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 |   |  2002 Acura NSX - The Great White
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2002 Acura NSX - The Great White

Dangerously fast and always hungry for more

Jun 14, 2012
Htup 1207 01+2002 acura NSX+downforce NSX R hood Photo 1/12   |   2002 Acura NSX - The Great White

With pursed lips and bated breath Tommy Lee stared unblinkingly at the wraithlike machine in front of him. “Could this be real?” he thought to himself. All of his dreams prior to this moment lay in ruin at his feet, shattered by the realization that what he dreamed of all these years suddenly paled in comparison to what lay before him. Every wish and hope was for naught now. There was only one direction to go, and that was toward owning the sleekest machine imaginable. As he walked out of the building and into the cold night air, a promise was made that would never come undone. It was a pledge that was destined for fruition. He was finally going to own an Acura NSX.

Ten years later, Tommy finally got what he had been craving all of those years. It was a black ’97 NSX that he quickly equipped with Volk GTC rims, a full Wing’s West body kit and a complete RM exhaust. He was on cloud nine. Every day was bliss behind the wheel of his black beauty. But one car was not enough for a man with this kind of appetite; so before long, there was a 2000 Monaco Blue NSX in his garage as well. This one was treated to a ’02 rear bumper and taillight upgrade, Do-Luck side skirts, a Wilwood BBK, Work Equips, Wing’s West front lip, and a Taitec GT Lightweight Exhaust System. With multiple dream cars at his disposal anytime he pleased, Tommy was living the life most of us can only dream of with tongues wagging. So what does a man who has everything do now? Sit back, relax, and have a glass of single malt? No. He gets back into the thick of it and builds a car that is more elegant, sophisticated, and blisteringly fast than anything he has ever encountered before.

Htup 1207 11+2002 acura NSX+NSX R rear wing Photo 2/12   |   2002 Acura NSX - The Great White
2019 Acura NSX
$157,500 Base Model (MSRP) MPG Fuel Economy

By 2011, Tommy decided he was finally ready for a younger model… of his dream car. The ’02 version was calling, and he needed one in white. We all know that the NSX is a rarity. In fact, there were only 376 white NSXs ever made worldwide; eight of them were the ’02–’05 model, and within that time frame, only three of these were made in ’02. So finding a white NSX was suddenly proving to be a pain in the arse. While looking online one day, Tommy stumbled upon something that came close: a silver 2002 NSX with low miles, the black interior he wanted, and an überlow price tag. What Tommy didn’t know was this seller was going to make all his NSX dreams finally come true.

Brian Urlage of Source 1 Automotive couldn’t believe his ears. Here was some guy on the phone, hundreds of miles away, wanting to buy his silver NSX. And this guy had all sorts of expensive requests. He was wanting to know if Brian could outfit the car with a Comptech supercharger, custom forged wheels, Downforce carbon goods, enough Type R parts to bankrupt the national treasury, and a healthy coat of Championship White paint as the pièce de résistance. Zero budget limitations and a client with an open ear to suggestions are sure to make any builder smile. Sure, he could build this car. It’s not like Source 1 Automotive didn’t specialize in NSXs anyways.

Months later, things were shaping up nicely. Tommy’s favorite parts were on the car, and more were on the way. Type R goods were in abundance, a VHR lift kit was keeping the car from bottoming out, and the CT supercharger was humming along beautifully. But this build ran into a few unforeseen setbacks along the way. Fitment issues were a quandary at times, the custom wheels were nowhere near being done, and a very pricey carbon-fiber NSX-R spoiler that arrived was cracked and chipped. But patience is key during such an expensive venture, and eventually the checklist was finished. So the day after my photo shoot of the vehicle was complete, it was shipped off to its anxious owner some five states away. Shipped to a man who had never touched or even seen the car before. I decided to do some follow-up work and called the car’s owner recently. When I spoke with Tommy, he said the car is perfect in every way and he could not be happier with the finished product. I believed him. You’d be pretty happy too if this car was waiting in your garage every morning.

Htup 1207 17+2002 acura NSX+comptech shock tower bar Photo 6/12   |   A Comptech supercharger takes care of the power portion of Lee's build.

So what you see in front of you today is a true Corvette killer. It is sleek, silent, and sexy. But without a moment’s hesitation, it can also strike with the lightning-fast predatory power that can only be found in the wild. The weekends warrant a brisk drive for the car’s owner to clear his head, and trust me when I say he really likes to put it through its paces. With the supercharger shrieking, the rear wheels screaming, and a foot on the floor, Tommy drives off into the distance, forever searching for fresh prey. And always hungry for more…

Bolts & Washers

Comptech Supercharger, 6 lb
Comptech headers
Comptech carbon-fiber airbox, upper and lower
Comptech PG2 clutch
Downforce AIS intake
Downforce carbon-fiber engine vent
Downforce carbon-fiber/Lexan engine cover (also have the OEM targa holder)
ARK DTS exhaust
OEM JDM Black coolant tank cover
SOS short-shift kit

Htup 1207 02+2002 acura NSX+downforce stacy side skirt Photo 7/12   |   2002 Acura NSX - The Great White

363 whp

Umbrella Auto Design VRH Kit, 3-inch lift potential
BC Racing coilovers, 30-way adjustable
Swift springs, 10K front/8K rear
Procar rear chassis bar
OEM NSX-R front chassis bars
Comptech rear shock tower bar

Brembo Indy big brake kit, front
Cross-drilled rear rotors
Brembo BBK pads, front
OEM pads, rear

Wheels and Tires
Forged 1 five split custom wheels, Grand Prix White/red trim
Front: 18x8 +37 offset
Rear: 19x10 +29 offset
Goodyear Eagle F1 tires: 215/40-18 front; 275/35-19 rear
Rays forged black lug nuts

Downforce rear diffuser
Downforce NSX-R rear spoiler with brake light
Downforce/Stacy’s side skirts
Downforce carbon-fiber side splitters for side skirts
Downforce NSX-R hood, FRP top/carbon bottom
Downforce NSX-R carbon-fiber hood duct
Downforce NSX-R front underbody aero kit
Downforce carbon-fiber front cowl assembly, with HEPA filter
Downforce front lip spoiler, paint matched
NSX-R rear wing decals
OEM red NSX-R badges
Source 1 Automotive hand-cut clear 3M bra
OEM S2000 antenna
Grand Prix White paintjob

LIV Auto LED lights, interior/exterior
Downforce NSX-R seats
Downforce carbon-fiber doorsill plates
SOS seat rails
SOS brushed gauge rings
MOMO tuner 350mm NSX-R horn button with cruise buttons
Tfent red NSX-R carpet
OEM NSX short gear stalk
OEM Type R shift boot
OEM S2000 CR shift knob, numbers custom painted red
OEM NSX-R doorsill badges

Htup 1207 20+2002 acura NSX+umbrella auto design air tank Photo 11/12   |   2002 Acura NSX - The Great White

Grom iPod cable
Viper alarm, proximity detected

Source 1 Automotive
Downforce USA
Science of Speed (SOS)
Umbrella Auto Design
CT Engineering (Comptech)
NSXCA (NSX Club of America)

Owner Specs

Daily Grind

Htup 1207 08+2002 acura NSX+downforce front lip spoiler Photo 12/12   |   2002 Acura NSX - The Great White

Favorite Site

Screen Name
Brother’s EK

Building Hondas
5 years

Dream Car
Spoon Sports S2000

Inspiration For This Build
Bro’s car and father

Future Build
’81 Toyota Starlet

Source 1 Automotive

Source 1 Automotive opened its doors to the public in 2007. The shop’s owner/founder, Brian Urlage is a complete NSX whore, and has owned over 20 NSXs in the last decade. With his friend Justin on board as acting chief mechanic, these guys have learned everything imaginable about the NSX, and for good reason. On average, Source 1 works on a staggering 40 to 50 NSXs a year, and during that time period they tackle all aspects of the car. Anything from light maintenance to turbo and supercharging can be handled with great ease by the skilled team. Every aspect of each generation has been addressed and understood. Like an advanced, hands-on anatomy class, they have literally stripped these mid-engine monsters down to their bare aluminum carcasses just to see what makes them tick. Once all of their burning questions were answered, they put them right back together again. Brian and his team value every drop of engineering that was put into the NSX, and it’s their mission to bring that same level of excellence to every car they touch.

“Our reputation rests solely on the cars we build. And as you look over this Type R replica that sits before you today, you can see for yourselves that exquisitely detailed work is what we do best.” —Brian Urlage


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