Acura intends to boost it sales volume with new regional advertising and marketing campaigns that begin this month.
Dick Colliver, American Honda Motor Co. Inc. executive vice president, who is in charge of Honda and Acura, told Acura dealers that the first regional ads produced by its national agency, Suissa-Miller of Los Angeles, will start at the end of this month. Colliver told dealers he wants to reposition Acura by creating a brand image of precision, craftsmanship, technology and performance.
He wants to fashion the new image before the introduction of a new Integra, a freshened RL and what Colliver calls a surprise vehicle. The new models will be introduced during the next two years.
Acura also will start target marketing this year. Colliver said 25 percent of NSX buyers are doctors. The division has compiled a list of 60,000 prospects that include doctors, owners of other exotic sports cars and people who have monthly car payments of $700 or more. They will be the targets of a direct-mail campaign for the NSX.
Colliver predicted Acura sales will increase to 120,000 this year, up from 110,392 last year.
There was not much for Acura dealers to dislike about the make meeting. One of them, Clark Richardson, chairman of Acura's national dealer council and owner of Goodson Acura in Irving, Texas, said 1998 was his store's most profitable year.
Colliver said a decision will be made this year about whether to discontinue the SLX sport-utility. While sales of luxury sport-utilities are skyrocketing, only 1,634 SLX models were sold last year.