Acura has confirmed that it has appointed Jon Ikeda as its new chief, just as the brand prepares for the launch of its crucial second-generation NSX supercar. Former chief Mike Accavitti, a Chrysler veteran who only joined Honda in 2011 in a marketing role before being promoted to the head of the upmarket Acura division in 2014, has left the company, the reasons for which are not clear at present.
Though Acura’s sales performance has waned in recent years, things were starting to turn around. Last year, Acura sales grew 1.5 percent to 167,843 units in the United States, and for the first six months of this year they were up 11.7 percent.
Accavitti wanted Acura to become a younger, hipper brand. Some specific measures executed under his watch included the development of the new NSX supercar primarily in the U.S., the expansion of Acura’s local motorsport program, and a new partnership formed with Galpin Auto Sports for a SEMA concept.
New chief Ikeda has a design background (he’s a graduate of the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California) and has been with Honda since 1989. He was previously in charge of design at Honda’s R&D Americas division.