Honda recently announced its racing plans for the 2013 racing year and unfortunately no plans were announced for Formula 1. However a car that will be making a return to Japan’s GT500 series is the Honda HSV-010 GT. With the last production Acura NSX being produced in 2005 and with the aging Acura NSX Super GT car becoming increasingly obsolete back in 2009 with it’s C32B based stock engine, Honda was already full into development for providing a replacement not only for it’s GT racer but for the whole Acura NSX production car as well. What resulted was called the HSV-010 (HSV stands for Honda Sports Velocity).
The HSV-010 had all the credentials to replace the aging yet fully relevant Acura NSX with its front mid engined 3.3L naturally aspirated V8 pumping out a healthy 500 horsepower and 290 lbs-ft of torque (with power capped for the GT500 series, more can theoretically be made trading off power for long term reliability)
The Machine design was quintessentially expressed by the HSV’s head designer Keinosuke Taki,”
“The Super GT machine regulations are very specific about overall length, overall width, frame thickness, the wheelbase, and the length of front/rear overhangs. In addition, the basic shape of the base vehicle must be preserved, so the key is how to pursue functionality within these limitations.
I understand that some enthusiasts are saying ‘the engine can’t be mounted in front, can it?’ But it is definitely mounted in front. It’s just that the front hood looks relatively low since the base vehicle design features an accentuated wedge that flares to a prominent rear-end. We flatter ourselves to think that the enormous effort put into the rear-end design has given this machine a novel design never before seen in Super GT.
The vehicle’s image is derived from predatory birds in nature, which we hope that people will associate power and strength with the machine. But even with its beauty, since this is a racing machine, it won’t mean anything unless it is fast. We intend to keep evolving this machine further so that victory will be the ‘game’ that our ‘bird’ captures.”
In addition, Honda was passionate about getting the sound of the exhaust just right ( remind you of the Lexus LFA much?) An 8-4-2-1 single exhaust exit was designed and more power could be extracted thanks to some clever exhaust manifold design, but what resulted was an exhaust note that wasn’t pleasing to the ear. Instead, Honda sacrificed power for an aesthetically pleasing sound, reworking the exhaust to sound just right.
The Honda HSV-010 GT is truly a high performance vehicle worthy of carrying the NSX nameplate,but with a tanking economy back in 2009, a totally new NSX design that was more environmentally conscious as well as staying true to the original NSX design of being mid ship was made.
The only place you’ll find the Honda HSV-010 GT running is at the race track (specifically in the GT500 series) No plans to bring this high performance vehicle to production have been made, but it’s always nice to imagine that given enough demand and enough development on the ractrack to bring the cost down, a Honda HSV-010 GT could possibly make its way under a limited run to a showroom floor near you.