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Rumors on Next Gen NSXs

12 May 2000
Redmond, WA
I read this from the vtec.net site. Don't know if this is just a rumor or not... What caught my attention was the part about how Honda is trying to keep the NSX under $55k and if they can't do it, then they won't be offering the NSX at all in America.
2003 NSX = The specs for the next NSX have been completed for approximately 8 - 12 months. There will be no subtle reskin/engine improvement to the current car as the Japanese car mags have been speculating (PhotoShop).
Instead, scheduled for a late 2002 arrival as a MY 2003 car, the all new NSX will be mass produced from Honda with near 100% steel based construction.

The new car will offer a singular engine option of a massaged 4.0L V-8
(technologically similar but not identical to the powerplant in the 2001 RL sedan) that produces between 400 and 450HP. Price is estimated at $50K, but will not exceed $55K. The exec was adamant about this point, even
stating that if Honda can not deliver the car to North America for a retail price that equals less than $55K tops, it's likely that it won't be offered there at all.
The "mass produced" and $55K price point sound worrisome. I hope each individual next-gen NSX gets the same hand-crafted, loving attention that they do today. And I hope it's just as exotic and state of the art as the NSX was 1991.

I wonder who Acura considers to be the competition for the NSX? Corvettes, Boxsters maybe? An interesting upcoming sports car in that price range is Lotus' mid-engine M250 (previewed in the April/May 2000 issue of Sports Car International magazine). It's definitely inspired by the current NSX.

I really think they should go after the Ferrari 360 Modena, and with a 400HP V8, they are certainly in the same performance class. And replace the automatic/SportShift model with a real F1 shifter like the F355 and 360 offer.

Acura should strive to make the most state of the art, high-performance exotic sports car possible, and spare no expense. If it costs $100K and only sells 300 units/year, so be it.

If they want to make a mass-produced $55K sports car that sells a couple thousand units a year, they shouldn't call it an NSX.

- Stephen
'99 NSX-T
Originally posted by sas:
If they want to make a mass-produced $55K sports car that sells a couple thousand units a year, they shouldn't call it an NSX.

Well, I have to agree with this statement for sure! We have all made the choice to own the most under-rated and under-appreciated car ever made. Giving tens of thousands of people a $55K car that is a mere shadow of the original would seem to further belittle the true value of the real exotic that we all know and love (and paid for).

Gordon G. Miller, III
Y2K NSX #51 Yellow/Black
You know I love my NSX and I like the fact that it is a fairly rare car that is considered and exotic.. but some of you guys are going off on the wrong track. It seems that you want the car to stay an exotic for your own greedy reasons. Let's face it the car should be about being a premier leader in performance, technology, and refinement, price is an irrelevant issue. As far as the car being made of steel, you should all be aware that aluminum really doesn't save that much weight especially considering it is not as strong and as a result more raw material is required to make a part of equal strength in steel, this renders the weight factor almost negligible. Case in point there are many steel body cars out there that are plenty light and have very good stiffness (any body ever heard of TVR?).
We should all be lucky to even have an NSX, Honda looses money on each one it sells and the only reason they keep on selling them is marketing and image. I really don't think we will see a very high end NSX as before but rather a car that has equal (or better) performance than Porche and Ferrari at a much more competetive price. Look what they did with the S2000, it's by far the best sports car in it's class and also the cheapest and by no means has it's price lessened it's image. Remember cars are for driving first and the more people we can share our love of the NSX with the better.
On the new car I have heard a number of times that even with steel and the bigger V-8 the weight should still be the same or less than the current generation car? But by far I can't wait for an oportunity to ride and buy a 400hp V-8 NSX with a 6speed F1 stle tranny.
#1 - the next generation 2003 NSX will be powered by a 3.5L V8 producing 396 H.P.

#2 - ALL Honda's, including those that are mass-produced, are very well made products... but saying that the NSX is built with "loving attention" is a stretch.

#3 - Honda does not... I repeat... does NOT loose money on every NSX they sell.
Whatever the nextGEN NSX will be, I'm sure it's going to be something awesome. Be it 400+HP, made of Steel, non-pop up headlights, Front wheel drive, Rear wheel drive, front engine, rear engine, Targa, non-targa, etc. I just hope that they don't discontinue the NSX due to slow sales & cost of manufacturing the NSX, just like how the following cars were removed from the lineup: Supra, 3000GT, 300ZX, RX7... All were fantastic cars, but fell prey to low demand & high cost.

I've had my NSX-T for almost 2 months now and I have no buyer's remorse for getting it, even though I could have bought a corvette or a viper for less than what I paid for my NSX. It's something about owning and driving the finest & the best in Honda/Acura engineering. Not to mention the looks I get from all the people who drive the integras, civics, preludes, etc. Simply priceless.


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Originally posted by steve-a:
#1 - the next generation 2003 NSX will be powered by a 3.5L V8 producing 396 H.P.

#2 - ALL Honda's, including those that are mass-produced, are very well made products... but saying that the NSX is built with "loving attention" is a stretch.

#3 - Honda does not... I repeat... does NOT loose money on every NSX they sell.

With regards to my earlier comment on Honda loosing money on the NSX. I am not an accountant for Honda Japan (as we all aren't) so none of us really know for sure, but I did read an interview with a highly ranking Honda Exec who did indicate that Honda was not making a profit on the NSX and in fact they were loosing money. However, they would continue to produce the car as it is a "image thing". Granted my knowledge is only based on an article I read in a major auto magazine a couple of years ago but unless the story is fabricated I would think there must be some truth to it. At the dealer level they do make a profit and I'm sure it's pretty good.

p.s. don't ask me which magazine or what month/year it was. I do have good memory but not that good.
Re: Honda's profit/loss on NSX production:
It's hard for me to imagine that a vehicle produced in a factory exclusively devoted to its production, making maybe 500 vehicles per year, can generate much of a profit for Honda. The costs of maintaining any automobile manufacturing plant, not to mention advertising, etc, must be very high.



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"Honda looses money on every NSX they sell"

Harsh words, but I believe they are indeed true. I recall the same article that jon69 referred to. If you recall the initial production targets of 3,000+ cars per year, then needed to make those figures work for 10 years just to pay for design, Research and development, factory and tooling, etc.

With numbers dropping to below 9% of original yearly targets you can imagine that Honda is hurting to recover the hundreds of millions of dollars it must have spent to design, engineer, produce, distribute, sell and service all the NSXs out there.

As westernb4 says it just doen't make sense. It doesn't take an MBA from Harvard to see that Honda is taking a bath on this project and bleeding red ink all over the 2003 proposed project drawings. The Honda S2000 is a perfect example of how to make a car millions want and hundreds of thousands can actually purchase. If I were Honda, I would rather sell 100,000 2003 NSXs at make $10 each on them, than lose money on the 285 NSX they will sell this year.

Gordon G. Miller, III
Y2K NSX #51 Yellow/Black


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Originally posted by G-man:
[BIf you recall the initial production targets of 3,000+ cars per year, then needed to make those figures work for 10 years just to pay for design, Research and development, factory and tooling, etc.[/B]

And that 3000 was just for the US... the original goal was to have the factory producing 25 per day!

Honda may not lose money on a "cost of materials and direct labor per unit" basis, but I'd say anyone who thinks they're making money on the NSX if you take ALL costs into consideration (R&D, tooling, marketing, etc.) is indeed smoking more than just tires...
It was my understanding that the NSX was profitable if Honda made 2000-3000 units per year. If you have a infrastructure set up for that quantity it seems obvious that Honda might be losing money when they make a tenth of that quantity.

It's a double-edged sword. Sure, it's nice when Honda makes only several hundred units a year. It makes the car exclusive and special.

However, I'm concerned that at 200-300 units per year it won't make sense for Honda to continue.

I can't help but think keeping the production numbers in the 2000-3000 is good thing for Honda and for us enthusiasts. A steel-bodied, V-8 with 400 hp with the quality level and panache of the current NSX would be very interesting. If it were priced at $55K-$60K, I think the quanitities would come back to the 3000 level and long term future of this wonderful car would be assured.


1991 NSX Blk/Blk
1974 Vette 454 4 spd
Damn, if a $55K model offered the same performance and quality, our NSX's will drop in value overnight. I'll be watching very carefully.

94 Red & Tan NSX. One of 35 made that year.
My 95 red NSX-T gets driven fast and all over the local mountains, and I reproducibly get 22 mpg. It seems very unlikely that a new V8 will give that kind of efficent performance when pushing around a heavier steel car. Furthermore, my 270 HP car goes like a bat out of hell, and frankly I don't need or want more HP. The car is so fast that it's scary, not only to me, but also my passengers. Let's say Acura could fit a light 5,000 HP V12 (8 mpg) behind your butt in this new steel car. Would this make the new NSX a better car than the old ones? Obvious answer: NO!

To me, my 95 all aluminum car is perfect. If the new NSX is as described above in this thread, when it is introduced I certainly will continue to own a most exotic sports car: the ORIGINAL and PERFECT NSX-T!!! Happiness is not just having more. Happiness is knowing when enough is enough, and I have arrived!


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I agree with you guys. My current 91 is just about perfect. I can't imagine anything that could be too much better. However, I also have confidence in Honda that they're the only company that could improve on the current design.

More power, perhaps. I guess more torque would be nice if the car was a bit more heavy.

I agree that the prospect of $55K NSX will have an effect on resale values. I think post-95 model year cars would be most affected since those are the years that saw the price rise drammatically.

Does anyone remember the original 1991 SRP? I'm thinking it was in the $40K range. We're now pushing $90K and I think at that price the NSX sales numbers have dwindled. At that price you get people (I don't necessarily agree with them) who figure that for $90K they can buy just about any exotic car. It's a different world at that price.

I think there's a happy medium somewhere. I think the NSX should always be positioned above the Corvette. In status, technology and in price/performance. I don't think Honda would ever want to produce or sell as many NSXs as Vettes. I think 2000-3000 units per year still provides an exclusive vehicle.

I won't disagree with those owners who will say that even at $90K the NSX is a fine machine without peer. However, I do believe that the production numbers must increase for this vehicle (and our owner/enthusiast community) to survive and prosper. If bringing out a new model at $55K-$60K, that maintains the design spirit and philosophy of the current car, achieves that, then I think that will be a good thing in the long run.

Then again, I'm not the owner of a new 2K NSX either, so what do I know...


1991 NSX Blk/Blk
1974 Vette 454 4 spd
Originally posted by Jimbo:
Then again, I'm not the owner of a new 2K NSX either, so what do I know

Well, as an owner of a NEW 2000 NSX, I can tell you that I went through all of this in my head and on paper before buying an NSX, and since the issue was raised, it might be fun to share it here.

Actually, there is very little that is really EXOTIC to buy at $90K. I had my money down on a 1999 Ferrari 355 for $130,000 and took it back to buy the NSX. Saved myself $40K+ and got a better car to boot. I also got nothing but attitude from some Acura dealers when I balked at the $90K price tag. I still remember the $68K MSRP from just a few years ago. $88K is a long cry from $68K for not much better car. One even told me to "go buy a vette then, you can get those for 1/2 of the NSX cost. And I almost did, until I realized what a piece of crap the Vette is compared to the NSX.

The hard part was when I found out I could have bought a Dodge Viper GTS for LESS than the NSX. That really hurt. It too is fairly exotic, very well known and has a phenominal social following. And to make matters worse they won Daytona 24 hours race this year by placing 1st, 2nd and 4th (or 5th) overall! Unprecidented win by ANY manufacturer. But, in the end, it still does not handle and drive as well as the NSX and it is not as reliable, comfortable or as inexpensive to service or repair... especially body work.

In the final analysis, unless you wanted to pay $130K+ for a Ferrari or $230K+ for a Lambo there isn't really much that is really exotic that can be had for under $1,000 a month on a lease except the NSX.
I have to admit that I would not have paid any more than I did for mine ($84,000 - All options). The car has reached its limits and unless Honda wants to be more visible in its racing efforts here in the US or spend a boat load of cash in advertising, it will NEVER carry the mistique of the Ferrari, but it still will be one hell of a car.

Gordon G. Miller, III
Y2K NSX #51 Yellow/Black
Another quick comment...

I also went through the calculations in my head of why pay $90K for a 2000 when you can buy a 1997 car that is almost identical to it for only $60K and save another $30K! If you walk that reasoning out a little further you can see why a 1991-1993 car is such a value at sometimes less than $30K. There are so few fundamental changes from 1991 to 2000 that everyone should definately look at a 1991-1993 car and save $60K along the way.

The only reason that I didn't do that is that I have heard some horror stories... many of them for you people
... about how many NSXs are "mistreated" by their owners. I would hate to inheirit all kinds of problems from the previous owner that doesn't baby theirs like I do mine. I even read some of the problems you guys post and ask myself, "Jeez, mine doesn't rattle, make noise, shake at idle, come apart... etc, and so either I feel real lucky that I got a good one, or my time has just not come yet for me to run into it. Either way, I am a bit gunshy to pay $60K for a 1997 car that might be worth $40K thanks to all the damage done that can't be seen. This is an expensive car, and can be wonderful, but if treated poorly, it can bite you later... afterall, it is still an exotic and exotics refuse to be "tamed".

Gordon G. Miller, III
Y2K NSX #51 Yellow/Black
I agree with Jimbo on this one. I wondered how the new NSX would affect the value of my car but overall it would be better if they continue production. I assume that the new car will be on the same vein as the original (best car for any money, no compromise) and does not morph into something different like some cars do (ie: T'bird). Besides it gives me another car to add to my collection (time to start expanding the garage... again).

I would be rather driving my 91 today then waiting for the new NSX to show up.

H. Gunner
91 NSX blk/blk