Corporate / Executive Remarks
Remarks by Dick Colliver, Executive Vice President, American Honda Motor Co., Inc
Thank you, Charles. And good morning honored guests. I want to begin by thanking all of the associates who are taking time from your busy schedules to join us here this morning for this very special celebration.
And before I go any farther, I want to recognize a special group of associates who've joined us here this morning. If I can ask these folks to wave their hands, I would like to recognize these associates who were with the Acura Division at the time of its inception twenty years ago ... and with them, our Vice President for the Acura Division, Mr. Steve Center. Let's give these folks a big hand for all their hard work in making this day possible.
Today, Acura is twenty years old...or maybe I should say twenty years young...because today's Acura is stronger, faster, more nimble and more on the cutting edge of automotive design and technology than at any time in its 20-year history.
From the very beginning, as the world's first luxury brand from a Japanese nameplate, Acura has challenged the conventional wisdom of what a luxury brand can and should be. And that same pioneering spirit that gave birth to Acura two decades ago is driving our continued advancement and innovative approach to luxury
No question, Acura is on a roll...and not just in terms of our products and technology. Today's Acura is attracting a record number of customers. And these customers are the most affluent buyers in our history ... choosing our products after cross-shopping with other high-end luxury brands. And these customers helped take Acura to our third straight year of record sales in 2005, topping the two-hundred thousand mark for the first time in the brand's history.
Of course, the market isn't all that interested in our past or even our present accomplishments. What really matters is where we will take Acura and our customers in the future. And while we gather to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the creation of Acura, today's event is really all about looking "ahead" to the next 20 years of innovation and leadership.
And "ahead" is really the key word. Staying ahead of the needs of our customers with leading edge designs, performance and technology...and staying head of the competition.
This year, we'll introduce two new products that look ahead to Acura's future. This summer we'll launch the all-new Acura RD-X that will expand the gateway into the Acura brand. Then, this fall we introduce an exciting all-new MDX. At next month's New York auto show ... our customers will get their first look at an exterior styling concept of the new model.
Importantly, both of these new products were a result of the unique market insights and styling inspiration of our designers here in our R&D's LA Center. Today, we take an important step in advancing these capabilities with the creation of the new Acura Design Center. This new, exclusively Acura Design Center, will work in conjunction with American Honda's product planning and market research functions, to set the future direction of Acura. The addition of the Acura Design Center will play an important part in the continuing evolution of Acura, further distinguishing Acura products in the market place and ensuring that we continue to deliver products ahead of the times and ahead of the competition.
In short, the key to success lies in our collective ability ... as one team ... to present new dreams to our customers. The designers who will work in this new facility ... the engineers and technicians in our Ohio Center ... the manufacturing folks in Ohio and Canada ... and the associates here in Torrance and around the country who work in marketing, sales, parts, service and finance.
Clearly, the best is yet to come. Looking to the future ... we are focused on the concept of being ahead of the market. But the future of Acura is not just about staying ahead of our competitors ... it's really about looking ahead to where our customers are headed and creating products and technologies that help them realize these new experiences. In fact, if there is one constant for Acura in the future - it is the notion of being "ahead" in every way imaginable. This is the future of Acura, and I can tell you...it's a bright one indeed.
But enough words ... the best way to honor the past ... is to look to the future. So, the moment we've all been waiting for ... the official groundbreaking for the new Acura Design Center, is here. With some help from my friends ... let's break up this ground. Thank you.