Driving 30 Years of the Honda NSX

Discussion in 'Cars in General' started by GTPNewsWire, Feb 14, 2019.

  1. GTPNewsWire

    GTPNewsWire Contributing Writer

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  2. Jump_Ace

    Jump_Ace Staff Emeritus

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    Best article evar! Great work as always gents! <3


    Jerome
     
  3. Famine

    Famine Administrator

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    Best day evar!

    I also got some time with this - not enough, but some:
    notannsx.jpg
     
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  4. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    @Famine

    You needed one with pop-up headlights. :)
     
  5. Jump_Ace

    Jump_Ace Staff Emeritus

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    Man, I'm so jealous. Hows the legroom in the NSX, roof room? I think it'd be a tight fit for me. That Type-R is now more powerful than the 90's NSXs I think. How's it compare handling-wise?


    Jerome
     
  6. Famine

    Famine Administrator

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    I did indeed. I've got this cool mate with just such an NSX who lives near two awesome, iconic places in the USA who - although he doesn't know it yet - I'm arranging a trip to see so we can, among other things, take it and the new one to one of those places. And meet his kids :D
     
  7. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    That sounds awesome! Sounds like a great guy too... and handsome. :) Now you've really piqued my interest about what these iconic places might be. I've got so many ideas.
     
  8. CallawaySS

    CallawaySS

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    1st gen nsx, the car that I wanted since I was small. Unfortunately, it's getting more and more expensive over time. My dream version is 2002 Type R, which is the fastest and rarest version of the 1st gen. But I would be completely happy if I could get at least the early 90s with manual transmission with good condition.
     
  9. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    Ok now...

    The 2002 has no pop-up headlights, so that's a big problem right there. Secondly, the type R has no AC, no sound deadening, no audio, and the steering wheel is in the wrong place. It's not really a road car. If you want to lust after a rare NSX, lust after the Zanardi version. :) That's the best of the road-going NSXs.

    @Famine

    Was that 1990 version with the automatic sold with left hand steering? Because that would make for a good EV conversion if it's cheap.
     
  10. CallawaySS

    CallawaySS

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    Yes, I know what kind of car it is. But if I had a money for that car, I wouldn't daily drive it obviously. I would drive something else. And I prefer fixed headlights.
     
  11. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    Why?
     
  12. CallawaySS

    CallawaySS

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    At first I preferred 1990-1997 models with Pop-ups, when I was like 4-6 years old. I even remember when my uncle had some car models, one of them was 2002 type r and the other was 1990, I thought the 1990 looked cooler and found the 2002 uninteresting.

    But then, when I was 7 years old I got a GT5 Prologue. There was a 1991 Acura and a 2002 type R. The newer version was much faster and it had a Honda badge on it. I began to use it a lot and liked it more. When I was 9, I got Gran Turismo 5 and there I used this car even more. I also started watching some Best MOTORing videos featuring this car and I was amazed how fast and capable it was. Then I had GT6 and used it a lot there aswell. My love for this car was just raising and raising, till it because my favorite car.

    Like I mentioned before, this car is basically a top version of the 1st gen NSXs and also the rarest, most special one. I would say it's even the ultimate Honda sports car. All this just made me like Face-lifted versions more. I also like the rear end more and wheels. Although, I'm starting to like Pop-ups version too now, especially because in GTS there is only non-facelifted '92 R version :lol: So who knows, maybe I'll change my mind over time But at the end they are both beautiful cars, and both NSXs. I'll likely be more able to afford the oldest one with pop ups though.
     
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  13. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    So I want to come back to this one because I think a lot of people don't quite think through their love of track-heavy cars.

    The Type R (and S-Zero) is not a good road car. It's uncomfortable and loud, and its skills over the regular NSX are not well used on the road.

    The Type R (and S-Zero) is also not a good track car.

    I know I know, the room is spinning and that's blasphemy. Just hang on a second and I'll explain how on earth that's even remotely reasonable. Yes, it's fast on the track. Yes it's built for the track. It's not built perfectly for the track. It has some road compromises. No big deal though, that can be dealt with in exchange for having great track performance. Here's the problem...

    It's worth too much.

    You do not want to have a 6 figure off-track experience. Very few people can afford to have a 6 figure off-track experience. You don't just need to be able to afford to buy a Type R to enjoy it on the track, you need to be able to afford to trash it if you actually want to take it to the track. For example, I can afford to own my NSX, but I cannot afford to track it because I cannot afford to waste it. I'd need quite a lot more money before I was willing to track my NSX. And I'd need twice that again (or more) before I'd be willing to track a Type R.

    The other problem is the availability of inexpensive alternatives for the track. A roughed up E36 M3 is still relatively inexpensive by comparison (or boxster, miata, MR2, E30, 330i, 325i, and maybe some 996s). Tear out the interior, sound deadening, stereo, AC, windows, replace the seats, add a 5 point harness, add a roll cage if you're getting real, remove exhaust bits, replace rubbery forgiving suspension links with ball bearings, corner balance, mega camber, great tires, and go have a blast. If you run off track and tear some body work... meh... replace it with plastic, who cares. Keep going. That's what a track car should be.

    Car enthusiasts need to understand that the track is not the place for your garage queen road car. The track is a place where cars get roughed up a bit. It's better suited for an uncompromised car that has a kill switch and a fire extinguisher. For $30k, a trailer, and a pickup truck, you can have an insane track car that will behave how track cars are supposed to.

    Where does this leave the Type R? It's not good for the road, and you'd have to be slightly insane to track it. Well unfortunately it is in collectible land. It has the same problem as a McLaren F1 with 100 miles on it (or well... actually any F1). You'd have to be slightly crazy to actually use it. Sure you can put the Type R on the road, but why? Sure you could take it to the track, but why?

    That's fine, it's a legendary car, and it's collectible. It's just not very usable.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2019
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  14. kikie

    kikie Premium

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    I have found a few beautiful NSX's on a Belgian website. These cars are so expensive.
     
  15. Hayden

    Hayden Premium

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    Danoff raises a very, very good point, which I never considered myself until I had a close call on track with my then-financed, daily driven GT86.

    If you can’t afford to easily replace it, you can’t afford to race it.

    With a collectible or limited edition car it gets worse. The risk of lowering the total amount of those cars in the world is doing a disservice to a vehicle you clearly like a lot to be buying one in the first place.

    That doesn’t detract from the idea of it being the ultimate version of a given car however. And that idea, even if it’s never actually put to use, will always have mass appeal to car guys.
     
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  16. homeforsummer

    homeforsummer Premium

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    Couple of points here I'd like to address.
    I've heard this a lot, and I never really get it. Who are these people for whom going to the track is one and the same as throwing their car in the gravel? I know the internet is full of people in R35 GT-Rs lobbing it up the inside of others at the last second and people barrel rolling at the Nurburgring but if you're driving within your own and your car's abilities you shouldn't get close to having an off, regardless of the car.

    I'm aware tracks put additional strain on cars in ways that road driving doesn't - engine, transmission, brakes, tyres, suspension, everything basically - but then what is a track car (any car you take on track) if not something you're prepared to spend a little extra on when it comes to parts and consumables?
    I'm sure you're already aware but this is so much just your own opinion and not a statement of fact. It's certainly something that people who take rapidly-appreciating Porsches of various vintages to track days I've been on wouldn't agree with - cars worth far more than an NSX-R.

    Now I'm not denying that you could take [cheap car] and throw a load of parts at it and probably both go quicker and have more fun, but then fun is relative too. We had this discussion in another thread - I'd have more fun on track in an MX-5, you'd have more fun in an E36.

    If there's someone out there who'd have more fun in an NSX-R - even simply because of what it is, rather than what the alternatives could be - then I can't see the problem with that. If I was wealthy enough to own an NSX-R and say, a Caterham R500, the latter being in theory a far better track car, you can bet your ass I'd still take the NSX-R on track now and then.
     
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  17. mustafur

    mustafur

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    To think the Type S is still more hardcore then anything sold outside of Japan, and it's the soft one.
     
  18. Tornado

    Tornado

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    The Type S was the Zanardi.
     
  19. McLaren

    McLaren Premium

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    If you can afford a NA2 Type R, you can afford to buy a new one if you trash it to the point of totaled. They're $200,000+ cars.

    [​IMG]

    As long as you have the funds to maintain the car, track/drive it all you want. You got folks out there banging gears on $35+ million GTOs on the track....



    McLaren F1 owners get together once a year or so for 3 day drives somewhere in the world.
    [​IMG]
    Tuscany, 2014.

    [​IMG]
    Utah, 2018.
     
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  20. homeforsummer

    homeforsummer Premium

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    They say money can't buy happiness but I can't imagine I'd be too unhappy shipping my McLaren F1 half way across the world for a road trip...
     
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  21. McLaren

    McLaren Premium

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    If a dream ever becomes a reality, here's your registration.
    https://white-labelevents.com/106-drivers-club/

    Looks like they are planning a P1/Senna gathering for McLaren this year.
     
  22. mustafur

    mustafur

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    Yes but with 50kg heavier, the weight difference is the same as the S Zero to a normal Type S.

    I wouldn't say it's the same as the Type S, considering the Base Manual JDM NSX is a still lighter then the Zinardi.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
  23. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    First of all, there are people with insane amount of money who can afford to literally walk away from a million or multiple-million dollar cars. But those are not all of the people that own those cars. Many of the people that own those cars cannot afford to just walk away, and take them where their insurance covers an accident.

    Another edit (this post is Frankenstein):

    Second of all, the point of taking a car to the track is to get much much closer to the limits of the car than you're supposed to get on the road. You can drive a car half way on the track in order to preserve it. That's especially true if you rent the entire track for yourself (or buy a track). But wouldn't you prefer to have the right tool for the job? A car you don't have to worry about and which delivers track performance in spades?


    In the case of the Type R, it's not merely a question of "spend a little extra". You literally cannot get some of those parts. If it breaks, it's gone. Kinda makes you want to take a car which would be tons of fun at the track without costing you a small fortune in parts or value.

    As noted above, some people are just insanely rich. Or perhaps they're just willing to risk huge portions of their net worth on having a hoot at the track. Not all of the owners fit into that category.


    I don't see a problem with that either. I'm saying that you need a huge bankroll to do it. Bigger than most people think, much bigger than the bankroll that it takes to actually buy one.

    Define wealthy enough. $2M net worth? No, I don't think you'd be taking your NSX-R to the track if you had $2M in the bank. You could buy one, sure, but you're just not realistically going to put 10% of your net worth on a track and walk away from it if totaled. Unless you just happen to be someone who values the track experience above all else and will not settle for anything less. In which case, I think you're a little nuts. I mean, in this scenario, you literally have a Caterham you could take instead.

    You can buy track insurance but... what are they gonna do? You've messed up a car that cannot be put back to its original condition. Now what? In many cases, they'll slap it together (somehow) and call it good - explain to you that you've got your car back, so you're made whole. Sure it's worth $100k less, but you got your car back, it's the same color as it used to be. Their job is done.

    If i had $10M in the bank I would still not be willing to risk $200k on a track day. I would need to be pushing more like $50M or $100M to do that. And there are people that have that much and more. So of course it happens. And then there are people that are just willing to take crazy risks with their money. So of course it happens. But it's not every owner, and it's not something that just because you can afford to buy a Type R you can do. Hell, almost anyone can afford to buy a Type R. You literally just need the cash to buy one, hell, not even that, you could get a loan to buy one. And you can afford it because it's not going down in price. Any time you need the money you can just sell it. If you can afford a $200k house, you can afford a $200k Type R.

    Nope. I can afford a Type R now. I can't afford to trash it. Or maybe you think that "afford" means the ability to trash it. I'm not sure why that would be. I can afford a house, I can't afford to burn it down and get no insurance from it.


    I'm not seeing a track there. I'm seeing a road. I'm not seeing people who are pushing their cars to the limit. I'm seeing a road where people are presumably driving somewhere close to the law.

    Edit:

    And comeon, realistically now, the NSX Type R is not as good as much cheaper alternatives. Why would you take enormous personal risk to take a car that is not as well suited for the track? This is starting to sound religious to me.

    I think this no-man's-land is a real problem for some cars, and I think the Type R is in it.

    Edit 2:

    Ok, so here's the problem with the Type R in a nutshell. Let's say I have $5M in the bank and own a pristine Type R. And let's say I have a hankering for taking a fantastic track-oriented NSX for a track day.

    My Type R represents 4% of my net worth. And it's the jewel of my car collection. What am I to do? Take it out on the track?

    Nah, I think I'll buy a high mileage regular NSX for like $40k, slap $20k worth of parts on it, and have a BETTER time at the track and risk a quarter of the money. Actually, if you really break it down, the risk is far less than a quarter, because tearing a bumper off of a high mileage NSX is not going to tank its value the same way it would for a Type R. It might only cost you a few thousand in repairs and get you right back on the road with an equivalent car.

    This is the problem with the Type R. It's in a strange place in terms of what it's for and what it's worth.

    Edit 4:

    Here, like this guy:

    http://www.fastvoice.de/NSXfiles_engl.html

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
  24. mustafur

    mustafur

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    So your mixing a collectors mindset with someone who is willing to track a car.

    Alot of the sceniaro's you have pointed out suggest your level of wealth, you say you can afford the type r without affording to track it, so that's not exactly what anyone here is talking about.

    If tracking an NSX-R isn't an issue if you crash it money wise you would probably be willing to replace it with another NSX-R rather then trying to find parts for it, even though it uses most parts on other cars, the biggest difference is interior stripping, suspension and brakes, still uses the same driveline as other NSX from the same era.

    It's the same thing as taking a M3 CSL to the track.
     
  25. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    That's a huge swath of people.

    Edit:

    I specifically said that anyone can afford a Type R (including getting a loan). And I also said that $5M is not enough to be able to dispose of one. So you've got me pinned down to somewhere between 0 and $5M. ;)

    You can't just assume that all exotic car owners have infinite wealth.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
  26. mustafur

    mustafur

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    This whole thing is about assumptions so what's the difference.
     
  27. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    Ok, sure. The Type R is a great track car platform. If you have enough money to view $200k as a project that you can light on fire, great. Go buy a priceless Type R, put a kill switch, fire extinguisher, harness, swap out the suspension bits to stiffen them for the track, supercharge it, remove the glass, upgrade the brakes. Yup... I can't make too much of an argument with that. With infinite funds you could gut a Type R and make it a really great all-around track day car.

    All we have to do is assume someone that practically doesn't exist, and they can then behave in a way that is horrible from just about any car enthusiast's view, by trashing a rare super cool car. Awesome.

    Getting back to reality, if you want to have a great track experience in an NSX, trash a high mileage regular one just like the guy I posted. It'll be better than the Type R (with brakes that sound like a freight train and suspension that doesn't give), less expensive, and won't make you cry.
     
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  28. mustafur

    mustafur

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    I personally wouldn't track any low numbered valuable car, a good twisty road would be enough for me and in that sceniaro a rare collectable car would be very suitable since it's pretty much what they are designed for.

    Having a car on a trailer is much different to driving said track car to the track though surely you know this.
     
  29. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

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    That's where I am as well. Which is why I prefer the NSX over the NSX-R. Because it has things like sound deadening and AC which make that twisty road a more pleasant driving experience. This is the no-man's land for the Type R that I was describing

    I'm not sure what you're getting at with this. I think that it's a mistake to try to drive your car to the track. I mean, if that's the only way you can do it, fine go for it. But ultimately, when we start talking about 6 figure sums, I think it's a big mistake.

    The thing I'd like to say to all car enthusiasts is basically what James May has been preaching for some time now. Setting up a car for the track ruins it for the road. You don't want the same things. You don't want AC at the track, or even windows. You don't want a stereo, or sound deadening, or a muffler, or tires that are good at cold temperatures, or the ability to move in your seat, or airbags. You need room for a helmet. You don't care if your brakes are quiet, or clean, you care if they can stop the car from a thousand miles an hour as fast as possible over and over and over. And the one thing you really don't want, is for it to be preciously valuable!

    This is why I find the ultra-track-performance version of many sports cars to be more pointless than just about anything else on the road. It's ultimately a very compromised vehicle for the road, in exchange for not going far enough at the track. You want a super light flywheel that forces you to shift as fast as humanly possible, but not for the road! For that road that's super annoying.

    The track toy is just not a good road car. And road cars like the Type R, that are track focused, seriously run the risk of not doing a great job of either, especially when the price starts to go way up.
     
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  30. Jump_Ace

    Jump_Ace Staff Emeritus

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    This ;) And Danoff, where can I drool over some of your NSX pics?

    Aaand this. So true. Or you could just go karting at a local place like K1 Speed. No car maintenance at all!

    Jerome
     
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