2003 Acura NSX

Change Year or Vehicle
$33,703–$109,951 Inventory Prices
SAVE
Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
Compare
Back to top

Key Specs

of the 2003 Acura NSX. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
    Coupe
  • Combined MPG:
    20-21 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    252-hp, 3.0-liter V-6 (premium)
  • Drivetrain:
    Rear-wheel Drive
  • View more specs

2003 Acura NSX Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview
Acura’s high-dollar, aluminum-bodied, mid-engine sports car gained a notable redesign during the 2002 model year, so it’s essentially unchanged for 2003. In addition to restyled front and rear fascias for 2002, the two-passenger NSX got a lower air dam as well as an air diffuser integrated into the lower rear bumper. Acura’s goal was to enhance handling and performance and improve the car’s aerodynamics.

Fixed-position headlights replaced the prior pop-up units. A trunk lip spoiler was added above restyled taillight housings. The suspension was modified with an increased front spring rate and a larger-diameter rear stabilizer bar, and bigger 17-inch tires are installed. A lightweight removable roof panel is standard.

Since its 1991 debut, the NSX has been the most costly, strongest-performing member of the Acura lineup. It competes against the BMW Z8, Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper SRT-10 and Porsche 911. Through the years, it’s been a technological showcase for Honda, Acura’s parent company. The NSX was originally intended as a response to Ferrari and other high-end sports cars, but it never achieved that status level so its investment potential is less dramatic.

Exterior
Unlike some sports cars with designs that date back to the early 1990s, the NSX still looks sleek and contemporary. Aluminum is used for the low-slung coupe’s sculpted, wedge-shaped body, as well as for many of its components. An integrated spoiler at ...
Vehicle Overview
Acura’s high-dollar, aluminum-bodied, mid-engine sports car gained a notable redesign during the 2002 model year, so it’s essentially unchanged for 2003. In addition to restyled front and rear fascias for 2002, the two-passenger NSX got a lower air dam as well as an air diffuser integrated into the lower rear bumper. Acura’s goal was to enhance handling and performance and improve the car’s aerodynamics.

Fixed-position headlights replaced the prior pop-up units. A trunk lip spoiler was added above restyled taillight housings. The suspension was modified with an increased front spring rate and a larger-diameter rear stabilizer bar, and bigger 17-inch tires are installed. A lightweight removable roof panel is standard.

Since its 1991 debut, the NSX has been the most costly, strongest-performing member of the Acura lineup. It competes against the BMW Z8, Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper SRT-10 and Porsche 911. Through the years, it’s been a technological showcase for Honda, Acura’s parent company. The NSX was originally intended as a response to Ferrari and other high-end sports cars, but it never achieved that status level so its investment potential is less dramatic.

Exterior
Unlike some sports cars with designs that date back to the early 1990s, the NSX still looks sleek and contemporary. Aluminum is used for the low-slung coupe’s sculpted, wedge-shaped body, as well as for many of its components. An integrated spoiler at the rear contains a center-mounted brake light. The NSX rides a 99.6-inch wheelbase, measures 174.2 inches long overall and stands 46.1 inches tall. The car’s front/rear weight distribution is 40/60 percent. The removable roof panel permits open-air driving.

High-intensity-discharge headlights sit in conventional fixed positions. A lower air dam yields a 0.30 coefficient of drag, as well as improved front-to-rear lift balance. Forged-aluminum-alloy wheels with a ribbed spoke design hold 17-inch tires.

Interior
Only two people can fit into the NSX, but tall occupants get more usable space than they would in many other sports cars. Acura claims that the cockpit is meant to evoke the image of a jet fighter. Because of the mid-mounted engine, a modestly sized trunk is located up front; its cargo volume is just 5 cubic feet. The instrument panel has a blue background, and the removable aluminum roof panel contains an integrated storage compartment.

Standard equipment includes perforated leather seat upholstery, automatic air conditioning, four-way power bucket seats, cruise control, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, a Bose cassette stereo, variable intermittent wipers, and power windows, door locks and mirrors.

Under the Hood
Two powertrains are available. A 252-horsepower, 3.0-liter V-6 engine teams with a four-speed-automatic transmission, while a 3.2-liter V-6 cranks out 290 hp and mates with a six-speed-manual shift. The SportShift automatic unit features a manual gear-selection provision, which is operated with buttons on the steering wheel; this idea was borrowed from Formula One racing. Instead of a throttle cable connected directly to the gas pedal, or hydraulic actuation, the NSX uses electronic drive-by-wire technology.

Safety
All-disc four-channel antilock brakes and traction control are standard. Side-impact airbags are not available.

 
Reported by Jim Flammang  for cars.com
Posted on 3/26/03

Latest 2003 NSX Stories

Consumer Reviews

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2003 Acura NSX currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2003 Acura NSX has not been tested.

Change Year or Vehicle

0 / 0 0 Photos
0 / 0

Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The NSX received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker