2020 Acura NSX vs. 2020 Ford Shelby GT500

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/28

The NSX’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The NSX has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

Both the NSX and the Shelby GT500 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

Warranty

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The NSX comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Shelby GT500’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

Acura’s powertrain warranty covers the NSX 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Ford covers the Shelby GT500. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Shelby GT500 ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

Engine

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As tested in Motor Trend the Acura NSX is faster than the Ford Shelby GT500:

NSX

Shelby GT500

Zero to 30 MPH

1.2 sec

1.6 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

3 sec

3.7 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

4.8 sec

5.2 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

7.2 sec

7.3 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

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Regenerative brakes improve the NSX’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the NSX’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission and Drivetrain

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A nine-speed automatic (SMG) is standard on the Acura NSX, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the Shelby GT500.

All wheel drive, available in the NSX, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The Ford Shelby GT500 is not available with all wheel drive.

Brakes and Stopping

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The NSX offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The NSX stops shorter than the Shelby GT500:

NSX

Shelby GT500

60 to 0 MPH

95 feet

100 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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The NSX has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the NSX is 1.9 inches wider in the front and .1 inches wider in the rear than on the Shelby GT500.

The NSX handles at 1.03 G’s, while the Shelby GT500 pulls only 1.01 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The NSX executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Shelby GT500 (23.2 seconds @ .92 average G’s vs. 24.1 seconds @ .85 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the NSX’s turning circle is 4.1 feet tighter than the Shelby GT500’s (39.7 feet vs. 43.8 feet). The NSX’s turning circle is 4.4 feet tighter than the Shelby GT500 Track Package’s (39.7 feet vs. 44.1 feet).

Chassis

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The NSX is 1 foot, 2.2 inches shorter than the Shelby GT500, making the NSX easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

To almost totally eliminate engine vibration in the passenger area, the NSX has liquid-filled engine mounts. The liquid helps further dampen engine harshness. The Shelby GT500 uses conventional solid rubber engine mounts.

The NSX uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the NSX is quieter than the Shelby GT500:

NSX

Shelby GT500

At idle

32 dB

61 dB

Full-Throttle

85 dB

94 dB

70 MPH Cruising

74 dB

74 dB

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/28

The NSX has .7 inches more front headroom and 1.3 inches more front shoulder room than the Shelby GT500.

Cargo Capacity

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With its coupe body style and remote trunk release lockout, the NSX offers cargo security. The Shelby GT500’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Acura service is better than Ford. J.D. Power ranks Acura 6th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 55% lower rating, Ford is ranked 24th.

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/28

The NSX’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The NSX’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children from operating them. Ford does not offer a locking feature on the Shelby GT500’s power windows.

If the windows are left open on the NSX the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Shelby GT500 can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The NSX’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Shelby GT500’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the NSX detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Shelby GT500 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

The NSX’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford charges extra for heated mirrors on the Shelby GT500.

When the NSX is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Shelby GT500’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/28

The NSX was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2017. The Shelby GT500 has never been an “All Star.”

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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