2016 Honda HR-VEnlarge Photo
The 2016 Honda HR-V subcompact crossover hasn't quite made it to U.S. showrooms, but there is already speculation that it could spawn a related model.
Specifically, that Fit-based crossover could trade its "H" grille badge for an "A."
Honda leverages many of its vehicle platforms for luxury Acura models, so could it do the same with the HR-V?
A seeming indication of that plan is Honda's recent trademark of the name "CDX," reported by AutoGuide.
The trademark was filed February 11 with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, covering "automobiles and their structural parts."
Acura SUV-X concept, 2013 Shanghai Auto ShowEnlarge Photo
There has already been speculation that Honda is considering a subcompact Acura crossover.
One of the chief engineers for the HR-V--known as the Vezel in other markets--discussed that possibility early last year, even before the HR-V name and North American specifications were confirmed.
Honda and Acura routinely share vehicle platforms and powertrains. The Acura ILX is essentially an upmarket version of the Honda Civic, and the RDX shares its platform with the CR-V.
Acura previously showed a subcompact crossover concept called the SUV-X at the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show.
While geared towards the Chinese market, it could serve as a styling template for the HR-V-based CDX.
2016 Honda HR-V, debut at 2014 Los Angeles Auto ShowEnlarge Photo
Luxury carmakers are building more small sedans and crossovers these days, but it's unclear whether any would follow Acura into the subcompact realm.
While Acura can leverage an existing vehicle--and increase profits by selling it at a higher price--it may not be worthwhile for other carmakers to develop new platforms for this segment.
While the recent success of models like the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class shows U.S. luxury buyers are willing to downsize, they typically aren't as interested in two of the main benefits of a small vehicle--fuel economy and price.
Given that, it'll be interesting to see how small buyers are willing to go.