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Posts Tagged ‘mike accavitti’

Acura Chief Accavitti Unexpectedly Exits

New Acura boss is veteran designer Jon Ikeda.

by on Jul.28, 2015

Mike Accavitti with a prototype Acura TLX at its preview during the 2014 Detroit Auto Show.

With sales growing well ahead of the industry overall, everything seemed to be going right for Acura boss Mike Accavitti. But the industry veteran has unexpectedly exited the Japanese luxury brand, parent Honda Motor Co. offering no explanation for his departure.

Accavitti will be succeeded by Jon Ikeda, who had served as head of Honda’s U.S. R&D operations and who was trained as a designer before joining Honda in 1989.

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“Jon Ikeda brings tremendous knowledge and talent to Acura,” John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda, said in a statement. “From deep R&D experience with the brand, he has emerged as the ultimate advocate for Acura and has built a record of solid achievement and success.”


Acura Spends Record Cash to Promote New TLX

Maker looking to revive brand image with new ads.

by on Aug.11, 2014

Acura is promoting the 2015 TLX on Jerry Seinfield's webshow, "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee."

With the launch of the new 2015 TLX, Acura new advertising campaign must pull double duty. Not is not only launching a new car, but also it needs restore the company’s reputation as a top-flight luxury carmaker.

Mike Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager, said the advertising blitz comes at a critical time for Acura’s passenger car line. Sales of Acura passenger cars dropped 55% in July and are down 34% for full year.

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The campaign will debut Aug. 17, and Accavitti declined to say how much Acura will spend on the initiative “for competitive reasons,” but it will easily be the most expensive ad campaigns ever mounted by the Acura. (more…)

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.


Acura MDX Sales Set Record – But Passenger Cars Remain a Problem

Japanese luxury brand bills MDX as best-selling 3-row ute ever.

by on Jul.11, 2014

The 2014 Acura MDX has readily outsold all its competitors in the three-row luxury SUV category.

With sales up more than 68% so far this year, Acura is billing its MDX as the best-selling three-row luxury SUV ever. The redesign has clearly clicked with consumers, but the MDX has been a hot-seller ever since its introduction 15 years ago, topping all other three-row competitors every year since 2002.

That’s the good news for Acura, but there’s also plenty of bad. Despite introducing several new passenger cars in recent years, including its entry-level ILX and flagship RDX, Acura’s passenger cars simply aren’t cutting it with consumers.

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So, despite the surge in sales of the brand’s big SUV, Acura’s overall volume slumped 18.6% in June, making it one of the few brands to report a decline as the U.S. car market continues its recovery.

“MDX is the clear benchmark in its class,” crowed the Acura Division’s General Manager Mike Accavitti, proclaiming that “Luxury car buyers have spoken.”


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.


Acura Places Bet on China – But Remains Focused on U.S.

Maker to open plant in China by 2016.

by on Jul.22, 2013

Honda will revive the Acura NSX for 2015.

Honda’s long-struggling luxury brand Acura reportedly plans to start building cars in China in 2016, targeting what is soon expected to become the world’s largest market for highline vehicles.

But Acura officials insist that even as they look for other opportunities abroad, they are increasing their focus on what has traditionally been their largest market, the United States.  They’re backing that up with an assortment of new products that will soon include an all-new version of the once ground-breaking supercar, the Acura NSX.

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Honda plans to invest about $70 million on its flagship plant in Marysville, Ohio to get ready for the re-launch, late next year, of the revived NSX. The sleek, 2-seat sports car was once a showpiece of Asian automotive prowess and lent a halo to Honda’s Acura division, the first Japanese brand to target the demanding luxury market.  But after a 15-year-run, the NSX was pulled from production in 2005 a move that coincided with Acura’s sharp downturn, leading some to wonder whether it could survive, especially as the automotive market plunged into recession.


Honda Exec Downplays Impact of Consumer Reports Trashing

No maker can "always hit them out of the park."

by on Aug.30, 2011

Can the 2012 Honda Civic overcome bad reviews?

Timing is everything – and Mike Accavitti was clearly wondering whether he got it right the day he accepted his new job as head of marketing for American Honda, a couple months back.

That was the same day that the influential Consumer Reports magazine took a potshot at the Honda Civic, declaring that the 2012 remake of the long-popular subcompact, normally one of the non-profit publication’s favorite choices, “now…ranks near the bottom of its category.”

As if to drive the knife deeper, the magazine followed up with a second report raising serious questions about Honda itself.  And CR wasn’t alone.  The 2012 Honda Civic has received a rash of criticism while the maker itself has come under increasing fire from various media – including – faulting it for a variety of issues, including timid design.

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Further complicating matters, the maker was hit hard by the earthquake that struck Japan on March 11.  The subsequent product shortages have probably reached their worst this month, says Accavitti, a former Chrysler executive.

“For a second, I thought, ‘Holy, moley, what did I get myself into?’” he says with a laugh that betrays his initial concerns.  But despite Honda’s recent setbacks, the new marketing chief insists he’s in for a good ride.