Horn of a dilemma
THE horn in the Honda NSX is feeble. Barely a squeak.
That’s fine in a baby Jazz at $14,990 but hardly suitable for the all-new $420,000 Honda supercar that the company is pitching against Porsche, Ferrari, Lamborghini and Audi.
Supercars usually announce their arrival with a trumpeting horn that’s also good for intimidating the world’s most exotic wildlife.
But the NSX horn is not what it seems. Or sounds. “Of course we know about the horn,” says NSX development engineering chief Jason Bilotta.
He’s smiling like he has a secret and he does.
The horn, it seems, was the subject of a lot of engineering input on its size and location. And eventually it was the location that decided its size, and also the noise it makes.
“The packaging at the front of the car is very tight. It’s a question of airflow and cooling. We couldn’t fit a bigger horn and we couldn’t put it anywhere else,” Bilotta says.
He laughs when he says a set of old-school air horns would have been fun, but even with a $1 billion development budget on the most important Honda in more than a decade it just wasn’t possible. “The car speaks for itself. It’s not about the horn,” Bilotta says.