Honda’s premium brand Acura has revealed its Precision EV concept, which previews an upcoming electric crossover that’ll use General Motors underpinnings.
Acura’s latest styling theme will make its production debut on an all-new electric crossover that’s due to go on sale in the US from 2024.
This car, along with a rugged-looking 2023 Honda Prologue, will be based on GM’s Ultium architecture and built at a GM factory. So far these two vehicles have only been confirmed for sale in North America.
According to Acura, the new concept has an “athletic stance [and] expressive silhouette” that is “inspired by the elegance, artistry and harmony of form and function unique to luxury Italian power boats”.
Instead of ripping up Acura’s current design script, the Precision EV retains the brand’s diamond pentagon grille and chicane-style lighting graphics.
With the grille broader than ever before, and flanked by tiny headlights, the new language serves to emphasise the car’s width.
While these elements are familiar to Acura, the Precision EV’s long and flat bonnet, upright glasshouse, floating roof, and surfacing are new for the brand.
Also new is the illuminated fractured diamond pattern in the grille, and the “particle glitch” lighting elements for the front and rear fascias.
Inside, the concept features a yoke-style steering wheel, recycled aluminium and marbled plastic trim, and 100 per cent biomass-derived leather.
The driver setup is said to be “F1-inspired”, but the vehicle is also said to feature an autonomous driving mode where the steering wheel retracts, soothing scents are emitted and calming underwater-style projections help to soothe the passengers.
Acura currently only sells cars in the US, Canada, Mexico, Panama, and Kuwait. It also retails vehicles in China, but will leave the world’s most populous nation by the end of 2023.
While the luxury marque isn’t available in Australia, some of its cars do occasionally make their way into local showrooms.
The original MDX crossover was sold Down Under as a Honda. Despite landing in Australia in 2003, around the same time as the Toyota Kluger, the MDX wasn’t a sales success here.
This was thanks in part to its steep pricing. The US-made MDX was priced at $69,990, while the Kluger started at a more reasonable $43,990.
More recently the second-generation NSX, which was developed in the US and built there too, was sold across most of the world, including Australia, as a Honda.
The most recent 2014-2021 Honda Legend, while not available in Australia, was designed firstly as the Acura RLX, and then sold in other markets with Honda badges.
Given this history, it’s possible Acura’s new design language may appear on some high-end Acura-designed Honda-badged products.
This time last year, Jon Ikeda, Acura’s chief brand officer, told The Drive, there will be a third-generation NSX because a new version of the car gets approved about whenever Honda believes “there’s something we want to say”.
Ikeda noted the first-generation car was petrol-powered, and the second was a hybrid, hinting the new NSX will be an all-electric model.
Earlier this year as part of an announcement on its electrification plans, Honda teased two upcoming sports cars.
It referred to them as “a specialty model and a flagship model”, suggesting one was the mooted NSX replacement.