Today was a long day, but well worth it. I flew from Big “D” to San Francisco to meet the newest member of the family for the first time, my new NSX. Brandee was kind enough to actually pick me up at the San Jose airport and we had a nice ride back to San Francisco together.
After taking care of business, Brandee said her farewells to her baby, and I took possession. Today was the first time I had ever sat, ridden in, or driven an NSX, so read on for my first impressions…
Surprisingly, throughout the entire process I’ve been very calm. Even though this is a true exotic supercar, and I am a car nut, I didn’t lose any sleep over the purchase. That isn’t to say I haven’t been excited. I just haven’t stressed out over it.
When my flight arrived early at the airport Brandee had just driven up and parked, so our timing was perfect. I walked out into the garage and got my first look at this baby. At that point, a big grin overtook me and the reality of the situation began to sink in.
- Brandee is a good driver. I felt perfectly comfortable with her at the wheel and she maneuvered us through traffic like a real expert.
- As a first time passenger there was a lot to take in. The soft leather wrapped around the firm seat, the harmonious sound of the hand-built engine, the thrust available at any RPM and in any gear, and even the relatively comfortable ride.
- The car seems new. I know its 13 years old, but it’s like it has been stored in a time capsule. There are a very few minor cosmetic details, but no more than my truck which is 1 year old. It’s amazing that this car’s previous owners have taken such good care of it, and one can tell the vehicle has been loved and adored.
After we got back to SF, Brandee needed to go to work, so we stopped by her house and then I took it from there. The interesting thing is that I pretty much hopped in the car and drove away as if I’d been driving this car for years. I consider that a testament to the drivability of the vehicle considering I had never even been in an NSX, and I hadn’t driven a stick in probably 10 years.
So, to celebrate my new purchase, I went to my favorite place to eat in San Fran, down on Pier 39 (I know… tourist trap…), Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Company. I’m telling you, it’s hard to beat their Bucket O’ Boat Trash and an order of Cajun peel n’ eat shrimp.
After tanking up at Bubba’s, I headed over through the horrendous traffic to the Golden Gate Bridge (never go to San Fran on a weekend if you can help it) where I proceeded to take all of the photos you see here.
I then made my way back through town to hop on the highway heading south through California to Bakersfield. It’s about a 5 hour drive to Bakersfield, which happens to be half way to Las Vegas, my destination tomorrow morning. I’m bunking down at the Homewood Suites Hilton and it’s a very nice place. I got my room upgraded for free because I’m a Hilton Gold member, so I’ve actually got a suite. (I’ll do a hotel review later.)
During the 250+ miles I traveled to get here from San Fran, I was absolutely impressed at how easy the NSX is to drive. I had actually expected, and been willing, to do some work to drive this car. But it just isn’t required. Shifting is effortless, the clutch is not very heavy, the suspension soaks up bumps in the road, the steering is solid and the car tracks down the highway perfectly straight.
It was pretty dark out and the road was fairly vacant, so I made it a point to stay away from all the other cars. This was a fairly simple task. Whenever someone encroached into my space I either let them pass (and I had the cruise set on 80! These Californians are fast!) or gave the gas a little juice and put some distance in between us.
There was one moron who was following me for a while with what I guarantee were illegal headlights because they were so bright, and he wouldn’t get off my butt no matter how much I varied my speed. So eventually I pushed it up to about 100 for a minute or two and left him in the rear view mirror. Although hitting 100 in this car only takes a few seconds, the scary thing is that you feel like you’re going about 70. Things are moving by pretty quick, but you can tell the car isn’t phased. It’s like doing 60 in a normal vehicle.
Stay tuned for tomorrow’s report from Las Vegas…
(Continue on to Part 2 or Part 3)