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600 miles yesterday....love my NSX even more now.

1 May 2001
Point of No Return
So I have been dreading going back up to Michigan to see this customer of mine. Partly because it is a 5 hour drive ONE WAY, and partly because the drive is intensely boring (Indianapolis, IN to Birmingham, MI). Well, the customer was needing to see me this week, so I said okay, and decided just to get it over with. Last time I took my Accord so that I could stay low profile at speeds (the NSX and our E63 AMG are NOT low profile), but this time I went out into the garage and decided I did not care to stay low profile, I just wanted to enjoy my drive. So I grabbed the NSX keys, piled a bunch of stuff in there for work, and headed out shortly after 8 a.m. for my drive.

Still a bit groggy as I slipped into my cozy OEM seats (I have a 3 year old that thinks sleep is optional, so these seats were like a nice comfortable hug), put the key in the ignition and twisted it, and the symphony began. The bark of the Taitec JGTC Parallel Exit exhaust as the engine sprang to life made me smile, and suddenly I was a bit more awake than before. :)

Coasting out of the garage, down the driveway, and snicking the car into first gear to pull away from home the morning sun was reflecting off of the Grand Prix White hood and fender tops with an almost magical orange glow. I weaved my way through town and entered the highway with windows down, radio off, and overpasses quickly approaching as I came to the bottom of my ramp. Liberal application of the throttle while submarining under the overpasses resulted in the full bodied echo of all of Sochiro Honda's engineering genius enveloping me as the intake and exhaust roared, and valves switched to their more aggressive cam lobes. 8,200 RPM...switch gear...repeat. Accelerate again....glance at speedometer...and let off of gas. Smile. Begin to breathe again. Yes, this magnificent car still takes my breath away after over a decade in this particular one, and 18 years in an NSX. It is simply stunning in every way.

The sun continued to rise, and after 100 miles or so of gliding along on my magic carpet ride, I really noticed that the NSX seems to be 'comfortable' and in its own groove, around 85 - 95 mph. Yes, I know that is speeding, but I am just making an observation, and appreciating the engineering that makes this marvel settle into its own at speeds where other cars begin to feel less stable. The NSX could run all day at those speeds (or slightly higher) and not be the slightest bit bothered to do so.

As my trusty NSX and I made our way to our appointment, and hundreds of miles had passed beneath us (including watching the odometer roll past 184,000 miles with great haste), I really appreciated how much time the engineers took to make everything just right. I did not have to look to adjust the climate control or any dials, because they are all right where they should be intuitively. It is like they called me up and said, 'Ummm, Mitch. This is Honda R&D. Could you come by and get fitted for that NSX you will eventually buy? We want to make sure everything is exactly the way you want it'. Well, that is the way it feels anyway. ;)

After arriving and completing our business, the NSX and I left for home in a downpour that was not there when I went in. Stopping for fuel and to feed the hard working team of cylinders and valves seated just behind me, I did my usual checks of oil level, and looking underneath the car to check the tires, and make sure nothing was leaking or dragging. Everything perfect, as usual. Part of the fuel stop checks are for security, and part are just because I never get tired of looking at the lines of this car, and all of the individual components that go into making it what it is. Body panel shapes, suspension arms that look like they came from a modern art museum, engine compartment with its myriad of perfectly placed and designed components. It is just spectacular.

After feeding both the NSX and myself, we blasted home at a spirited pace in order for Daddy to make a date with bed time, and tuck in a certain 3 year old that insists that Daddy be there to read to her. During the trip, I did not listen to the radio for even a second. I either listened to the sound of the engine and exhaust, or eventually plugged my iPhone into the OEM stereo and listened to sound clips of the NSX with Senna driving it. Something about listening to an NSX video while driving an NSX just seemed like a great idea at the time. Then listening to a Senna movie play while enjoying the fruits of his inputs into suspension and vehicle dynamics of the NSX made it even more fulfilling. Being in the moment of knowing that the exact view I had of staring out over the sloping hood of the NSX, tops of the wheel well humps and fenders prominent in my vision, and listening to that marvelous engine sing, was the same one seen by Ayrton Senna....well, that just made it perfect. :smile:

Returning home and backing into the garage, I gave the throttle a little 'blip' to echo the exhaust off of the garage walls and to let my Baby Girl know that Daddy was home to read her a book and put her to bed. My daughter and our dog both know and love the sound of the NSX, and are excited to hear it. I sat for a moment and smiled. All told I had driven a little over 600 miles, and felt great. I had traveled in amazing comfort in a dream car that back in 1991 I thought I would never own. 18 years, 3 NSXs, and literally hundreds of thousands of miles later, the NSX is STILL the quintessential sports car for me. It is everything that embodies perfect design and function, understated elegance and beauty, and reliability usually only found in 'mans best friend'. This is not just a car to me. It is my friend, place to go for solace, amusement park ride, and perfect escape to enjoy the world with a smile on my face. I cannot wait to be able to slide back into that Onyx leather seat and do it all over again the next time. Thank you, Mr. Honda. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You made the perfect sports car. :smile:
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Mitch You're killing me. First the MT NSX/LFA video earlier this week, now your post...I really should be leaving for Columbus OH in a different car than my 191k mile Accord... soon... Reminds me of any of the 50+ drives I used to make back & forth between Plymouth MI and Pittsburgh PA in my 300zx. Next time consider stopping at the Coffee Bean in Plymouth MI on your way home. Great coffee and even better outside sitting area that's elevated from street level, perfect to enjoy the view of your parked car and energize up for the drive home. May even see Neal's blue or imola cruise by... Great post, life is good...Now I know what I'll be thinking about for the first hour or so. Time to go!
Great read. You should be writing books lol.
You should write a book call 50 SHADES OF WHITE! :biggrin:

LOL!! That would be awsome. :biggrin::cool:

Funny thing is that one time I actually read a book called 'Darwin's Blade' only because the main character drove an Acura NSX, and the author actually owned one. Good book too. I would recommend it to anyone. :)
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Such an inspiring and visual post. I could picture in my head your entire trip and feel it inside my mind. It brought a smile to my face and a warmness to my heart. I look forward to a time when I can feel the same type of passion for a similar machine. One day, I too will own the one thing I have been in love with for over 20 years and look back at your words and live a similar experience. Thanks
What a fun read, Mitch. I love how you took something where most would just settle for prose and you turned it into poetry. I'm a little less afraid of the mileage now as well. Thanks!
Mitch, great read and definitely something I can relate to. I love that you drive your NSX and enjoy it so much. Life on the road is exciting - I just got back yesterday from a 6-day, 3744-mile adventure in my 2013 ILX.

Congratulations on your 8,000th post too.
Nicely put, Mitch! I agree wholeheartedly. I put 600 miles on a drive in my NSX last month, and just did a Kartchner Caverns drive this past Saturday. Even though we encountered pretty heavy monsoon storms, the drive was still a blast! The miles roll by so quickly in an NSX, but every one of them is so amazingly enjoyable thanks to Honda's great engineering and design work. Thanks Honda!
If you hold onto it long enough, you just might be able to appreciate it... :rolleyes:
Seriously, thank you for penning what the majority of us feel every time we settle into the driver's seat...
Best, Tim.
Great read. I could picture every moment. Love reading your posts!
Nothing against your story as it was very well written; however, if a semi-lengthy drive in your NSX left that much of an impact then you're doing yourself a large injustice of not driving it more.