The Acura ZDX Is Coming Back as an Electric SUV With a Type S Variant
The ZDX name is coming back for Acura’s first EV, an SUV that will be built in partnership with General Motors.
The electric SUV that Acura's co-developing with General Motors will revive a name from the recent past that you may have forgotten: "ZDX." The Acura ZDX is scheduled to drop in 2024, with GM's Ultium battery platform underneath and styling elements from the Precision EV on top.
In a press release, Acura states: "The ZDX will be Acura’s first zero-emissions SUV and the name pays homage to a previous Acura model of the same name, which was the first vehicle styled from the ground up in the Acura Design Studio which opened in Los Angeles in 2007."
I left the automaker's bold-type on "Z" and "zero" there; that gives you some context as to why that name was chosen. As for the original car's design—we'll come back to that.
The letter you might find most interesting in the new car's name is S, because a Type S performance trim of the new electric vehicle has already been promised, which is huge. Seeing that Acura's committing to come out of the gate on electric cars with performance in mind is stoking my optimism as an enthusiast. I've been really impressed with the driving dynamics of many sport-oriented Acuras in my driving career and I'm excited to see the company's looking to maintain that identity as it moves into electric cars.
While a model year has not been specified, the official word from Acura is that the ZDX is "coming to market in 2024" and that it will "launch with a ZDX Type S variant." Based on that wording, I might expect to see these vehicles late in the calendar year of 2024, possibly as 2025 model-year cars.
The ZDX will be Acura's first production EV, but not it's last. The company plans to launch additional models starting in 2026 based on its own platform it's calling its global e:Architecture.
Acura's yet to release specifics on what we might expect for range or speed. There are no visual teasers yet, either, beyond stating that the ZDX will incorporate some styling elements of the new Precision EV concept. The automaker did release this logo graphic, however.
Now those of you who remember the original Acura ZDX might be thinking something like, "Oh, yeah, wasn't that the luxury Accord Crosstour?" Both those cars were out around the same time and did indeed share some aesthetic vibes, but they were not really mechanically related. In fact, if you look at both of them closely, they don't even look that similar. While the Crosstour had the soft curves of a sea creature, the ZDX looked more like a weapon from an early Marvel movie.
Back in 2009, Car and Driver interviewed the original ZDX lead exterior designer Damon Schell who described the car like this: "We’ve always thought of it as a four-door luxury sports coupe, very personal, very dynamic, with a lot of energy. Even though it’s on an SUV platform, we feel that can give a coupe a ton of capability and put us in a unique location where nobody else is."
Based on the look of the Precision EV concept and what Acura's been drawing up for motorsports, I think we're going to see a lot more long, curved creases in the new ZDX versus the old car's sharp edges. I just hope it ditches the concept's yoke for a regular steering wheel.
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