Although it has been discontinued, it looks like the BMW i8 has had some posthumous success as it garnered more sales last year than the Acura NSX did. And while you would think that Acura’s halo car would be sure to outsell almost anything in its upper-echelon class, you would be remiss to think that it’s so popular. If anything, the i8 outselling it proves that it’s not.
2020 was an embarrassing year for the Acura NSX
The year 2020 was a tough one for everyone, but the Acura NSX probably felt it more than most, especially in comparison to others in its category. According to Car Scoops, Acura sold only 128 NSXs for the entire year, while Audi sold 583 R8s, Mercedes-Benz sold nearly 2,400 AMG-GTs, and Porsche sold 2,400 911s in the fourth quarter alone. But the real story here is the fact that BMW managed to sell 192 i8s in 2020, almost 70 more units than Acura, which is surprising considering that production of the i8 was ended in June.
This means that the automaker was only selling the residual amount of new i8s for the rest of the year and it still managed to eke past the Japanese automaker.
The Acura NSX beats the BMW i8 in all other areas
Despite its sales shortcomings, the Acura NSX is still an overall better supercar than the BMW i8 ever was, at least on paper. Both cars operate on hybrid powertrain setups, however, the NSX has twice as many cylinders as the i8. The NSX is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine that works in conjunction with a tri-motor setup to produce a total of 573 hp and 476 lb-ft of torque. In case you’re wondering, that’s enough power to motivate this 3,900-pound supercar up to 60 mph from a standstill in around 3 seconds.
The BMW i8, on the other hand, is powered by a turbocharged 1.5-liter, three-cylinder engine that’s paired to two electric motors for a combined output of 369 hp that’s routed to all four wheels. According to Car and Driver’s testing, the i8 is able to get from 0 to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds, which is quick for almost any car, just not one in the category it competed in.
In a MotorTrend comparison between the two cars (as well as the Polestar 1 and the Lexus LC 500h), the BMW i8 came in third place as the publication cited the car’s artificial steering feel and lack of high-end power as its major downfalls while the NSX was heralded for its balanced ride and impressive power.
What does this mean for the Acura NSX?
While we can see that the sales for the second-generation Acura NSX have been dwindling since its re-introduction into the market for the 2017 model year, there’s no telling what the Japanese automaker will do with it in the years to come.
No matter which way you look at it, 128 units sold in an entire year is a little concerning, however, supercars aren’t exactly mass-produced, so we can see why there would be a heavy fluctuation in sales. Either way, the NSX could benefit from more advertising, or possible a price change, but it’s clear that it hasn’t won any popularity contests in the past few years.