Launched in 1986, the Acura Legend combined the sporty design of a coupe with the roominess of a sedan. The Legend was the first car in Honda's line to feature luxury instead of just its trademark high performance and tight engineering. There were two generations of the Legend, the second of which was launched in 1991. Each generation was equipped with a V6 engine, which provided the Legend with ample power. The car helped Honda gain a foothold in the larger consumer market.
The first generation Acura Legend was designed and assembled in Japan at the Saitama Honda plant. The car receives 18 miles per gallon in the city and 26 miles per gallon on the highway. The first generation had a 2.5 to 2.7 liter engine and could reach speeds of 60 miles an hour from a standing stop in only 8 seconds. The second generation expanded to a 3.2 liter engine and increased its horsepower to 200 from the first generation's 151. The sedan and coupe models were capable of seating four to five people with two individuals in the front and up to three people in the back.
When the Legend was introduced, several other UK and North American car companies immediately began working on developing competitive models. The decision to launch a new generation of the Legend in 1991 led to a more powerful and luxurious vehicle, but the choice to phase out the Legend in 1996 in favor of its replacement, the Acura RL, was not a popular one. While the RL had more luxury features, it lacked the sporty nature and flawless performance of its predecessor.
The first generation model came with an automatically operated moonroof, which was considered luxurious at that time. The audio system was top-notch, with a four-speaker Technics system and cassette tape player. The second generation model added more bumpers and styling to the exterior, giving the car a slightly fuller, well-rounded look. The interior gained increasing levels of trim featuring walnut and, in the top models, heated leather seats. Eventually, CD players were integrated into the Legend. The second generation models from around 1991-1993 tend to be the most consistently popular; those with low mileage have an exceptionally high resale value.
Motor Trend awarded the first generation Legend Coupe its Import Car of the Year award in 1987, while the car placed on Car and Driver's Ten Best list for three consecutive years starting in 1988. The car's exceptional engineering and meticulous luxury has given it a life beyond its initial production run. It is commonly referenced in popular media with the same fondness accorded to so-called classic' cars, such as a 1966 Ford Mustang. It is, in many senses, a new' classic car
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