The electric Acuras are coming. Acura's first full-electric model will arrive in 2024, a "performance-oriented" SUV called "ZDX," a name familiar to fans of questionable-looking, fastback SUVs of the 2010s. That's all well and good; every automaker must begin electrifying their lineup to meet government regulations. However, the ZDX accompanies potential fodder for the R&T set; it arrives in conjunction with a performance Type S variant (you should remember that almighty letter, used in current and classic versions of the Integra and NSX).
The ZDX itself will introduce new styling themes to Acura's road-going lineup, which Acura says will play a central role in the automaker's entire line of vehicles, while the ZDS (seen here in pre-production camouflage) aims to further sharpen this self-proclaimed performance SUV. Acura says many of the production ZDX/ZDX Type S's design cues were first dreamed up by the Acura Precision EV Concept that was unveiled for Monterey Car Week . We spot some of that influence, but the sharp angles of that concept do appear to be dulled somewhat for production.
What to make of a camouflaged variant of an electric SUV that promises to serve as Acura's new flagship? Well... uh... not too much just yet. The ZDX is being co-developed with GM, leveraging the latter company's global EV platform and powered by Ultium batteries . So we know it'll have good bones. The rest will be left for determination.
This news is confirmation, however, that the luxury electric SUV has become central to automakers' strategies moving forward (and indeed basically every automaker outside boutique sports car manufacturers the size of Caterham). Expect more of your favorite automakers to interpret "performance" as lifted, electrified, powerful conveyance.
I do find a particular, peculiar joy in driving large things that handle. Plus I love the current MDX, so I can't wait to see how the big electric Acura tackles a backroad. But we all pray that after this hi-po SUV, Acura will continue to apply that "S" badge to the compact, soulful cars that built the brand's image in the first place.