Honda to unveil new Fit, Acura TLX prototype at Detroit auto show

The Fit logo is seen on the body of a Honda Motor's Fit subcompact hybrid car at the company's headquarters in Tokyo

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The Fit logo is seen on the body of a Honda Motor's Fit subcompact hybrid car at the company's headquarters in Tokyo October 30, 2013. Honda Motor Co's second-quarter net profit rose 46 percent, slightly less than expected, after strong car sales in its biggest market, the United States, and motorbike sales in India and Thailand. In July, Honda started to operate its new Yorii plant near Tokyo, where it is set in November to start manufacturing the redesigned Fit subcompact, which went on sale in Japan in September. Car sales in September in Japan jumped 40 percent from a year earlier to 74,779 vehicles. REUTERS/Issei Kato (JAPAN - Tags: TRANSPORT BUSINESS)

DETROIT (Reuters) - Honda Motor Co will introduce a new version of its subcompact Fit and the automaker's luxury brand Acura will show its TLX midsize sedan as a prototype at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit next month.

The Fit's sales have been pressured in recent years in North America because capacity constraints, said Mike Accavitti, vice president of American Honda at a press event in Detroit this week.

That situation will be remedied when the 2015 Fit, the third generation of the subcompact, begins production at Honda's new plant in Celaya, Mexico, said Accavitti.

The new Fit will be introduced to U.S. showrooms in the spring.

Fit's U.S. sales through November were up 7 percent at 49,000. The Fit is a four-door subcompact car with a hatchback.

While the Acura TLX sedan is listed as a prototype for the Detroit show, what is shown will be close to the vehicle that will debut in U.S. dealer showrooms in mid-2014, said Chuck Schifsky, Acura spokesman.

Acura is streamlining its sedan offerings from four to three, as the TLX will replace the TSX and the TL, said Accavitti.

Once the Fit and the TLX are on sale in 2014, both the Honda and Acura brands will have three sedans. Honda will have the Fit, the compact Civic and the midsize Accord. Acura will offer the ILX compact, the TLX and the full-sized RLX.

The TLX will be made at Honda's plant in Marysville, Ohio.

(Reporting by Bernie Woodall; Editing by Ken Wills)

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