An angry salesman at a used Acura dealer

Orange County, CA – Asplunder Acura, a mainstay family of luxury dealerships familiar to anyone in Orange County, closed their collective doors today shocking locals while sending their respective car-buying aspirations into a tailspin. And while the reason behind the sudden closure is unknown, anonymous sources from within the now-defunct dealership seem to be pointing the finger at their own used Acura inventory.

Which reminds me of an old joke that goes something like this:“There are two reasons I don’t take my girlfriend on long drives in my Acura. First, I don’t have a girlfriend. Second, I don’t have an Acura.”

If you’ve never heard that joke before, don’t worry. It probably means that you live in Orange Country. How do we know that? Well, a recent study shows that Orange County is one of the few places where people actually drive Acuras. By choice. Yeah. As in ‘Hey I need a need a new car’, ‘ooh Acura?’, ‘I think I’ll buy one’, ‘Hey! I bought an Acura!’, ‘I’m really happy with my Acura!’. Do those sound more familiar, Orange County-ers? In fact, how many of you could admit to saying at least one of those things in the last 12-18 months?

That said, the rest of us can’t claim to share your familiarity with the offerings of this particular automaker? Ask yourself, do you drive an Acura? Do any of your close friends, family or co-workers? And in the slim chance that any of them do own an Acura, are they swaggering douche-bags? Inevitably, there will be a few ‘yes’ among the responses, but we expect it – after all, the study did show that 3% of total sales took place outside of Orange County. But if 97% of Acura’s national sales are credited to Orange County, how is it possible that a family of Acura dealerships would be forced to close their doors?

Simply put: over-saturation.

We spoke to Andras Asplunder, CEO of Asplunder Honda (the dealerships’ parent company) who offered a surprisingly candid response. “Acura experienced a 4.2% sales dip in 2017, and has been a steady decline since 2005. The writing’s on the wall. No-one in Orange County is interested in buying an Acura anymore, because everyone in Orange Country already owns one. Plus, no-one is interested in paying significantly more for little more than a shoddily rebadged Honda. We’re simply better off serving up great lease deals and competitive pricing on the Honda lineup. It’s like the ancient Japanese proverb, “Rotto kara hanarete idō suru yunitto ga nai baai wa, saikō no mājin demo mondai arimasen.” (Which, loosely translated, means, “even the best margin is shit if there aren’t any units moving off the lot.”

So, if you’re an Orange County resident looking to upgrade your Acura, plan on the need to drive a little bit further to find the closest dealership. Also, keep your doors locked as you drive (especially through shady neighborhoods) since your Acura’s worth far more as part of a pimped-out ghetto Camry or Land Cruiser.


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