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2017 Acura NSX GT Car

2017 Acura NSX GT Car

Even though it hasn’t hit the streets yet, the 2016 Acura NSX is already in its second season of competition in the GT500 class of Japan’s Super GT series (where it races as a Honda), and now it’s looking increasingly likely that the NSX could race elsewhere, in either the GT3 or GTE classes or possibly both. But to understand Honda’s intentions, it’s also important to understand the sometimes confusing world of GT racing.

GT racing is currently in the middle of renaissance, and Honda isn’t the only company getting in on the action. The FIA’s GT3 class in particular has exploded in popularity, with countless series in Europe, Asia, North America and South America. There are no factory teams. Instead, the cars are sold directly to racing teams, but the corporate proxy battle between Porsche, Audi, Mercedes, BMW, Lamborghini, Nissan and McLaren has been raging for years, with Bentley and Lexus joining the fray more recently. The cars are relatively inexpensive and easy to maintain, which makes them ideal for privateer teams.

The FIA GTE class, on the other hand, is more often the reserve of factory-backed racing teams, and includes the 2014 Chevy Corvette C7.Rs and 2013 Porsche 911 RSRs that compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the GTLM class in the United SportsCar Series. Despite having a similar appearance, they’re more complex and expensive than GT3 cars. They’re thought to be bit quicker too, but that’s far from certain, since the two classes rarely compete at the same venue.

Sportscar365 recently asked Honda Performance Development VP and COO Steve Erikson where he thought the NSX GT will end up. “That’s what we’re trying to figure out,” said Eriksen. “It was one of the reasons I was at a recent race at Road America, to try and get a sense of what the options are and how well those options fit with American Honda’s plans of promoting the car.”

Acura currently runs its 2015 Acura TLX-GT in the Pirelli World Challenge series. Several GT3 cars currently compete in the series, but it’s slated to adopt full GT3 rules for the 2016 season, which would make the all-wheel-drive TLX-GT ineligible. With a new GT3 spec NSX, the company could continue to compete in that series and potentially even sell a few to customer teams. A GTE NSX, on the other hand, would be eligible to compete in high-profile endurance races, like the 24 Hours of Le Mans and other World Endurance Championship rounds.

So, with that in mind, let’s take a deeper dive into what we might expect from an NSX GT race car.

Continue reading to learn more about the Acura NSX GT Car.

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Honda Says There's Room For Another Sports Car

Honda Says There’s Room For Another Sports Car

A new mid-engine Honda sports car that will slot in between the upcoming 2016 Acura NSX hybrid supercar and the Japan-only 2016 Honda S660 kei car is looking like more of a real possibility. We’ve seen a few patent images of the new car, but Honda is yet to announce anything official, or even mention anything about the new car, until now.

“I can’t tell you anything about the ‘baby NSX’ … I could, but I’d probably get fired.” That’s what Honda of America vice president John Mendel recently told AutoGuide, when asked about the possibility of a new mid-range Honda sports car. That’s not a confirmation, but it’s definitely not a denial either from someone who likely has a pretty good idea of what’s in Honda’s product pipeline. AutoGuide went on to ask if there is room for a dedicated sports car in Honda’s current lineup. “Absolutely there is,” Mendel responded.

So, what shape could this new Honda sports car take? The 2019 Acura ‘baby NSX’ will likely be positioned in Porsche Boxster and Alfa Romeo 4C territory. Styling will echo that of the new NSX, but feature a speedster body with a stowable top. It should get the turbocharged 2.0-liter four cylinder from the 2016 Honda Civic Type R mounted behind the rear seats and mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Unlike its probable rivals, the ‘baby NSX’ could be a hybrid, with a pair of Honda’s Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive motors powering each of the front wheels. Total system output should be around 400 horsepower.

Reports indicate that the new car will be sold as a Honda, both abroad and in the United States (instead of as an Acura), meaning it could revive the S2000 name.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Is This The Acura NSX Roadster?

Is This The Acura NSX Roadster?

The long-awaited second generation 2016 Acura NSX is slated to finally hit the streets in 2016. This week, there’s a custom-built 1991 Acura NSX convertible advertised at a used-car lot in Massachusetts making the rounds of the Internet, and it’s a reminder that a roadster version of the 2016 NSX is all but a foregone conclusion. A series of renderings picked up by a Dutch online newspaper show patent-office photos of a car that looks suspiciously like an NSX with a removable roof panel.

Acura hasn’t released any details or even confirmed that a convertible version of the NSX is planned (no prototypes have been spied in testing that we know of, either), but it’s a safe bet that such a car would follow the coupe’s introduction within a year or so, and use the same hybrid-boosted V-6, all-wheel drive and nine-speed, dual-clutch transmission as the coupe.

There was never a convertible version of the original NSX, so the body rigidity of the roadster in Massachusetts might be a little suspect, especially since there’s no mention of who built it. The conceptual images that have surfaced show what appears to be a removable roof panel that leaves a sculpted rear deck when down, similar to the drop-top version of the new NSX that appeared in the 2012 Marvel blockbuster The Avengers, with Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark at the wheel.This design also looks like it retains much of the coupe’s structural rigidity.

Continue reading to learn more about the Acura NSX Roadster.

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2016 Acura RDX

2016 Acura RDX

If there is one thing Acura knows well, it’s SUVs. It has long been an industry leader in luxury SUVs, and the RDX is no exception. It had massive success in 2014, as it led its class at 44,865 units sold. Despite this, Acura decided not to rest on its laurels, but has decided to give the RDX a refresh on the inside, outside, and under the skin. This new RDX debuted at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show on February 12.

With all of the details in hand, it is clear that Acura’s plan is to make every one of its vehicles as similar to the wildly successful TLX sedan as it can. Like the sedan, the 2016 RDX received the Jewel Eye headlights and a 3D grille. Also added were some tech updates and a slight power boost under the hood.

Updated 04/15/2015: Acura announced prices for the 2016 RDX, which is now on sale. The model will be priced from $35,270 – an increase of just $175 over the 2015 model year.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Acura RDX.

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Acura Prepares Lots Of Customization Possibilities For The New NSX

Acura Prepares Lots Of Customization Possibilities For The New NSX

Meet the Once and Future King.

It doesn’t always pay to be the first at everything — just ask everyone who ever left on a boat, never to be seen again. Honda was indeed sailing into uncharted waters when it released the original NSX — a budget-priced supercar that handles, idles and actually starts when you turn the key? "Variable valve timing?" What’s that? The NSX was in many ways an unwelcome revelation for sports car makers worldwide, a game-changer that forced hands and preceded a revolution in sports-car design, refinement and sophistication.

Honda paid for it, too. The original NSX was a critical wunderkind, a dadaist poke in the eye of "serious" sports car makers like Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini, and later, Lambo’s corporate cousin Audi. Almost immediately, those companies responded to the NSX by releasing new designs that were increasingly docile around town, faster and safer on the highway, and (most importantly) laden with horsepower, gadgets, computers and luxury options well outside of Honda’s budget ballpark. It’s not easy to justify a $100,000 surcharge for a badge alone.

Now, the Empire of the Rising Sun strikes back, rising to meet the Italians and Germans right in their own market. Ever wonder what Honda could have done with $100,000, and a point to prove? Yes, indeed — The Once and Future King is back to reclaim his throne. And this time, he’s coming with all the hardware he needs to meet the usurpers on level ground. Let the war begin.

Click past the jump to read more about the Acura NSX.

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Acura Wants HR-V Based Crossover

Acura Wants HR-V Based Crossover

Acura is still riding the wave of enthusiasm it created by introducing the 2016 Acura NSX, but while this sports car looks great on wallpaper backgrounds, video games and magazine covers, the automaker will need a lot more than a limited-production, halo performance car to keep up with its luxury rivals in other segments. That product could be a potential entry-level crossover slotting in beneath the RDX and based on the all-new 2016 Honda HR-V subcompact crossover.

In an interview with WardsAuto, Honda Executive Vice President John Mendel suggested that Acura is considering its own version of the small HR-V, but he didn’t exactly confirm the new model or provide any details. As more luxury automakers begin launching new compact and subcompact utility vehicles, a smaller Acura crossover would make a great one-two CUV punch alongside the popular Acura RDX, which is receiving a makeover for the Chicago Auto Show.

If this model comes, expect it to follow the same design language as the rest of Acura’s lineup, with the shield grille and narrow, jewel-eyed headlights, while wearing a new derivative of Acura’s _DX crossover nomenclature. As far as pricing goes, the new Acura crossover would definitely cost less than the $35,095 RDX, but competition includes the $31,200 BMW X1, the $32,500 Audi Q3 and the $33,300 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class.

Click past the jump to read more about Acura’s future crossover.

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Acura Plans a More Powerful NSX Type R

Acura Plans a More Powerful NSX Type R

Even though most of the glory expected by the 2016 NSX was stolen by the bonkers-looking Ford GT concept car in Detroit, it seems that Acura/Honda is only getting started in this segment, as an even more powerful and lighter NSX Type R model is already in the works. Of course, its actual horsepower and weight are still a bit of a mystery, as the only official numbers regarding the NSX’s powerplant mention "over 550 horsepower." With that being said, a future NSX Type R should probably get more than 600 horsepower, along with a major reduction in weight.

Most of the information above comes straight from Ted Klaus, the chief engineer for the new Acura NSX, who confirmed it during an interview with Auto Express during the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Considering that the first-generation NSX saw a Type R variant some two years after its official unveil, the earliest we could see a version of the new one would probably be 2017. Nevertheless, the simple fact that the carmaker is considering something even more hardcore and maybe even track-ready is enough to make us get all hopped up.

Naturally, pretty much every detail concerning the new NSX-R can only be regarded as speculation right now, but there should be plenty of different features on the model to make it worthy of the red "R" nameplate. The original NSX Type R didn’t even have an audio or air-conditioning system, thus dropping quite a lot of weight compared to the already-light NSX, so a drastic weight loss should also be expected from the future model, along with redesigned suspension kinematics and even more horsepower.

Click past the jump to read more about the Acura NSX-R.

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Acura Integra Could Get a Successor

Acura Integra Could Get a Successor

For years, the Integra represented accessible, sporty refinement, mixed with the renowned dependability of Acura’s parent company, Honda. Without question, the Integra was one of the most widely tuned cars in the history of aftermarket performance, and an enormous following of enthusiasts and parts makers remains today. Many clambered to experience the high-rev shriek of the Integra’s VTEC motor at full song. So when Acura halted production in 2006 with the DC5, also known stateside as the RSX, many lovers of the 2-door, front-drive sport coupe felt left out in the cold.

Now, however, Acura is trying to reclaim those sporty credentials. This year at SEMA, Acura brought a lightly-modified TLX and it’s twin-turbo GT sibling to showcase what can be done if someone with the intention of going fast buys an Acura. The race car is great if your commute consists of qualifying laps and battling for the checkered, but it doesn’t really mean a whole lot to anyone looking for a streetcar. The lightly modified TLX, on the other hand, looks good, but it’s still a grocery-getter on coilovers. While the TLX might make a decent family sedan, what Acura really needs is a two-door coupe that is both tunable and cheap enough to appeal to a younger crowd. What Acura really needs is a new Integra, and it looks like that may actually happen.

Speaking to Car & Driver, Acura chief designer Dave Marek was unable to divulge any specifics, but did hint at the possibility of a sporty, entry-level vehicle coming to Acura’s lineup sometime in the future: “A performance brand needs a flagship and it needs an accessible sport car. Not a sports car, but a sport car.”

If Acura does come through with an affordable sport car, Marek confesses it might happen in 2017. “There are lots of resources and activity going into making Acura back into what it was,” Marek said.

Click past the jump to read more about the Acura Integra.

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Spy Shots: Acura NSX Goes for Another Testing Session

Spy Shots: Acura NSX Goes for Another Testing Session

If you haven’t already seen it, we are celebrated Halloween with a list of cars that we never want to see come back from the dead. To keep with that theme, let’s take a look at a car that was dead, but has thankfully been resurrected. The upcoming Honda NSX supercar was last seen testing at Nurburgring where it unceremoniously burst into flames and subsequently burned to the ground.

Since that fateful day, the Acura has risen from its fiery grave and is back to tackling the ‘Ring. We caught some video footage of the machine just a few days ago, but now we have our official spy photos. The car looks stunning, and I am beyond excited that most of the wild concept styling is remaining to make it to production.

We still don’t have any more details about this AWD hybrid supercar, but it is nice to see it running around the track again. With a supposed public debut in about six months, Honda needs to get those bugs worked out soon.

Click past the jump to read more about Acura NSX.

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Video: Honda NSX Goes Back to Nurburgring

Video: Honda NSX Goes Back to Nurburgring

The last time we saw Honda’s latest and greatest supercar, the NSX, on the Nurburgring, it was slowly smoldering and turning into a pile of carbon fiber and ash. Thankfully Honda wasn’t fazed by the fiasco, and has since returned to the Green Hell with a new, and fully functioning NSX prototype, all wrapped in camo.

The car is definitely going through some rigorous suspension testing, and it does look like the test drivers are giving this car a proper thrashing. Each run sounds like its at full throttle, there is plenty of tire squeal, and they even bottom out a few times by hitting the mini carousel at such a high speed. They are going for broke for this and it’s awesome.

The sound is a pretty interesting thing to hear as well. While there is a fair bit of motor noise, you can hear a lot electrical whine from the hybrid system that’s getting a work out too. This is most easily heard when the car is coming in for a turn, and the regen system starts harvesting energy.

As a bonus, there is even just a hint of Jaguar growl in one shot thanks to the NSX being chased by an F-Type. Press play and look at the NSX, driving around the ‘Ring, and not catching fire.

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Acura Looking Into Offering Standard AWD on All Models

Acura Looking Into Offering Standard AWD on All Models

Acura remains a brand trying to find its way, as many luxury buyers simply don’t see it as a premium enough brand to warrant a high entry fee. With Acura’s sales falling well behind Lexus, BMW and Mercedes as of September 2014, Honda’s luxury arm needs to do something to boost sales. Acura is working on solutions to this issue, and one answer is to do what many other brands are doing these days, steal a page from a successful brand’s book.

Specifically, Acura is considering offering all of its models with standard all-wheel drive, according to Automotive News. The hope in moving to standard all-wheel drive is to develop a brand image that keeps buyers coming back for more. Acura head, Koichi Fukuo, says he looks to the recent success of Subaru and Audi, in building their brands around selling almost exclusively AWD vehicles. Fukuo feels Acura may be able to tap into the same market and build more customer loyalty.

Currently, Acura offers at least one form of all-wheel drive on all of its models, sans the

Civic

based ILX, and roughly 50 percent of its sales include all-wheel-drive. Additionally, with Acura’s two next-generation all-wheel drive systems — a revised SH-AWD and the new Sport Hybrid SH-AWD — this take rate will likely increase. Despite this trending toward all four wheels getting power, all Acura models, including its crossovers, come standard with front-wheel drive.

According to Fukuo, this idea is currently under consideration and a final decision isn’t ready to be made. While I love the idea of standard AWD in every Acura model, the brand also needs to continue separating itself from Honda like other luxury brands have in recent years. Sure, the all-new TLX is a nice step in the right direction, but it is still easily identifiable as a redone, albeit a very well-redone, Accord.

Click past the jump to read more about Acura’s future move to AWD.

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Acura NSX Will Go On Sale in 2016; Aims At Ferrari 458

Acura NSX Will Go On Sale in 2016; Aims At Ferrari 458

Be still my beating heart, it seems that the new NSX is real, production-ready, and it will be on sale in a little over a year. After what seems like decades of rumors, prototypes and speculation WhatCar? has confirmation of new performance stats, pricing brackets, efficiency targets and a launch timeframe. The benchmarks they are aiming for include names like Porsche 911, Audi R8 and Ferrari 458. They are aiming high with this one.

For performance the article quotes Ted Klaus, the head of NSX development as saying, “We have to achieve the type of acceleration that the customer is achieving with the [458 Italia]. More importantly we have to achieve this every day and also at the Nurburgring.” That is some stout speed and handling coming from Honda’s hybrid powertrain. Because it’s a hybrid, Honda is also aiming to have the new NSX at the top of class when it comes to efficiency. Klaus stated that, “The 911 is the most efficient performance car today and we will be well clear of that.”

So that is two main rivals being shown up by the NSX, but what of the Audi R8? Klaus says the R8 is being targeted as the price benchmark. Considering it is the cheapest of the mid-engined supercars, Honda is aiming for a cheap machine. When Nissan came out with the R35 GT-R they proved that you could make an insanely fast supercar for cheap. It looks like Honda is going to try the same trick.

As a final piece of news, our source here claims that the production NSX will debut next year at the Tokyo Motor Show with sales commencing early in 2016.

I can’t wait.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Acura NSX.

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