Toyota isn't limiting VVTi to Toyota OR Lexus. FSI can be found in Audi as well as VW. So, no reason to make VTEC or i-VTEC or A-VTEC exclusive to either Acura or Honda.
  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    that i followed, except can't the very same be said of:
    toyota, scion and lexus
    nissan and infinity

    and dare i:
    volkswagen and porsche

    and probably others?

    for example, when i see lexus vehicles on the road, they look like toyotas to me, and it seems they both suffer from their use of similar DBW throttle control strategies and parts.
  • autoboy16autoboy16 Posts: 992
    Umm... Wasn't Honda's ATTS the predsessor to SH-AWD? I remember reading that thats where the idea for SH-AWD came from.

    -Cj
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Prelude was the first production car to get ATTS, but the system also featured in the AWD system of 1991 Honda FSX concept. The AWD system in FSX was a conceptual predecessor to SH-AWD. FSX was powered by a 280 HP 3.5-liter V6.

    After Prelude was gone, the first signs of Honda's plan to revive ATTS came with 2001 Honda Dualnote hybrid concept. In this case, hybrid power was fundamental to the AWD system, and ATTS was mounted upfront to distribute torque (but unlike RL where the outside wheel can get upto 100% of the power, instead of sending all of the power from inside wheel to the outside wheel, some of it was directed to keep the ultra capacitor pack charged.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Ahem

    1993:
    NSX – 652
    Vigor – 10K
    Legend – 38.9K
    Integra – 58.7K

    1994:
    NSX – 533
    Vigor – 8.4K
    Legend – 35.7K
    Integra – 67.4K

    1995:
    NSX – 844 (year of the targa)
    Vigor – 16.5K (including TL)
    Legend – 18.1K
    Integra – 61.3K

    The Integra had sales that were pretty stable. The Legend and Vigor did not.

    The Integra had a VTEC system "essentially identical to that used in the NSX". The Legend and Vigor did not.

    You yourself have noted that Integra sales did their share to carry Acura through the 1990's while other models faltered. That was, in part, because buyers could get a little of that NSX magic in an inexpensive performance vehicle. The Legend/RL and Vigor/TL of the times were neither VTEC-powered nor performance-oriented.

    "To avoid [perception issues], top-to-bottom approach is needed. V8 or V10 need to be showcased at their best with detuned version showing up later in lesser models."

    Yes, you are correct. I was hasty and probably posted an incomplete thought. What I meant is that Acura should be building a V8-powered halo car and sharing that engine with the RL and MDX. This way, they get the halo car AND the engine for their mainstream products.

    "...my concern comes from the fact that unlike S2000, ASC is using an AWD system which will add some weight up front."

    It also adds weight to the back. That's where the fancy differential is located.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Lexus and Porsche have tangible "things" which separate them from Toyota and VW.

    Lexus uses luxury to put itself on another level above Toyota. They don't use performance (until recently), so the similarities there are less of an issue.

    Porsche creates a whole different breed of car. They use different styling, different drivetrains, and different body types. The performance of a Porsche is typically on a completely different level than VWs and Audis.

    Acura products are not necessarily sportier than Hondas. The S2000 is sportier than anything in the Acura lineup. The Prelude was sportier than the Integra. Enthusiasts often complained that the RSX prevented Honda from building a proper Civic Si. In fact, the current Civic Si is probably just as sporty as a TSX.

    Furthermore, Acuras are not remarkably more luxurious than Hondas. (Though, this seems to be changing.) Anyway, going from a Honda to an Acura is not as dramatic as going from a Toyota to a Lexus. Or, more specifically, the perception separating Honda and Acura is not as dramatic.

    Acura could have used VTEC to separate themselves from Honda, but they didn't. (I'm not saying they should have, but they could've.) With SH-AWD, they do have something which may be used as that single, performance-oriented feature which makes Acura unique from Honda. If they build a super car, I think it should highlight that unique feature.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    I can’t attribute Legend sales going downhill to NSX, or Integra’s consistent sales in 55-65K/year range in that same time frame. And as I pointed out, Integra’s best years happened in the pre-VTEC era. And Legend did have its strongest years along with NSX, and in fact outsold Integra which was a revelation to me. Except for 1994 Integra (67K sold), that number would not be repeated again until the incredibly successful 1999 TL in the year 2000.

    Legend’s decline is sales volume can also be attributed to reduced trim levels and increased price. Until 1993, Legend’s lowest trim was available for $29K or less. In 1994, the base price jumped up to $34K and topped out at $42K. Higher price = lower sales, unless the car is substantially different. In this case, that was not the case, and it happened without a redesign. How does NSX figure in all this?

    Honda’s refusal to use VTEC in Legend (and Vigor) is another of several bad moves by the company. In 1991, FSX concept was shown and complete with an SH-AWD like system. That car was powered by a 3.5-liter V6 DOHC VTEC rated at 280 HP. What happened to that engine? We won’t see a drive train like that in an Acura for another 13 years (until 2005 RL arrived).

    This also helps reinforce my point. If Acura doesn’t adopt showcased groundbreaking technologies in lesser cars, the company would not be helping itself. At least in case of NSX, VTEC trickled down to the cheapest Hondas, while the rest of the car demonstrated Honda’s commitment in its racing effort which is closely tied to its marketing efforts as well.

    What does ASC bring? SH-AWD is old news. V10 is unlikely to go mainstream (I will shut up if Acura RL is offered with a V10, but I am not holding my breath for it). May be it will demonstrate a brand new engine technology but it will remain pointless if that technology isn’t used in lesser cars (just like VTEC not being used in upper Acura models).

    NSX may not have been the fastest car, but it remains a benchmark. It was a product that was clearly out of the box thinking for a company that was pumping out docile mainstreamers. There is a reason it gets mentioned in test drives of newer super cars. It gets mentioned when people talk automotive technologies. It may not sell in huge volume, McLaren F1 didn’t either, but benchmark cars make a lasting impression.

    Too bad Acura fails to realize that. It is all about $$$ I guess. Unless they can sell a few thousand units of a car, it is deemed a failure. It makes sense from a bean counter perspective living in the present. But, I can’t help but ask as the question: “Where’s the passion?”

    It also adds weight to the back. That's where the fancy differential is located.

    But with rear biased SH-AWD, is it moving to the front? (we saw a rear biased SH-AWD-like system in Dual Note where the ATTS/planetary gearset was mounted on the front axle as opposed to RL’s where it is on the rear axle).
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    Not to mention, half the Lexus models are rear-drive cars on platforms not shared with Toyotas. There is no danger that anyone is going to ever call the LS460 or the IS350 a "gussied up" Toyota.

    In Honda's case however, every single model has at some time been called a gussied up Honda, except the NSX. And at various times in the last 15 years, such remarks have been very much on point IMO.

    Even the Integra, one of my favorite cars of all time, was barely a half notch beyond a gussied up, top-trim Civic at times (remember the old RS? Mmm-hmm...). It was usually fairly well disguised, especially with the advent of the RSX, but the remark hit home I think.

    Seems to me that if Acura really wants to eke out a new spot on the luxury spectrum for itself, the future RL (next gen, in fact) needs to be a proper sport luxury sedan, using the next-gen NSX powertrain and a stretched version of its platform. Nothing less will suffice. The RL and TL are clashing too much already. And it has been said many times, but the next TL has to be SH-AWD (hopefully with rear-biased settings). Even then it might get the "Gussied-up Accord" moniker thrown at it, but there will be a performance difference between the two substantial enough to qualify it for "Acura status".

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    Not to mention, half the Lexus models are rear-drive cars on platforms not shared with Toyotas. There is no danger that anyone is going to ever call the LS460 or the IS350 a "gussied up" Toyota.

    thanks i did not know that. from the outside, many of the toyota and lexus sedans look the same, right down to the funky bend in the exhaust pipe right before the muffler.

    that bend has always captured my imagination. does it serve a functional purpose?

    anyway, i think i see where you guys are comming from.

    i think there are a group of people that know Honda and Acura have a similar pedigree and opt to "buy up" when they come into more disposable income.

    i don't think there's anything wrong by having them have similar driving dynamics and features and parts. nope, i think it's a good thing for a portion of their loyal customer base.

    essentially, you guys want to widen the differences between the top end of the honda and the lower end of the accura lines right?

    i don't think you do that by throwing LUX at the vehicles. hondas and accuras are known for being functional, purposeful and non-extraneous right?
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Acura could have used VTEC to separate themselves from Honda, but they didn't. (I'm not saying they should have, but they could've.) With SH-AWD, they do have something which may be used as that single, performance-oriented feature which makes Acura unique from Honda.

    I don’t agree with the idea of using SH-AWD as the sole differentiator between Acura and Honda. There has to be more. I would rather see Acura being compared to Honda than with Subaru, Mitsubishi, Nissan etc. It would not only be a matter of pride, but also of perception in the market.

    Acura is in a position today to grab the prestige thing it has been chasing forever. Stubbornness needs to be put to rest. Acura has the volume today to easily warrant a platform dedicated to TL and RL. And potentially re-launch CL. Then ASC would start to make more sense too. Remember, Porsche isn’t where it is today by only selling 911, like Acura did with NSX.

    Emphasis has to be on styling that has a presence in a good way. Looking at TL on the road, I know Acura is capable of doing it. Having a mainstream coupe/sedan lineup like the following would do a lot of good:
    TSX: Compact touring sport sedan ($28-30K, FF, 210 HP/I-4)
    TL: Mid size touring luxury sedan ($35-40K, FR, 300 HP/V6)
    CL: Coupe and Convertible ($35-45K, FR, 300 HP/V6)
    RL: Full size luxury sedan ($45-55K, FR, 300 HP/V6 or 350 HP/V8)

    Each of these cars could be offered with a sport package (no need to bump up the power, just chassis tuning). Then comes the Type-S with SH-AWD:
    TSX-S: $35K, SH-AWD, 260 HP/Turbo I-4
    TL-S: $40-45K, SH-AWD, 350 HP/V6
    RL-S: $60K, SH-AWD, 400 HP/V8

    And then something like ASC with SH-AWD to top things off. I don’t think this is an impossible task for Acura, especially financially. Reward will be there’s to reap after initial investment which they need anyway to go any further.
  • carguy58carguy58 Posts: 2,303
    "What does ASC bring? SH-AWD is old news. V10 is unlikely to go mainstream (I will shut up if Acura RL is offered with a V10, but I am not holding my breath for it)."

    Nah Honda will never use a V-10 in the RL because gas Mileadge would be horrible for an RL if it came with a V10.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    "This also helps reinforce my point. If Acura doesn’t adopt showcased groundbreaking technologies in lesser cars, the company would not be helping itself."

    LOL. No, it reinforces MY point.

    If Acura produces a rear-mid-engined car with ordinary RWD, it will need to find something other than the drive train to share with the rest of the line. It might provide groundbreaking performance, but there's little to suggest that Acura's FWD or SH-AWD products are similar. The company would not be helping itself.

    However, if Acura produces a super car with SH-AWD, then it DOES have a technology in common with the lesser cars in the line-up. The connection between super car and mass production vehicles is obvious.

    "But with rear biased SH-AWD, is it moving to the front?"

    Why on earth...? Think SH-RWD with a small prop shaft sending power to an open diff at the front.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    "essentially, you guys want to widen the differences between the top end of the honda and the lower end of the accura lines right?

    i don't think you do that by throwing LUX at the vehicles. hondas and acuras are known for being functional, purposeful and non-extraneous right?"


    Correct. I suspect the ideal is to make Honda cars and trucks the functional, purposeful vehicles. Meanwhile, the Acuras will be the sporty, technologically advanced vehicles.

    Taking the Acura cars up-market will benefit both brands of car.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    "Not to mention, half the Lexus models are rear-drive cars on platforms not shared with Toyotas."

    Yeah, that's true. But Lexus has had a better reputation than Acura even longer than they've been doing (notable) RWD platforms. I mean, the best sellers for Lexus have consistently been the ES cars and the RX crossover. These are simply variations on the Camry and Highlander.

    I think you're right, but I also think Lexus/Toyota have done a better job of separating the line-ups in other ways. The difference in luxury between a Camry and the ES is more significant than the difference in performance between an Accord and a TL.

    Some of that is starting to change. The next Pilot will probably not have SH-AWD and the electro-magnetic suspension of the MDX. The RDX is remarkably different than the CR-V with which it might be compared. If the rumors are true concerning the Sports4 concept being the basis for the next TSX, then that car will be very different than the Accords.

    FWIW, I think the next TL ought to have an option for SH-AWD right at launch. Making it standard, might be moving a little too fast for the loyal customers. Never mind waiting for the MMC and a Type S car, though.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    If Acura produces a rear-mid-engined car with ordinary RWD, it will need to find something other than the drive train to share with the rest of the line.

    Not exactly. In fact, "Beat" from the other example drives home an interesting point. Honda took FF set up, moved it to the rear, and came up with a cheap roadster, the Honda Beat. In fact, the early prototypes for the NSX project involved a similar move. I think it is also a reason NSX made sense at the time. While it (directly) didn't share the engine, it could have. The front engine was relocated to the rear.

    Now, as far as "sharing goes". There are three things we can talk about:
    1. SH-AWD
    2. Engine
    3. Platform

    Mid-engine/RWD option doesn't offer the third choice, but it does offer engine and SH-AWD sharing (SH-AWD, unlike an engine, can be an option).

    For that reason, Acura could have come up with a 450 HP, V8 powered NSX, and offered that V8 in other Acuras. If SH-AWD is to be a big deal, NSX could have offered that too (being mid-engine car does not stop implementation of SH-AWD).

    With ASC, SH-AWD will be common with the rest of the Acura lineup. What else? I don't see V10 going into TL or RL. And I hope it doesn't share platform with what should be a full size luxury sedan in which case ASC will end up weighing 3800 lb like BMW 6-series does. May be 4000 lb, considering its got SH-AWD too.

    Acura could have developed a 4.5-liter V8, with 350 HP for RL and MDX (and a detuned version for Ridgeline). And a 450 HP version in the next NSX. Eventually a Type-R (or whatever Acura may want to call it) with 500 HP and SH-AWD!

    There you go! Except for the platform, NSX could have represented both, application of a mainstream engine and AWD system at their best.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    BTW, I like the idea of Honda engineers not going monster-power for the next NSX, but rather putting the money into a well-engineered, LIGHTWEIGHT chassis, with maybe 350-375 hp from a smallish V-8 just to stay in the ballpark in terms of power bragging rights. There are too many power-heavy, heavy-handling entrants in the field already. Honda's model should be a balanced package with superb handling, and if it isn't the very fastest in a straight line, that's OK.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Given the direction with a 4.5-5.0-liter V10 and SH-AWD, the plan is clearly not heading towards a light weight chassis.

    If one of the primary goals is to minimize exclusivity to maximize parts sharing as well as be able to advertise those parts, be it the engine, the AWD system or both, a midsized V8 makes more sense than a small displacement V8.

    An exclusive small displacement V8 will have an advantage but sharing with lesser models won’t be it. In RL and MDX, a 3.5-liter V8 would make no more sense than a 3.5-liter V6 does. The advantage will be in terms of packaging, being smaller and lighter than a shared “midsize” V8.

    And if that small V8 were derived off the midsize V8, it won’t offer packaging and weight advantage so one might as well go with the larger displacement. So on the downside, the shared V8 will indeed add some size and weight but then it will be insignificant compared to the heft added by SH-AWD which seems to be a non-issue to Acura at this time.

    For that reason, I would rather see an NSX revival with 4.5-liter V8 powering it, while a detuned version of the engine becomes optional in Acura RL and MDX. And if the flagship must showcase SH-AWD as well, that can be included as well (although I don’t like the idea for the fact that it will add about 225-250 lb to the curb weight).

    I also like the idea of an NSX revival with V8 because it would not only represent mainstream Acura products but also bode well with Acura’s racing efforts (and Honda’s too, for those of us who don’t mind Acura to Honda and for very good reasons).

    The original NSX represented Honda’s F1 efforts in spirit, this new one would do that plus have an engine that closely resembles F1, IRL and ALMS motors.

    In the future, Acura could offer a lesser NSX with a different name, more affordable to the masses with V6 power (also shared with mainstream Acura vehicles). Given the potential Acura has, the duo could potentially send shivers down the spine of the brands that currently feel unthreatened owing to the prestige factor. And this would, undoubtedly, help Acura where it wants to be, as well as acquire that prestige.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    If SH-AWD has to be a part of performance showcase, here’s another idea which can be included in an NSX. This doesn’t require SH-AWD to be an integral part of the car.

    Mainstream NSX could be mid-engine, RWD as it has been, with 450 HP V8. Acura could offer a top of the line NSX with SH-AWD but after addressing couple of issues.

    SH-AWD will add weight. So, a good start will be to trim the standard NSX along the lines of Type-R, and looking at the last NSX-R effort, Honda had managed to chop about 300 lb off the curb weight. A similar effort could result in a new Type-R which also uses SH-AWD now and without weighing more than the standard version. To top things off, bumping the power from 450 HP to 500 HP should be possible as well.
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    Okay, then what if the SH-AWD NSX-R got out-handled by the base RWD NSX at a track? It could well happen.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    If SH-AWD deteriorates performance, then skip it. In the process, weight, fuel economy, improved drivetrain efficiency and cost savings will follow. I'm not for it as a standard feature anyway.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Agreed - as in the RWD 911 GT3 being preferred by many track enthusiasts over the heavier, more expensive, AWD 911 Turbo ;)

    IMO, Acura needs to put a lid on the can containing SH-AWD when it comes to a high end sports car and high end flagship sports sedan. At least temporarily. Give us normal enthusiasts something to consider over a Cayman S or basic 911S in the $80k price range. If they want to take on the Ferrari 430, Gallardo and 911 Turbo down the road with an AWD 500+hp version for $150k, fine. But the former market could produce sales in the 10's of thousands, the latter market will be in the low thousands or less.

    On the sports sedan side, only the mid range, not-so-sporty models of the cars I would consider even have AWD as an option. Mostly due to the aformentioned weight problem. You can get a 530ix 6-speed, but not a 550i 6-speed in "x" form. No M or AMG models in "x" or 4-matic form. That isn't a coincidence.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Actually, Robert, I'd say there are four things we could talk about.

    1. Drive train (SH-AWD)
    2. Engine
    3. Platform (by this, I mean assembly line, not chassis)
    4. Styling

    As you wrote, with either front mid-engine (FME) or rear mid-engine (RME) you can use the SH-AWD. So that's common to both.

    With a V10, neither layout can realistically expect to share the engine with other products. I can't think of any transversely-mounted V10s in production.

    When it comes to platform, the FME car has a more realistic chance of being shared than the RME. Advantage goes to the FME.

    When it comes to styling, the shape of an FME car is more akin to that of a FWD car. The styling of an RME car would not translate as well to other products. (Sure, you could share surface details, but the FME does it better.)

    FME = 3
    RME = 1

    Even if they move to a V8, as you suggest, the FME can share it just as readily as the RME. The score changes, but the end result is the same.

    FME = 4
    RME = 2

    I sorta agree with the notion that they develop the V8 first. If done correctly, that could provide them with a boost for the RL and MDX much quicker.

    On the other hand, Honda building a V8 isn't as head-turning as building a V0. Headlines would read something like, "About time!" The idea behind building a halo car is to attract attention. The headlines for a V10 would likely be more significant and more positive.

    The V10 vs V8 issue is one where I'm on the fence.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    I think that's going to depend very much on how the vehicle is designed. A RWD car with AWD added may not benefit much from the extra hardware. The cars you mention were designed as RWD vehicles. However, a car developed with AWD from the ground up can be very entertaining.

    Furthermore, not all AWD systems are created equal. The ATESSA system is well-proven on the track. X-drive and 4-matic do not have the lateral torque vectoring capacity that makes SH-AWD unique.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    The previous type-R was an Integra. As such, it had the limitations caused by its price. They still built it from steel, they just stripped out sound insulation, the A/C and carpets, etc.

    The NSX is an exotic - build it from exotic materials and save hundreds of pounds, without having to "type-R" it. Can you imagine an all-aluminum and carbon fiber NSX? That would give them the weight reduction necessary to give it SH-AWD without a big penalty. But if they want to keep it RWD, I like that even better. :-)

    It sure would be a good idea if they planned the powertrain to be share-able with the RL. Next comes platform - they should plan the platform to be stretched in future for the RL. Evolving the current model will never turn it into anything but the budget alternative to "proper" luxury sedans like Lexus LS and 5/7-series.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    NSX Type-R was available as well, and it followed similar Type-R principles as the Integra did. The result was a car that tipped the scale at about 2800 lb. So, it was more than 300 lb lighter than the regular NSX. Part of weight savings came courtesy of use of carbon fiber and, of course, aluminum alloy chassis was always a part of NSX.

    Let us assume that Acura could produce an NSX propelled by 450 HP/4.5-liter V8 and tipped the weighing scale at 3400 lb. No AWD system is necessary here. Technically, I won’t mind seeing an NSX-R weighing in at 3150-3200 lb with 450-500 HP either, but if it must also showcase SH-AWD as well, then the weight saving exercise is simply meant to compensate for added heft of the AWD system which would be fine, as long as the car delivers what it must to justify the technology and cost.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    The trouble with building a super car platform to be shared with any other vehicle is compromise. We want the super car have X, Y, and Z, but cannot achieve Z because that won't work for the sedan.

    You end up with a not-so-super super car.

    No, I think the best we can expect is one of two options.

    1. The super car can be built on the same assembly line as other cars. (Thus keeping production costs in check and allowing more money to go into the engineering & materials.)

    2. A second, less expensive sports car is based on the same platform. Building a large sedan from the basis of a super car probably isn't going to work. However, building a modest-sized 2+2 coupe might be possible.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    How much do you guys think SH-AWD is going to add to such a car?

    I mean, the system used in the MDX is only about 205 lbs. Use a magnesium case, carbon fibre prop shaft, and other tricks... they can probably get it well below that. And it's not like a standard rear differential with an LSD is weightless to begin with.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Leaving the SUVs out:

    RSX: Sport Coupe
    2.3T/I-4, AWD, 260 HP, 6AT/6MT, $30K-$32K (Option: Navigation)

    TSX: Compact Touring Sedan
    Base: 2.4/I-4, FF, 210 HP, 6AT/6MT, $28K-$30K (Option: Navigation)
    Type-S: 2.3T/I-4, AWD, 260 HP, 6AT/6MT, $33K-$35K (Option: Navigation)

    TL: Mid size Touring Luxury Sedan
    Base: 3.5/V6, FR, 300 HP, 6AT/6MT, $35K-$40K (Option: Navigation/Sport Package)
    Type-S: 3.5/V6, AWD, 350 HP, 6AT/6MT, $40K-$45K (Option: Navigation)

    CL: Luxury Coupe/Convertible
    3.5/V6, FR, 300 HP, 6AT/6MT, $35K-$45K (Option: Navigation/Sport Package)

    RL: Full size Luxury Sedan
    Base: 3.5/V6, FR, 300 HP, 6AT/6MT, $45K-$50K (Option: Navigation/Sport Package)
    Premium: 4.5/V8, 350 HP, 6AT, $50K-$60K (Option: Couple of packages)

    SSX: Premium sports car (a name I remember from the time S2000 was on its way)
    3.5/V6, MR, 350-375 HP, Auto-Manual, $65K

    NSX: The super car
    Base: 4.5/V8, MR, 450 HP, Auto-Manual, $80K
    Type-R: 4.5/V8, AWD, 500 HP, Auto-Manual or 6MT, $90K

    There’s something for everybody PLUS the room to grow. There’s plenty of platform and engine and transmission and SH-AWD sharing too. A compact, a midsize and a full size sedan, a mid priced convertible/coupe for those who want some style with 2+2 seating and a performance oriented 2+2 entry level coupe. SSX would be to NSX that Boxster/Cayman are to Carrera, besides adding volume and allowing some parts sharing.

    There’s another constant across the entire lineup (regardless of the orientation of the platform, MR in case of NSX, FR in case of TL/CL and FF in case of TSX).

    Type-R: More power, track tuned chassis, SH-AWD, features stripped to save weight,
    Type-S: More power, sport tuned chassis, SH-AWD, features retained

    Except with the entry level cars, there would be none of that dreaded comparison with Honda. And I need to get a copyright on this virtual lineup of mine, just in case Acura decides to go for it. (although, I would gladly give it to them for free :P )
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    When it comes to platform, the FME car has a more realistic chance of being shared than the RME. Advantage goes to the FME.

    I agree. But do we really want a “sports car” to share a platform with a full size luxury sedan? BMW 650i is a good example about how cars can quickly gain heft. That thing tips the scale at 3814 lb. That is with a 360 HP V8 and without an AWD system. Starting at $74K, it isn’t inexpensive either.

    When it comes to styling, the shape of an FME car is more akin to that of a FWD car. The styling of an RME car would not translate as well to other products.

    I don’t think that is necessarily a good thing. Besides, styling elements are more important than overall shape of the vehicle. Audi R8 helps make a strong case here. Despite of being RME unlike any other car in the Audi lineup, it uses strong family tones.

    On the other hand, Honda building a V8 isn't as head-turning as building a V10.

    IMO, headline should be made via performance and in style. V10 isn’t a new story either, BMW has it, Dodge has had it, Lexus will too. V8 won’t be new, at least it offered a new ground to rest of the Acura lineup. As far as performance aspect goes, Honda is capable of getting 500 HP out of a V8.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    Even if the system by itself weighs about 200 lb, any added weight generally adds more “indirect” weight to the chassis. While not exactly from the same system, we see some of the indirect impact in RDX. Assuming that 2.3T in RDX saves some weight over a V6, there is no weight savings when it comes to transmission which is designed for a powerful V6. And the chassis is tweaked to handle the additional power as well. As a result, the gain (or loss) isn't just directly from the engine, but also from the "supporting casts".
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