Rebound slower than expected at Acura

Acura is continuing to lose ground as its car and truck sales plunged steeply in August compared with year-ago numbers. The luxury marque moved only 9,054 vehicles out of U.S. showrooms last month. It was a drop of 24.5%.

The sales cut leaves Acura nonplussed. An executive for the Japanese company said Acura isn't worried, that the low numbers simply reflect the company's careful ramp-up of production in the wake of the tsunami and quakes that devastated Japan in 2011.

"August marked a return to normal production levels for most of our models," said Jeff Conrad, vice president of Acura sales.

"We remain optimistic for a resilient year as Acura dealerships rebuild their inventory to meet our customers' needs."

But as August began, Acura was predicting a robust turnabout. It didn't happen. But the situation is not hopeless. Year-to-date U.S. sales at Acura total 79,136 cars and trucks, a one-year reduction so far of 8.1%, a palatable number considering the challenges the company has faced. The only thing Acura can be criticized for is its exuberance in rushing its recovery from Mother Nature's wrath.

Acura's best U.S. seller in August (again) was the MDX, with 3,126 trucks sold. Even as the sales leader the MDX's sales fell 31.5%. The top-selling cars were the TL (pictured, 2,404 units) and TSX (2,263). Sales of the two cars were both down by double-digit percentages.

Results reported by Acura this week are based on a daily selling rate. The daily selling rate, or DSR, is calculated with 26 selling days for August 2011 and 25 days for August 2010. Year-to-date, the DSR is calculated with 204 days for 2011 and 203 days for 2010. All percentages reflect DSR.

You can reach TN's Hawke Fracassa at [email protected] Follow Hawke on Twitter @HawkeFracassa.

Image source: Acura

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