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Posts Tagged ‘japanese luxury sedans’

Acura Going All-In with New TLX

New sport sedan sees largest launch ever for struggling luxury brand.

by on Jul.14, 2014

The new 2015 Acura TLX targets the performance sport sedan market once a stronghold for the old Legend model.

Acura is playing its new TLX sports sedan like a winning poker hand, going all-in on the mid-range model it is launching for 2014.

It may not have any other choice. Despite the strong reception given the Honda subsidiary’s redesigned MDX sport-utility vehicle this year, Acura has continued to struggle with the rest of its line-up, its sedans, in particular, posting double-digit sales declines. But it’s confident that it finally has the right cards in place to ante up with the biggest launch campaign in its 30-year history.

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“We’re very excited about what the TLX will bring us,” said Mike Accavitti, the executive recently appointed to head Acura, which is gaining more independence from its parent brand in a bid to reverse years of weak sales.  Replacing the old TL model, Accavitti promised that the new TLX “is positioned in the sweet spot of the sedan market. It has the right stuff to put us back in the performance sedan game.”

Acura better hope so.

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New Acura TLX to Debut at NY Auto Show

Deja vu all over again?

by on Mar.20, 2014

The "prototype" 2015 Acura TLX during its debut at the Detroit Auto Show in January. Look for minor changes in the production model.

Don’t be surprised if you get a sense of déjà vu all over again – as Yogi Berra liked to say – when you get to the New York Auto Show next month.

Yes, you’ve seen that Acura TLX before.  Well, almost but not quite.  Honda’s upscale marque gave us a look at a “prototype” during the Detroit Auto Show a couple months back.  That’s a common practice for Honda which has been very effective at double-dipping into the 24-hour news cycle.

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Expect to see a few minor tweaks as we go from prototype to production – such as the row of LED lights fused to the base of each sideview mirror — but the basic shape is going to be largely the same as what was revealed in the Motor City.  “The TLX will serve as the backbone of the Acura sedan line-up,” said Mike Accavitti, Acura’s new brand boss, so the maker is intent on getting it right with what will soon become the middle model in its three sedan line-up.

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First Look: 2013 Lexus LS 460

Putting some passion into the flagship.

by on Jul.31, 2012

Lexus delivers a more passionate take on its LS flagship, the new LS 460 F Sport shown here.

Few cars did more to revolutionize the market than the original 1990 Lexus LS 400, a flagship for Toyota’s new luxury marque and proof positive the Japanese really could go toe-to-toe with the best of the German competition.

In the nearly quarter-century since the LS line first appeared, however, Lexus has played it increasingly safe, especially when it has come to design, no wonder the big 4-door has lately lost ground to the more aggressive Europeans.  But during the preview of the smaller Lexus GS last year, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda promised to punch some more passion into the brand — and the 2013 Lexus LS 460 that debuted in San Francisco last night is a clear indication of what he meant.

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At a gathering of 500 invited guests from the San Francisco arts and design community, Lexus actually showed up four different versions of the flagship sedan: the “base” LS 460, the long-wheelbase LS 460L, the LS 600h and the new LS 460 F- Sport, a more aggressive addition to the line-up.

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