Acura NSX pushes super car design envelope

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NSX220150505Calling the 2016 Acura NSX a technological tour de force is an understatement. To put it more accurately, the latest version of the soon-to-be-released Acura NSX can set a good number of design trends for super cars in the future.

From its body made from aluminum, carbon fiber and high-strength steel, to its propulsion system that includes three electric motors complimenting the twin turbo-charged engine, it is very hard to overlook how the mid-engine 2016 Acura NSX will influence future super car design.

The company even used the Society of Automotive Engineers 2015 World Congress last month as a venue to show off the technological features of the Acura NSX.

“In advance of the market launch of the highly anticipated next generation Acura NSX, the engineers leading the super car’s development shared new technical details and design strategies with the automotive engineering community at the April 22nd SAE Detroit Section dinner,” Honda said in its website. Acura is a brand under Honda.

“The unprecedented sharing of technical details prior to the car’s market introduction reflects the desire of the NSX development team and the company to inspire the imagination of automotive and technology enthusiasts along with the next generation of engineers,” it added.


Among the features of the 2016 Acura
NSX that has the super car world abuzz is its Sport Hybrid SH-AWD system with dynamic torque vectoring. Simply put it, the system utilizes electric motors to complement the 3.5-liter V6 twin-turbocharged engine of which the actual power output has not yet been revealed, although in excess of 500 hp won’t be a surprise.

“The groundbreaking Sport Hybrid SH-AWD dynamic torque vectoring technology applied to this all-new NSX represents research and development that has been ongoing for well over two decades,” Honda said.

The electric motors sends more torque to the wheels, which will make them gain more traction and give the super car more control when taking those corners and hairpins fast.

The power from the V6 engine is sent to the rear wheels through a nine-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission

Another feature the 2016 Acura NSX is its Total Airflow Management, which Honda says “supports component cooling, aerodynamic performance [drag and downforce]at a very high level without the use of active aero technology, while also contributing to even more dynamic styling.”

“The development team had to totally re-imagine the thermal and aerodynamic engineering for this modern super car so that maximum energy is extracted from the flow of air around and through the NSX with the highest efficiency,” Honda added.

Extensive research testing
Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) was used extensively during the development phase of the 2016 Acura NSX to allow the US-based team developing the super car to maximize the performance of the engine that was being developed in Japan. Wind tunnel and real-world testing was also conducted alongside the utilizationof CFD.

The Total Airflow Management uses 10 air-cooled heat exchangers to cool the electric motor units at the front, the V6 engine, rear-direct drive electric motor, and the transmission system.

Three radiators cool the all-new, twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine that creates an enormous amount of heat. One of the three radiators is located at the center, and the other two at each side.

The other technological advancements from the 2016 Acura NSX include the multi-material body.

“For this new NSX development, anything and everything that could offer incredible base rigidity and lightweight design was on the table,” said Shawn Tarr, principal engineer and Acura NSX body development leader. “We considered all-aluminum unibody, carbon fiber monocoque and space frame designs and ultimately engineered a multi-material space frame because it offers the lowest weight and best rigidity, precision and hybrid powertrain packaging capability of any design.”

Meanwhile, the styling of the 2016 Acura NSX is the boldest ever from the stable of both Acura and Honda. The good news is the styling of the 2016 Acura NSX was based more on science than aesthetics, even if the super car has bold styling features like multi-LED headlamps and an aggressive stance.

“Aerodynamic drag is minimized, even while moving large airflows through NSX as it inhales and exhales. Aerodynamic downforce is created through the total airflow management focus on utilizing airflow through each vent, as NSX exhales, and through more traditional aerodynamic shape optimization,” Honda said.

When it comes to creating downforce for the super car, Honda said “flowing from below the car and exiting through meticulously optimized lower, rear diffuser fins is a critical vortex that further anchors NSX to the ground. Uniquely, the fins are not parallel to each other, but are narrower toward the front of the car and wider at the rear. This design creates low pressure and further maximizes downforce.”

The styling of the 2016 Acura NSX is enough to cause buyers and aficionados of super cars to try to find a way to get one in their garage. Compared to the previous Acura NSX, the latest iteration looks completely different, and ready to claim its place alongside the other popular super cars of today. There is no way the tag “super car pretender” can be affixed on the latest 2016 Acura NSX, simply because it is a super car in every sense.

The buzz is the 2016 Acura NSX will be released at the latter part of this year as a 2016 model.

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