Words by Raj Hunjan
The first Honda NSX was released in 1990 and was the first and arguably the most pure supercar to come from Japan. It is one of the few high performance cars with a mid engine and rear wheel drive layout to be produced in Japan. When the final car rolled of the production line, 18,000 had been sold worldwide in various guises. The NSX was sold under the Acura brand in North America and Hong Kong.
Honda / Acura is busy producing a new version of the supercar, with the first cars to be ready for sale in early 2016 and we think it has great potential to be a FutureStar. It will be branded as a Acura NSX in North America and as a Honda NSX in the UK & Europe. The car will feature a mid mounted a twin-turbocharged 75-degree DOHC V6 engine with a 9-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT) and three-electric motor Sport Hybrid system—integrated with an ultra-rigid and lightweight multi-material body. This will be the first all wheel drive NSX. A system called Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) will utilise torque vectoring to enhance the handling of the car, similar to the system found on the Porsche 918 Spyder. All the drive is sent through a nine-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
Performance headlines are likely to be sub 4.0 seconds to 60mph and a top speed of around 200mph. However the NSX promises more than clinical figures in the way it delivers effortless performance and usability, key strengths of the original NSX. The closest rival to their planned formula is the recently released BMW i8.
“After three years of intensive development work we are excited to reveal this next-generation supercar — the NSX — to the world,” said Ted Klaus, chief engineer and global project leader of NSX development. “We’ve developed a human-centered supercar that responds to the will of the driver and that builds upon the NSX heritage.”
The NSX is being developed by a global team of engineers led by the company’s North American R&D operations in Raymond, Ohio, with design led by the Acura Design Studio in Torrance, California. The NSX will be produced exclusively at the new Performance Manufacturing Center in Marysville, Ohio, using domestic and globally sourced parts. So this will not be a Japanese built Honda NSX but it looks to have the key ingredients to make it a huge sales success.
“Our commitment was to create an all-new NSX that is true to the heritage of NSX—a supercar that delivers a new driving experience, one where every part of the vehicle is respectful of the smartest part of the car, the driver,” said Mike Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager of the Acura division. “The soul of a car is the emotional connection it makes with the driver. With the NSX, that connection will be intense and immediate.”
The production ready NSX will debuted at the North American International Auto Show on 12th January 2015. Going on what we’ve seen so far from Honda / Acura the styling is bang up to date, a low and wide stance with angular details scream dynamic performance. On the inside expect there to be a driver focussed cabin with styling led The relaunch of the Honda NSX ties in well with Honda’s return to Formula One, the 2015 McLaren F1 car will be powered by a Honda engine rather than a Mercedes-Benz AMG unit. The innovative use of electrical power is likely to feature in the road car and borrow some of the learning from the Formula 1 development programme.
Whilst many details are still unconfirmed there has been a lot of interest in the new NSX, a handful of Honda dealerships in the UK have been instructed to accept deposits. This is despite no confirmed details of the car specification or price being announced. Prospective buyers have been asked to place a non refundable £5,000 deposit to guarantee a place in the initial production order book. Honda has confirmed that the order book has already closed. More than one hundred customers have placed deposits for the all-wheel-drive supercar. If you are one of the lucky few than your exclusive place in the queue is likely to be a great initial investment. When the car is finally released in 2016, early cars are likely to be in high demand among people that missed out on getting a deposit down. When the order book reopens in the UK it is recommended to get your deposit down fast to secure one of the second generation NSX supercars.
2015 Honda Acura NSX
2013 NSX Concept
|172.8 in. (4390mm)||+3.1||174.2 in.
|+0.6||46.1 in(1170 mm)||+1.8|
|Wheelbase||103.5 in.(2630 mm)||102.8 in.
|Front track||65.2 in.
|– –||– –||59.5 in.
|Rear track||63.6 in.
|– –||– –||60.7 in.(1540 mm)||+3.0|
More details from the official press release below:
Human Support Cockpit
“Consistent with the ‘human-centered supercar’ development concept, the NSX was designed from the inside out with an uncompromising focus on the driver,” said Johnathan Norman, NSX interior design project leader. “Like the original NSX, we created a ‘Human Support Cockpit’ that provides exceptional driver control, visibility and packaging, but further advanced to meet the extreme performance expectations of a modern supercar.”
The NSX interior boasts exceptional forward visibility, simple and intuitive controls, and class-leading ergonomics—most notably the seat, which features top-class holding performance with outstanding comfort and easy ingress/egress.
The NSX’s instrument cluster features a dynamic TFT display that responds to changes in the driver-selectable Integrated Dynamics System with pertinent graphics and information. The center console holds the Power button that readies the sport hybrid powertrain, nested in the center of the new Integrated Dynamics System dial control. Interwoven under the handcrafted leather dash panel is the exposed midframe—a functioning chassis structural member that reflects the design aesthetic of a naked sport bike. An ultra-thin, yet super strong A-pillar design and low-mounted instrument panel minimize obstructions to the driver’s view of the road.
Sport Hybrid Power Unit
In keeping with the foundational philosophy of the original NSX, the next-generation NSX is designed to provide a new sports car experience that maximizes the capabilities of the driver, delivering exceptionally intuitive and confidence-inspiring response “at the will of the driver.”
Acura engineers leveraged the company’s expertise both with high-performance engine and hybrid electric-drive technologies, as well as its two decades of experience with industry-leading dynamic torque-vectoring technologies, including Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD), to create the most sophisticated, technologically advanced and intelligent powertrain in the supercar universe.
At the heart of the NSX’s performance capabilities is an all-new mid-mounted, 75-degree, DOHC V6 engine with twin turbochargers mated to an Acura-developed 9-speed DCT. The V6 engine employs a race-inspired compact valve train and dry sump lubrication system to help lower the center of gravity. The all-new 9-speed DCT delivers synapse-quick gear changes and rev-matching downshifts. The rear direct-drive electric motor, housed between the engine and transmission, supports acceleration, braking and transmission shifting performance. The NSX’s front wheels are driven by twin independent high-output electric motors which deliver instantaneous torque response and dynamic left-to-right torque distribution.
The NSX uses its front electric motors for dynamic torque vectoring in addition to enhancing acceleration and braking performance. The result is an instantaneous “zero delay” launch performance and handling response that seems to anticipate the driver’s desire. The NSX has undergone extensive testing at some of the world’s most challenging race circuits, including the famed Nurburgring.
Advanced Multi-Material Body
Also in keeping with the legacy of NSX—the world’s first all-aluminum supercar—the new NSX features an innovative new multi-material body design with world’s-first material applications and construction processes.
The NSX body utilizes a space frame design—an internal frame constructed of aluminum, ultra-high strength steel and other advanced materials. Anchored by a carbon fiber floor, torsional and bending forces are taken up entirely by this ultra-rigid structure which also utilizes advanced joining technologies.
The NSX features world’s-first casting technology that combines the design and manufacturing flexibility of a casting process with the strength and elongation properties of a forged material, enabling significant weight reduction. The body panels are composed of a combination of aluminum and sheet molding composite (SMC).
Advanced Sport Package
The NSX features an “Advanced Sports Package” with placement of key powertrain components –the mid-mounted engine, twin front motors and Sport Hybrid battery pack and power control unit – optimized to concentrate vehicle mass low and toward the center of the vehicle, to further enhance dynamic response. The combination of this packaging concept and the lightweight body give the NSX the lowest center of gravity in its class.
The NSX utilizes a fully independent, all-aluminum front and rear suspension and puts its considerable power down through ContiSportContact™ high-performance tires—245/35Z R19 front and 295/30Z R20 rear—mounted on 19×8.5 inch front and 20×11 inch rear aluminum alloy wheels. Powerful, natural and confident braking performance is provided by 6-piston front and 4-piston rear monoblock calipers squeezing ultra-high performance carbon-ceramic brake discs.
Handling is greatly enhanced by Sport Hybrid Super-Handling All Wheel Drive (Sport Hybrid SH-AWD), enabling lightning-quick response to all driver inputs—steering, braking and throttle—along with the stability, control and launch performance of all-wheel drive. Agile Handling Assist (AHA) uses the subtle application of brake torque to further enhance yaw response and dynamic stability.
The NSX’s dial-operated Integrated Dynamic System features Quiet, Sport, Sport+ and Track modes. The system adjusts engine, motor, transmission and chassis response, as well as the engine sound level, based on the needs of the driver and driving environment. Quiet mode enables electric-only driving at lower speeds for short durations. Dynamic vehicle responses become increasingly sharp as the driver moves from Sport to Sport+ mode and, finally, to Track mode, where the NSX reveals the full spectrum of its performance capabilities.
The NSX also features a “launch” function to achieve the ultimate in “zero delay” launch performance, aided by both the engine and three electric motors.
New Production Facility
The NSX will be manufactured exclusively at the Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, Ohio, where approximately 100 highly-skilled associates will conduct full body construction, paint, and final assembly using domestic and globally-sourced parts.
The PMC and its processes have been developed to perfectly blend associate craftsmanship and technology in a new approach to manufacturing. By in-housing the body construction, Acura maintains complete control over total body quality, including critical strength, suspension accuracy, and fit and finish—from initial construction all the way to final assembly.
Associates will utilize innovative techniques to deliver next-generation craftsmanship and world-class quality in the realm of specialized, supercar vehicle production.