This prestigious marque was created to bring elegant styling, state-of-the-art technology and engineering, stimulating performance and an unprecedented level of customer service to the luxury import market.
Now in its eighth year, that venture is showing extraordinary results. Acura has been the number one selling luxury import make and for the past seven years its flagship luxury sedan, the Acura Legend, has been the best-selling luxury import in each of the last five consecutive years. From a start-up with two automobile lines, three models and 60 dealers, Acura now offers four automobile lines, with six distinct models, sold through a network of nearly 300 dealers. And, during the 1994 model year, the one millionth Acura automobile will roll out of one of those dealerships.
While selling a relatively high number of automobiles for the luxury import category, Acura has consistently performed extremely well in one of the most important measures of success:making the ownership experience as satisfying as possible. Acura has ranked number one in the annual J.D. Power and Associates® Customer Satisfaction StudySM (CSI) survey four times. The marque has also ranked best in the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Performance StudySM (VPI), which ranks customer satisfaction with the operational and functional performance of their automobiles after three years of ownership, for the last three consecutive years -- every year the survey has been conducted.
Research and Development
The success of Acura can be attributed largely to the research and development that goes into every vehicle. Acura automobiles are designed and built using leading-edge technology. At the same time, they are well-known for extremely high levels of ergonomic design, quality and durability.
To give the designers and engineers the kind of creative freedom and positive working environment they needed to function at their best, an autonomous research and development company was formed in 1960 as a separate entity from its parent, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. This separation allows the engineers to go their own way, investigating new ideas and innovations without the budgetary and bureaucratic constraints encountered by engineers at many other automobile manufacturers.
After an automobile is designed and developed, it is exhaustively tested at facilities in Japan and the United States, and it undergoes environmental testing in harsh climates and conditions allover the world. The main R&D testing facility in Japan is the Tochigi Proving Grounds, with its broad range of demanding driving situations. Acura automobiles are also tested at two major test facilities in the United States. The Transportation Research Center (TRC), in East Liberty, Ohio, has many of the same capabilities as the Tochigi Proving Grounds. And further illustrating our commitment to the U.S. market, an all-new testing facility in the desert north of Los Angeles, the Honda Proving Center of California (HPCC) has recently opened, which allows thorough development and product testing close to Acura Division headquarters in Torrance, California. HPCC features a 7.5-mile high-speed oval track, plus five miles of a winding road course that offers a full range of challenging road surfaces.
The deep-seated commitment of Acura to racing started at the very beginning-- well before the Acura Division was founded. Soichiro Honda, who founded Honda Motor Co., Inc. in 1948, was a racing enthusiast at heart. Throughout his life he maintained an active interest in his company's racing exploits and in the world-leading technology that made them possible.
Nobuhiko Kawamoto, president of Honda Motor Co., Ltd., has his roots in racing as well. Kawamoto was a key engineer on the early Honda Formula One racing effort in the 1960s. And later, as president of Honda Research and Development Co., Ltd., his influence and engineering expertise led to Honda's return to Formula One racing in 1983.
Formula One racing is the world's most demanding arena of motorsport competition. The participation of Honda in Formula One serves as an indispensable training ground for engineers, and a unique source of inspiration for the designers of Acura production automobiles.
Racing also provides a priceless body of knowledge, at the leading edge of technology, that would be impossible to acquire in any other way.
Honda-powered cars have won six consecutive Formula One Constructors' World Championships (1986, 1987,1988,1989,1990,1991) and five consecutive Formula One Drivers' World Championships (1987, 1988,1989,1990,1991). But the ultimate payoff of this racing experience is built into each Acura in the satisfying way it functions and feels.
The Acura commitment to racing is also evident on the racetracks of the United States. Race-prepared Acura Integra automobiles have won two consecutive IMSA International Sedan Manufacturers' Championships and three consecutive IMSA International Sedan Drivers' Championships.
The Comptech Racing Acura-Spice GTP-Lights race car, powered by a modified Acura NSX V-6 engine, has carried driver Parker Johnstone to the last three consecutive Manufacturers' Championships, and last three consecutive Drivers' Championships in the prestigious IMSA Camel GTP Lights series.
Acura Model Chronology
Two initial model lines went on sale in March 1986. The Integra sports sedans, in both 3-door and 5-door versions, were introduced, along with the Legend 4-door performance luxury touring sedan. The Legend Coupe was introduced one year later, in 1987.
Since the unveiling of the two original model lines, two models have been added: the mid-engine NSX exotic sports car and the Vigor luxury sports sedan. And both original model lines, the Integra and the Legend, have been superseded by all new, totally redesigned and re-engineered successors.The second-generation Legend Sedan and Legend Coupe were introduced in the 1991 model year. The second generation Integra was introduced in 1990: the all-new 1994 Integra Sports Coupe and Sports Sedan represent the third generation of the Integra model.
Acura enters the 1994 model year with a full line of sophisticated automobiles, each carefully tailored to bring the best in driving satisfaction, inspiring performance, state-of-the-art safety engineering and advanced ergonomics to its owners. New for 1994, every automobile in the Acura line is equipped with both driver's and front passenger's Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) air bags as standard equipment.
The NSX, called "the best driving experience available from anywhere in the world," is updated for 1994 with wider, larger-diameter wheels (16" front, 17" rear) and wider, lower aspect ratio tires. A new color, Brooklands Green, is available, and all exterior colors are now available with a choice of either a black or tan leather interior.
The 1994 Legend lineup includes a new model, the Legend Sedan GS, which features the high-performance 230-hp Type II engine, standard 6-speed manual transmission, 16-inch-diameter wheels, and dual-piston front brakes first introduced in the Legend Coupe. Like the Coupe LS, the Sedan GS also includes a sophisticated Traction Control System (TCS), more aggressively tuned suspension and a body-colored front grille.
All 1994 Legend Coupe and Sedan models feature a new, power tilt and telescopic steering column, with an auto tilt-up function for easy entry and a memory function that works in conjunction with the two-position power driver's seat memory system. All Legend models have also received additional sound insulation, for even quieter operation.
All Legend Sedan models have been updated with a newly designed front grille, front bumper and air intake. The "base" model Legend Sedan has been discontinued for 1994.
All Legend Coupe models have a redesigned grille, front bumper and air intake and a new high-mount brakelight integrated into the rear trunk lid. The Coupe LS model also includes a body-colored chin spoiler, side sill and rear bumper skirt.
Like all other Acura automobiles, every 1994 Vigor features both driver's and front passenger's Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) air bags as standard equipment. Every Vigor is also equipped with burled myrtle wood interior accents, and the Vigor GS model features a leather-trimmed interior, power moonroof and an eight-speaker AM/FM stereo/cassette unit with a standard in-dash CD player.
The 1994 Integra Sports Coupe and Integra Sports Sedan are entirely new models, designed to provide a compelling combination of exciting performance, agile handling, and sheer driving fun.
Both the Sports Coupe and Sports Sedan body styles are offered in RS, LS and GS-R trim. The RS and LS models feature a refined, 142-horsepower, 1.8 liter DOHC 4-cylinder engine, mated to either a crisp-shifting 5-speed manual or a new, four-speed automatic transmission that features an innovative Grade Logic Control System.
The GS-R Sports Coupe and Sports Sedan feature an all-new, 1.8 liter, DOHC, 4-cylinder, 170-horsepower, VTEC-equipped engine, mated to an upgraded S-speed manual transmission. GS-R models also feature wider, larger-diameter 6.0 JJ x 15-inch alloy wheels and 195/55 R15 V-rated tires.