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What you need to know about the 2016 Acura NSX

13 January 2015

We’ve all been waiting some time to see the latest NSX from Acura and Honda, which was finally released at the 2015 Detroit Motor Show. Most of the rumours were true, but we can now lock in what the NSX will be featuring.

It’s hard to believe that the original world-beating NSX was originally released 25 years ago, because to this day it still performs extremely well and maintains a modern supercar bodyline. The next generation NSX is something very special indeed. Long gone are the days where you can get away with a naturally aspirated three-litre engine producing 206kW (280hp) with supercars demanding much more than that to remain competitive; hence the newfound name for most — the hypercar. Although Acura call their recent creation a supercar, we think after reading what the NSX features, you’ll agree when we refer to it as a hypercar.

If we first look at the progression of the Japanese supercar you’ll note that the Nissan Skyline GTR, once a 206kW (276hp) rated six-cylinder, has now evolved into a fire-breathing 362kW (485hp) heavyweight. With this in mind, it was expected that the Acura NSX would feature similar power and a similar all-wheel-drive drivetrain to remain competitive in today’s world.

The new NSX features a 75-degree DOHC V6 engine, with twin turbochargers and three electric motors dubbed the ‘Sport Hybrid system’. With this combination of tried-and-tested technology and pioneering electronic wizardry, the NSX is said to produce a GT-R-beating 410kW (550hp). However, if the NSX were to compete with the latest from Nissan, it too would have to be all-wheel drive — and it is. Featuring a nine-speed dual-clutch transmission, gear changes will be seamless through the steering-wheel-mounted flappy-paddles.

The chassis is what gets me most excited as the last NSX was completely state of the art, so finding out what was beneath this model’s skin was something we couldn’t wait for. The cutting-edge chassis is constructed out of aluminium and steel, with a carbon-fibre floor. The body panels are made of aluminium and a fibreglass-like sheet-moulding compound. The 19×8.5-inch wheels up the front and 20×11-inch wheels down the back are wrapped in 245/35 and 295/30 Continental ContiSportContact tyres. Braking is taken care of with six-pot front calipers and four-pot rear calipers, all of which clamp onto carbon-ceramic discs.

The interior is extremely luxurious; Honda has come a long way since the early ’90s. There is plenty of leather and aluminium inside the cabin and an extremely fancy steering wheel with every control that you could ever need right at your fingertips. You will even get a dial which will allow you to activate different ‘modes’ which will have an effect on handling.

The question is, has the NSX lost its lightweight, naturally aspirated and responsive nature? Will it have computers that pretty much drive the car for you like the latest R35 GT-R? Only time will tell if the latest from Acura and Honda will become an unchanged-for-25-years cult classic like the previous model.