As one of the country’s most respected NSX and S2000 specialists, ScienceofSpeed has brought out a number of hardcore Hondas to the Shootout in years past, including its ridiculously sexy widebody NSX. Last time we saw it in action, it was powered by one of SoS’s potent supercharger kits, but this time SoS general manager Chris Willson decided to showcase his new Stage 3 all-motor setup, including individual throttle bodies that gives his Acura an intake note sweet enough to make angels weep (or at least a few magazine editors).
On the dyno, SoS knew it would be at a bit of a disadvantage (where the NSX made 384.8 whp and 301.6 wtq, the highest all-motor numbers we’ve ever seen at the Shootout), but with lightning-quick throttle response and ace pilot Mike Speck behind the wheel, there was good reason to be optimistic about SoS’s chances during the timed events. Things didn’t go quite to plan, though, primarily due to some setup changes the guys made to work around the non-optimal tire sizes available.
“Without having the tires in advance for testing, we made some decisions on the suspension for the NSX that I now regret,” Chris says. “We knew the tires were 20mm narrower in the rear and 10mm wider up front than we normally run, so we expected the car to be very loose in the corners and adjusted the alignment to be very neutral in the rear and lowered the rear spring rates by 25 percent compared to the front. As we quickly found out the day of the event, we were too aggressive with softening the rear and had problems with transferring too much weight to the rear of the car under acceleration.”
This setup did work remarkably well on the dragstrip, though, where the extra weight transfer to the rear helped the SoS NSX put down a very impressive 12.26 at 115 mph. But without enough time to dial in the suspension for the new tire setup, driver Mike Speck had to find creative ways to get the NSX pointed in the right direction. Still, with a fifth-place finish in both the autocross and time attack, it’s scary to think just how quick Speck and the SoS NSX would have been had they been given the time to dial in the suspension for the new tire sizes and compound.
'92 Acura NSX
Engine 3.5-liter C32B V-6
Engine Modifications SoS Stage 3 3.5-liter C32B, stroker crankshaft, rods, pistons & ITB system; Toda Spec C camshafts
Drivetrain SoS spec 6-speed, OS Giken LSD and 4.4 FD
Suspension JRZ RS Pro dampers & Hypercoil springs
Wheels, Tires & Brakes 17x8.5” (f) & 18x10.5” (r) Volk RE30 wheels; Continental Grand Am–spec 245/40R17 (f) & 275/35R18 (r) tires; Brembo “Indy” brake system
Interior SoS harness bar; Downforce NSX-R seats; Race Technology dash
Exterior SoS carbon-fiber widebody; GruppeM GT spoiler