Editorial

Could New Acura NSX Be BMW i8's Most Serious Rival So Far?

Now this is a head-to-head comparison we all want to see.

We’re only a week away from this year’s Detroit Auto Show and, amongst many other new cars, the highly anticipated second generation Acura NSX will have its official debut. We already know, more or less, what it’ll look like based on the near-production ready concept and various spy shots. But the question is: what will be the NSX’s most direct rival? The Ferrari 458 Italia successor? Lamborghini Huracan? Possibly, but we can think of something else that’ll be more in line with the new NSX in both technology and price: the BMW i8.

It’s a plug-in hybrid, high-performance sports car that pairs a 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-three gas engine located mid-ship with a lithium-ion battery pack. These two combined move the rear wheels while an electric motor powers the front wheels. Throw in lots of lightweight carbon fiber, and the i8 is literally a blueprint for how performance cars of the future could turn out to be. But what about the new NSX? We know it’ll feature a mid-mounted V6 gas engine that’ll move the rear wheels, too. A pair of electric motors powers the front rollers. Bottom line is that both cars are mid-engined with very similar drive configurations.

Both, obviously, are also all-wheel-drive. The i8 has a combined total of 360 hp. Acura, meanwhile, promises the new NSX will deliver more than 400 hp. So in writing, these two 21st century sports cars are seemingly already bitter rivals. The i8 against the NSX. Now this is the comparison test we want to see. Expect for this to happen sometime within the next year.

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