During last month’s 2021 United States Grand Prix weekend, AlphaTauri Formula One driver Pierre Gasly took a first-generation Acura NSX for a hot lap of the Circuit of the Americas near Austin, Texas. It makes for some very entertaining viewing and mimics a classic video of Ayrton Senna driving the same car at Japan’s Suzuka.
Senna was Gasly’s childhood idol, and Senna had a hand in developing and promoting the original NSX. Acura parent Honda provided the engines that powered Senna to three F1 championships, and is the current engine supplier for both AlphaTauri and parent team Red Bull Racing.
While Honda is set to withdraw from F1 at the end of the season, transferring its powertrain-development operation to Red Bull, it used the U.S. Grand Prix to promote Acura. Red Bull and AlphaTauri slapped Acura decals on their cars and drivers’ helmets.
Pierre Gasly drives a first-generation Acura NSX at COTA
Which is how Gasly—who didn’t finish the race due to a suspension issue—ended up behind the wheel of a first-generation NSX. The in-car video—complete with foot cam—shows him working the NSX hard around COTA, even getting a little sideways at one point.
Acura went in a very different direction with the second-generation NSX, giving it a complex hybrid powertrain. The 2022 model year will be the last for that version, which gets a 600-hp Type S special edition as a sendoff. Acura’s boss has hinted that there will be another NSX, but for now the original seems to have made quite an impression on Gasly.
“I need to find a way to get one,” he said while returning to the pits after his hot lap.