Acura sports cars are luxurious cars but still affordable
Acura sports cars is the luxury vehicle division of Japanese automaker Honda Motor Company. The Acura brand has been available in the US, Canada, and Hong Kong since March 1986 marketing luxury and performance vehicles and near-performance vehicles division.
The brand was introduced to Mexico in 2004 and to China in 2006. However, Honda's plan to introduce Acura to the Japanese market have been repeatedly delayed due to economic reasons: the planned 2008 launch was delayed for 'about two years or so' and then in a December 17, 2008 announcement from Takeo Fukui, CEO of Honda, the original plan was withheld as a result of the 2008 financial crisis around the world and economic recession that resulted.
The acura sports cars that we are going to look at are the Acura NSX, Acura Integra and Acura RSX
The Honda Integra (sold in some markets as Acura Integra) is a compact sport coupe made by Honda during the years 1985 to 2007. It is usually a two door front wheel drive car that is able to house four passengers with a four door variant available. The Integra's balance of reliability and performance made it an instant hit, especially for those buyers looking for a cheaper alternative to German imports.
Through the years, the Integra developed a large following of consumers. Some were interested in a basic commuter car while others were looking for a solid base for modification with performance parts.
The Integra was able to satisfy all. Using its knowledge gained from Formula 1 racing to innovate new technologies for its passenger cars, Acura sports cars introduced its VTEC variable valve timing system to the Integra in the early '90s. The Integra was the first car after the exotic NSX to receive it, and the system helped the car squeeze every drop of power out of its small 4-cylinder engine while maintaining an admirable amount of fuel efficiency.
The first generation Integras actually came with two different engines. Although they shared the same engine code (D16A1), there were a few differences. The engine differed in the years 1986 to 1987 and 1988 to 1989. The two engines are commonly called the "Browntop" and "Blacktop" due to the color of their valve covers. The "browntop" came in 1986 and 1987 Integras while the "blacktop" came in 1988 and 1989 models. The improvements in the "blacktop" engine included lighter rods, domed pistons for slightly higher compression, and an electric advance distributor (the "browntop" came with a vacuum advance distributor). The overall gain in performance was about 5 hp (3.7 kW) for 118 hp (88.0 kW).
The second generation integras was offered in two body styles (this time with a four-door sedan), this Integra was more sophisticated and was powered by a new 1.8-liter four-cylinder that made 130 hp. In addition to the RS and LS trims, Acura added a GS trim. It was a "top of the line" trim with added standard equipment, such as antilock brakes and an upgraded interior. All acura sports cars came standard with a five-speed manual, with a four-speed automatic being optional.
Honda debuted the third generation model in 1993 in Japan. Acura sports cars followed in 1994. It had an unusual four headlight front end design which was dubbed "bug eyes" by some enthusiasts. The bug eye model was known in Japan as Integra Si, and it was powered by a B18C engine with a power of 170 bhp hp which later became the basis for the 210 bhp JDM (195hp USDM) Type R engine.
The fourth generation Integra, produced from 2002 on, was renamed the Acura RSX for the United States, Canada and Hong Kong in accordance with Acura's new alphabetical naming scheme. It also had an entirely new engine, the K-series. The Integra came in two models in the United States, the RSX base model, and the RSX-S boasting the K20A2 engine from 2002 to 2004, while the 2005 and 2006 RSX-S came with a K20Z1. The RSX was still sold as a Honda Integra in Japan and Australia, markets where Acura sports cars did not exist.
This was one of the true and finest Acura sports cars to be introduced.
In 1991, five years after the debut of the Legend and Integra, Acura introduced the NSX, a midship V6 powered, rear-wheel-drive sports car. The NSX, an acronym for "New Sports eXperimental", was billed as the first Japanese car capable of competing with Ferrari and Porsche.
This vehicle served as a "image car" for the Acura sports cars brand, heralding the introduction of Honda's VTEC technology. The NSX was the world's first all-aluminum production car, and was also marketed and viewed by some as the "Everyday Supercar" thanks in part to its ease of use, quality and reliability, traits that were unheard of in the supercar segment at the time. With the release of the NSX, Acura sports cars introduced the "A-badge", a stylized pair of calipers - a tool used for exacting measurements to imply that Acura vehicles are built to precise and demanding standards.
For its debut, the NSX featured a 3.0-liter V6. The engine was equipped with VTEC (Variable valve Timing and lift Electronic Control) and a variable-volume intake manifold to increase power and tractability. Titanium connecting rods allowed a high redline. Developing 270 horsepower and 210 lb-ft of torque, the engine sent its power to the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission.
Acura sports cars also made a four-speed automatic available but with a reduced-output V6 (252 hp). Acura used aluminum to build much of the car to keep curb weight at a minimum. Racecarlike double-wishbone suspension design was used for each corner. Standard equipment highlights included antilock brakes, automatic climate control and leather upholstery. In 1995, a targa-roof model (the NSX-T) became available.
Two years later the Acura NSX finally received its first and only powertrain upgrade. The 1997 manual-equipped models featured a new six-speed transmission and a larger 3.2-liter engine producing 290 hp. Those with the automatic kept the previous 3.0-liter V6. A limited-production Alex Zanardi Edition was available for 1999; available only as a fixed roof coupe, it had special wheels and a more stiffly tuned suspension.
Acura performed its last NSX update in 2002. The coupe model was discontinued and out-of-fashion elements like flip-up headlights and monochromatic interior panels were axed in favor of fixed HID headlights and updated metallic-look trim. Functional changes included a stiffened suspension (though not as much as the Zanardi), larger wheels with wider tires and a sequential-shift mode for the automatic transmission.
By 2005, NSX unit sales amounted to a few hundred vehicles per year worldwide. Honda deemed continuation of the NSX was not economically viable, considering the very high cost of manufacturing the NSX along with the company's growing interest in producing a new model with a V10 engine and performance on par with the most modern high performance sports cars. On its launch in 1990, the NSX had been a technological marvel, but by 2005 Ferrari had gone from the 348, which was the original benchmark for the NSX development team, to the F355, 360 and to the F430. In July 2005, Honda officially announced that it would cease manufacturing NSX after 15 years, and transfer its research and development efforts to the search for its successor. The last NSX sale in the US took place in Spokane, Washington in the summer of 2006; originally intended for Honda's museum.
The RSX also known as the Integra DC5 is a two-door sport hatchback. It is available in base and "Type-S" models in North America, and a "Integra iS / Integra Type S" and "Type R" version sold in Japan and Oceania. However, the "Type R" sold in Oceania is very similar to the "Type-S" sold in North America, and the Integra line naming in Oceania has recently been realigned to be similar with North American conventions. This model is the final generation of the Honda Integra; afterwards production ceased.
The base RSX has the K20A3 motor with an output of 160 hp (120 kW) and is offered with either an automatic or a five-speed manual transmission; the Type-S has a 200 hp (150 kW) (2002–2004) K20A2 or 210 hp (160 kW) in 2005 K20Z1 motor and a short-throw 6-speed manual transmission which has been linked to many technical problems with inside components such as synchro and gears 3 and 5. In 2005 the RSX Type-S received camshafts, b-pipe and muffler, 4.7 final drive ratio, crankshaft pulley and the intake snorkel duct from the Japanese model Honda Integra Type-R.
The Honda Integra Type-R, sold in Japan has reduced weight, a 220 PS / 164 kW / 217 hp (162 kW) K20A I4 engine (Japan-only; Oceania models have an engine similar to the Acura RSX-S), as well as a limited slip differential (LSD) and stiffer springs and shocks, 4 piston Brembo brakes, 17" wheels on Bridgestone Potenza tires, Recaro suede seats, body trim, and more.
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