Acura NSX EV Concept to ‘race to the clouds’

Honda’s US subsidiary will campaign an NSX-based electric car at Pikes Peak
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June 22, 2016
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The annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is just around the corner, and Honda has announced that its American subsidiary NSX will race an all-electric, NSX-inspired concept at the event. The EV concept will join the two previously announced NSX hybrid coupes in the Time Attack 1 and Time Attack 2 classes at the race on Sunday, June 26.

The four-motor EV will be driven in the Electric Modified Class by Tetsuya Yamano, who piloted last year’s CR-Z-based electric prototype to its class win. “We’ve been tuning the car for several weeks at Pikes and have advanced its performance significantly,” said Yamano.  “We’re honoured to be running at Pikes in this historical, anniversary year – an event respected by racing fans all over the world.”

Taking the place of the 1.5-litre turbocharged V6 petrol and nine-speed transmission under the NSX body is an all-electric, four-motor Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) powertrain, which is a tweaked version of the one that powered last year’s winner in the Exhibition class. It’s also three times more powerful than its predecessor. Honda says this powertrain is the result of 20 years of research and development aimed at achieving “ideal vehicle handling.” By applying separate twin motor units on each axle, Honda has made torque distribution to all four corners independent. Apparently, the team of engineers updated the powertrain’s system management based on last year’s race results to make the four-wheel torque vectoring even more precise.

The electric concept also looks a bit different from the standard hybrid, sporting a massive rear wing and a front spoiler. It’s also sure to have received weight-saving modifications and a race-prepped chassis. More details are expected on the concept later this week, ahead of Sunday’s race, which will be a grueling test for the NSX, what with the 156 arduous turns giving it quite a workout.