You don’t often hear about supercars. And you definitely don’t see supercars very often on the road. These are the cars you dream of owning or being able to afford one day when you’ve “made it.” Supercars are mostly left to the daydreamers – unless you’re an automotive writer.
In that case you get one delivered to you to drive for a week. Technically the supercar I drove is considered a 2020 model year (and yeah I know it’s 2021 and almost 2022). But when you sell so few (capped at 350 per year), it’s not uncommon for supercars like the Acura NSX to not update too much from model year to model year.
In this case, the NSX’s big boast this model year was the eye-catching Indy Yellow Pearl color (like the one I drove). The Indy name is appropriate since the NSX has a long history in racing. The second-generation NSX has also dominated on the racetrack.
Similar to Ford’s super car, the GT, the Acura NSX doesn’t have (nor does it need) a V8 engine. Instead this car has a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine with a hybrid boost. That’s right, this super car is technically a hybrid. But what hybrid do you know cranks out 573 horses?
With that electrified drivetrain comes crazy, off-the-line speed, to the tune 2.9 seconds in 0-60 mph times. It has a top speed of 191 mph (and no I did not find that out firsthand).
Helping all of that performance out is a 9-speed dual clutch transmission. It’s a phenomenal transmission. Add in true torque vectoring and all-wheel drive and this super car emphasizes the word super.
Adding to the overall personality are four distinct driving modes, each with its own merits. Quiet mode (why would you ever want to be quiet in this car?) holds back the exhaust tune. Sport mode is nimble and has outstanding linear response. Sport + mode was my favorite and felt like the NSX’s sweet spot. Of course there’s track mode, which is not for the faint of heart with its launch mode and blazing off-the-line performance.
On looks, the NSX also acts the part. It immediately looks special. Driving down the road it garnered much attention. I saw several instances of people photographing it or taking video of it as I went by. The Acura NSX is a real head turner, which you’d expect from a car like this.
The Indy Yellow Pearl color adds to the appeal. It was already going to grab attention, but with this color it really stands out. The low-profile stance adds to the aggressive look of the NSX.
The squinty headlights have an aggressive, sinister look that fits this car so well. I would’ve liked to have seen some carbon fiber on this car to complete the look and certainly gull wing doors would’ve been apropos. Without those two features, it still didn’t pull away the aggressive, sex appeal of the NSX.
The two-seat NSX has a high-quality interior (as it should for the price tag). The seats are angled for optimal driving but are adjustable. For being so “cramped” it wasn’t that difficult to find a comfortable seating position. And for a super car it was actually relatively easy to get in and out of the seats.
The shape of the steering wheel felt the part of a race car. The tactile appeal matched with the tune that was coming out of the engine – all of it producing goosebumps.
Acura’s infotainment system continues to be a detriment to its otherwise high-quality interior. While it has enough technology, including the ELS Studio Premium Audio, the less-than-intuitive nature of the infotainment system was a disappointment.
One person asked me what the trunk was like to which I responded, who cares. But the “trunk” if it even qualifies as being called that is only 4.4 cubic feet. Why bother?
Being a hybrid, the fuel economy for this powerful NSX is decent. But, similar to the trunk, who really cares? You don’t buy a car like this and worry about trips to the gas station. That being said the NSX has an EPA rating of 21 mpg/city and 22 mpg/highway.
As far as price goes, the NSX sits right around the same range as other similar super cars like the Audi R8 and the Porsche 911. My tester had an MSRP of $197,995.
I’ve had my fair share of special cars in my driveway over the years. This was my first time in the NSX. It will most certainly change your opinion of hybrid technology. As always with this job, some weeks are better than others.