The original Acura/Honda NSX is one of the most legendary Japanese cars of all time. It challenged the idea that supercars had to be impractical and unreliable, and it was (and still is) regarded as one of the best driving machines ever made. While Honda has released a new version of the NSX, it is the first generation that gets motoring enthusiasts hot under the collar, and now is your chance to own one.
This 1991 Acura NSX has travelled just 1,700 miles from new and is in exceptional condition. The car was produced in July 1990 and was purchased by its current owner from Val Strough Acura in Pleasanton, California on September 6, 1990. The car has remained in the San Francisco Bay Area its whole life and has been stored in a climate-controlled facility when not being driven (which must have been quite often).
The car is fitted with a 3.0-litre VTEC V6 engine paired with a 5-speed manual transmission. Just three colours were available for the first-year NSX, and this one is finished in Formula Red with a contrasting black roof.
This NSX sits on the factory wheels, measuring 15-inches in diameter at the front and 16-inches at the rear. It also retains the original Yokohama A-022 tyres – measuring 205/50 and 225/50 -- which were fitted to the car from new. The original temporary registration tag still remains affixed to the windshield, and a Val Strough license plate and paper insert still sit at the back.
On the instead, the car retains its stock Bose audio system, steering wheel, shift knob and other features. The interior is absolutely immaculate (as you would expect from a car that has only travelled 1,700 miles) and all of the factory keys are included.
If you happen to be the lucky buyer of this piece of motoring perfection, you will also get the factory owner’s manual and cover, a coffee table book, the service history and more. The car has a clean Carfax report and a clean California title.
At the time of writing, the bid for this NSX is around $105,000 but we expect to see that rise dramatically as the auction progresses. Nineties Japanese cars are starting to fetch some eye watering sums (like this Supra for example) and we expect this NSX to be no different.
A Brief History of the Honda NSX Generation 1
The story starts in 1984 when Honda decided to create a concept that would be a testing ground for future technologies. Honda’s goal was to produce a car that could compete with the likes of the Ferrari 328 and later the Ferrari 348.
They worked with Pininfarina to create a concept that would later evolve into the NS-X (New Sportscar Experimental). This concept featured a 2.7-litre V6 engine from the Honda Legend, but Honda decided to develop a new 3.0-litre VTEC unit for the production NSX.
The design team was headed up by Masahito Nakano, and Executive Chief Engineer, Shigeru Uehara. They also enlisted the help of Formula One drivers Aryton Senna and Satoru Nakajima to develop the chassis and handling of the car.
The NSX was unveiled to the world in 1989 and went on sale in 1990. In 1992, Honda launched a more hardcore version of the NSX known as the NSX-R. This was a stripped out racer for the road and featured a lighter body and a tuned engine.
Honda would go on to create other models such as the NSX-T (targa style), the NSX-S and the NSX-S Zero. In 2002, Honda gave the NSX a makeover (these cars are known as NA2s) and changed a number of things on the car (new headlamps, body styling, updated engine). A second NSX-R was launched in the same year and despite being based on a 15-year old design and being 100hp down on power, the car could lap the Nurburgring in a time equal to that of Ferrari’s F360 Challenge Stradale.
Following the release of the NSX-R, Honda decided to create an even more hardcore version of the NSX known as the NSX-R GT. This was developed for Japanese Super GT homologation requirements and featured a number of performance upgrades (lowered suspension, further weight saving, etc.).
Production came to a halt in 2005 due to poor sales, however, the name lived on through the likes of the Mugen RR concept and the Super GT NSX. In 2015, Honda launched the second generation NSX, but the first gen is still out favourite.
If you would like to know more about the history of the NSX, make sure you check out our “Complete History of the Honda NSX Series 1” article.