Last week, CAD illustrations, supposedly submitted as part of a patent filing, of a new Honda mid-engine vehicle appeared online. The images you see here were first published by AutoGuide.
When asked about a "baby NSX", he is quoted by Autoblog and others as saying: "No, I can't tell you anything about the baby NSX. I mean, I could, but I'd probably be fired."
Sources have informed AutoExpress that Honda is indeed planning a third mid-engine model to sit in between the S660, which is a Japan-only proposition at the moment, and the much larger and more expensive NSX.
The in-between model is reportedly deep into its development cycle. It will be powered by the same 2.0-litre turbocharged engine used in the forthcoming Civic Type R, although it will likely produce around 250kW rather than the Civic's 231kW.
It will be aided by a hybrid system similar to the NSX's, with two electric motors at the front and one at the rear that's built into the nine-speed dual-clutch transmission. Estimated total output will be around the 300kW mark.
According to the British publication, the mid-engine car will weigh under 1400kg thanks to an aluminium space frame and carbonfibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) body panels.
The new sports car will allegedly be built alongside the NSX at the company's purpose-built factory in Ohio. In contrast to the NSX, which will be badged as an Acura in countries where the luxury brand operates, the unnamed mid-engine vehicle will wear Honda badges around the world when it launches in 2018.