The Acura Precision Concept Shows Acura Hasn’t Given Up on Design
We’ve got a pulse!
Outside of the NSX, which exists on a supercar island of its own, it's been years since Acura has shown us anything interesting in the way of design. From the dowdy RLX on down, Acura has been a brand sorely in need of a design defibrillation, which is why the new Precision Concept debuting at the Detroit auto show is such a big deal.
Sharp, but hardly revolutionary
The first thing you'll notice about the Acura Precision Concept is its striking shape. Taking a page from the now well-worn four-door coupe book, the new concept's wide, low stance and long dash-to-axle ratio give it a strong sense of presence. Swept-back A-pillars flow smoothly over a narrow greenhouse with invisible B-pillars, before joining with the rear haunches and terminating with a short decklid. Chunky five-spoke, 22-inch wheels and aggressive, no-nonsense Michelin Pilot Super Sport summer tires complete the package.
Big, sculpted lines shear through the long, 122-inch wheelbase in profile, while short overhangs help emphasize its length. A strong character line starting from the bowed-out rear fenders stretches prominently toward the front wheel before ending just shy of the front door, while deeply carved rocker sills echo the same line below.
Up front, Acura proudly shows off its new "Diamond Pentagon" grille, a folded Superman-logo-looking face that we can expect to see a lot of moving forward. Large incised air inlets frame the new nose, transitioning into slim headlights iced out with so-called Jewel Constellation LED headlights.
Many of these exterior lines are cleverly reflected inside, in some cases tracing the shape of the car's underlying structure. We saw some similarly conceived design tricks on the Acura NSX (pictured below), where the exposed chassis structure up front is integrated seamlessly into the center console layout. This tells us Acura is thinking seriously about making its new interiors as clean and honest as in the NSX.
Signs of Life
Acura knows that its looks as of late haven't been exactly riveting. But the new Precision Concept shows that the brand still cares about design enough to show up at one of the world's biggest automotive stages with a pure styling exercise.
"The Acura Precision Concept is more than simply a concept vehicle, it is a design study model that literally will shape the direction of all future Acura products around our Precision Crafted Performance DNA," said global creative director Dave Marek, in a statement.
"The Acura Precision Concept is the leading edge of a renewed commitment to delivering Precision Crafted Performance in every facet of the product experience and creating a powerful and very exciting direction for the next generation of Acura models."
We know from the get-go that the Precision doesn't preview any specific new car. In fact, we'd be surprised if Acura even possessed the gall to build another large four-door luxury sedan to follow up that homely bellyflop it calls the RLX. What the concept tells us is that Acura is finally getting serious about catching up to the rest of the industry on a design front, where competitors like Infiniti and Lexus taken adventurous risks, for better or worse.
Whether or not you like this flashy and angular direction Acura might be headed, the Precision Concept shows that there are, at the very least, less boring days ahead. We consider that a win.