It’s rare to see one Honda NSX at the best of times. So, you can imagine our surprise when we just happened to pass a flood of them outside a ratty old garage a few miles from Middle-of-Nowhere, Japan. But this pot of Honda gold is exactly the kind of impromptu petrolhead oasis that you stumble upon in Japan.
Called Garage Kite, it’s a specialist in Honda’s mid-engined supercar. Unlike the UK supercar specialists who seal their stock in hermetic, temperature-controlled chambers to maximise value, Garage Kite simply leaves them out on the street.
It’s a mish-mash of fourteen first and second generation NSXs (in various states of spec and tune) sat covered in dust like it’s some shabby old second-hand car dealer in Scunthorpe. But shabby old second-hand car dealers in Scunthorpe definitely don’t have a fleet of cute Honda Beats as courtesy cars. Garage Kite does.
(One of these is not like the rest!)
The original NSX was the supercar that proved supercars don’t have to be painful to drive, painful to own, and boast the all-round visibility of a slim-fit suit of medieval armour. Take it easy in the NSX, and it was as comfy as a boggo Civic.
But give it the edamame beans, and the NSX came alive. Five point seven seconds to 95km/h and a top speed of 270km/h might not sound blistering by 21st-Century standards, but wind the 3.0-litre V6 out towards the redline, spur that VTEC into life, and the NSX was an utter screamer: huge traction, great steering feel, ride quality to embarrass the so-called European elite of the day. But then you know all about the NSX and it’s charm.
You may have noticed that there are no third-generation NSXs in the line-up. That’s because the NSX’s new twin-turbocharged dry-sumped V6 isn’t easy to work on. Especially as there are three electric motors getting in the way too.
The Japanese also have a funny relationship with the new car as it was developed and built in Ohio, so they don’t feel a whole lot of patriotic affiliation to it like the simpler and purer previous generations.
STORY Rowan Horncastle