Car, Truck of the Year Finalists Revealed

2014 Acura MDX

2014 Acura MDX is a finalist for North American Truck of the Year.


The voting is in and all that remains to kick off the new year for some automakers is being named as either the 2014 North American Car or Truck of the Year at the Detroit Auto Show.

2014 Chevrolet Silverado

2014 Chevrolet Silverado

Culled from the dozen car and truck finalists were the Corvette Stingray, Cadillac CTS and Mazda3 while GM’s Chevy Silverado nailed down a spot in the truck segment next to the Jeep Cherokee and Acura MDX.

Some 48 journos from two countries — OK, the US and Canada, eh? — began with a list of 28 cars and 18 truck/SUVs that were trimmed to a dozen of each shown below:

North American Car of the Year:
BMW 4 Series
Cadillac CTS
Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
Chevrolet Impala
Infiniti Q50
Jaguar F-Type
Kia Cadenza
Lexus IS
Mercedes-Benz CLA
Toyota Corolla

North American Truck/Utility of the Year:
Acura MDX
Buick Encore
Chevrolet Silverado
GMC Sierra
Hyundai Santa Fe LWB
Jeep Cherokee
Kia Sorento
Land Rover Range Rover Sport
Nissan Rogue
Subaru Forester
Toyota Tundra

Journos make their decisions based upon the following criteria includingThe awards recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year based on factors including innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.
To be eligible, vehicles must be “all new” or “substantially changed.”

What’s my selection?

2014 Corvette Stingray

2014 Corvette Stingray

Well, some of the vehicles that I’ve driven such as the Range Rover Sport is substantially

2014 Mazda3

2014 Mazda3

changed and in many ways it mirrors the past and the future in one neat vehicle. So, too, are the Subaru Forester, Jeep Cherokee, a long-wheel-based Santa Fe, Mazda3, Caddy CTS and more. The Chevy Impala is a real dark-horse car that handles and feels like a European sedan more than twice the price. It’s that good, folks. Best Impala ever made.

In the Truck category I select the Jeep Cherokee.

2014 Jeep Cherokee

2014 Jeep Cherokee

I just drove one and it’s phenomenal.  Folks may be polarized by the styling but the ride, drive and handling, not to mention mileage keep it true with street and off-road cred to its bigger brother, the Grand Cherokee.

2014 Corvette Stingray

2014 Corvette Stingray

In the Car category, given the kudos give to the Corvette all around from the start I figured it would/could win this title. It’d be no surprise. I look forward to sliding behind the wheel some sunny day.

The Mazda3 is also remade and rewarding. It’s roomy, refined and not what you might have expected while offering a standard transmission if so ordered.

2014 Cadillac CTS

2014 Cadillac CTS

Cadillac, and I’ve got friends who agree, is nothing to sneeze at mechanically, but I think the brand has lost its way. The brand’s name used to be synonymous with being the best of the best. And the new Caddys are much better than before, but they don’t look like a Cadillac but any homogenized sedan with a sloping hood and stubby rear. It’s short, it’s not recognizable as a Caddy while a 2005 STS with its Northstar engine underneath jumps out as if saying, “I am a real Cadillac.”

Soap box sidebar aside, I can’t see the Corvette – arguably one of America’s top motoring icons – NOT taking the top title. Stay tuned until next year.

Light truck sales drive Honda, Acura increases

  • Record June sales of American Honda light trucks; best sales since 2007
  • Record June sales of Honda light trucks, CR-V and Pilot
  • Record June sales of Acura RDX

TORRANCE, Calif., July 2, 2013 – American Honda Motor Co., Inc. today reported June 2013 U.S. sales of 136,915 units, a total increase of 9.7 percent compared with June 2012 (up 13.9 percent based on the Daily Selling Rate, or DSR*). The Honda division posted June 2013 sales of 123,150 units, an increase of 12.5 percent compared with June 2012.  Acura division U.S. June sales of 13,765 units decreased 10.4 percent compared with June 2012.


  • Honda light trucks posted record June sales on the strength of CR-VPilot and Odyssey
  • CR-V set a June record with sales of 26,572, an increase of 14.1 percent compared to June 2012
  • Pilot posted its best June since 2005 with record sales of 12,085 and up 21.3 percent from June 2012
  • Odyssey sales topped 14,000, up 26.0 percent for the month with the refreshed 2014 model hitting dealerships today
  • The Accord continues its strong pace, topping the 30,000-unit mark for the fourth consecutive month and up 20.4 percent for the year
  • The Civic posted sales of 29,724, up 8.1 percent compared to last June

“Honda was firing on all cylinders in June with the hot-selling Accord joined by the Fit, CR-V, Odyssey and Pilot all posting their best sales of the year,” said John Mendel, executive vice president of sales at American Honda. “Our goal for 2013 is to be the leader in retail sales for all four of our highest volume models: Accord, Civic, CR-V and Odyssey. These solid results further showcase Honda’s pure, market-driven momentum achieved by customers choosing Honda vehicles one at a time rather than relying on fleet sales to drive volume.”


  • The RDX marked its 14th consecutive month of record sales with 4,023 units sold, remaining the top selling Acura for the month
  • The MDX recorded June sales of 3,828 as supply of the all-new model increased following the June 20th launch

“Record sales of the RDX underscore Acura’s leadership in the fast growing entry luxury SUV segment,” said Jeff Conrad, vice president and general manager of Acura sales. “With the all-new MDX now on-sale and just starting to hit dealer lots, we look to continue this sales momentum well into the summer.”

*The daily selling rate (DSR) is calculated with 26 days for June 2013 and 27 days for June 2012. Year-to-date, the DSR is calculated with 153 days for 2013 and 154 days for 2012. All other percentages in release are unadjusted; see table for adjusted DSR figures.

Acura debuts campaign for new MDX: Made for Mankind

The 2014 Acura MDX Made For Mankind campaign.

The 2014 Acura MDX Made For Mankind campaign.


Apparently needing to underscore the importance of its vehicle being used for daily use, Acura has rolled out a three-part media campaign called “The Extremely New MDX – Made for Mankind” to highlight the all-new 2014 MDX SUV.

The series will show how the luxo suv connects to the driver, the road and wherever they might be going – ahem, in style – in the national ad rollout

There are three distinct video concepts as part of the campaign.

  1. Human Race” is the anthem spot evoking Acura’s dedication to creating vehicles performing in harmony with the driver.
  2. Re-Invention” depicts how the MDX has been re-thought and improved to the point that the only remaining component of the previous generation model is a small metal bracket.
  3. Choose,” focuses on the MDX’s all-new Integrated Dynamic System (IDS) with three driving modes: Sport, Normal and Comfort to suit the tastes of the driver.

“The all-new 2014 MDX is the benchmark for luxury SUVs. We’ve advanced the current MDX’s already great dynamic performance, while improving fuel efficiency and luxury comfort and styling,” said Mike Accavitti, senior vice president of automobile operations at Acura. “The new MDX campaign captures Acura’s unique perspective on luxury defined by the quality of the driving experience, where the vehicle performs at the will of the driver.”

Acura partnered with its new creative agency-of-record Mullen (Boston and LA) and with MediaVest, the new media agency-of-record for the brand, in the development of the new campaign. This is the first campaign from Mullen and MediaVest since the agencies were hired in March of this year.

“The most emotionally resonant big ideas are born from an absolute truth about a brand, and Acura’s own designers and engineers will tell you, everything they consider and eventually create starts with the human beings behind the wheel,” said Gary Robinson, manager, national advertising and brand at Acura. “Luxury as the result of synergy between man and machine. That harmony was our guide – and all of our work will seek to tell that story in ways that consistently elevate the brand’s prestige.”

The 2014 MDX went on sale at Acura dealerships nationwide on June 20, 2013. Built on a completely new platform, the seven-passenger 2014 Acura MDX offers outstanding ride comfort, a more versatile and luxurious cabin, increased fuel efficiency, advanced connectivity and exceptional dynamic performance. The MDX is also being offered for the first time in a more affordable and even more fuel-efficient two-wheel-drive configuration.

The “Human Race” TV spot can be seen by clicking here.

Acura offers a full line of technologically advanced performance luxury vehicles through a network of 272 dealers within the United States. The Acura lineup features six distinctive models including the all-new MDX luxury sport utility vehicle and RLXluxury flagship sedan, the TL performance luxury sedan, the TSX sedan and Sport Wagon, the ILX compact luxury sedan, and the RDX luxury crossover SUV.

How to

  • Connect with Acura:

2014 Acura MDX priced at $42,990 or $990 less than 2013

2014 Acura MDX

2014 Acura MDX

MDX flagship SUV now available with Two-Wheel Drive, direct-injected powertrain, Jewel Eye™ LED headlights, versatile interior,  AcuraLink™ Next Generation services

Acura’s flagship SUV, the all-new third-gen MDX with room for 7, goes on sale with an MSRP of $42,990 or $990 less than the 2013 model it replaces. The delivery charge adds another $895 to the tab before options and other fees.

New for 2014 will be a two-wheel-drive MDX – which begets the smaller price tag of $42,990.

MDX will be sold in one of what Acura calls grades, each available with front-wheel drive or Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD).

Engine power comes from an all-new direct-injected, 290 hp, 3.5-liter i-VTEC V-6 rated with 267 lb.-ft. of peak torque (both SAE net).

Another first includes the MDX with standard Variable Cylinder Management (VCM), switching  between 3- and 6-cylinder modes, depending on engine load and driving conditions for better fuel efficiency.

The new mill replaces the a 3.7-liter engine, offering an 8-percent increase in torque at engine speeds below 2,750 rpm for greater overall responsiveness.

It’s quieter, has a tad longer wheelbase, improved ride and drive, and the usual refinements one can expect and appreciate in a top-notch SUV luxuoliner.

The full presser, stats, options and pricing can be found below. Read on.

TORRANCE, California.

The all-new 2014 MDX, the third generation of Acura’s acclaimed 7-passenger luxury performance SUV, goes on sale at Acura dealerships nationwide tomorrow, offering comfort, connectivity and performance every luxury customer wants at a price that no other luxury brand can match. Available for the first time in a new two-wheel drive model, pricing for the 2014 MDX begins with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $42,290*, a substantial $990 reduction in starting price versus the outgoing 2013 model.

The 2014 MDX adds a bevy of new standard features – including Smart Entry with Push Button Start, Jewel Eye™ LED headlights, exterior and interior LED lighting, Extended Slide second-row seating with One-Touch Walk-In for third-row access, an 8-inch On-Demand Multi-Information Display touchscreen, Expanded View Driver’s Mirror, a powerful 432-watt Acura sound system, and an acoustic glass front windows and windshield.

The range-topping MDX with Advance Package boasts a wide range of new technologies and features, including Lane Keeping Assist System, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow, remote engine start with an extended range of at least 300 feet, a new Ultra-Wide DVD Rear Entertainment System with HDMI connectivity, and front and rear parking sensors.

Optional Acura Genuine Accessories for the 2014 MDX includes standalone features such as a heated steering wheel, LED fog lights and a Trailer Hitch ATF Cooler Kit (allowing for up to 5,000 lbs. of towing).

The all-new 2014 MDX offers even higher levels of luxury comfort and quietness, together with exhilarating dynamic performance, class-leading fuel economy ratings, and advanced safety features, and an even more luxurious, technology-packed and versatile passenger cabin.

Developed on an all-new platform that is optimized in every respect for the needs of today’s luxury SUV buyers, the 2014 Acura MDX is powered by a new 290-horsepower direct-injected i-VTEC V-6 powertrain with fuel-saving Variable Cylinder Management technology. The new MDX, similar to its flagship sedan counterpart, the 2014 RLX, harnesses a host of Acura signature technologies including AcuraLink® Next Generation services and Agile Handling Assist to deliver on Acura’s “Synergy between Man and Machine” product direction, and the idea of creating vehicles that truly respond to the will of the driver.

The 2014 MDX is the third generation of Acura’s top-of-the-line SUV to be designed, developed and engineered in North America. Production of the new MDX and its powertrain will take place at the company’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Lincoln, Alabama.1

In designing the new MDX, Acura engineers built on the foundation of its excellent dynamic performance with a focus on three core values: class-leading fuel efficiency, new levels of luxury comfort, and top-level safety performance. At the same time, they sought to further enhance dynamic performance while maintaining the MDX’s core appeal – the family-friendly, 7-passenger cabin in a nimble exterior size and appearance.

New from the ground up, the 2014 MDX has a 2.8-inch longer wheelbase, and is lower and narrower for reduced frontal area and enhanced fuel efficiency. With high-strength steel, aluminum and magnesium comprising 64-percent of its body structure, the 2014 MDX is 275 pounds lighter than the previous model with the lightest published weight in its segment, which directly contributes to improved acceleration, nimble handling, and class-leading fuel economy ratings. A redesigned MacPherson strut front suspension and new multilink rear suspension, along with new Electric Power Steering (EPS) give the MDX even greater agility and confidence-inspiring dynamic performance. The standard Integrated Dynamics System (IDS) lets drivers select their preferred driving mode (Comfort, Normal or Sport) to suit their mood and the driving conditions. Standard on the MDX, a signature Acura technology called Agile Handling Assist selectively uses the vehicle’s brakes to improve corner traceability and impart confident handling feel.

Power comes from an all-new direct-injected 3.5-liter i-VTEC V-6 rated at 290 peak horsepower and 267 lb.-ft. of peak torque (both SAE net). Closely related to the powerplant in the new 2014 Acura RLX luxury sedan, this 24-valve V-6 engine is Acura’s second Earth Dreams™ Technology engine, which features a next-generation set of advancements that greatly enhance both driving performance and fuel efficiency. For the first time, the MDX has standard Variable Cylinder Management (VCM), which switches seamlessly between 3- and 6-cylinder modes, depending on engine load, effectively varying engine displacement to match driving conditions for improved fuel efficiency.

Compared to the 3.7-liter engine it replaces, the 3.5-liter V-6 in the 2014 MDX offers an 8-percent increase in torque at engine speeds below 2,750 rpm for greater overall responsiveness. Due to improved operating efficiency, horsepower output per liter is up two percent and torque output per liter is up 4.4 percent compared to the previous model’s engine. Together with the 2014 MDX’s substantial reduction in curb weight, overall performance is enhanced, including quicker 0-60 mph times and 8-second quicker lap times on Germany’s Nürburgring Nordschliefe (North Loop), where both the new and outgoing model were extensively tuned and tested.

The efficient new engine is paired with a standard 6-speed automatic transmission with Sequential Sport Shift, and available Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD). For the first time ever, the MDX is available with front-wheel drive, which saves weight and enhances fuel economy ratings. This new 2-wheel-drive MDX is EPA rated at 20/28/23 mpg2 (city/highway/combined), a 28-percent increase in the EPA combined rating versus the previous SH-AWD model (the only drivetrain configuration previously available). The 2014 MDX with SH-AWD has a remarkable 17-percent increase in its EPA combined fuel economy rating versus the previous model, reaching class-leading ratings of 18/27/21 mpg2 (city/highway/combined).

Perfect for kids or clients, the MDX interior is a luxurious and accommodating passenger compartment with roomy seating and a second-row seat with reclining seatbacks and a new Extended Slide feature that offers a total of 6-inches of fore-and-aft travel. Additionally, a new kid-friendly One-Touch Walk-In feature greatly improves access to the third row of seating, and a wider, lower step-in enhances convenience and usability. Cabin quietness and overall refinement have been dramatically improved, with hundreds of measures aimed at reducing noise, vibration and harshness, including thicker, 3-layer acoustic glass for the windshield and front side windows, thicker rear door glass, new triple side-sill door seals and Active Noise Control technology.

Repackaging of the rear-seat climate control system allows for a large center console storage space, concealed beneath the sliding, leather-trimmed center armrest. About 2 inches deeper and wider, and almost 5 inches longer, the main compartment offers 2.5 times more volume than the previous model and is large enough to accommodate a moderately sized purse, tablet computers and more. This is a key MDX advantage in the class, where many competing models offer little center-console storage.

Acura customers have high expectations for state-of-the-art connectivity and entertainment. Enhanced connectivity in the 2014 MDX is made possible by the next-generation AcuraLink™ system, which offers thousands of media channels via Aha® mobile, all delivered via the owner’s internet-linked smartphone and data plan. There is also a host of new available assistive and convenience features, including collision notification, remote unlocking, stolen-vehicle tracking and surface-street traffic information, all delivered via built-in cellular technology (subscription fees are applicable).

The new MDX will also thrill audiophiles with its available music entertainment features. Four audio systems are available, starting out with the standard 8-speaker, 432-watt (up from 253 watts) Acura Sound System, and topping out with the Advance Package, which features an Acura/ELS® Studio 12-Speaker Audio System with new ceiling-mounted speakers, a 546-watt amplifier and 5.1-channel surround sound.

The available Technology and Entertainment package adds a DVD Rear Entertainment System with a ceiling-mounted 9-inch full VGA screen, while the MDX with Advance Package features a Rear Entertainment System with an all-new ultra-wide 16.2-inch full WVGA screen – the largest and highest resolution screen ever offered in an Acura vehicle. The system also includes a High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) port to allow the attachment of high definition players and compatible gaming consoles, along with standard composite video and audio inputs. A 115-volt power outlet is rated for devices up to 150 watts.

Both the AcuraLink™ and Acura/ELS Studio® systems take advantage of a 2014 MDX’s new 7-inch color On Demand Multi-Use Display™ (ODMD™) touchscreen with haptic feedback. The addition of the ODMD, along with other interior changes, allowed engineers to reduce the number of hard buttons in the center stack from 41 in the previous generation MDX to just nine in the all-new 2014 model.

The MDX with Technology Package and above grades feature the latest generation Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™ (now available in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Canada and Mexico). The MDX navigation system features an 8-inch high-resolution WVGA backlit color display and now also includes surface street traffic data, allowing the driver to choose faster, less-congested routes. The system offers a new level of convenience with AcuraLink, allowing users to send destination information to the MDX via the AcuraLink Connect phone app (with the available Connect Package).

Utilizing Acura’s next-generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, along with seven airbags, including a new driver’s knee airbag, the MDX is anticipated to earn the highest possible safety ratings – a 5-Star NCAP Overall Vehicle Score from the federal government and a “TOP SAFETY PICK+” rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), including a GOOD rating in the IIHS’ new rigorous small overlap frontal collision test.

Available safety systems include available Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW), and an available Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS).

The new MDX offers an impressive array of advanced driver-assistive, and information and media technologies. These include the standard next-generation AcuraLink™ connected car system with collision notification (Connect package required), a standard Multi-Angle Rearview Camera and Expanded View Driver’s side mirror, along with available Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low-Speed Follow and Blind Spot Information (BSI) system.

There are four MDX grades, each available with front-wheel drive or Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD).

  • The well-equipped MDX has standard leather trimmed first- and second-row seats with heating on the front row, Smart Entry with Push Button Start (front doors and rear hatch access), a 432-watt audio system with 8-speakers, 18-inch alloy wheels, Jewel Eye™ LED headlights, and more.
  • The MDX with Technology Package adds 19-inch alloy wheels, Smart Entry for all four doors, the Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™, a 501-watt Acura/ELS® Studio audio system with 10-speakers, Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Blind Spot Information (BSI) System and more.
  • The MDX with Technology and Rear Entertainment Package adds a 529-watt Acura/ELS® Studio audio system with 11-speakers and HD Radio™, a DVD rear entertainment system with 9-inch display, rear-passenger window sunshades, and other features.
  • The top-of-the-line MDX with Advance Package includes unique 7-spoke 19-inch alloy wheels, a 605-watt Acura/ELS® Studio audio system with 12-speakers, the Acura DVD Ultra-Wide Rear Entertainment System with 16.2-inch display, perforated Milano leather first- and second-row seating and ventilated front seats, front and rear parking sensors and remote engine start, along with Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS), Collision Mitigation Brake System, Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low-Speed Follow, and additional luxury features.
MDX $42,290 20/28/23
MDX with Technology Package $46,565 20/28/23
MDX with Technology and Entertainment Package $48,565 20/28/23
MDX with Advance Package $54,505 20/28/23
MDX with SH-AWD $44,290 18/27/21
MDX with SH-AWD and Technology Package $48,565 18/27/21
MDX with SH-AWD and Technology and Entertainment Package $50,565 18/27/21
MDX with SH-AWD and Advance Package $56,505 18/27/21

About Acura
Acura offers a full line of technologically advanced performance luxury vehicles through a network of 272 dealers within the United States. The Acura lineup features six distinctive models including the all-new MDX luxury sport utility vehicle and RLX luxury flagship sedan, the TL performance luxury sedan, the TSX sedan and Sport Wagon, theILX compact luxury sedan, and the RDX luxury crossover SUV.

Connect with Acura: 
Consumer Information:

1 The MDX is built using domestically and globally sourced parts.

2 Based on 2014 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your actual mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle.

*MSRP excludes tax, license, registration, vehicle options and destination charge of $895.00. Dealer prices may vary.


Acura sponsors ‘Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee’ with Seinfeld

Jerry Seinfeld with the NSX Concept in Acura's First Super Bowl Commercial.

Jerry Seinfeld with the NSX Concept in Acura’s First Super Bowl Commercial.


OK, we know that Seinfeld’s show was actually about nothing, but life in the world as it happened to a bunch of hapless friends in the Big Apple. We watched, we laughed, we had our own Festivus festivals and more.

Saab convertible sales got a boost as did many other things. So having Seinfeld do nothing actually does something to a brand, or brands in a show with someone who’s about marketing, brand recognition and publicity.

Thus, Acura, just signed as the sole sponsor of “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” the popular award-winning web series created by and starring Jerry Seinfeld, returning this summer to Crackle and  Acura will sponsor 24 new episodes to be released in 2013 and 2014.

Seinfeld, who previously worked with Acura and starred in the luxury automaker’s much-heralded 2012 Super Bowl commercial, will incorporate several unique product integrations, including the much-anticipated, all-new Acura MDX.

Instead of a show about nothing, it’s about driving, the fun of driving, having coffee and the subsequent costs of said java beans and what they’re driving by en route to a java joint. It’s great fun and entertainment, especially if you were one of the denizens who loved Seinfeld’s old show on network TV.

“We at ‘Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee’ are so glad a company we already admire has stepped forward to support us,” said Jerry Seinfeld. “Not everyone understood what we were doing. But like Moe Green who invented Las Vegas, Acura is a company of vision and guts. We could not be more thrilled to have them as our sponsor. Because of them, we advance!”

Sponsorship of the series was a natural fit for Acura, as the brand is inspired by those who are not afraid to defy convention. “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” achieves just that, boldly breaking away from traditional expectations, and Seinfeld is pushing the standards of entertainment. While the mediums are different, the end goals are the same – to be inspired by the taste-makers who are propelling the future forward.

“We love Jerry’s unconventional, fan-first approach of creating great content and trusting that the right people will find it,” said Mike Accavitti, Acura Senior Vice President of Auto Operations. “It is totally consistent with Acura’s organic approach of putting the customer first and building the vehicle around them.”

In terms of execution, Acura and Seinfeld are aligned on a unique approach, building content around the consumer – not the other way around. As the only sponsor the upcoming 24 episodes, Acura will integrate short, contextually relevant ads at the beginning and end of each episode.

Said Eric Berger, Executive Vice President of Digital Networks for Sony Pictures Television and General Manager of Crackle. “It’s a great fit to have Acura on board and through our exclusive partnership, we will be working closely to engage millions of fans around the fun, simple pleasures of driving.”

The breakout hit returns this summer, featuring Seinfeld’s conversations with comedy greats like David Letterman, Sarah Silverman, Chris Rock and Don Rickles.

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