Acura will make a Type S version of every single model.
Honda’s luxury marque has flown under the radar of late. Certainly Acura hasn’t been quiet, per se, but its competition has been making headlines that tend to steal the spotlight.
From our point of view, Acura’s recent styling choices seem a bit like rehashes of Lexus’s. No doubt, the TLX is a stylish car, and Acura’s pentagonal grille is instantly recognizable. But other than that, things have been relatively quiet on the Acura front.
What’s a way to shake things up for a stagnating luxury brand?
How about an announcement that every. Single. Acura. will be offered in a souped-up Type S version, beginning with the MDX Type S and including a speedy as-yet-unnamed compact sedan to fit into the lineup below the mid-sized TLX and the slightly smaller ILX.
A lot of Honda’s cachet comes from how unexciting it is. Honda sells thousands of vehicles every year to consumers who are buying their cars specifically because they don’t want any surprises. They need a car or SUV that will get them from point A to point B with no mechanical adventures. There’s a reason why Honda has built up a decades-long reputation of reliability, and rocking the boat is not in Honda’s best interest when it comes to that particular audience.
But Acura buyers are a bit different from Honda. While most Honda CR-V drivers are looking for a reassuringly unexciting driving experience, those who shell out the extra cash for an Acura likely want a little extra oomph to validate their purchase.
We got a glimpse of Acura’s grand Type S plan in June, when it leaked information about the upcoming MDX Type S in June 2020. Now we know that the 2021 TLX Type S is on the horizon. Acura Brand Officer Jon Ikeda told MotorTrend about the company’s plan to release performance variants of every one of its models. Ikeda mentioned that this is part of the “relaunch” of Acura’s brand, which began with the release of the Acura NSX hypercar in 2015.
Ikeda’s quotes in the interview will warm the heart of any automotive enthusiast. “We’re trying to build emotion again, make fun-to-drive cars again,” he said.
Ikeda added that the success of the RDX showed Acura that it was on “the right path” with its renewed focus on upscale performance.
Perhaps even more exciting for enthusiasts on a budget, Ikeda said that he wasn’t ruling out sharing performance products with Honda, which could potentially mean some more affordable speedy Hondas on the horizon.
According to Ikeda, the TLX is getting bigger as well, with the ILX just below it. Ikeda said that Acura needs an “entry” model, so we’re excited to see a nimble Type S subcompact Acura sometime soon.