By on January 21, 2015

I try to find what I think are interesting backgrounds to use when taking photos of cars that I review. Last summer, because of the Independence Day weekend, I was able to keep a Scion FR-S for a couple extra days and, procrastinator that I am, I put off taking some pics until the last moment. Baker’s of Milford, a restaurant and banquet hall located not surprisingly in Milford, Michigan, home of the famed General Motors Proving Grounds, hosts one of the oldest and biggest weekly cruise-in car shows in the country every Sunday afternoon. There are some great two lane roads in that part of Oakland County, including those that circle the Proving Grounds, roads exactly of the sort for which the Toyobaru sports car was designed, so I headed out to Bakers. It was late, they were giving out the raffle prizes, but there were still lots of cars, enough to make a nice backdrop for the photos.

Since a lot of car enthusiasts like to drive something enthusiastic to car shows they attend, when I attend a show I always try to check out the parking lot. There’s almost always something cool or unique, a car or truck worth seeing and this show was no different. I didn’t have to look for very long, because as I pulled into the parking lot I noticed three fairly interesting cars parked together, a Honda S2000 was parked right behind a red and black Acura NSX, which itself was parked next to an even redder Ferrari 430. My immediate car guy question was: so if I had the choice between the two mid-engine supercars for an extended drive, but I could only choose one, which would I choose?

I’ve never driven a Ferrari, which is undoubtedly on the list for every car guy and gal. I’m a car guy. It’s a Ferrari. Capice? On the other hand, I’ve never driven the all aluminum mid-engine Acura and I know how significant the NSX is and what a great car it is, perhaps an even more significant car than the 430.  The NSX was something new from a completely unexpected source. The Ferrari may be a Ferrari, but it’s just another Ferrari. When it was new, the buff books sang the 430’s praises, as it was said to be a significant improvement over the 360, but that’s sort of how things go with Ferraris. The 360 was considered in its day a significant improvement over the 348/355. Now that the 458 variant of the 430 has been released, the previous model doesn’t get as much attention. The original NSX, though, is the stuff of automotive legend.

That might not be completely fair comparison since the 430 is at least a generation newer than the original NSX.  As it is, many Ferrari 360 owners hold the belief that the folks in Maranello benchmarked that car against the NSX because the Ferrari folks in Maranello knew that Honda’s supercar was in fact superior to the 348 and 355.

In any case, it’s still an interesting thought experiment. If you could only choose one, which would it be? It is a good question, but since everyone seems to still come up with the same answer (what car guy, after all, is going to turn down driving a Ferrari supercar of any vintage?), in addition to the straight up choice between the Ferrari 430 and the Acura NSX, I’ll offer up another couple of questions to the Best & Brightest. Since we all want to drive a Ferrari, how about if you could drive both of them, which would you drive first? That way you can check the Ferrari off of your bucket list and still get to experience what is supposed to be one of the best driving cars ever, the original NSX.

Finally, though we all want to drive a Ferrari, we also know that exotics are not typically suitable for daily use. My last question is if you had to own one for a year, without having to consider purchase price, depreciation or possible profits, but you would have to be financially responsible for any repairs, maintenance and wear and tear, which one would you pick?

Since there are many fans of the NSX among our readers (not to mention that it’s the favorite car of our Managing Editor), I’ve also included some shots of a couple of other NSXs that were at Bakers that Sunday. A red one was in the show, and a late model gold NSX was parked not far from where the Ferrari, Honda S2000 and NSX were. Yes, the early ones with the hidden headlights look much better than the later versions of the original NSX and I’m probably not the only person who thinks they also look better than the production 2016 NSX, just revealed at the Detroit auto show.

Note: This post was revised since originally published.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

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107 Comments on “If You Could Choose Only One: Ferrari 430 or Acura NSX?...”

  • avatar

    The Ferrari is a 430 rather than a 360. I’d take the NSX. It’s an all time classic while the Ferraris are just obsolete steps in Ferrari’s path to self-driving compliance cars.

    • 0 avatar

      Seconding CJinSD’s comment.

      1.) It’s an F430, not a 360 Modena; and
      2.) I’d rather have the NSX than either.

    • 0 avatar

      I agree. I’d drive the NSX first, and then really judge honestly if the Ferrari was any better – even though it was a newer, more expensive, and more fragile car.

      On question 2, I’d live with the NSX any day. So much easier, and so much less maintenance. And nobody spits on it when you park it. Or hates you when you pass them. They think “Hey an NSX, that’s cool!” Not “Hey, a red Ferrari, dude’s a d!ck.”

    • 0 avatar

      Easy to mistake the 430 for a 360 (very similar styling). Then again, if you took naked pictures of Scarlett Johanson and Jennifer Lawrence, and covered their faces, they might look similar too.

      Sorry, cars shaped like a woman’s body do this to me…

    • 0 avatar

      Amen. I’ve driven the NSX, not the 430 (or 360; or any other F-bomb). And even though it was yellow (crikey), it was everything I ever wanted from a mid-engine car; or a car, frankly. It was easy and exhilarating and comfortable and special and all around spectacular. Looks, packaging, sound, driving position… I literally have no complaints.

      Also, Senna had one. I’m with Senna.

    • 0 avatar

      Also the 458 was not a variant of the 430, it was an entirely new design

  • avatar

    They say you should never drive your hero, so the right answer is: neither? I’m pretty sure you can rent the Ferrari at various places where as the NSX is actually rare so I’d take it. However the real question is can I put them on a track? If I’m stuck on normal streets (with traffic) then whats the point.

  • avatar

    I’d drive the Ferrari, but I’d own the NSX. Easy!

    • 0 avatar
      John R


    • 0 avatar
      Nick 2012


      My former admin had an NSX with 200,000 miles with a tasteful set of modifications and an aftermarket exhaust. She let me drive it and it was sublime. Her and her husband are fairly handy and take care of most wear items themselves, and they have yet to have a major issue with the car. She said its been as reliable as the sun, and other NSX owners seem to report the same thing. I’ve never driven a Ferrari (though I did go for a ride in a F550), but I can’t imagine a 200,000 mile Ferrari being in the same condition.

      • 0 avatar

        But…..the question proposed by the author was “if you had to own one for a year, without having to consider purchase price, depreciation or possible profits, but you would have to be financially responsible for any repairs, maintenance and wear and tear, which one would you pick?”

        Only one year….not 200k of ownership.

        • 0 avatar
          Nick 2012

          “but you would have to be financially responsible for any repairs, maintenance and wear and tear”

          – NSX by a mile. I could drive it every day and be fairly certain that it would perform flawlessly every time I turned the key. I would lose little, if any, downtime for repairs. The NSX can sit in gridlock all day long without exploding, remain quiet enough for phone calls, and kick butt on any twisty road.

          Plus, Mr. Wolf drives one. I would get endless thrills from telling people “That’s 30 minutes away. I’ll be there in 10.”

    • 0 avatar


    • 0 avatar

      I second that, test drive the ferarri, then buy the nsx.

      Funny thoughts pops up in my mind, Ferrari is that hot girl u would die to date for even once, even if u have decided the nsx is the one to marry.

      Somehow feels like likening the Ferrari like a pcik up girl.

  • avatar

    I’d take the NSX simply because a used Ferrari surely has the potential to bankrupt its owners. But then again those of us who didn’t grow up thinking an NSX is cool would probably prefer a Ferrari of any flavor simply because everyone knows “what it is” so to speak.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t think you’d go bankrupt in one year of ownership (the authors question). No doubt it would be big over the long haul.

      • 0 avatar

        Depends on how the car comes configured. Most used cars need something even if its fluid changes or tires, something 20+ years old will probably need a little more even if its other wearables. I know zilch about Ferrari parts but I imagine dealer parts are quite expensive.

    • 0 avatar

      As long as the mod list is short (if any), an NSX should be a good one year car.

      I’d certainly pick an older one over the concept car, far more elegant, more reliable (less electric motors to wear out, no turbos), and I wouldn’t doubt the steering-pedal feel are much better in the previous NSX.

  • avatar

    Last photo:

    -What is the ghastly striped yellow thing from the 70s?

    -Lol at the MG at the back “I hide behind thees pole. You no see.”

  • avatar

    I’ve been a fan of the old NSX pretty much from first sight. I can’t say the same about the new one. On the other hand, its performance may be good enough to make me look past that ugly nose.

  • avatar

    Ferrari all the way. Why? Because it’s gorgeous and I’ve never done anything truly irresponsible in a LONG time. FTW.

  • avatar

    Good discussion point for sure. Both are great cars to be sure and any driving enthusiast would say yes to both. I would drive the NSX first, mostly because of gut feeling. All factors aside, I would take the Ferrari. It’s a far sexier car (IMHO) and it is represenative of a long line of a driver’s experience and I’m talking the entire line, not the nuances of any one model.

    As far as what car I would live with. I’d still say the Ferrari. I already drive a german sports car and the step up to Italian maintenance wouldn’t frighten me, especially for only a year. It’s the cost of entry, not the cost of the experience that keeps from me driving a Ferrari now. For a year of ownership, it would be a no brainer for me…..Ferrari.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    The “gold” NSX is Imola Orange.

  • avatar

    F360, both to drive and own.

  • avatar

    #1. I don’t like Ferrari. I like Lamborghini. I’d take an Aventador.

    #2. Since I wouldn’t fit in either, give me a CHARGER HELLCAT.

  • avatar

    Both would be fun and I can afford to buy either. However, I can afford to maintain the NSX but not the 360. That makes the NSX the only choice.

  • avatar

    Having never driven or ridden in either car, I’d drive the Ferrari first, then the NSX.

    I’ve followed’s NSX Long term test, as well as DeMuro’s ownership story, and I still can’t quite decide just based on reading those. I know the 360 isn’t as bad to own as people think it is, but I’d also trust the NSX to be generally cheaper and less troublesome…guess I’d have to drive before I decide!

  • avatar

    I’d say the NSX as it has the most comfortable seats of any car I’ve ever sat in. As the French would say, “They fit your a$s like a hand.”

  • avatar

    Hands down, NSX. I will take mine in “pull me over red” please.

    The first photo of the cars side by side really shows how nice and compact the first NSX was.

  • avatar

    NSX all day. I drove an F430 with the F1 box… the transmission was horrible, the straight line oomph was underwhelming, and the engine note really sounded like an uncorked DOHC VTEC Honda FOUR banger. Interior felt pretty low rent too. Only Ferrari MR V8s I would do would be the F355 and the 458. OK and I guess the 360 CS and F430 Scud.

    NSX is much easier to own and while I’ve never driven one probably more entertaining. Not a rocket, but more refined and with a better interior IMO. Plus its a legit classic while the 360 and F430 really aren’t.

  • avatar

    Ferrari or Honda? Gee that’s a tough one. :/

    I’d take the 430, but only with 3 pedals

  • avatar

    One of my fondest memories involves a ferrari (355) and the NSX. Three of us were going to lunch. One of us was a personal injury lawyer with a car fetish. He owned a 355 and a NSX. He and one friend were in the NSX, I was following them in the 355.

    On the highway, the lawyer decides to floor the NSX. Now I don’t know what restaurant we were going to as I’m following him. This is not my car, it’s in the South and I’m Black. So I figured my best course of action was to stay on his tail which I did.

    Needless to say, we exceeded the speed limit by a fair margin. It was a warm Summer day and the 355 was a great drive. I never got behind the wheel of the NSX, but the drive in the 355 was memorable

  • avatar

    Take out for one drive, once? Ferrari. Buy and own, NS-X any day.
    Well, I was about 12 when it came out, and it was a very competent dreamcar replacement for the Testarossa and 328 Ferraris, which Ferrari themselves replaced with who knows what, that no one cared about (in my mind)
    It may not have been a match for a Countach, but that was replaced by the totally ‘meh. Diablo anyway. (And Lambo may never be able to outdo the Countach)
    It’s also one of the two greatest Japanese sportscar designs (or should I say Japanese car designs?) in history, and considering it’s quite a bit better at everything that the 240Z (which is the other one), it may just be the pinnacle of Japanese car building, to the point that it was probably the best and most beautiful sportscar you could buy at the time.
    (the absolute genius of the design is also that you can tell right way that it is a Honda, they really had their design language figured out at the time, much of which was still visible at least up to the 2nd gen CR-V)
    Even to the point that every other sportscar manufacturer had to take notes and try their best to do better. And that did take some time. Or that will still take some time, depending on who you ask….

  • avatar

    NSX all the way. Timeless sexy bodied exotic with Honda reliability.

  • avatar

    Given the chance I’d drive the Ferrari 360 first, then the NSX to see how well Honda was able to steal bits from Ferrari, if any.

    If I had to own one for a year, just a year, I’d take the Ferrari. It would be more pricey perhaps, but lifes to short to not enjoy the genuine article. Plus if I start a blog it’ll make for great ad revenue everytime I make the smallest post on it (Looking at Dough DeMuro here).

    Plus, I’d sooner trust a used Ferrari than a used Honda. I cannot stand having to mess with someones aftermarket mods and Hondas are almost always modded in some idiotic fashion. You don’t have to mess with a Ferrari to make it good.

  • avatar

    I hold no particular regard for either car since both are way out of date these days, so I’d pick the Ferrari for a years’ ownership. Not much point picking a car everyone said was as easy to drive as an Accord. Where’s the challenge or enjoyment in that? Plus at least the Ferrari has a V8 and looks just wonderful.

    In fact C/D conducted a comparison test of a new Boxster vs a 2005 NSX, and it was a cakewalk for the Porsche.

    So give me that Ferrari 360 please! Rose-tinted glasses viewpoint and remembrances from childhood of the 25 year old design NSX warp the mind of rationality.

    • 0 avatar

      It’s hard to take Car and Driver seriously when comparing almost anything with a Porsche. Just look at how they said the NSX will depreciate more in the next five years than the new Porsche will. Hard to believe, when a top condition NSX is worth quite a bit more than it was two years ago, and one from the middle of production is worth twice now what it was in 2010. Car and Driver serves two purposes. One is for the people that work there, and the other is to promote new cars.

  • avatar

    I drove an NSX back in the 90’s when I worked at the Milford Proving Grounds and the only thing I remember was the impressive visibility. Must not have stirred my emotions which doesn’t surprise me since it’s a Honda. I have never driven a Honda car (incl. the S2000) or bike that pushed any of my buttons. They’ve all felt like fast appliances. So I’d have to say Ferrari. Italians know how to instill emotion in their machines.

  • avatar

    Yeah, that F430 is such a POS – I’d take the NSX in a minute. Right.

    This is like asking whether I’d like a new GTI or an M3 for a year – the GTI is a quick, very nice hi-po hatchback and the M3 is an assassin.

    An F430 and an NSX are not even remotely in the same performance universe. F430 in a New York minute.

  • avatar

    One drive? The Ferrari. To own? The NSX. I have shopped the NSX and done some homework and it looks like I could afford to maintain it. Not so much with any Ferrari.

    The real question is why can’t the new NSX resemble the original more?

  • avatar

    I gotta think the NSX is going to be like everything else out of Japan. It’ll run great and cost next-to-nothing to own. Given the choice, assuming I have no choice but TO CHOOSE- the NSX is the car to buy.

    To drive for a day and impress the honeys- the 430, for sure.

  • avatar
    Compaq Deskpro

    I’ll take that Caprice with the tacky paint job in the last picture.

  • avatar
    Steve Lynch

    I can’t believe Derek The Number One NSX Fanboy has not chimed in.

    And I agree with him…

  • avatar

    I’d take the F430 in the lead photo (or 360, or F355) over the NSX.

    The legend that is the NSX, while an absolute brilliant car under the skin and to drive, is too bland for me in the styling and design department. Its interior is a blatant ripoff of Porsche’s 928 and its exterior is the Honda Accord of mid-engined high performance cars: looks OK on its own, but, put it next to its peers and it starts to look like a rolling “meh”.

    I’d just get the limit raised on my “for emergencies only” credit card and drive off with an F430…in Spider form…in either of the available shades of blue.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Wow, I guess I am in the minority but…..own a Ferarri or a tarted up Honda. Boy that’s a tough one.

    And yes, I get the cost of ownership, maintenance blah blah blah..give me the Stallion and I will be on my way.

  • avatar

    Owning an older ferrari I can say the car I would most like to try is the NSX. Lets not forget that Gordon Murray benchmarked the NSX when designing the F1.

    In period an NSX was also considdered a little bland to drive, tricky at the limit. Nowadays when everythign is electronic overweight lacking in sublety and paddle only the NSX is seen as a seminal car.

    As to a ferrari, can say neither a 360 or a 430 is really that exciting on street unless its a stick or the CS version, and even then they are pretty wide cars. What they are though is pretty reliable and should not break the bank to run, they are also perfctly driveable as dailys although if red will get noticed too much, try a grey ferrari and few notice.

    As an investemnt comapred to a newer ferrari the NSX will win hands down, and is probably easier to live with.

    A 355 will be the most fun to drive by far, but can easily bankrupt the owner evrytime its started.

    Now a 328 will cost a bit more than a NSX and be a bit slower, but more exciting to drive and own, it will also appreciate more, in fact enough to negate running costs. Neitehr of these cars is fast by modern standards, so do you want excitemt and drama or more clinical japanese apporach, one for weekends and one for the daily.

    For balls out excitement if you dont care about price try a 512 Tr a Boxer or maybe even a 550. The 550 would make an easy daily driver but will surely cost not lesss than 5k per year to run.

    For a daily though you could get the modern equivalent of the nsx namely a stick R8, or the seminal car of our time the new Z06 vette.

    So really if the question is a car under 50K then its NSX hands down in every category.

  • avatar

    I’d prefer a 360 to the F430 pictured. I feel the styling was cleaner.

    And if I’m going to be able to choose a sports car, I want the one that emits obnoxiously loud race car noises, because racecar.

    As with the NSX but on a somewhat larger scale, maintaining a used Ferrari requires 1) Homework, and 2) Budget. There is no magic; just the right dollars for the right fixes. “Dollars” sometimes means ten thousand dollars, and “fixes” sometimes means well-researched aftermarket parts to replace poor OEM components.

    That said, the NSX is a superior “car” in that it is generally reliable for its almost-supercar capabilities. And a V6 spinning up to 8000 can’t sound half bad, either!

  • avatar

    I’d take the NSX because there are a lot of Ferraris I would want more than a 360 but no Honda I want more than the NSX.

  • avatar

    The NSX is an old model,the big steering wheel is almost the size of one you find on a bus.Cannot even compare.Ferrari if only i could afford one.

  • avatar

    If the offer were for keeps I’d choose whichever one would be easier to trade for a perfect Citroen DS.

  • avatar

    I once delivered pizzas for a couple weeks for a buddy’s pizza business in his NSX.

    Some folks make it out like the NSX is Camcord levels of easy to live with but it’s not. Yes, it’s more livable and d2d drivable than any other large mid-engined sports cars, but at the end of the day, it’s still a big, mid-engine sports car.

    Never driven a Ferrari, so I have no basis of comparison but I do know that if I had to maintain one, I could afford an NSX whereas I can’t afford to maintain a Ferrari. If that wasn’t a part of the equation, 360 any day.

  • avatar
    johnny ro

    NSX as I am somewhat normal, economically, and it is within reach of average enthusiast with a decent day job who really wants one. Corvette prices. Meant for the top say 25% (10%?) money-wise. If you really want one you can get there somehow.

    Sell the outboard, harley and sleds.

    Ignore next gen.

    Ferrari is meant for the 0.1% so its just not me. I do not, unfortunately, have a third home on Lake Como. I know my limits.

    Point taken about investing in the right Ferrari. Wish I were smarter.

    Reality is I want more sidewall than available for any setup possible on either car. I drive in the real world.

  • avatar

    Would take the Ferrari. In terms of putting around on the street I’d way rather have the high-strung v8 and the f1 gearshift. The car is just more fun for what I would use it for. Sublime handling and “purity” are awesome, but 290HP just isn’t that much for fun on the streets or backroads.

  • avatar

    If both were manuals, then the Ferrari hands down. HOWEVER, if the NSX was a manual and the Ferrari an automatic, I’ll take the NSX. Good thing you’re sitting inside the NSX because it’s a snoozer as a looker.

  • avatar

    Ferrari, if only for the resale. Let’s be honest, though. These two cars are in completely different leagues.

    Next up, Ferrari 599 or brown diesel manual transmission wagon?

    Brown diesel wagon, of course.

    • 0 avatar

      2000 NSXs have been appreciating since April of 2012. Earlier NSX model started appreciating 2 years prior. A condition 1 2000 coupe that was $54,900 then is $72,600 now. A 2000 Ferrari 360 in condition 1 that was $90K then is $67,500 now, and going nowhere but down. I used the Hagerty valuation tool for price trends.

      • 0 avatar

        There’s something skewed about their data. Apparently the value of a 2000 Ferrari 360 dropped $16,000 between May 2014 and September 2014 alone.

        As already pointed out, though, the pictured Ferrari is a 430. So no contest.

    • 0 avatar

      danio, we’ve been over this, NOTHING beats a Bronze-Metallic, CRD twin-turbo, 6 spd manual, leatherette appointed Bahnstormer. NOTHING.

    • 0 avatar

      F430s and 360s are depreciating. The NSX is appreciating.

      I’d still pick the Ferrari. Don’t expect to make money on them, however. Those two models were produced in relatively large numbers by F standards.

  • avatar

    I’d go for the Ferrari, but mainly because I had an NSX for 3 years. I learned from it that there is such a thing as too much perfection, to the point of being dull. No drama, no power surge – seemingly underpowered because it was too smooth. I have not driven an Audi R8 but my impressions from what I have read is that it may have a similar problem. My other fun car was an Alfa spider, I kept that one. It’s about as far from an nsx as you can get and I enjoy it so much more.

    I will say that I really enjoyed the engineering of the NSX, by that I mean admiration of all the aluminum suspension parts and working on it, which was very easy. And the hood made the most satisfying click when dropped closed.

  • avatar

    Many years ago, when I replaced the clutch on one, I had the opportunity to test drive the NSX. It was relatively straight forward and easy to work on. Therefore, if I had to pay for maintenance, then it would have to be the NSX for me.

    If TTAC is footing the bill; FERRARI! I don’t want red though.

  • avatar
    Turbo Is Black Magic

    F430, 360, or even 355 any day (as long as it’s a manual) over the NSX. Why? Gated shifter! Along with 8,000+ rpm V-8! Yes, maintenance is more expensive, but it’s not as bad as most people think. On the 355 and up there is a hatch behind the seats for belt changes so the engine does not even have to come out for major’s. You can honestly change the belt’s yourself, it’s about a day job.

    If you have ever driven a manual trans Ferrari with a screaming V-8 behind your head, you will understand and accept gladly the higher maintenance costs.

    • 0 avatar

      The 360 and up has a hatch behind the seats for the belt change. The F355 does not, but the belts can be changed by dropping the fuel tank and not the engine. Even the 360 hatch is small and tiresome to use.

      At a major service, you do not want to be just changing belts. In fact, the belts are among the less worn items if you’re following the 5-year schedule. The 355 and earlier require dropping the engine to service everything, and the newer models do not.

  • avatar

    My father had an NSX when I was in undergrad, I did not see it much but honestly while it was kind of a cool looking car and cool car overall, I did not think it was that great to be honest. The Ferrari F430 as pictured above on the other hand is a vastly superior car when it comes to driving dynamics, looks, materials engine noise and overall cachet. Few things on earth look better than a red Ferrari especially with the tan interior and virtually nothing sounds better. I preferred his 500E over the NSX and a whole lot of other cars to be honest, that was a truly spectacular car.

  • avatar

    NSX, it’s much prettier and I’d like to drive a car when I want to, not when the car’s in the right mood.

  • avatar

    I realize that this is entirely my own opinion, but you asked. Given the two, I would choose the NSX. Why?

    1) There ain’t many of ’em.
    2) Rice Rocketers and motor heads love ’em.
    3) I won’t cringe every time it rains, birds fly over it, wind blows bits of leaves, other drivers, random shopping carts, creepy insurance rates, cops pulling me over to check it out/me out/her out, is that a puddle??!!
    4) Oil changes. Tune Ups. Other Ferrari people.
    5) But most of all, in the Ferrari, I would feel like Bronson Pinchot in the Tarantino flick “True Romance” (yes, I’m aware that was a Porshe), aka a total Hollywood wannabe A-Hole.

  • avatar

    Neither one for me. Give me a Corvette any day, in red, yellow or gray.

  • avatar

    The NSX first drive and own the Ferrari, although you make the choice tough because it’s auto and a 360. I would drive the Honda just to remind myself that money is better spent on the Z06. The Ferrari does two things, one I get to drive two red hot vixens (the other is my high maintenance wife) for the year, the other is that my clients are mostly spoiled rich bitches and the Ferrari badge carries way more cache.

  • avatar

    Easy answer. The NSX…, particularly if I am paying the maintenance.

  • avatar

    I’d take NSX. No question.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    I’m sorry guys, it’s hard to take it seriously when someone mis-IDs a late model Ferrari. How hard is it to get that right? We’re not talking some obscure 60s one-off.

    Anyways, for 1 year, I’d take the Ferrari. Always been on the bucket list as something I’d want to experience. But then I’d likely be happy to relinquish it, and replace it with an NSX, which is a car I’d want to own forever. Even if I could afford to maintain a Ferrari, having to reach so far into my wallet so often for menial BS would eventually piss me off.

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    I would take the Acura, lest I be accused of DeMuroing.

  • avatar

    Of these two, the Ferrari. I find the NSX to be not even remotely interesting. But this Ferrari is much too new for me to be all that interested in, my Ferrari desires stop with the 308/328.

  • avatar

    I had the incredible opportunity to participate in a World Class driving event a few years ago. We were able to both drive and spectate (passenger) in a handful of supercars for roughly 30-40 minutes. We were in southern Wisconsin, roaming around the Kettle Moraine. Here’s the inventory:

    Ferrari 599GTB
    MB SLR McLaren
    Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder
    Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4
    Lamborghini Murcielago
    Porsche 911 Carrera S (was a stand-in for an F430 I think, that had been crashed)

    Having a fair amount of both 2 and 4 wheeled track experience, I wasn’t wilting under the awe of the opportunity. In order of preference, here’s what I came away with:

    1st – Ferrari 599GTB: Tops overall, incredible suspension, unbelievable sound and engine that just begged to be revved hard. The drivetrain just seemed so dynamic and fluid, like it wasn’t even trying. This would be a great DD (casting maintenance and upkeep aside). Interior was much more hardcore track-toy in this company… practical and effective, not ‘beautiful’. Really thrilling drive in a way the others were not.

    2nd – Murcielago: I swear if there was a car that looked/felt like it wanted to kill me, this was it. It sounded like a beast, it drove like a beast .. not nearly as road-accessible as the Ferrari. Drove heavy. This is a car that pummels you. LOVED IT. Bad daily driver, but who the hell cares? Nothing about the interior really struck me.

    3rd – SLR: A great exhaust note, gorgeous interior, tied for 1st with Murcie for most exotic looking, crazy torque- but once past that, in this company, boring. Really a Jewel of a car for someone that puts that as a high priority. Absolutely ridiculous ceramic floor-hinged brakes.. VERY tricky to modulate well. Driving dynamics, kinda meh.

    4th – Gallardo’s and 911: Most inspiring thing to me was getting in the 911, which I drove in the middle of the pack, was that from a pure acceleration standpoint, I literally thought I had gotten into a minivan. I kept waiting for the acceleration buzz, never came. All the normal 911 stuff stands tall: great chassis, yada, yada, yada… in this company, obviously outclassed.

    The Gallardo’s were probably the most disappointing… I just thought they were meh all around. Again, in this company.

    So, to the topic at hand… God, if the F430 were at all similar in feel to the 599, my heart says it would be an easy choice. My practical brain says NSX to own and cherish forever… a long term, own-until-I-die car. I’d probably want to slit my wrists after a few years of Ferrari ownership with maintenance chores/cost.

    • 0 avatar

      The F430 is much more hardcore than the 599. You would be blown away.

      The V8 is a different monster. The 599 is really a GT.

      • 0 avatar

        I’m sure the F430 is hardcore, more like the Murci is hardcore, but as a car that really engages and involves the driver, where every component seems to be working in concert: steering, suspension, brakes, engine, transmission … that’s what I’ve heard about the beauty of the NSX.

  • avatar

    I used to know a guy who was an Air Force captain and owned a 430- totally car-poor. He never let me drive it, but I did get a ride in it. At my altitude, acceleration wasn’t really any better than my 335i. I could tell it was a lot more responsive, but I was a bit underwhelmed.

    It had the F1 transmission, which burns the hell out of the clutch. I want to say the clutch lasted about 15,000 miles and was $5k to have changed. No thanks on owning one.

    It’s definitely a lot more stylish than an NSX though.

  • avatar

    Easy questions!

    I’ve driven an NSX and found it to be sublime, just the perfect car IMO. So the first one I would drive would be the Ferrari, since I have never had the pleasure. Then I would compare it to the NSX and see if it still felt so perfect.

    For 1 yr of ownership… once again, the Ferrari. I think you can drive anything for a year and not go broke, and with a Ferrari, with any luck, you could sell it at a profit later on.

    But then I would take that profit and buy myself an NSX, to keep forever. I am still trying to talk my wife into trading our MR2 for an NSX.

  • avatar

    This seems a lot like the ‘Ginger versus Mary Ann’ question…

  • avatar

    I’d drive the Ferrari. I’d take a couple of weeks worth of vacation and spend it with racing instructors.

    Then I’d sell it and use the proceeds to pay off my house (midwest prices), pay the instructors, and upgrade my minivan.

  • avatar

    marry: mx-5
    f*ck: nsx
    kill/hoon: ferrari

  • avatar

    I’d take the NSX all the way. Inspired by Soichiro Honda and built as an engineer’s toy. There is nothing like it. Drive it everyday without worry or dramatics while it holds the value for a very long time. Ferrari is gorgeous but she’s high maintenance.

  • avatar

    NSX, mostly because I’ve already driven a 360 and a 430. Both them are certainly nice, but both left me wishing for more torque and less understeer. They’re also not as well put together as either a Porsche or a Mclaren. The Ferraris are also spectacles wherever you drive them, and if I’m going to drive a rolling conversation piece, the gruffer and torquier Gallardo would be my pick.

    If the NSX combines the obsessive attention to detail of an early-90’s Accord with the performance envelope of a Ferrari, I’ll be a fan of it.

  • avatar

    there are Ferrari’s I’d prefer, but this isn’t one of them. NSX today, NSX all year. I’d hit the same 3 turn set every day, and each time I did it better than ever before feel like Sennna. The NSX is the ultimate expression of a particular automotive ethos. The 458 is too. This Ferrari is first at nothing.

  • avatar

    NSX without a second thought, now if it was an F40 or 288 GTO I might have some trouble deciding.

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