With the addition of hybrids to the lineup, Acura dealers are expected to cheer up after having been disheartened over the cancellation of plans for V-8s and rear-wheel-drive vehicles. Honda Motor Co.
CEO Takanobu Ito confirmed that the luxury brand will get hybrid variants. No time frame was given. It also wasn't disclosed which models will get the technology. An Acura dealer said that a hybrid version of the TSX sedan is planned for the 2011 model year and two other hybrid models will follow soon after.
In an interview conducted at the Detroit Auto Show, Ito said that Honda still has to complete development of a hybrid system for large vehicles.
John Mendel, American Honda Motor Co. executive vice president for auto sales, explained that the plan for Acura hybrids isn't a new one and that it isn't a result of losing the V-8 and rear-drive vehicles that had been promised to dealers at a national meeting two years ago.
Honda executives in Japan had an agreement to challenge top-tier luxury brands with V-8 and rear-drive models however; these plans were dropped due to the economic downturn that started in the fall of 2008.
Mendel did not provide further details but he did confirm that there will be more than one model getting a hybrid variant. [via autonews - sub. required]