Acura Press Conference
2008 New York International Auto Show
Remarks by Dick Colliver, Executive Vice President, Automobile Sales
March 19, 2008, 10:00 AM EST
Good Morning everyone and welcome. At Acura, we're counting down to the launch of this new 2009 TSX with tremendous anticipation. Why? Because we believe it sets a new benchmark for this hard-fought premium segment. This is an important category, not just for Acura, but for every luxury nameplate. Cars like the TSX serve as an affordable entry point for buyers to access the luxury market-and then hopefully move up through the lineup as their income grows and their needs evolve.
In addition, this segment is projected to grow by over 7-percent by the year 2012. So there's tremendous sales potential here-if you have the right product. And Acura does.
This new second generation TSX is powerful, larger, more comfortable, more agile and more technically advanced than ever before. So it's more ready than ever to compete in every area alongside competitors like the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C Class, Audi A4, and Lexus IS.
It offers major advancements in: engine performance, handling, ride quality, interior roominess, feature content, safety, and fuel efficiency. We started from the bottom and worked our way up until we had designed, engineered, and developed a true world-class sports sedan that driving enthusiasts would love.
The TSX is now longer and wider, and it rides on a wider track and longer wheelbase. These larger dimensions combine to provide greater interior roominess, increased agility, and improved ride quality. A thoroughly revised suspension adds to the TSX's sporty handling.
Power comes from a new, all-aluminum 2.4-liter i-VTEC engine that delivers a significant bump in torque and real-world performance. The new TSX is quicker from a standing start and accelerates more quickly from any speed making all that power far more usable. Torque is what gets your attention as a driver and the TSX has more of it-plus, I'm pleased to say, better fuel efficiency.
With gas prices on the rise, we felt an increase in fuel economy was just as important as the gain in performance. Plus, the engine is also cleaner and now meets aggressive EPA and CARB emission standards.
So, we know the new TSX is quicker and more agile, but there's also a flipside to this category of automobile... and that's luxury. This new TSX is roomier inside and can accommodate five adults in an upscale, contemporary and beautifully appointed interior. Everywhere you look, the TSX blends intelligent design with technical innovation.
And that technical innovation is important to the target younger buyers in this category. This it the internet, MP3, iPod, Blackberry, You Tube generation that looks to technology to stay connected and improve their quality of life. And here the new TSX will not disappoint.
Standard features include Bluetooth connectivity, USB port, AUX music jack, iPod interface, remote entry and a premium 7-speaker sound system. In addition, the 2009 TSX comes standard with a power moonroof, dual zone climate control, leather interior, and HID headlights. And if that's not enough, the TSX is available with an optional Technology Package packed with leading edge electronics making driving more efficient and enjoyable.
We're talking about features like a voice activated navigation system, AcuraLink with Real-time traffic and Traffic Rerouting. Also included is a new feature known as AcuraLink Weather-a single-screen, continuously updated real-time weather information system. Plus, there's a rearview camera that activates when the transmission is placed in reverse.
Included in the Technology Package is a 10-speaker Acura/ELS premium surround sound audio system tuned by multiple Grammy award winning sound engineer Elliot Scheiner.
Naturally, the TSX includes all of Acura's class-leading "Safety Through Innovation" content such as the patented ACE front body structure, Active Head Restraints and Vehicle Stability Assist with Traction Control.
As you can see, everything is wrapped in dramatic new bodywork using our exclusive Acura "Keen Edge" design language. Sharp contour lines and bold wheel arches give the new TSX a sleek, athletic profile, while the new signature front grille immediately identifies the TSX as a member of the Acura family.
The TSX is designed to appeal to young professionals who will fully appreciate the performance, technical allure and styling the TSX offers. We sell over 30,000 TSX sedans annually, and we expect that number to increase dramatically once this new TSX hits the sales floor.
And remember, this is only one of three new Acura sedans we'll be introducing this year. We showed you the new RL at the Chicago Auto Show, the new TSX here today and there will be a new TL by year's end.
For the 2009 model year, we will have the freshest lineup of luxury-performance sedans in the marketplace-all offering major improvements in performance, handling, comfort, and safety. And all boasting the very latest technology to enhance the driving experience in every way imaginable.
For Acura, this is the year of the sedan. And the TSX is a prime example of what we, as an engineering driven company, are capable of creating.
Now, there is one more brief but important announcement that I'd like to make this morning. Acura has entered into a unique partnership with exclusive W Hotels and will be the preferred vehicles at all W Hotel properties in North America. Hotel guests will have the opportunity to be chauffeured across town in an Acura MDX luxury SUV. In addition, Acura vehicles will be available for test drives at select W properties. The program begins the first of next month.
At this time I'd like to introduce an esteemed representative of W Hotels, Tina Edmundson, Senior Vice-President of Starwood's Luxury Brands Group. Tina, as they said in the movie Casablanca, "I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship."
Thank you all very much for attending the launch of this important new Acura. Now, I'd like to invite you to follow me into the Acura booth for a closer look at the new 2009 Acura TSX.
I'll be happy to answer your questions and you'll have an opportunity to photograph Acura's newest sedan.