Epic Road Trip Adventure: Assembly To Track 2020 Acura NSX

Source: Forbes

I recently had the opportunity to take an inside look at how the Acura NSX gets built.  The fun didn't stop there! I was able to drive an NSX off the factory lot to the legendary Daytona Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, for the endurance Rolex 24 hour race.  Acura supports several incredible racing teams such as Acura Team Penske and Meyer Shank Racing, both of whom participated in the race. These racing groups use Acura sourced vehicles and parts to compete in the longstanding endurance race. After all, Acura was born to be an enthusiast brand with racing heritage behind the badge, as we see today in the NSX.

Acura hand assembles the NSX supercar in Marysville, OH.  Just down the road in Anna, OH, the engine gets individual, manually built treatment in a specialized facility by Honda's best engine assembly crew.  Many crew members who work in the NSX manufacturing plant, as well as Honda's general assembly, have worked for the company for over 30 years. 

After spending the day touring the facilities, we headed to the lot to find an array of sparkling new NSX supercars with just 30 miles on the odometer. Those 30 miles aren't road miles though, as Acura brakes in every NSX engine, so it's ready to hit the racetrack right from the factory line.

Over the next three days, we drove through Ohio, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.  A wonderfully scenic route was planned out in advance that took us through some of the most enjoyable back roads in the country.  This allowed us to experience just how capable the NSX truly is. 

Having driven several other cars in this class like the Audi R8 and Porsche 911 Turbo, I can say with confidence that the NSX outhandles the 911 Turbo and is neck and neck with the Audi R8. It's able to achieve such incredible handling dynamics due to the use of active dampers and a variable electric power steering system, which adjusts to your driving speed and steering inputs to ensure you keep the shiny side up. Torque-vectoring AWD also plays a vital role in allowing the NSX to handle like it's on rails, giving you the confidence to head into curves at speed and feel the g-force take hold of your body.

The NSX is a mid-engine hybrid supercar, using battery technology in conjunction with its turbocharged 6-cylinder engine. This highly sophisticated system uses an all-new twin-turbocharged mid-mounted V6 engine and a direct drive motor that supplements the driver with instant torque response. The front wheels are mechanically independent of the rear power unit.  Instead, the front wheels use two electric motors, while the rear wheels get power from the twin-turbocharged V6 with one direct-drive motor and the 9-speed DCT. 

The result is instant torque from the electric drive unit and a total system output of 573 horsepower and 476 lb.-ft. of torque, which is suitable for a 0-60 time of just 2.9 seconds. The NSX clocks a quicker time than the Audi R8 V10, Porsche 911 Turbo, and McLaren 570s. 

Final Thoughts

It was an incredible experience seeing the NSX come to life right before my own eyes. Those who make this supercar dream a reality, do so at the Performance Manufacturing Center in Marysville, Ohio.  These highly skilled workers are handpicked, and most of them have over 20 years of experience at Honda manufacturing vehicles. The NSX is such a unique performance vehicle from many different angles, one of which is that it's hand-built in the USA and can go head to head with Ferrari's, Lamborghinis, and McLarens. While performance is present in this car, it also retails for a fraction of the price, starting at $157,500. Plus, it's an Acura product that will require less maintenance than an Italian supercar. 

Driving it off the factory lot in Ohio and piloting it down to Florida on an epic road trip to watch Acura race in the Rolex 24, was a testament to just how focused Acura is on motorsports and how the NSX is truly a supercar ready to hit the track.

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