By Nat Shirley
Tuesday, Jul 22nd, 2014 @ 11:22 am
 
It's been nearly a year since we last saw Acura's upcoming NSX, but the gas-electric supercar has reappeared undergoing shakedown testing on Germany's Nurburgring.
Although still sporting heavy camouflage, it's clear that the NSX is nearing production-ready. The last time the NSX made a public appearance it was lacking several details, but this prototype is fully equipped with things like lights and grille covers.

The NSX's final exterior design was previewed by a concept car at the Detroit auto show.



That concept also featured a full-functional cabin trimmed in leather, carbon fiber and suede. The layout is said to afford excellent visibility, and a "Simple Sports Interface" keeps button clutter to a minimum and lets the driver focus on the road ahead.

Sport-Hybrid SH-AWD system
The Acura NSX will make use of Acura's Sport-Hybrid Super-Handling All-Wheel-Drive system, which teams a mid-mounted VTEC V6 with a trio of electric motors - one integrated into the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and two mounted at the front wheels.

The V6 and the gearbox-mounted electric motor power the rear wheels, while the other two electric motors motivate the front wheels and can add or dial back torque as needed for optimal grip and performance.

Precise details remains scarce, but the latest rumors indicate the NSX will use a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V6 and boast a system output of about 500 horsepower.

Athough the car will certainly use less fuel than most similarly-powered cars, its eco-friendly credentials aren't likely to please the typical hybrid crowd. Still, Honda's CEO says that the NSX represents the future of performance under the Acura banner, a move that should allow it to comply with emissions and economy standards while still delivering track-inspired driving dynamics.

"Consistent with the spirit of the original NSX, our intention is to support the psychological and emotional aspects of driving a super car at the limit, because we are insistent about delivering on the synergy between man and machine," said Jon Ikeda, chief designer, Acura Design Studio. "Importantly, this will be true of all Acura vehicles moving forward."

Acura is developing the NSX in the U.S., with production expected to take place in a new facility in Ohio. The NSX will hit the market in 2015.

Live images by Chris Doane.