Honda NSX to target buyers upgrading from Porsche 911, says project boss
The Honda NSX is the car for people who are sick of their Porsche 911, says the man in charge of the reborn Japanese supercar’s development.
Honda NSX large project leader Ted Klaus believes the new high-performance hybrid coupe will appeal to owners of Porsche’s iconic sports car asking the question: ‘What’s next?’
“Do they go Audi R8? Do they get a special 911?” Klaus pondered.
“We want to catch that person when they’re thinking of coming out of a 911 to their next [car], and I think we offer a tremendous sports car experience and sports car values.”
Australian pricing and specifications won’t be finalised until closer to the NSX’s launch in our market at the end of 2016. In the US, where the car will be built, Klaus said the company was determined to keep NSX pricing “in the US$150,000s”.
“That gives us a strong comparison to the 911 Turbo and the Audi R8 V10,” he said
In Australia, both of those cars cost about $360,000 before on-road costs, though Honda Australia director Stephen Collins warned against attempting to estimate local pricing by extrapolating such figures, suggesting that pricing of the car from Honda HQ and the strength of the Australian dollar would affect its positioning more than any other factors.
Collins did, however, confirm our NSX was “certainly not going to be [Nissan] GT-R price”, indicating it will cost well over $200,000 in our market.
With pricing and specification still up in the air and the car itself still at least 12 months away, Australian dealers have been asked not to take orders for the NSX, though more than a handful of enthusiasts have already placed deposits to ensure they’re among the first in the country behind the wheel.
The NSX will be available through just five dealerships, one each in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.
Collins says Honda will launch a presale program early next year to build hype around the car and to give prospective buyers an indication of pricing and specification, but says he isn’t too concerned about how many the company sells.
“I want to sell as many as possible, but I think it’s just great for the brand.
“It’s one of those cars that really just says what Honda is capable of. We’ve clearly been lacking some sports cars in recent times, so I think the more sports cars we can get into our range the better.”
Klaus agrees that the NSX has a big role to play in changing the market’s perspective of the brand.
“NSX itself as a brand will help Honda and will help Acura, that’s our understanding. Through the NSX values and brand, we can help educate people about all these amazing things going on at Honda: Honda Jet, F1, Asimo…
“Honda’s this crazy company. Sometimes we are misunderstood, so we are trying to communicate again, and NSX is another chance.”
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