Acura has made it clear it wants to be a top tier luxury brand but to do this it will need to change its lineup to suit the tastes of wealthy buyers, who are more likely to demand RWD cars with powerful engines.

The company’s CEO Takeo Fukui recently confirmed that a new V8 engine was in the works and that it could arrive within the next 18 months. However, an inside source at Acura has told Auto Observer that there is no V8 in the immediate product-development pipeline, and that the previous comments made by Fukui were very general and were more about the development of the engine rather than the actual launch.

According to the source, the new engine won’t be ready for the next-generation RL, due around 2010 or 2011, but will most likely appear in the generation after that, sometime around 2015. Acura has major plans for its future lineup, with a range of RWD models designed to target BMW’s 3, 5, and 7-Series.

While the current global economic climate has seen most manufacturers downsizing their engines and focusing on fuel efficiency, Acura is eager to build a top tier brand image. The bigger and more powerful V8 engine should give it the boost it needs in terms of marketability.

However, fuel efficiency has not been completely forgotten. Referring to the future V8, Fukui remarked that it will be "completely different from conventional, past-generation" engines and that it will "have excellent fuel efficiency".

Another senior Acura executive, vice president Koichi Kondo, also recently revealed that a V10 engine will appear in the NSX replacement due to arrive in 2010 and there’s a strong possibility the supercar will feature a V8 option as well.