Branding is tricky business.
Do it correctly and your product can flourish with minimal change (see: Coke). Do it incorrectly, and it doesn't matter how good the product is. Selling it is going to be an uphill battle (see: Blackberry).
And, as with Blackberry (née RIM), the changing of a product name is a bold, sometimes desperate attempt at brand strategy. Good-bye, brand equity; hello, blank slate. This year, the front-drive 2014 Acura RLX replaces the slow-selling all-wheel-drive Acura RL (which was killed in 2012). That's right, Acura's added an "X" and removed standard all-wheel drive from its $60,000 luxury flagship sedan in an effort to increase desirability. (All-wheel drive will be available on the 370-horsepower Acura RLX Hybrid.) Read Article