Choosing the right used Acura NSX is a fairly straightforward process since changes were few and limited throughout its 15 year run. It was sold from 1991 through 2005, and a first-year NSX isn’t very different from a 2005 model. The lack of changes speaks volumes on how advanced and well designed the Acura NSX was. The normal changes expected for other cars through a long production run were not needed. The lack of major changes just means that you can buy an earlier model used Acura NSX and be content that you’re not missing out on much.
At its unveiling, the NSX featured a 3.0-liter V6 developing a healthy 270 horsepower and 210 lb-ft of torque. It was the first production engine to feature variable valve timing and a variable-volume intake manifold. The NSX delivered its power to the rear wheels with a 5-speed manual transmission. Also available was a four-speed automatic but with a de-tuned V6 making only 252 hp.
1997 marked the only power upgrade for the Acura NSX with a larger 3.2-liter engine producing 290 hp along with a new six-speed transmission. The automatic transmission equipped NSX kept the previous 3.0-liter V6.
A targa (removable) roof model, the Acura NSX-T, became available in 1995 and in 2002 became standard as the coupe was dropped.
In 1999 a limited-production Alex Zanardi Edition was available as a fixed roof coupe with special wheels and a stiff, sport-tuned suspension.
The last Acura NSX update was in 2002. Along with the coupe version, also dropped were the flip-up headlights and the monochromatic interior. These were replaced by fixed HID headlights and updated interior trim. The suspension was stiffened and larger wheels and tires were added. A sequential-shift mode for the automatic transmission was also available.
The consensus of Acura NSX reviews has painted it as the “sensible super-car.” That appears to be the case when price, performance and reliability are combined, since a used Acura NSX is probably the perfect entry vehicle into the “super-car” world.