Much to the dismay of Acura, the ILX hasn't exactly been the success Honda's near-luxury brand expected it to be selling a little over 12,000 units in 2012, or less than half than the 30,000 originally targeted. That's something Acura freely admits.
"The ILX is not hitting our sales expectations," American Honda President John Mendel told reported at November’s Los Angeles Auto Show, according to Wards Auto. "Consumers have told us they like the 2.4L and they wish they had an automatic, but they say the midrange vehicle is underpowered and they don’t see the value in it."
Acura currently offers the Civic-based ILX with a choice of three powertrains, including a 150hp 2.0-liter gasoline engine linked to a 5sp automatic, an 111HP hybrid model with a 1.5-liter engine, and a range-topping 201hp 2.4-liter gasoline unit paired exclusively to a six-speed manual.
To increase sales, among other things, Acura plans to add an automatic transmission option for the most powerful engine of the range while also improving the ILX's equipment features.
"We’re doing some value enhancements on the car," says Mendel. “We’re planning some as we go forward. But I think, overall, we have a good plan for ILX. It is bringing in buyers to Acura we had wanted, as in first-time luxury (buyers) or move-ups.
"We had a little bit overestimated the size and the growth of that segment to begin with. But it’s probably getting two-thirds of our (volume) expectations. The nice part is that it’s increasing every month, catching on more. It’s accepted. It’s kind of a growing segment."Story References: Wards Auto