One. Two. Whoosh. By the time I count to three, the Acura NSX’s automated launch control leaps from a standstill to 60 miles per hour. But there’s not a trace of wheel spin and smoking rubber, the usual hallmarks of a neck-snapping drag-strip run here at the track in Thermal, Calif. Oh, there is drama, only it’s largely confined to what’s happening under the Acura’s swoopy skin.
This Acura is a plug-in hybrid, part of an electron-pumping vanguard that’s changing the very definition of a performance car. From showrooms to race paddocks, the clock is ticking for fuel-slurping gasoline engines. Battery-boosted cars, whether hybrid or full electric, are rushing to fill the gap. In our highly regulated future, these may be the only kinds of sports cars you’ll be able to buy, and the trippy journey to such a world seems to be taking place at warp speed.
Back in 1990, the original Acura NSX challenged every notion of what a supercar was supposed to be. Coming from Honda, the manufacturer of the Acura luxury brand and a company known for safe, affordable, and ultrareliable cars,…[Read more]
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