1997 Acura NSX Review

Pros & Cons

  • Exotic, mid-engined sports car for less than $100,000.
  • Not any faster than the new Corvette.
List Price Estimate
Not Available

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Vehicle overview

Since its 1991 introduction, the Acura NSX has been heralded by much of the motoring press as the best sports car ever produced. Certainly, with its 24-valve V6 engine, all-aluminum body, mid-engine layout and traditionally Honda-correct ergonomics, the NSX is a heckuva car. But the best sports car ever made? We're not too sure about that.

First, there is the issue of the NSX's ability to keep up with the best sports cars in the world. Sure, it handles well, but its acceleration figures barely matched that of American muscle cars like the Chevrolet Camaro Z28 and the Pontiac Trans Am. To answer critics who claimed that the NSX lacks the gusto of a true supercar, Acura increased the NSX's displacement to 3.2-liters and added a six-speed manual transmission. (Models equipped with an automaitc transmission make due with the previous 3.0-liter engine.) The new engine cranks out 290-horsepower and moves the car to 60 mph in about five seconds.

The second issue has had to due with the Acura's prohibitive price. Retailing for $84,000, the NSX is not a bargain, and is dangerously close in price to the Dodge Viper and the Porsche 911 Carerra. Additionally, a redesigned Corvette, and new roadsters from BMW, Porsche, and Mercedes-Benz, are available for roughly half of the price of the NSX.

While the future of the NSX is not certain, we think that it is a car worth considering. Its revitalized powerplant makes it more appealing for those desiring a supercar, while its livable interior and excellent ergonomics make it practical enough to live with on a day-to-day basis.

1997 Highlights

The six-speed 1997 Acura NSX comes to us this year with a larger 3.2-liter V6 engine that makes 290 ponies. Automatic NSXs continue with the 3.0-liter, 252-horse V6.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Acura NSX.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

The Exotic Without the Headache
Not only was this car the fulfillment of a young man's dream, but it exceeded every expectation; driving, appearance, satisfaction, value (yeah, value in an exotic). It's fast, and has looks and technology that 15 years later still excels. Every owner I've ever met has been classy and that says a lot about the type that drives this car. I've had Ferraris and a Porsche, and the NS is the most satisfying.
the best of both worlds...
dave jones,05/28/2002
some say the nsx fails in both classes - its not "exotic" enuff (power, agressiv e looks) to be a great exotic and its not "friendly" enuff (more seats, quiet, truck space) to be a luxury car for commuting/cruising. but I say what acura has done well with the nsx is find the perfect balance of b oth. if you can buy a viper and a mercedes than go for it... but if you have the money for only 1 car the nsx gets both jobs done well. I commuted in mine for over a year - its possible to enjoy both worlds at the same time day in and day out... but only in an nsx.
None Better
You'll never do better (new or used) in terms of bang for the buck. This is an incredibly well made car.
Dream car
Edmunds price is ridiculously low. good luck finding a car at that price. I paid mid 50s for a 27mi, 97 NSX-T.

Features & Specs

See all Used 1997 Acura NSX features & specs


IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1997 Acura NSX

Used 1997 Acura NSX Overview

The Used 1997 Acura NSX is offered in the following submodels: NSX Coupe. Available styles include 2dr Coupe, and T 2dr Coupe.

What's a good price on a Used 1997 Acura NSX?

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Which used 1997 Acura NSXES are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 1997 Acura NSXs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Acura NSX for sale - 7 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $11,396.

Find a used Acura for sale - 1 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $16,641.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura NSX for sale - 4 great deals out of 7 listings starting at $18,604.

Find a used certified pre-owned Acura for sale - 8 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $21,533.

Should I lease or buy a 1997 Acura NSX?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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Check out Acura NSX lease specials