This Sunday at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Charlie Kimball recorded his first-ever IZOD IndyCar Series win driving a Honda-powered vehicle for Chip Ganassi Racing. The fourth consecutive win for a Honda-engined car in the 2013 season, the Japanese derived auto brand has come to life as a meaningful force against what was an almost domination of Chevrolet engines.
Not only did American driver Kimball’s win at the Honda Indy 200 in the process of his milestone victory, he brought his #83 car across the line first in within close proximity of more than 10,000 Honda employees. After more than 30 years of automotive production in the United States, the state of Ohio has been adopted as Honda’s second home. For this reason, it was not an provocative announcement when Honda named Maryville, Ohio as the production origins for the upcoming Acura NSX supercar. Already acknowledging the glorious ending for within their United States hub, Honda had also created another scene at the 2.4-mile Lexington, Ohio track as a prototype Acura NSX completed its first public lap.
After two years of observing Acura’s reinvented high-performance machine at a standstill, the worst danger for the visually stunning vehicle was limited. Perhaps the most harm that could come to the concept car was someone’s belt buckle scratching the finish or one person on a media day slamming a door too hard (the latter one happened in my presence at this year’s Canadian International Auto Show. The car was undamaged but almost everyone in the vicinity jumped a metre). At Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course, the Acura NSX’s first outing at speed would finally acquaint the vehicle with its true nature.
With every moving element of the Acura NSX concept car at speed, attendees of the Honda Indy 200 race weekend were the first to set eyes on the anticipated halo vehicle. A mid-mounted, direct-injected V-6 engine combined with three electric motors, this was the first time to see what engineering and motoring harmony could be achieve with an upcoming supercar. Sport Hybrid SH-AWD (Super Handling All-Wheel Drive) integrates all aspects of the gasoline/electric powertrain for what should be profound performance delivered to the driver aided by a dual-clutch transmission. Honoured with the enviable position behind the wheel of the Acura NSX prototype, a seat many would beseech, Testing Project Leader for the car Jason Widmer handled the blue car around Mid-Ohio.
Not expected until 2015, the raving early presentation of the next Acura NSX at Mid-Ohio should serve have created two reactions. Either the car in motion will be still the passions of eagerly awaiting supercar fans or will stir up anxiousness as we want to see this vehicle face-off with the Chevrolet Corvette Stingray and Ferrari 458 Italia.
Information, photo and video source: American Honda Motor Company