2020 NSX New Car Test Drive
Some folks call it sexy. Others deem it stimulating. However it's described, the 2019 Acura NSX is a supercar with a difference-one that goes beyond stunning looks and technological excellence. It's a hybrid that augments its V-6 engine with a trio of electric motors. It's shifted away from a conventional powertrain without losing a speck of the performance that's marked Acura's two-seater since it first appeared as a 1991 model.
Built in Ohio, the aluminum-bodied NSX adopted its battery/gasoline configuration as a 2016 model. In addition to new design cues, standard equipment has grown for the 2019 model year. Chassis enhancements include stiffer stabilizer bars and grip-tighter tires. Interior trim is now gloss black.
A Technology Package now is standard, including navigation and ELS Studio audio. Semi-aniline leather and Alcantara sport seats are also standard. Thermal Orange is a new body-color choice.
Only one trim level is offered, but Acura offers a broad collection of options.
A mid-mounted 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 engine works with a direct-drive electric motor that powers the rear wheels, via a 9-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Up front, twin electric motors drive the front wheels, fed by a lithium-ion battery pack.
The twin-turbo V-6 generates 500 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque, while the electric motor produces 47 horsepower and 109 pound-feet. Total system output is 573 horsepower and 476 pound-feet, resulting in 3.0-second acceleration to 60 mph. Quite a feat for a hybrid car that weighs close to 3,900 pounds.
No shift lever of any kind can be found. That task has been overtaken by a strip of switches and buttons, though some drivers might feel that something vital is missing in a car of this caliber.
The exotic NSX hasn't been crash-tested by either the federal government or an independent agency. Because of limited production, it probably never will be.
Rearward vision is constricted, but helped by a multi-angle rearview camera. Forward views are superb, past a low hood and dashboard. Despite its price and stature, Acura's NSX lacks the latest collision-avoidance technology, such as adaptive cruise control and automatic emergency braking.
Only about 800 NSX supercars are produced each year..
Prices do not include $1,800 destination charge.
NSX Coupe ($157,500) combines a twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6 with three electric motors and all-wheel drive. Standard equipment includes leather and Alcantara seat upholstery, a leather-trimmed instrument panel, dual-zone climate control, keyless start, ambient lighting, a tilt/telescoping steering column, 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, Bluetooth streaming, two USB ports, nine-speaker audio, HD radio, multi-angle rearview camera, and staggered 19- and 20-inch alloy wheels.
New standard equipment for 2019 includes ELS premium audio, parking sensors, four-way power seats, navigation, and aluminum pedals. Options include carbon-fiber trim and an Alcantara headliner. Full semi-aniline leather adds $1,000. Carbon-ceramic brakes cost at least $9,900 extra. Blue or red paint also adds to the total. .