Acura TSX to Get New Diesel
By Brendan Moore
Honda has announced that their new clean diesel engine will make its Noth American debut in the redesigned 2009 Acura TSX sedan.
According to Automotive News (paid subscription required), Honda will put its new diesel in the TSX, although Honda officials would not confirm this.
More from the Automotive News
article, in italics:
“All along, we’ve said there would be a diesel in Acura,” said Dick Colliver, executive vice president of American Honda Motor Co. “The whole direction is to separate Acura and Honda more. In five to six years, Acura will be a tier 1 luxury brand. The face of Acura will be totally different.”
Honda’s new 2.2-liter, four-cylinder i-DETC clean diesel will be available on the redesigned Honda Accord in Europe this summer. The European Accord and the TSX are basically the same vehicle.
Honda will introduce a V-6 diesel around 2010. That engine likely will go in the mid-sized Acura TL sedan and the MDX crossover as well as some Honda-brand vehicles.
Acura sales fell 10.5 percent in 2007 to 180,104 units. Colliver expects sales to rise this year to just under 200,000 units.
“We get the TSX in the spring and the new TL in the fall,” he said. “We knew going into 2007 that we were facing tough times because the product line was aging, and there was a lot of new competition. To compete with BMW, we must build cars in those segments. We need more crossovers and an image car.”
So, it’s pretty obvious that Acura wants to play in the same sandbox as BMW, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz, etc., as opposed to just being thought of as a really nice Honda.
Does this mean that the Acura line is going to go rear-wheel-drive? Or, if not the whole lineup, at least the top model? Will the cars jump way up in price as they get more content in them in order to better compete in the rarified air of the true luxury segment? And will Acura go sport first and luxury second, as in BMW, or will they go luxury first and sport second, a la Mercedes-Benz? And, of course, there is always the third way; the Lexus way of luxury and almost no sport, but given Acura’s performance-oriented past, that doesn’t seem likely.
All good questions – maybe the answers will make themselves known shortly.
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