When Honda launched the Acura brand in 1986, two models powered the fleet: the Integra and the Legend. Since then many other models have been added to the Acura line up and the Integra was eventually renamed the RSX and the Legend was later given the RL designation. After two decades of service, the Integra/RSX is in its final year of production. Please read on for reasons why the Honda Motor Company will kill off this once popular seller.
Blowing Up Bridges — When Honda created Acura, the company wanted one “bridge model” to be included in the mix to help Honda owners transition to Acura. The thought back then was that the price differential between the two brands would be too much for many one-time Honda owners to swallow. Thus, the Integra was created and priced only slightly higher than the most expensive Honda model, but well below the prevailing price of the Legend. With this pricing plan in place, Honda believed accurately that Integra/RSX owners would eventually opt for a more upscale Acura. Today, however, Honda is now actively separating the two brands with individual research and development departments in play. Furthermore, Acura is being repositioned to better compete against Infiniti and Lexus, two Japanese luxury brands without a bridge model.
Invest Elsewhere — Related to the first point, the RSX was due for a change. The current model is old and the monies to bring about a new model would take away from the company’s bottom line. Acura has mentioned that a coupe version of its popular TL sedan is likely to be introduced to satisfy whatever consumer demand remains for a luxury coupe.
Changing Consumer Tastes — While a sports coupe has its advantages, the market for this type of car is limited and dwindling. Chevrolet gave up the Camaro, Pontiac the Firebird, while the Mitsubishi Eclipse and Ford Mustang manage to hold their own. None of these cars are on the luxury level of the Acura and consumer interest has been steadily dwindling over the past five years.
A New NSX? — Acura’s discontinued NSX, a two seat sports car, is rumored to be coming back. Although sales will likely be limited to less than 10,000 models annually the high priced NSX would be the “halo” model for the Acura fleet. USA Acura dealers want the car and it appears that the Honda Motor Company many oblige.
In its heyday the Integra was a popular seller and a frequently stolen car. Hard to find parts made the Integra a popular target of thieves; expect this problem to worsen as the RSX goes completely out of production. So, if you don’t have an alarm system installed on your Integra/RSX yet, do so today. The Integra/RSX you currently drive may be the last one you own; don’t let thieves make that determination for you!