2017 Acura NSX first drive review Page 3

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Supercar sheen

The NSX is a stubby two-seater, but interior space is ample for adults. At 176 inches overall, it rides on a 103.5-inch wheelbase, a few inches shy of a Civic sedan.

There's plenty of room in all directions for 6-foot drivers, especially in head room, though the NSX sits low at 47.8 inches high. The base four-way manual seats can be optioned up to power leather-and-suede buckets with lumbar adjustment. The driving position is excellent, but the bottom cushion angle isn't adjustable on any except the most expensive seats.

In some ways, the NSX is as big as an RLX sedan. It sits 87.3 inches wide and in stock form, weighs 3,803 pounds. That's despite a body that makes fairly extensive use of lightweight materials. The passenger cell is made of aluminum. Body panels are aluminum and composite. The floor pan is carbon fiber, the roof pillars high-strength steel. 

In another sports-car irony, you can pay to make the NSX lighter. Acura will sell a carbon-fiber roof panel, interior trim, even a rear lip spoiler. Colin Chapman, meet P.T. Barnum.

There's no solution for the meager trunk space. At 4.4 cubic feet, it'll fit a couple soft-sided bags, and that's it.

2017 Acura NSX

2017 Acura NSX

Enlarge Photo

Crowding in on $200,000

It's deceptively easy to spend a lot on the NSX. The base price of $157,800 including destination includes power features; leather; tilt/telescope steering; keyless ignition; dual-zone climate control; ambient lighting; and a 7-inch touchscreen interface for audio, including Bluetooth with audio streaming, HD radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The NSX also comes with a multi-angle rearview camera, but front and rear parking sensors are an option. Off the menu entirely are active safety technology features such as forward-collision warnings, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and blind-spot monitors.

Configuring an NSX with some options lifts the price breathtakingly close to $200,000. The carbon-based pieces alone add thousands, whether you order carbon-ceramic brakes ($9,900), the carbon-fiber trim package ($9,000), the carbon-fiber engine cover ($3,600), the carbon-fiber roof panel ($6,000) or the carbon-fiber interior trim ($2,900).

A Technology Package will feature a 9-speaker ELS audio system, a navigation system, AcuraLink, and front and rear parking sensors. It's either $2,800 or $3,300, depending on whether you pre-pay for satellite radio.

Color and trim options polish off whatever change you'd expect from the dealer. Painted brake calipers are $700; full power seats are $2,500; an Alcantara headliner is $1,300; and special red or blue paint runs $6,000.

2017 Acura NSX

2017 Acura NSX

Enlarge Photo

Inflation-adjusted, the original NSX's sticker of about $60,000 would be about $104,300 today. With a plan to sell just 800 cars a year in the U.S., the new NSX's huge premium over that might not matter much. They'll be exceedingly rare for at least a couple of years, while cars trickle out of the Ohio facility that's essentially hand-building them.

The first NSX was a rare bird at first, too. A purely conceived halo car, it had no point other than to show Honda could build its own Ferrari, minus the badge.

The new NSX reasserts that authority. The purity has been replaced by a wildly inventive synthesis of drive systems. It's a technological flagship, and a convincing one.

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