1996 Honda NSX-T (UK Press Car)
This first-generation, right-hand drive, manual gearbox Honda NSX Targa enjoyed its early life as a much-featured UK Press Car.
GUIDE PRICE: £75,000 - £85,000
The legendary Honda NSX (standing for New Sportscar Experimental) was developed by the Honda Motor Corporation between 1984 and its eventual launch in 1990, with major chassis and suspension input from three-times F1 World Champion, Ayrton Senna and was everything that a sports car should be - dynamic, rewarding and stimulating.
It featured an all-aluminium monocoque body encompassing a revolutionary extruded aluminium-alloy frame and suspension making the car extremely light and very strong. Power was provided by a state-of-the-art, 3-litre, 24-valve, V6 'VTEC' engine (variable valve timing) which, despite being developed during F1's turbo-era, was normally aspirated. The free-revving, all-alloy unit produced 270bhp initially, which was good enough for a top speed of 168mph and a 0-60 time of less than six seconds. Those performance figures put the NSX on a par with Ferrari's 348 GTB, but in terms of comfort, ergonomics, driving dynamics and build quality, the NSX was in a different league entirely. The car was the first real Japanese 'supercar', proving itself and quickly establishing respect from its key competitors. However, this superiority was not translated into sales and, by the time production ceased in 2005, fewer than 20,000 had been sold, making them relatively rare and much sought after today.
Despite those slow sales, the NSX earned huge industry respect as the first mass-produced aluminium-bodied car with F1-derived innovations like platinum spark plugs, titanium con rods, a magnesium induction plenum, alloy wishbones and subframes, four-channel ABS brakes and an interior with the 360-degree cockpit visibility of an F-16 fighter jet.
Iconic Auctioneers are proud to offer this rather special NSX, a first-generation right-hand drive Targa with the desirable manual gearbox, finished in Sebring Silver with a Burgundy hide interior. It's an original UK car that was initially allocated to Honda's UK Press Department and was featured in many press releases and magazine road tests including a very complimentary one in Motor Sport Magazine. Originally registered as N115 GLY, it was finished completely in silver with no black top, a colour scheme that sets it apart from the general production examples. In excellent overall condition, the car is outstanding throughout and presents superbly, fitted with slightly larger 18" wheels of a similar pattern and an enhanced exhaust system. The comprehensive history file includes invoices going back almost to day one as well as an impressive MOT trace, displaying regular care and maintenance throughout its life.
Now back on its original plates, N115 GLY, it should be noted that the Cherished Registration Number illustrated, E2 NSZ does not form part of the sale but could be available by separate negotiation.
With a fabulous, temperament-free, mid-mounted engine, great chassis balance, and approachable running costs, the NSX was known as a hassle-free 'Supercar' back in 1990 and that description still applies over 30 years later.