Acura (in Japanese: アキュラ) is the luxury brand of Japanese car manufacturer Honda in the United States, Canada and Hong Kong since March 1985, to position itself in the luxury car market. The brand for 2004 was introduced in Mexico, for 2005 is established in China and finally in 2013 in Panama. It is also planned to introduce Acura in the Japanese market itself in 2008. With the Acura brand, Honda became the first to market Japanese luxury vehicles outside of Japan. Before Acura, cars exported from Japan were low-cost.
In 1985, after a decade of research and development, the Honda Motor Company opened 18 brand new outlets in the United States in support of its Acura division. This was the first Japanese luxury brand to hit the market, and its initial offering consisted of four models: Legend, in coupé and V6 sedan versions, and Integra, in five-door and four-door/hatchback versions, as well as sedan. The success of these models led to competition with Japanese luxury models Lexus from Toyota and Infiniti from Nissan.
In 1990, four years after the debut of the Legend and Integra, Acura introduced the NSX, a sporty rear-wheel drive V6. Its name is an acronym for New Sports eXperimental and was introduced as the first Japanese car capable of competing with Ferrari and Porsche. This vehicle was the hallmark of the Acura brand, as well as the first in production made entirely of aluminum.1 Despite the strong start of the brand (in terms of market acceptance), sales fell from the mid to late 1990s.
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