Tenty-five years ago today, the Acura brand was launched in Canada. It was the beginning of a bold and successful brand venture – the first Japanese luxury nameplate had arrived in Canada.
Created to bring performance, elegant design, advanced technology and higher levels of customer service to the luxury import market, Acura has grown from 20 dealers selling just two models in 1987 (Legend and Integra), to the current network of 50 retailers selling six distinctive Acura vehicles. The line up now includes three utility vehicles (MDX, RDX and ZDX) and three sedans (RL, TL and TSX). To date, more than 400,000 Acura luxury cars and trucks have been sold in Canada.
“When we look back at Acura’s history in Canada, we can take great pride in the many things we’ve accomplished,” said Jerry Chenkin, executive vice president, Honda Canada Inc. “We’re pleased to be celebrating this anniversary year with two exciting new vehicles coming this spring and additional models over the next several years that herald a dynamic future, firmly rooted in our core values of innovation, technology, luxury, and value, all built on a foundation of dependability, quality and reliability.”
On Thursday, Acura will unveil three important vehicles at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto – the long-awaited Acura NSX Concept, the all-new Acura ILX sedan and the completely redesigned Acura RDX. The RDX is scheduled to be in dealerships in early April, with the all-new ILX entry-luxury sedan planned to arrive later in the spring.
“The NSX Concept, all-new ILX sedan, and redesigned RDX have been designed from the ground up with Acura DNA,” said Chenkin. “And what better way to celebrate Acura’s 25th anniversary here in Canada than by showing Canadians what’s next.”
Acura’s history of ‘firsts’ in Canada over the past 25 years
YEAR ACURA FIRST
1987 First Japanese luxury brand to in Canada
1990 First all-aluminum production automobile (1991 Acura NSX)
1990 First Japanese ‘Supercar’ (NSX)
1996 First manufacturer to build an exclusive-to-Canada luxury car (1997 Acura EL)
1996 First luxury import brand to design, engineer and assemble a model in North America (1997 Acura CL Coupe)
1996 First in-dash satellite-linked navigation system (1996 Acura RL)
1997 First 4-channel ABS system
1999 First dual-stage driver and passenger side airbags
2001 First 3-row luxury SUV (MDX)
2002 First Variable Valve Timing system (VTEC®)
2003 First Drive-By-Wire™ (DBW) throttle system
2003 First standard DVD-Audio surround sound system (2004 Acura TL)
2003 First standard Bluetooth wireless telephone interface (2004 Acura TL)
2003 First use of ‘acoustic’ windshield glass (2004 Acura MDX)
2004 First brand to offer XM® Satellite Radio as standard equipment
2004 First brand to offer Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® technology as standard equipment
2004 First Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE™) body structure
2004 First torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system (SH-AWD®)
2004 First application of Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive™ system (2005 Acura RL)
2004 First use of acoustic windshield glass
2004 First standard DVD-Audio Surround System
2005 First to offer Active Noise Cancellation
2008 First IIHS Top Safety Pick-rated model line-up
2009 First brand with NHTSA 5-star crash safety ratings for all models
Acura is the technology advanced performance division of Honda Canada Inc. Six vehicles (TSX, RDX, TL, RL, ZDX and MDX) are marketed under the Acura brand. Both the Acura ZDX and MDX are produced at the Honda of Canada Mfg. facility in Alliston, Ontario.
From Richard Jacobs