Prior to its unveiling late yesterday, Acura had teased the world with a pair of concepts as well as a several year wait for the return of its iconic supercar. The Japanese luxury brand decided to end the teasing, and formally unveiled the eagerly anticipated 2016 Acura NSX at the 2015 North American International Auto Show.
The production version is a near duplicate of the highly acclaimed concept car, and retains many of the bold and aggressive styling cues that helped it strike a positive chord with automotive enthusiasts a few years back. This is evident in the front fascia where it is a balanced mix of futuristic style as well as bold aggression. The fastback silhouette that leads seductively into the tapered rear end is also a near match for the concept car and balances out the profile quite nicely.
Acura executives billed the 2016 NSX as a “human-centered super car” and on that front the interior of the NSX features a fully digital configurable instrument cluster as well as a center console that is a function over form affair (something that many supercar makers get backwards when building their models). The radically reduced button count that comes as a result of the sensible design allows the driver to focus on the task at hand, be it navigating the twists and turns of a local driving road, or sticking the apex at a local track day. It is also a subtle homage to the original NSX which also boasted an ergonomically friendly interior design during its time in production.
Performance for the 2016 Acura NSX is derived from a mid mounted Vtec V6 engine which is paired with three electric motors with one positioned between the engine and the nine speed dual clutch transmission, and two at the front wheels. The fore-mentioned electric motors power the front wheels while the V6 and the lone remaining electric motor provide motivation to the rear wheels. A modified version of Acura’s familiar Sport-Hybrid Super-Handling-All-Wheel-Drive system also arrives as standard equipment, and allows the NSX to deliver near instantaneous levels of performance while also scaling back on the festivities if the driving situation requires swift handling maneuvers.
The NSX also benefits from lightweight materials such as a specially designed carbon fiber floor, as well as body panels that are made out of a lightweight combination of aluminium and sheet molding composite (SMC) which both work together to help offset some of the weight gain that occurred when the hybrid drive system was added to the car. The NSX also comes equipped with a dial operated Integrated Dynamic System which comes equipped with Quiet, Sport, Sport+, and Track modes. As you can guess Quiet mode allows the driver to run the NSX on electric power alone for short distances, with the fun factor gradually increasing until Track mode is selected where the NSX and its full range of abilities can come out and shine. The NSX also features a revamped launch mode that claims to provide “zero delay” launching behavior thanks to the three electric motors working together with the V6.
“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.”
Executive Vice President of the Acura Buisness Office Erik Berkman highlighted the NSX’s key role in reshaping the future of Acura as a whole stating “The NSX reflects Acura’s American roots and makes a powerful statement about the strong role being played by our North American operations in envisioning and building the future of Acura,”
With its original design being a product of U.S. designers, it should come as no surprise that the NSX will also be assembled in the U.S. as well with the model spearheading production at Acura’s new Performance Manufacturing center in Marysville Ohio. The company will begin taking the initial orders for the NSX late next summer with the first round of deliveries expected to take place later in the year. Pricing details have not been announced, but expect the NSX to wield a base MSRP of at least $150,000.