The restructuring of Honda’s new model programme that led to the death of the new Honda NSX is much more extensive than previously thought. Honda is completely dismantling its plans for the next two years as it attempts to deal with the rapid collapse in new car sales across the world.
Among the casualties of Honda’s rethink are a range of rear-wheel-drive cars to be sold under the Acura brand, a proposed V8 engine, a successor to the Honda S2000 and a convertible based on the forthcoming Honda CR-Z coupé.
Acura, Honda’s US-market luxury rival for Infiniti and Lexus, has been hit hardest by the changes. Not only has it lost the NSX successor — due to be branded as an Acura but killed off last month — but the programme to develop new rear-drive cars aimed specifically at the BMW 3, 5 and 7-series has also been canned.
The basic planning on the cars had been carried out, and the first model to enter production was to be a BMW 7-series rival, due in 2015. It was meant to provide Honda with a credible alternative to established premium rear-drive brands. The future of the next Honda Legend is also in doubt.