HEADLINES

1999 Acura NSX-- Introduction

The intention in creating the Acura NSX, first introduced for the 1991 model year, was to produce a hand-built, exotic, midengine sports car that would establish entirely new levels of prestige, performance, refinement, drivability and reliability. The aluminum bodied NSX is designed to represent an entirely new definition of the exotic sports car through state-of-the-art, lightweight technology.

As the NSX has evolved during the 1990s, it has been continually hailed as a technological showcase.

The NSX-T model introduced during the 1995 model year, which features a removable roof panel, broadened the appeal of the NSX. It also succeeded in maintaining the extremely high levels of performance and sophistication established by the NSX coupe. Technological achievements include an optional Formula One-inspired SportShift automatic transmission with a unique steering column-mounted electronic shifter; a drive-by-wire throttle system and standard variable, electric power-assisted steering (EPS), a compact and efficient system pioneered in the first-year NSX equipped with automatic transmission.

The 1997 NSX/NSX-T took a giant step forward in performance with several major enhancements - the most notable of being a larger, more powerful 3.2-L, 290 hp, V-6 engine with a 6-speed manual transmission.

Other significant engineering updates included larger brakes and improved Antilock Braking System, refinement to the Electronic Power Steering System, application of new aluminum alloys for lighter-weight, high-rigidity body panels, adoption of special heat reflecting window glass and an antitheft vehicle immobilizer system.

For 1999 the NSX will continue as Acura's ultimate exotic sports car by combining world-class performance, styling and prestige with exceptional refinement, drivability and reliability.

CONCEPTS AND GOALS

In designing the original NSX, light weight was chosen as the core technological path to achieve best-in-class attributes:

  • Top-rank performance equal to or greater than existing exotics
  • Excellent livability- the NSX is as easy to live with as any other Acura
  • Outstanding handling
  • A high level of comfort and ergonomic design and low ambient-noise level;
  • Reliability and durability equal to mass-produced automobiles
  • Extremely high level of fit, finish and materials
  • Limited production
  • Excellent climate control system to keep the occupants comfortable under any weather condition

The NSX achieved all of the above and set new benchmarks for exotic sports cars. Goals for the NSX-T included all the original attributes of the NSX, plus the intangible excitement of open-air motoring. Priorities included:

  • Excellent body rigidity for precise handling.
  • Outstanding levels of noise insulation.
  • Providing a convenient storage compartment for the roof panel.
  • Minimizing wind buffeting at speed.
  • Providing a security system that functions with the top removed.

OVERVIEW

The midengine, two-seater NSX offers two distinct powerplants. The standard engine is an all-aluminum 3.2- V-6 that produces 290 hp and 224 lb ft of torque mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. An electronically controlled 4-speed automatic transmission with Formula One-inspired SportShift mode is optional and comes with an all-aluminum, 3.0-L V-6 that produces 252 hp and 210 lb ft of torque.

Both engines are normally aspirated and are equipped with dual overhead cams, four valves per cylinder, a Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control (VTEC) system, and a Variable Volume Induction System intake configuration. They also offer Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) and a direct-ignition system that uses six individual coils, one mounted atop each spark plug, instead of a single coil for all six cylinders.

The chassis features an all-aluminum construction for light weight. The four-wheel independent double-wishbone suspension also features aluminum-alloy control arms and hub carriers front and ear to minimize unsprung weight for optimum handling. Aluminum subframes for the front and rear suspension further limit suspension mass. The braking system features large-diameter, ventilated four-wheel discs and an advanced four-channel Antilock Braking System (ABS). The sophisticated Traction Control System (TCS) has been designed to help limit wheel-spin and enhance control.

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