We couldn’t have created a better April Fool’s joke ourselves: a Honda S2000 limousine. Only it ain’t April, and this ain’t no Honda S2000.
No, contrary to its ghastly appearance, this is actually a development mule of the next big sports car from Acura. Note how the body has been not only stretched but also widened, with diagonal quad pipes poking out the rear bumper.
Of course, when we say “the next big sports car from Acura,” we are referring to the successor to the legendary NSX, which ceased to be sold in the U.S. in 2005 after a decade and a half of production.
Now, it’s no secret that the next NSX—if it will even be called that—will have a GT architectural layout (i.e., front- or front-mid-mounted engine), as opposed to the same mid-engine program as the first-gen NSX. FrankenAcura here seems to confirm this.
However, what we don’t know is what form the car will take once the bandages are removed. When asked about rumors that the controversial design of the Advanced Sports Car concept had been scrapped, an Acura spokesperson told Car and Driver, “That’s news to me.” He said the reason for displaying the styling buck in Detroit was to show “this is what we’re thinking” about the design direction for the supercar, and he didn’t foresee any “radical departures” from the concept’s Corvette Stingray–esque design.
But then he added that, being so far from production, anything—including a big design change—is still possible. In other words, there is little we can accurately predict about how the NSX will finally look when it makes it here in a couple of years (let’s just pray that this isn’t it)
What we do know, however, is that “NSX II” will have a wee bit more going for it below the belt, if you know what we mean. Acura did a heroic job extracting the most performance out of the NSX, in spite of its small-for-an-exotic 3.2-liter V-6 (with 290 horsepower in its most recent iteration), thanks in no small part to knowledge gained on the racetrack.
For its next exotic, Acura will once again tap into the corporate racing program and install a 5.0-liter V-10 (largely because Honda doesn’t have a V-8 in its stable at this time) with upwards of 500 horsepower. Not coincidentally, this will put it on par with the upcoming Lexus LF-A supercar, which will also boast a 500-plus-horse V-10. The Advanced Sports Car concept was conceived using a rear-drive version of Acura’s deft Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD), but we wouldn’t rule out all-wheel drive, either.
Acura remains mum on final details, of course, but promises to show us something closer to a production model at its press conference during the Tokyo auto show in October. And you can bet we’ll be in the front row