Tech-laden mid-engine awesomeness from the Land of the Rising Sun

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The Nissan GT-R is definitely the hottest thing to come from Japan nowadays, but when it comes to mid-engined supercars, the Honda/Acura NSX set all the benchmarks. At least it did until 2005, when Honda decided to pull the plug on the sports car it had developed with input from Ayrton Senna, a man regarded by many as the best Formula One driver of all time. The NSX went on sale in 1990 with a 270-horsepower, 3.0-liter V-6 behind its seats. The engine was later updated to a 3.2-liter V-6 that cranked out 290 ponies. While its output wasn’t exactly impressive compared to contemporary supercars, the NSX was still incredibly fast thanks to its low curb weight. Zero to 60 mph took 5.1 seconds when the car was first released, but the benchmark dropped to 4.5 seconds by the late ’90s. The NSX ceased production in 2005, when Honda announced plans to develop a successor. Fast-forward to the 2015 North American International Auto Show, where after years of teasing and concept reveals, the 2016 Acura NSX finally became a reality.

A quarter of a century after the original NSX debuted, the second generation couldn’t be more different, apart from the number of cylinders and engine configuration, of course. Powered by a twin-turbocharged, 75-degree V-6 engine paired with three electric motors and a nine-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT), the 2016 Acura NSX is here and it means business.

"Our global team embraced the challenge to create a new sports car experience, leveraging new technology to deliver incredibly vivid performance in a vehicle that responds intuitively and immediately to the will of the driver," said Ted Klaus, chief engineer and global development leader for the model. "The NSX delivers pinnacle supercar performance, with zero-delay acceleration and exhilarating, confidence-inspiring driving dynamics."

Unlike the rear-wheel-driven first generation, the new NSX comes with SH-AWD, with the front wheels powered by two of the three electric motors. Despite being a globally developed sports car, the 2016 NSX was largely designed by a team led by American engineers from Honda’s development center in Raymond, Ohio, while production took place in Marysville, Ohio.

Updated 05/25/2016: Th first Acura NSX rolled out of the production line at the new Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, Ohio. The first unit went to Rick Hendrick whom will receive a custom-ordered NSX, after a winning bid of $1.2 million at the Barrett-Jackson auction in January. Hit "play" to watch the video from the event.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Acura NSX.


2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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As expected, the production sports car is a close reproduction of the concept vehicle we saw back in 2013. The front end is nearly identical, with the same Acura beak and massive grille occupying most of the nose. The manufacturer kept the bumper configuration and its air dams nearly intact. However, a closer look reveals a host of modifications.

As expected, the production sports car is a close reproduction of the concept vehicle we saw back in 2013.

A larger splitter sticks out underneath the grille, while the massive blades separating the main grille from the side intakes have been revised and reshaped. The silver ornament of the Acura beak is different too, while the headlamps boast new graphics, with six LEDs and an LED stripe replacing the concept’s five-point configuration. The front hood is different too, sporting two large vents right above the wheel arches.

As far as the rear fascia goes, it seems the production version inherited the concept’s taillights with minor modifications, and the same goes for the motorsport-inspired diffuser and large vents on each side. The biggest difference is in the position of the four exhaust tips, which now sit in the middle instead of being incorporated in the side vents. A protruding spoiler adds some complexity to the concept’s otherwise simple hood design. The side view is where the biggest changes lie, as the production NSX features a more pronounced "cab-forward" look, larger and higher side vents, a slightly different character line on the door, and a new vent on each front wheel arch.

Predictably, aluminum and carbon fiber were used extensively in the construction of the exterior panels.

There are many, many components that need cooling on the NSX, so proper thermal management via airflow control was critical. To this end, air is directed through the front grille, side intakes, and rear engine compartment.

Additionally, cooling needs had to be equalized with that other supercar component – downforce. The NSX creates three times as much downforce in the rear as it does in the front. This balance comes thanks to extensive testing with a 40-percent model at Honda’s Ohio-based wind tunnel facility, which was then verified with a full-scale model at another wind tunnel facility in Sakura, Japan.

Wheel sizing looks like 19x8.5-inch rollers in front, with 20x11-inch pieces in the rear. Both sets are made from forged aluminum.

Exterior Dimensions

Length 176 Inches(4470 mm)
Width 76.4 Inches (1940 mm)
Height 47.8 Inches (1215 mm)
Wheelbase 103.5 Inches (2630 mm)
Front track 65.2 Inches (1655 mm)
Rear track 63.6 Inches (1615 mm)


2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Interior
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The steering wheel has more of a racing vibe to it, since it now has both a flattened bottom and top.

Unfortunately, not much of the intricate symphony of leather, Alcantara and carbon fiber from the 2012 concept car was kept in the production version of the NSX. Most of the carbon-fiber bits have been replaced by a wide range of aluminum inserts, while the Alcantara is only present on the middle part of the seats. The rakish center console is more production-friendly, with some of the buttons and knobs borrowed from other Acura models, while the climate control air vents have an entirely different configuration compared to the concept car from 2012.

On the plus side, the steering wheel has more of a racing vibe to it, since it now has both a flattened bottom and top, while the instrument cluster is as high-tech as they come. The seats saw extensive testing, and Acura says it employed a variety of test drivers and used something called “pressure mapping measurements” to make sure they were both comfortable and supportive. Last but not least, the red-and-black, two-tone upholstery of the 2012 NSX Concept returns in the production car as well, although the primary color is now black instead of red.


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An all-new, twin-turbocharged, 75 degree V-6 has been developed for the car, with the mid-ship position being identical to the original NSX

An all-new, twin-turbocharged, 75-degree V-6 has been developed for the car, with the mid-ship position being identical to the original NSX. The powerplant combines both direct injection and port injection, along with Variable Timing Control to deliver optimal camshaft phasing, for precision combustion control throughout the entire rpm band, while also achieving high power output and performance at high engine speeds.

Acura says the powerplant underwent a slew of design iterations. Originally, it was a transverse-mounted, naturally aspirated V-6, but eventually the automaker went with the far more complicated longitudinally-mounted twin-turbo set-up. Understandably, this had ramifications affecting other areas of the car, including the aero and cooling.

The result after all the tweaking supposedly delivers the best balance between power production, overall compactness, and reduced mass. Key design elements that contribute to this statement include a sand-cast engine block, lightweight and compact cylinder heads, thermal spray coating on the engine block cylinder sleeves for higher thermal efficiency, and a dry sump lubrication system that significantly reduces the engine’s center of gravity.

Paired with the internal combustion engine are three electric motors, two of which are in charge of powering the front axle (one per wheel). A T-shaped lithium-ion battery sits in the middle, while the third electric motor is integrated between the engine and the rear-based nine-speed DCT. The front-mounted motors, called a Twin Motor Unit (TMU), provides instant torque and active AWD traction (also called "direct yaw control"), improving 0-to-60 mph acceleration times and quarter-mile runs, while the rear Direct Drive Motor is also used like generator to juice the battery pack.

The NSX also features the most advanced evolution of Acura’s Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive system (Sport Hybrid SH-AWD)

The result is instant throttle response with the slightest twitch of your right foot.

The NSX also features the most advanced evolution of Acura’s Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive system (Sport Hybrid SH-AWD), which is capable of distributing more torque than any other setup the brand has used in its products as of 2016. This system improves acceleration, braking, and cornering, all thanks to electric torque vectoring.

No fewer than 10 air-cooled heat exchangers cool the powertrain, with the V-6 using three radiators by itself. Further cooling is provided by the twin intercoolers in the side air intakes. Needless to say, the NSX has one hot drivetrain.

Sending the V-6’s power to the wheels is an advanced nine-speed dual-clutch transmission that bring together many new technologies. The gearbox employs an electronically-operated wet dual clutch, a high-rigidity shift fork, and an electronic shift actuator for quick and precise shifting. To improve cooling, Acura added two oil "rooms" within the transmission housing. A multiple-plate limited slip differential provides increased traction when accelerating and cornering.

The NSX benefits from a total output of 573 horsepower. The mid-mounted V-6 cranks out 500 horsepower from 6,500 rpm and 406 pound-feet from 2,000 rpm, while the motor situated between the engine and the transmission generates 47 horses at 3,000 rpm and 109 pound-feet from as low as 500 rpm. Each of the front-mounted motors send 36 horsepower and 54 pound-feet of twist to the front axle. Performance specs aren’t yet available, but the 573 horses should be more than enough to help push the NSX from 0 to 60 mph in less than 3.5 seconds.

Drivetrain Specifications

Power Unit
Sport Hybrid SH-AWD Power Unit Front wheels: mechanically independent from rear power unit components, two electric motors (Twin Motor Unit); Rear wheels: Twin-turbocharged V-6 gasoline engine with one Direct Drive Motor and 9-speed DCT
Maximum Total System Power 573 HP
Approx. Top Speed 191 MPH
Type Twin-turbocharged DOHC V6
Layout Longitudinally mid-mounted
Displacement 3493 cc
Horsepower - SAE Net 500 HP @ 6500-7500 RPM
Torque 406 LB-FT @ 2000-6000 RPM
Maximum Engine Speed 7500 rpm
Power Output Per Liter 143 hp/liter
Bore and Stroke 3.6 in. x 3.5 in.
Compression Ratio 10.0:1
Valve Train 24 Valve, IN/EX VTC, chain-driven camshafts
Intake Valve Construction Forged steel
Exhaust Valve Construction Forged steel , sodium-filled
Valve Angle 30 degrees (include angle)
Cylinder Block and Head Material Aluminum alloy
Cylinder Bore Lining Plasma transferred wire arc thermal spray
Cylinder Bank Angle 75 degrees
Crankshaft Construction Forged steel
Piston Construction Cast aluminum with integrated cooling channel
Connecting Rod Construction Forged steel, dowel pin
Fuel Injection Direct and port
Throttle Control Drive-by-Wire throttle system
Fuel Requirement Premium unleaded
Lubrication Dry sump system with 6-rotor scavenge pump
Oil Type Synthetic 0W-40
Cooling system Liquid and oil cooling
Exhaust System Layout Dual catalytic converter, dual path per bank
Turbocharger Type Single vane
Maximum Boost Pressure 105 kPa (1.05 bar)
Turbine Construction Inconel
Wastegate Control Electrical
Recirculation Valves Air bypass type
Intercooler Dimensions Width 232.2 mm; Height 382 mm; Thickness 64 mm
Type Water-cooled motor/generator
Layout Direct drive situated between engine & transmission; Crankshaft output shaft-attached permanent magnet rotor & in-engine body- copper windings
Horsepower 47 HP @ 3000 RPM
Torque 109 LB-FT @ 500-2000 RPM

Chassis And Handling

2016 Acura NSX Drivetrain
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The sports car is Acura’s first vehicle to employ a multi-material space frame design for increased body rigidity and lightness

To help it achieve that golden combination of ultra-high rigidity and low weight (just like the original all-aluminum NSX monocoque), Acura built the NSX’s chassis and select body components using an array of revolutionary techniques.

Specifically, the sports car is Acura’s first vehicle to employ a multi-material space frame design for increased body rigidity and lightness. The Japanese claim, based on internal data, that the NSX’s chassis is "by far the most rigid in its competitive set." I obviously can’t verify that, but I’ll take Acura’s word for it.

Also, Acura says the NSX’s body is the world’s first automotive application of new ablation casting technology, which allows the ultra-rigid castings to be used within the car’s crush zones, adding to the car’s overal rigidity and improving handling. Another innovative feature that further enhances rigidity is the use of a three-dimensionally formed, ultra-high-strength steel A-pillar.

The aluminum-intensive space frame is complimented with precisely crafted ultra-high-strength steel and anchored with a carbon-fiber floor together. The use of multiple materials deliver a more dynamic driving experience, superior fit and finish, and improved occupant protection in the event of a crash.

Further optimization efforts include things like placing the 9DCT’s clutch and differential right next to each other, paired alongside a parallel gear set arrangement to reduce the drivetrain length. The battery pack for the Intelligent Power Unit uses a “caseless” design to reduce weight, and the fuel tanks (yes, there are two of them) are mounted in front of the engine.

There is a double-wishbone set-up with double lower control arms up front, while the rear is a multi-link step-up

The suspension is mounted directly to the space frame (i.e., no subframe). There is a double-wishbone set-up with double lower control arms up front, while the rear is a multi-link step-up. Both were made from aluminum. Aluminum was also used for the castings for the suspension mounting points, and there are third-generation active magnetorheological dampers. The steering is a dual-pinion variable-ratio electric power set-up with, and there are double ball joints in front to even out any steering “disturbances” caused by the torque vectoring system.

The brakes are electro-mechanical, with both normal friction braking (Brembo provides the aluminum calipers and iron rotors) and regenerative braking. Acura claims the NSX has “virtually fade free” braking.

Rubber duties include high-performance summer tires (Continental Conti-Sport Contact), or the optional “ultimate handling" tires. Tire sizes are 245/35 ZR19 in front and 305/30 ZR 20 in the rear.

And what sports car would be complete without a variety of drive modes? The NSX comes with an Integrated Dynamics System, which is controllable via a dial on the center console. This offers four different driving modes: “Quiet,” “Sport,” “Sport +,” and “Track.” These different modes alter the car’s steering, braking, throttle, Vehicle Stability Assist, dampers, AWD system, and intake and exhaust noises. There’s also a launch control mode.

Tested on tracks like Virginia International Raceway, the Nurburgring, and the Takasu test circuit in Japan, the NSX promises quite a bit when thrown a corner or two.


Safety-wise, the Acura NSX is packed with passive and active features. The sports car has single-stage driver and dual-stage passenger multiple-threshold airbags, SmartVent front side airbags, and one-row side curtain airbags with rollover sensor. The front seats have three-point belts with automatic tensioning system and reminder. Active features include Vehicle Stability Assist with Traction Control, Anti-Lock Braking System, Electronic Brake Distribution, Brake Assist, Multi-Angle Rearview Camera with Dynamic Guidelines, and Tire Pressure Monitoring System with Location and Pressure Indicators. The NSX is also equipped with auto high-beam headlamps, corner and backup sensors, and cruise control.


2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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The Acura NSX retails from $156,000 before options. The Online configurator for the NSX is now live, offering the NSX as Acura’s first build-to-order vehicle. No-cost options include exterior colors of Curva Red, 130R White, and Berlina Black. Interior colors offered are Red, Orchid, Saddle, and Ebony. For an extra $700, the exterior can be finished in Casino White Pearl, Source Silver Metallic, or Nord Gray Metallic. Andaro colors come in at a $6,000 premium with Valencia Red Pearl and Nouvelle Blue Pearl.

The Acura NSX retails from $156,000 before options

There are three factory option packages to choose from as well. The most significant is the Carbon Fiber Exterior Sport Package. This package adds a carbon fiber front spoiler, carbon fiber rear diffuser, dark chrome exhaust finisher and carbon fiber side sills. This package comes at a price of $9,000. To go with that package, or available separately, is the Carbon Fiber Interior Sport Package. It offers aluminum sport pedals and footrest, carbon fiber steering wheel garnish, and a hand-wrapped carbon fiber meter visor. The last package is a technology package that brings Acura’s ELS Studio Audio system to the NSX. It also includes satellite navigation with voice recognition and HD Digital Traffic, and front and rear parking sensors. SiriusXM Radio is also available with this package at a premium. The Technology Package starts out at $2,800.

In addition to the three packages, there is also a list of individual options available. You can add a carbon fiber roof for $6,000, a carbon fiber engine cover for $3,600, carbon-ceramic brake rotors for $9,900, exclusive interwoven wheels for $1,500, or a carbon fiber rear spoiler for $3,000. Inside, semi-aniline full leather power sport seats command $2,500, semi-aniline leather and Alcantara power sport seats call for a $1,500 premium, and a black Alcantara headliner will set you back $1,300.

The first unit to leave the factory was auctioned for $1.2 million in early February 2016. The vehicle was purchased by NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick, and all proceeds were donated to two children’s charities: Camp Southern Ground and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.

Vehicle Price Without Options (MSRP) $156,000
Carbon Fiber Interior Sport Package $2,900
Carbon Fiber Exterior Sport Package $9,000
Technology Package $2,800
Technology Package with SiriusXM Radio $3,300
Carbon Fiber Engine Cover $3,600
Carbon Fiber Roof $6,000
Carbon-Ceramic Brake Rotors With Black Brake Calipers $9,900
Carbon-Ceramic Brake Rotors With Silver Brake Calipers $10,600
Carbon-Ceramic Brake Rotors With Red Brake Calipers $10,600
Carbon Fiber Rear Decklid Spoiler $3,000
Exclusive Interwoven Wheels $1,500
Semi-Aniline Leather and Alcantara Power and Heated Sport Seats with memory for driver $1,500
Semi-Aniline Full Leather Power and Heated Sport Seats with memory for driver $2,500
Black Alcantara Headliner $1,300
Casino White Pearl $700
Source Silver Metallic $700
Nord Gray Metallic $700
Valencia Red Pearl (PPG Andaro paint) $6,000
Nouvelle Blue Pearl (PPG Andaro paint) $6,000


Ferrari 488 GTB

2016 Ferrari 488 GTB Exterior
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Acura once said it wants the NSX to achieve "...the type of acceleration that the customer is achieving with the Ferrari 458," so it’s only natural to include Maranello’s entry-level supercar on this competitors list. However, the 458 Italia has since then been replaced by the 488 GTB, a redesigned supercar that received a smaller, turbocharged V-8 instead of the traditional 4.5-liter unit. Rated at 660 horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque, the new 3.9-liter mill enables the 488 GTB to charge from 0 to 60 mph in three seconds, 0.4 ticks quicker than the 458 Italia. This figure will likely trump the NSX’s acceleration.

Top speed has also increased from 199 to 205 mph with the added turbo power and the updated seven-speed automatic gearbox, which received revised gear ratios. Pricing for the 488 GTB starts at $242,737, a bit more than the 458 Italia and nearly twice as much as the NSX.

Read more about the 488 GTB in our detailed review here.

Audi R8

2014 - 2015 Audi R8 V8 Coupe High Resolution Exterior
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Since Acura uses the R8 as the price benchmark for the NSX, we might as well have a look at Audi’s only supercar to date, also the most affordable vehicle of its kind. Also set to receive a replacement by the time the NSX arrives, the R8 is currently available in three different guises here in the U.S. The range begins with the V8 model, which is motivated by a 4.2-liter, V-8 engine with 430 horsepower and 317 pound-feet at its disposal. Hitting 60 mph in the base model takes 4.4 seconds. More power comes from the V10 model that hides a 525-pony 5.2-liter under its hood. The added power decreases the 0-to-60 sprint to 3.8 seconds.

Customers in need of more oomph can go with the V10 Plus. The range-topping R8 boasts the same drivetrain as the V10 model, but output jumps to 550 horses and 398 pound-feet of twist. Naught to 60 takes only 3.7 seconds. The R8 retails from $115,900 in its base trim and fetches in excess of $173,500 when the V10 Plus model is selected.

Find our more about the Audi R8 in our full review here.

BMW i8

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Although the i8 will be no match for the NSX in terms of performance, I decided to include it for a hybrid-to-hybrid comparison. The i8 is currently the world’s fastest hybrid, but the German will have its benchmark crushed as soon as the NSX hits the road. The i8’s drivetrain brings together a 1.5-liter, three-cylinder engine that generates 231 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, and an electric motor that produces 131 ponies and 184 pound-feet.

Total output sits at 362 horses and 420 pound-feet of torque, and the power travels to all corners through a six-speed automatic transmission. The coupe hits 60 mph from a standing start in 4.2 seconds, so it’s safe to assume the NSX will be way faster. Pricing for the i8 begins from $135,925.

Read our full review of the BMW i8 here.


2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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Undoubtedly, the 2016 NSX is a worthy successor to Honda’s original supercar. There’s a lot of hype around the NSX nameplate and Honda took a long time to get here, but the idea of another Ferrari killer with a Japanese badge on its nose is as exciting as it gets. With all that technology packed under the carbon-fiber skin, it looks like the new NSX was well worth the wait.

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Update History

Updated 05/06/2016: Acura dropped a new video in which it explains how the new NSX was designed, developed and manufactured at its Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC), making it a 100% built in the U.S.A. Hit "play" to learn more about the building process.

Updated 03/18/2016: Acura announced that the all-new NSX supercar will be put into production in late April at the company’s new Performance Manufacturing Center in Marysville, Ohio.

Updated 03/16/2016: We’ve added all the latest nerdy details straight from Honda. Check it out!

Updated 02/25/2016: The configurator for the new Acura NSX is now live, and offers a number of optional upgrades. Check out the details in the pricing section below.

Updated 02/01/2016: The first Acura NSX was auctioned at the Barrett-Jackson auction for the incredible amount of $1.2 million. All the proceeds will go to the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation and Camp Southern Ground in Georgia.

Updated 12/18/2015: Acura has announced pricing and on-sale information for the NSX sports car. Find out more in the Prices section below.

Updated 10/26/2015: Acura dropped the official specifications figures on its brand-new NSX supercar - and its even better than everyone expected. The NSX will deliver a total of 573 horsepower: 500 horsepower from the V-6 engine, while the rest comes from the electric motors placed front and rear.

Updated 9/1/2015: Our man Jonathan Lopez took some pics at Monterey Car Week. Enjoy!

Updated 08/14/2015: Acura dropped a series of new images for the 2016 NSX, this time showing the car in Nouvelle Blue Pearl and Berlina Black. The cars were displayed at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering.

Updated 04/23/2015: Acura dropped a series of new technical details on its upcoming NSX supercar, including the confirmation that it will get a newly developed twin-turbo V6 engine with a 3.5-liter displacement.

Updated 01/23/2015: We’ve added a series of new images from the car’s official debut at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Check the new images in the "Pictures" tab.

Updated 01/12/2015: After years of developments and tons of testing sessions, the all new NSX finally made its world debut at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Click past the jump to see if it worth the waiting.

Updated 08/05/2013: Acura finally put the NSX prototype on the track just before the Honda Indy 200. So far, the Japanese automaker has unveiled only a few image of the car lapping the 2.4-mile-long Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, but we dig up a few videos on YouTube of the prototype lapping the course. You can read more about this prototype after the jump and you can see more images in our Gallery.

Updated 07/25/2013: Today, Acura unveiled a prototype of the upcoming NSX that will lap the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course just before the Honda Indy 200 on August 4th. You can see the blue-liveried NSX above. We’re sure there will be many more images and videos after it makes its trip around the track, stay tuned for more in August.

Updated 12/17/2014: Acura revealed the first teaser images and a teaser video of the production NSX set to debut at the 2015 North American International Auto Show on January 12, 2015. Click past the jump for the new details.

Spy Shots

July 22, 2014 - Acura NSX caught in production form for the first time

2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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October 30, 2014 - Acura NSX return to Nurburgring

2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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2016 Acura NSX Exterior Spyshots
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Racing Prototype

2016 Acura NSX Exterior
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Acura put a blue-liveried NSX on the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio over the weekend, making its intentions to race the upcoming NSX as clear as day. Acura didn’t release any details on this prototype, but we assume that it features the same mid-mounted, 3.5-liter, V-6 engine that combines with trio of electric motors to produce somewhere near 400 horsepower.

2016 Acura NSX Exterior
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On the outside, this NSX prototype screamed "racecar," as it donned No. 1 badging, a paint job that combined several different shades of blue and "NSX" printed all around in various shades of blue. Sans the crazy blue paint job, this NSX is no different than the last concept we saw.

2013 Acura NSX Concept

2013 Acura NSX Concept High Resolution Exterior
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At the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, Acura lifted the veil from the latest NSX concept. It was very similar to the 2012 concept, but the front apron on the 2013 model is more defined and production-like, and the rear apron also gained some extra depth. Basically, the 2013 concept was a more sculpted version of the 2012 concept.

This is also the first time we got a good look at the super-sexy interior that looked like one you would see on a production car. It’s read and black leather motif was sporty, yet luxurious and everything looked in perfect place. We assume that this is the interior that we’ll see in the production model.

2012 Acura NSX Concept

2012 Acura NSX Concept Exterior AutoShow
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In 2012, Acura rolled out the first concept of the upcoming NSX. At that point, Acura announced that the NSX featured a 3.5-liter V-6 VTEC engine that sat in the middle of the car. Also included on this model was the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD system that continued onto the 2013 concept.

The body was sleek and stylish but obviously incomplete, as the front and rear aprons were not deeply styled all of the air intakes appeared non-functional. Basically, this was the shell that the 2013 concept was developed from.


New Teaser Video (12/17/2014)

NSX Leaving the Trailer

NSX Lapping Mid-Onio Sports Car Course

NSX Drive By

Jonathan Lopez
Jonathan Lopez
About the author

Press Release

Twenty-five years after the debut of the original, paradigm-shifting NSX supercar, Acura revealed the production version of its highly anticipated successor—the next-generation Acura NSX, developed and produced in the U.S.—to the world’s auto media at the 2015 North American International Auto Show today. The production model, in a scintillating NSX Red finish, took the stage with a growl from its twin-turbocharged engine.

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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The next generation NSX showcases the production styling, design and specifications of Acura’s mid-engine sports hybrid supercar, and Acura announced key details of the all-new vehicle’s design and performance. The company will begin accepting custom orders for the new NSX starting in the summer, with customer deliveries expected later in the year.

Specifically created to bring a "new sports experience" to the supercar segment, the NSX challenges conventional beliefs about supercars — much as the first generation did a quarter century ago. The approach is realized through an all-new power unit—a twin-turbocharged 75-degree DOHC V6 engine with a 9-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT) and three-electric motor Sport Hybrid system—integrated with an ultra-rigid and lightweight multi-material body with world’s-first material applications and manufacturing processes. Developed under the concept of a "human-centered supercar,” a car that puts the driver first in every aspect of its design, the next-generation NSX will leverage its state-of-the-art hybrid supercar power unit, body and chassis to deliver exceptionally intuitive and immediate response to driver inputs.

"Our commitment was to create an all-new NSX that is true to the heritage of NSX—a supercar that delivers a new driving experience, one where every part of the vehicle is respectful of the smartest part of the car, the driver," said Mike Accavitti, senior vice president and general manager of the Acura division. "The soul of a car is the emotional connection it makes with the driver. With the NSX, that connection will be intense and immediate."

As the pinnacle representation of Acura performance and prestige, the NSX was introduced at the auto show under the theme of "Precision Crafted Performance." The theme was the original tagline for the Acura brand, a guiding force behind the development of the original NSX and a critical component of its launch.

The development of next-generation NSX, driven by precision crafted performance, has resulted in a clean-sheet design, which involved nearly three years of intensive development effort by a global design and engineering team led by engineers at the company’s development center in Raymond, Ohio.

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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"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," said Erik Berkman, executive vice president of the Acura Business Planning Office.

"Our global team embraced the challenge to create a new sports car experience, leveraging new technology to deliver incredibly vivid performance in a vehicle that responds intuitively and immediately to the will of the driver," said Ted Klaus, chief engineer and global development leader of the new NSX. "The NSX delivers pinnacle supercar performance, with zero-delay acceleration and exhilarating, confidence-inspiring driving dynamics."

Interwoven Dynamic Exterior Design
"The new NSX is a product of what we term ’Interwoven Dynamic’ design," said Michelle Christensen, NSX exterior design project leader. "It represents the ideal blending of exotic sports car form and supercar function."

The NSX body features classic low and wide proportions married to modern and alluring surfacing, an aggressive front design, and tail lights that pays homage to the original NSX. The signature side intake and floating C-pillar collects air to feed the mid-mounted engine and directs airflow over the rear deck to increase downforce. To accommodate the new longitudinally mounted twin-turbo V6 and 9-speed DCT, the production vehicle was lengthened (+3 inches) and widened (+1 inch) with a slightly more cab-forward package, compared with the proportions of the NSX Concept shown in 2012.

Every element of the exterior body design has been carefully fashioned for total airflow management for both stability-enhancing downforce and vehicle systems cooling. The NSX has undergone extensive testing at the company’s state-of-the-art wind tunnel in Raymond, Ohio, leading to a number of significant changes from concept to final body design, including modified hood vents, new front fender vents, modified side air intakes, and an optimized deck spoiler.

Human Support Cockpit
"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."

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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The NSX interior boasts exceptional forward visibility, simple and intuitive controls, and class-leading ergonomics—most notably the seat, which features top-class holding performance with outstanding comfort and easy ingress/egress.

The NSX’s instrument cluster features a dynamic TFT display that responds to changes in the driver-selectable Integrated Dynamics System with pertinent graphics and information. The center console holds the Power button that readies the sport hybrid powertrain, nested in the center of the new Integrated Dynamics System dial control. Interwoven under the handcrafted leather dash panel is the exposed midframe—a functioning chassis structural member that reflects the design aesthetic of a naked sport bike. An ultra-thin, yet super strong A-pillar design and low-mounted instrument panel minimize obstructions to the driver’s view of the road.

Sport Hybrid Power Unit
In keeping with the foundational philosophy of the original NSX, the next-generation NSX is designed to provide a new sports car experience that maximizes the capabilities of the driver, delivering exceptionally intuitive and confidence-inspiring response "at the will of the driver."

Acura engineers leveraged the company’s expertise both with high-performance engine and hybrid electric-drive technologies, as well as its two decades of experience with industry-leading dynamic torque-vectoring technologies, including Super-Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD), to create the most sophisticated, technologically advanced and intelligent powertrain in the supercar universe.

At the heart of the NSX’s performance capabilities is an all-new mid-mounted, 75-degree, DOHC V6 engine with twin turbochargers mated to an Acura-developed 9-speed DCT. The V6 engine employs a race-inspired compact valve train and dry sump lubrication system to help lower the center of gravity. The all-new 9-speed DCT delivers synapse-quick gear changes and rev-matching downshifts. The rear direct-drive electric motor, housed between the engine and transmission, supports acceleration, braking and transmission shifting performance. The NSX’s front wheels are driven by twin independent high-output electric motors which deliver instantaneous torque response and dynamic left-to-right torque distribution.

The NSX uses its front electric motors for dynamic torque vectoring in addition to enhancing acceleration and braking performance. The result is an instantaneous "zero delay" launch performance and handling response that seems to anticipate the driver’s desire. The NSX has undergone extensive testing at some of the world’s most challenging race circuits, including the famed Nurburgring.

Advanced Multi-Material Body
Also in keeping with the legacy of NSX—the world’s first all-aluminum supercar—the new NSX features an innovative new multi-material body design with world’s-first material applications and construction processes.

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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The NSX body utilizes a space frame design—an internal frame constructed of aluminum, ultra-high strength steel and other advanced materials. Anchored by a carbon fiber floor, torsional and bending forces are taken up entirely by this ultra-rigid structure which also utilizes advanced joining technologies.

The NSX features world’s-first casting technology that combines the design and manufacturing flexibility of a casting process with the strength and elongation properties of a forged material, enabling significant weight reduction. The body panels are composed of a combination of aluminum and sheet molding composite (SMC).

Advanced Sport Package
The NSX features an "Advanced Sports Package" with placement of key powertrain components –the mid-mounted engine, twin front motors and Sport Hybrid battery pack and power control unit – optimized to concentrate vehicle mass low and toward the center of the vehicle, to further enhance dynamic response. The combination of this packaging concept and the lightweight body give the NSX the lowest center of gravity in its class.

The NSX utilizes a fully independent, all-aluminum front and rear suspension and puts its considerable power down through ContiSportContact™ high-performance tires—245/35Z R19 front and 295/30Z R20 rear—mounted on 19x8.5 inch front and 20x11 inch rear aluminum alloy wheels. Powerful, natural and confident braking performance is provided by 6-piston front and 4-piston rear monoblock calipers squeezing ultra-high performance carbon-ceramic brake discs.

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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Handling is greatly enhanced by Sport Hybrid Super-Handling All Wheel Drive (Sport Hybrid SH-AWD), enabling lightning-quick response to all driver inputs—steering, braking and throttle—along with the stability, control and launch performance of all-wheel drive. Agile Handling Assist (AHA) uses the subtle application of brake torque to further enhance yaw response and dynamic stability.

The NSX’s dial-operated Integrated Dynamic System features Quiet, Sport, Sport+ and Track modes. The system adjusts engine, motor, transmission and chassis response, as well as the engine sound level, based on the needs of the driver and driving environment. Quiet mode enables electric-only driving at lower speeds for short durations. Dynamic vehicle responses become increasingly sharp as the driver moves from Sport to Sport+ mode and, finally, to Track mode, where the NSX reveals the full spectrum of its performance capabilities.

The NSX also features a "launch" function to achieve the ultimate in "zero delay" launch performance, aided by both the engine and three electric motors.

New Production Facility
The NSX will be manufactured exclusively at the Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, Ohio, where approximately 100 highly-skilled associates will conduct full body construction, paint, and final assembly using domestic and globally-sourced parts.

The PMC and its processes have been developed to perfectly blend associate craftsmanship and technology in a new approach to manufacturing. By in-housing the body construction, Acura maintains complete control over total body quality, including critical strength, suspension accuracy, and fit and finish—from initial construction all the way to final assembly.

2016 Acura NSX High Resolution Exterior
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Associates will utilize innovative techniques to deliver next-generation craftsmanship and world-class quality in the realm of specialized, supercar vehicle production.

Press Release - April 23rd, 2015

In advance of the market launch of the highly anticipated next generation Acura NSX, the engineers leading the supercar’s development shared new technical details and design strategies with the automotive engineering community at the April 22nd SAE Detroit Section dinner, held in conjunction with the SAE 2015 World Congress and Exhibition. Additional information about the team’s efforts to achieve a true "New Sports Experience" included details of the NSX’s world’s first body construction process that helped create a multi-material space frame resulting in class-leading body rigidity, the advanced total airflow management system and an update on NSX’s power unit specifications.

Ted Klaus, chief engineer and global development leader of the new NSX, introduced key powertrain, body and dynamic performance engineers who shared new product and technical details in their related areas of the development. The unprecedented sharing of technical details prior to the car’s market introduction reflects the desire of the NSX development team and the company to inspire the imagination of automotive and technology enthusiasts along with the next generation of engineers.

"Our goal is to create something altogether new and exciting, something that advances the concept of a next generation supercar in the spirit of the original NSX," said Klaus. "In order to provide NSX-level value, we needed to push ourselves to experiment with, refine and then realize many new technologies."

Significant technical revelations concerning the NSX included:

The NSX includes Acura’s first use of a revolutionary multi-material space frame design that delivers class-leading body rigidity while remaining lightweight.
World’s first automotive application of new ablation casting1 technology resulting in world-class body rigidity for ultimate handling and control.
World’s first use of a three-dimensionally formed, ultra-high-strength steel A-pillar, supporting class-leading rigidity and crash performance while providing outstanding outward visibility.
The NSX achieves top-in-class aerodynamics targets without the use of active aerodynamic elements, while its three-motor Sport Hybrid power unit is cooled through 10 heat exchangers all thanks to a total airflow management strategy that maximizes the flow of air around and through NSX.
Displacement of the NSX’s all-new twin turbo V-6 engine was confirmed to be 3.5-liters.
The NSX will mark the introduction of the most capable and highest torque capacity Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system in Acura history.
The latest proprietary logic advances Acura’s two decades-long pursuit of Super Handling that proactively responds to driver inputs, allowing the NSX to achieve a new level of line trace while at the same time intelligently supporting the driver in changing environments.

Additional details on each of these engineering achievements follow:

Multi-Material Body
Acura’s First Application of a Multi-Material Body with Space Frame Construction
Developing the Most Rigid-in-Class, Multi-Material Body

At the core of the NSX mission to deliver timeless sports car values is an aluminum-intensive, multi-material space frame. This innovative space frame represents a next-generation leap in body design with class-leading technology that is exclusive to Acura within the automotive market. Based on internal data, the all-new Acura NSX multi-material body is by far the most rigid in its competitive set.

While the all-aluminum monocoque body of the original NSX was ahead of its time, current aluminum and ultra-high-strength steel-intensive body architecture has been taken to the limit for supercar design.

"For this new NSX development, anything and everything that could offer incredible base rigidity and lightweight design was on the table," said Shawn Tarr, principal engineer and Acura NSX body development leader. "We considered all-aluminum unibody, carbon fiber monocoque and space frame designs and ultimately engineered a multi-material space frame because it offers the lowest weight and best rigidity, precision and hybrid powertrain packaging capability of any design."

A key advancement in casting technology allowed the NSX development team to realize a quantum leap in body design, for the first time being able to engineer a vehicle with castings in key locations for rigidity, that also support the ductility necessary for placement within crush zones.

World’s First Application of Ablation Casting
The Acura NSX heralds the world’s first application of ablation casting technology in the automotive industry. Ablation casting combines traditional casting methods with rapid cooling techniques to offer the design flexibility and rigidity of casting with the ductility and energy absorption characteristics of extruded material.

Traditional castings provide the ultimate rigidity in space frame and other body designs, but have traditionally suffered a major drawback: traditional castings are brittle. With the no-compromise performance goals of the NSX, a groundbreaking new casting method within the crush zones had to be used.

The ablation process allows the ultra-rigid castings to be located within the crush zones and to function as large aluminum nodes, or junction points. Aluminum extrusions are then inserted into sockets in the ablation cast nodes, which act as fixtures that hold the space frame in place during welding.
During the welding process, shorter stitch welds can be applied, enhancing the exceptional, repeatable precision of the NSX space frame construction by reducing heat deformation during the production process.
Ablation castings also enable traditional aluminum castings to be used at strategic locations in the space frame and as the primary mounting points for suspension and power unit components, in addition to being the reference and temporary attachment points during the highly accurate space frame construction process.
Full space frame construction and vehicle assembly are conducted on-site at the new Performance Manufacturing Center (PMC) in Marysville, OH, providing a high level of quality control.

New A-Pillar Construction Technique
In addition to the world’s first casting technology, the NSX applies an all-new three-dimensionally formed ultra-high-strength steel A-pillar that provides next-generation rigidity and precise shape specification tolerances.

The previous generation NSX had a thin A-pillar that provided very good outward visibility. Reflecting this heritage with modern rigidity and roof crush performance requirements demanded this new, ultra-high-strength production method.

Advanced Materials Strategy
NSX represents an advanced expression of modern body design theory: the strategic integration of multiple materials to achieve optimal body performance for numerous targets, including rigidity, dynamic response, superior fit-and-finish and occupant protection.

The aluminum-intensive space frame is complimented with precisely crafted ultra-high-strength steel and anchored with a carbon fiber floor together producing body performance at its peak.
For the new NSX, the body design and technologies are about more than just raw performance – a goal of any supercar development. In keeping with the human-centered supercar concept, the NSX development team went further, to optimize how the car’s performance capabilities are experienced by the driver through the body.
Drivers will experience all of the on-the-rails handling provided by the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD power unit because it is communicated in high-fidelity through the most rigid body in its class.

Total Airflow Management
Engineering a Next Generation Thermal and Aerodynamic Package via Total Airflow Management

To meet the challenge of the ambitious performance targets, radical packaging design and exotic styling for the next generation Acura NSX, the development team had to totally re-imagine the thermal and aerodynamic engineering for this modern supercar so that maximum energy is extracted from the flow of air around and through the NSX with the highest efficiency.

This new total airflow management strategy supports component cooling, aerodynamic performance (drag and downforce) at a very high level without the use of active aero technology, while also contributing to even more dynamic styling.

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) was used extensively during development to allow the U.S.-based development team to maximize the performance of a power unit being developed in Japan. CFD models were run on computers totaling many years’ worth of computational uptime.

Thermal CFD was effectively used in two ways during development: first, for the proof-of-concept in establishing heat management strategy at the earliest development stage and second, for continuous thermal performance improvement as the vehicle matured through development. Extensive involvement of thermal CFD with design engineers during the development enabled maximum design optimization.

Along with the use of advanced CFD, wind tunnel and real world testing, the development team also employed computerized lap-time simulation models of some of the world’s most legendary proving grounds that could then be run on chassis-dynamometers allowing testing and validation of computer models for thermal management.

The all-new NSX employs 10 air-cooled heat exchangers responsible for cooling the front twin-motor unit (TMU), twin-turbo V6 engine, rear direct-drive electric motor and 9-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT).
The all new, twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine at the heart of the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD power unit requires the greatest cooling and receives it through three radiators: one center and two side units to get maximum airflow volume and efficiency. The center radiator is tilted forward 25-degress, allowing the largest, optimized configuration that best utilizes the inherent pressure gradient while maintaining the strict low center of gravity targets of the NSX’s Advance Sports Package.
Condenser and power drive unit (PDU) coolers are efficiently packaged in front of the center engine radiator.
The TMU is cooled passively through strategic use of air in the front motor room and by a heat exchanger mounted in front of the right engine sub-radiator.
The 9-speed DCT is cooled by two heat exchangers, one mounted in front of the left engine sub-radiator and the other in the engine compartment.
Twin-intercoolers located in the signature side intakes are used to cool the intake air charge.

Supercar Aerodynamics
NSX achieves top-class aerodynamic balance and supercar aerodynamic downforce without the use of active aero. Aerodynamic drag is minimized, even while moving large airflows through NSX as it inhales and exhales. Aerodynamic downforce is created through the total airflow management focus on utilizing airflow through each vent, as NSX exhales, and through more traditional aerodynamic shape optimization.

NSX has undergone extensive testing at the company’s state-of-the-art wind tunnel in Raymond, Ohio, using ultra-detailed 40-percent-scale models that replicate all of the intake and exhaust vents, heat exchangers and major under-hood components. These highly accurate scale models replicate drag and lift performance with near perfect approximation. It has been verified and put through its paces at the company’s full-scale wind tunnel in Japan, and on real and simulated proving grounds throughout the world.

Total airflow management vents and precision ducting also help create strong, consistent downforce for NSX and were tuned to optimized forms with aerodynamicist and designer input during working wind tunnel sessions.

Six vortices flow at the rear of the NSX including those that support creating the highest downforce across the rear deck lid.
Flowing from below the car and exiting through meticulously optimized lower, rear diffuser fins is a critical vortex that further anchors NSX to the ground. Uniquely, the fins are not parallel to each other, but are narrower toward the front of the car and wider at the rear. This design creates low pressure and further maximizes downforce.

Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive
A new handling paradigm decades in the making

The groundbreaking Sport Hybrid SH-AWD dynamic torque vectoring technology applied to this all-new NSX represents research and development that has been ongoing for well over two decades.

Next-generation torque vectoring
Acura has been continuously refining its advanced torque vectoring technology while in parallel developing new ways of accomplishing the timeless sports car values of lightweight, rigid chassis and potent powerplants. This all-new Sport Hybrid SH-AWD represents a system injected with more electric power, delivered more directly, managing more internal combustion power than any system Acura has engineered to date.

In keeping with the development team’s ’human-centered supercar’ concept, the new NSX and its Sport Hybrid Super Handling drivetrain were truly engineered from the driver out. While the NSX provides a new sports experience with ’on rails handling,’ its Super Handling technology was optimized to enhance the driving experience by responding instantaneously and intuitively to the will of the driver.

Super Handling is brought to its pinnacle form in NSX where the strengths of electric motors –delivering zero delay acceleration – allows the NSX to offer dynamic torque vectoring even at low vehicle and engine speeds.
Super Handling logic has progressed along a parallel path with hardware. While many advanced automotive technologies are focused on feedback, measurements of how the vehicle is reacting, NSX uniquely applies additional technology to focus on accurately responding to driver input through immediate, precise application of torque at each wheel at any moment.
Using cutting edge computer-aided engineering (CAE) optimization software, engineers created a double-wishbone, double lower control arm front suspension that decouples the twin-motor unit (TMU) torque from the driver’s experience at the steering wheel, providing timeless sports car steering communication to the driver with a new experience of on rails handling provided by the precise torque vectoring of the TMU.
Variable gear ratio steering is applied to further enhance the confident, race-ready driving dynamics of the all-new NSX.

Sport-Hybrid SH-AWD Power Unit
Powering the Sport Hybrid Power Unit with Racing Technologies

As announced at the 2015 North American International Auto Show, the new NSX will utilize an all-new power unit from a clean sheet design. At its heart is an all-new longitudinally mounted twin-turbo V6 engine that is mated to an all-new, Acura-developed 9-speed DCT with an electric motor that applies its torque directly to the crankshaft for higher output with immediate power delivery to the rear wheels.

The new engine has a displacement of 3.5-liters and utilizes pinnacle racing technology, applying both direct and port injection to its design.
The 75-degree V-angle and dry sump design optimizes engine rigidity and further supports the NSX’s Advanced Sports Package by allowing the engine and components to be lowered in the chassis to the maximum extent, resulting in the lowest center of gravity in its class. This also supports the advanced packaging of other engine components.
The engine’s dry sump design also helps maximize vehicle performance in high lateral-G conditions.
The rear direct-drive electric motor applies its torque directly to the crankshaft.
The 9-speed DCT’s main, counter, secondary and output shaft design maximizes the advanced sports package through a configuration that lowers weight and helps to center the mass nearer the driver.

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