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2017 Acura NSX Overview

James Flammang
Contributing Editor - May 4, 2016

A quarter-century ago, Honda’s luxury division first launched a two-seat NSX high-end sports car. Constructed with a lightweight aluminum unibody/chassis and fitted with a mid-mounted, high-revving V6 engine, that model lasted into the 2005 season before fading out of the picture. Now, a brand-new NSX has arrived. Fitted with a hybrid powertrain that works with a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 gasoline engine, the 2017 NSX slips adroitly into the supercar realm.

What's New for 2017

A completely new model for 2017, the next-generation NSX two-seat coupe is promoted as an aerodynamically optimized, “driver-centered” supercar. Built on a multi-material space frame, the NSX benefits from a low center of gravity. Rather than a gasoline engine alone, the NSX has a hybrid powertrain, consisting of a V6 engine working with three electric motors and all-wheel drive. The electric motors assist with accelerating, braking, and cornering.

Choosing Your Acura NSX

Mounted in the middle of the NSX, the twin-turbo, hand-assembled 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine generates a whopping 500 horsepower at 6500-7500 rpm, and 406 pound-feet of torque at 2000-6000 rpm. Combined output, working with a trio of electric motors, is 573 horsepower. Two of the electric motors drive the left and right front wheels, independently, whereas the third (at the rear) serves as a Direct Drive motor-generator. A nine-speed dual-clutch transmission sends all that energy to all four wheels, via Acura’s Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD).

A lithium-ion battery pack is mounted ahead of the engine. The NSX body uses carbon fiber, aluminum and steel, as well as a considerable amount of aluminum in the chassis. Weighing just over 3,803 pounds, the NSX has 42/58 (front/rear) weight distribution. The driver can choose from four selectable modes: Quiet, Sport, Sport+ or Track.

High-performance summer tires are standard: 19-inch front and 20-inch rear. Ultimate-handling performance tires are optional.

Acura describes the NSX instrumentation as “intuitive,” set into a simple control layout. The center console is designed to minimize distractions.

Seats promise lateral and fore/aft support suitable for a supercar, with torso and side bolstering appropriate for a “high-limit” vehicle. Upholstery blends leather and Alcantara.

A single trim level is offered, priced at $157,800 (including the $1,800 destination charge).

If the amount of carbon fiber in the standard NSX doesn’t seem sufficient, you can specify more. Options include a carbon fiber body package for $9,000; a carbon fiber roof ($6,000); carbon fiber engine cover ($3,600) and carbon fiber interior package ($2,900). Semi-aniline full leather seating adds $2,500, while an Alcantara headliner costs $1,300 extra.

Initial examples of the NSX have been fitted with upgraded carbon-ceramic brakes, adding $9,900 or $10,600 to the starting price. If you request all the factory options, the total cost could escalate past $205,000.

Logical competitors to the new-generation NSX include the Audi R8, BMW i8, Lamborghini Huracan and far more costly Aventador; and the coming-soon Ford GT.

CarsDirect Tip

Few would imagine that such a striking supercar has a hybrid powertrain, but technology has moved well ahead since the original NSX. Largely because of its price—well into six figures—the 2017 NSX inevitably has a limited appeal. For those who can afford the tariff, and especially enthusiasts who fondly remember the original NSX, driving home a modern-day rendition may well prove irresistible. Just don’t go overboard with all those option possibilities.

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