TOKYO -- Honda Motor Co.'s NSX sports car is a hybrid in more ways than its sophisticated drivetrain.
It is the result of a hybrid American-Japanese vehicle development project -- and it is now a hybrid of Acura and Honda branding.
Bringing the sleek, 573-hp, electric-gasoline racer to market required delicately balancing sometimes-opposing forces, since Japanese and American engineers didn't always see eye-to-eye.
The development team also had to be mindful that the resulting halo car will do double duty for both the Japanese carmaker's premium Acura brand and its mass-market Honda marque.
The NSX's homecoming to Japan, where the company began taking orders last week with a laser-lit gala unveiling, underscored how Honda has evolved over the years. The original NSX, sold between 1990 and 2005, was engineered and manufactured in Japan. The second generation returns as a car developed and produced in America.
The NSX is a rare case of a Japanese automobile being developed and manufactured in the United States and shipped back to Japan. To help pitch the NSX in the Japanese market, Honda even spotlighted the car's American chief engineer, Ted Klaus, and its India-born manufacturing head, Clement D'Souza, for the Japanese media roadshow.