The Acura Precision Concept debuts at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. As the name suggests, it is not a real car, rather it is an engineering and designing exercise for the geniuses at Acura. Its designers include Michelle Christensen, principal exterior designer, and John Norman, principal interior designer of the Precision concept. Both of them have also worked on the NSX, the car everyone has been waiting for.
In the past, Acuras were not preferred, and in fact they were treated as a joke due to their design language. Well, the Precision looks nothing like those Acuras. It’s a design-study model, that Acura says “will literally shape the direction of all future Acura products”. It is a brilliantly hand-made four-door sedan that was developed at the maker’s California design studio. The Precision Concept is 84 inches wide, almost eight inches wider than the NSX and, more critically, almost 10 inches wider than the RLX, the current top dog of Acura production sedans. It also features deeply sculpted side surfaces, a low stance, and almost rear-wheel-drive dash-to-axle proportions, although no powertrain details have been revealed so far.
With the concept’s quoted length of 204 inches and a wheelbase of 122 inches, it’s clear that the designers wanted to make the wheels to be able to tackle corners. And considering its breadth, the final product is really wide and can cover a lot of road. Height measures 52 inches, four more than the NSX but roughly 5.5 inches fewer than the RLX. The absence of a pronounced B-pillar makes it quite similar to the Audi A7, Mercedes-Benz CLS, and BMW 6-series Gran Coupe. But the pointy trailing edge of the taillights and the fastback-like backlight ensures a bit more surface drama on the rear. Out in the front, the Precision concept also debuts the brand’s aggressive Diamond Pentagon grille. The headlamps get a “Jewel Constellation” LED fascia.
On the interior, there’s a double-layer instrument panel on the dash which has an ultra-wide and curved center screen, which is operated by a floating touchpad on the angular center stack. Other interior features include contrasting front seat surfaces, thin rear seats that appear to be floating, and some amazingly detailed touches like the hand-crafted, wood speaker grilles.
In front of the driver, there’s a sport steering wheel with paddle shifters, controls for the integrated dynamics system to adjust vehicle performance characteristics, and a head-up display. Acura’s digital Human-Machine Interface (HMI) is said to be capable of recognizing each occupant when they enter the car; and it can also load personalized features and functions, including maps, audio preferences, and vehicle performance settings.
We really love this concept, but would reserve our judgment on the actual production car for now. We hope to see some ground breaking chassis and powertrain designs coming along to put this concept into production. Meanwhile, the aggressive and sharp styling is a good way to wake people up and take a second look at Honda’s Acura brand that has been irrelevant and neglected for a while. With the NSX, it is setting its priorities right and with Precision it could be a game changer for Acura and probably a head-ache for other Auto manufacturers.