After a long time and controversial early reviews, the NSX has now been accepted as a fast, capable and fun production machine that is suitable for everyday driving . It looks good too. There is only one major obstacle: many people don't think it should be called NSX. It is said to be an attack on an old car, a delusional bastard, or a misuse for excess. They are wrong.
To be sure, the old NSX is not something like the old NSX. The new is computerized, electrified and self-switching. This is a budget 918, not a shortened analog sports car like the OG NSX. At first glance, critics rightly claim that this is not a true extension of the brand.
But let's remember what the original NSX was and what it did. The main purpose was not to ensure perfect analog driving. The purpose was to take advantage of the supercar's existing features, experience and fun and add the reliability and everyday comfort of an Acura.
By making a sports car that you could drive every day and not go bankrupt, Acura achieved its primary goal: to provide N ew S ports X perience. Although there are sources who say NSX stands for New Sports (Unknown Variable) or New Sports eXperimental, Acura itself says the production car was named after the New Sports eXperience it provided. Ferraris of the day required expensive engine services and Lamborghinis were ergonomic nightmares, but the NSX works for you every day. That is why decades later there are numerous NSX devices with over 300,000 miles on them. Of course, the NSX was fast and fun, but the reason it changed the game was that it proved that you could have these things without giving up any hope of having a workable, usable car.
But there is a problem with the philosophy of providing a new sports eXperience. This is not exactly something you can do every few years. If you want to change the game, you need some paradigm shift or new technology that allows you to do something new. So until 2005, the NSX remained the same. When they couldn't invent it, they were missing it together for the time being.
At this point, the idea of a reliable and usable supercar was not so new. Ford was building the GT. Lamborghini is already building cars with Audi know-how. In the years after, Audi will launch its own supercar. And when Lexus, the almighty of quality, announced its own supercar, the LFA, it became abundantly clear that a new, simple and reliable supercar would not be enough.
Maybe that's why the lead time for the NSX was so long, It would initially have been a Japanese supercar with a V10 front engine, but since Lexus would beat them to the punch, why worry? It's not much of a new experience if your biggest direct rival is already doing it.
And so they did something completely new. They decided to make the first high-performance, hybrid hybrid supercar. While Ferrari, Porsche and McLaren were electrifying to the very end of the market with their hybrids, no one was doing anything below. Unless you count the BMW i8, which it absolutely shouldn't.
The true genius of NSX is not the technology, but how it is implemented. Despite the tricky tuning of the engine with torque mounting on the front axle and the overall wire-braking system, the NSX feels planted and predictable. It doesn't feel like the GT-R video game, but still has the same confidence in the corners.
It not only brings key future technologies to the market but also makes its advantages accessible to the driver. The sophisticated propulsion mechanism doesn't limit or scare you, but it gives you the confidence to keep pushing harder. It's electrifying made for fun, performance and opportunity. It's a new experience.
Not a perfect experience, mind you. In all its technology and computerization, the NSX is actually not much faster than conventional supercars. And without the front rack, it gives up some practicality.
Of course, they could give it a high-speed, naturally aspirated VTEC motor and manual transmission. It would be brilliant. I would love it. But it wouldn't be NSX. Love it or hate it, the new one moves the needle. If anything, this is undoubtedly the NSX.