It’s safe to say that the second-generation Honda NSX has fallen short of the lofty ambitions of its maker. The reborn technologically-advanced supercar was supposed to be the guiding light for hybrid performance, armed with a revered name. But dismal sales have forced the car out of many markets – including Europe and Australia – and ultimately led to Honda’s decision to stop production in 2022 after six years.

The company isn’t giving up without a fight, however, so the NSX is getting one last hurrah in its final year. This is the new NSX Type S, which gets some key updates to the styling, aerodynamics, powertrain and chassis to make this the fastest and most capable Honda ever built. Just 350 units will be available, with the lion’s share (300 units) being earmarked for the United States, where it will wear the Acura badge.

First up is the 3.5 litre twin-turbocharged V6, fettled with new turbochargers from the NSX GT3 Evo race car, increasing boost pressure by 5.6% to 1.11 bar. There are also higher-flow fuel injectors and revised intercoolers that are capable of dissipating 15% more heat. As such, the internal combustion engine is able to push out an extra 20 PS and 50 Nm of torque at 527 PS and 600 Nm.

The three electric motors (two torque-vectoring units at the front, one at the rear) remain, but the Intelligent Power Unit (IPU) lithium-ion battery is more efficient, allowing for a 20% increase in capacity and a 10% jump in output. The changes have enabled Honda to retune the motors to deliver increased performance in all situations, while the front motors are also geared shorter to boost acceleration off-the-line. Altogether, the Type S churns out 608 PS and 667 Nm, 27 PS and 22 Nm more than before.

Also seeing some welcome tweaks is the nine-speed dual-clutch transmission, which gets a new Rapid Downshift feature that allows the driver to skip several gears by simply holding down the left shift paddle. The reprogramming also enables the clutches to engage up to 50% faster for quicker upshifts in Sport and Sport+ modes, along with more instant automatic downshifts in Sport+. And in the all-out Track mode, drivers can downshift earlier into corners thanks to a 1,500 rpm increase in the rev threshold.

All these upgrades, combined with a number of other smaller changes, provide manifold benefits in each of the Integrated Dynamics System (IDS) settings. These include a longer electric-only range in Quiet mode, reduced body roll (thanks to retuned dampers) in Sport mode, more aggressive torque vectoring from the Sport Hybrid Super Handling-All Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system in Sport and Sport+ modes and a more audible engine note in Track mode.

The rolling stock has been given a big boost as well, with the addition of new five-split-spoke forged alloy wheels (19-inch at the front, 20-inch at the rear) that are finished in matte Shark Grey or gloss Berlina Black. The increased negative offset – which widens the track by 10 mm at the front and 20 mm at the rear – and new bespoke Pirelli P Zero tyres together raise lateral grip by six per cent. All in all, Honda claims that the Type S laps the Suzuka Circuit in Japan a whole two seconds faster than the outgoing NSX.

While still recognisably an NSX, the Type S has received a comprehensive redesign, dominated by the new front fascia. Gone is the mostly blacked-out face, replaced by a sharper nose and a gaping hexagonal air intake that bears more than a passing resemblance to the “singleframe” grille on the Audi R8.

Honda says that the larger central opening directs more air into the radiators, while the smaller sub-radiators are fed by the two additional inlets on either side. Tucked away in the corners of the bumper are ducts that channel air towards the side of the car to form an air curtain – this reduces the wake along the sides and allows more air to flow into the intercooler intakes further back.

At the rear of the car, you’ll find a larger carbon fibre diffuser modelled on the one on the NSX GT3 Evo, generating more downforce and shifting the aerodynamic balance rearwards. It also features additional fins to reduce the effects of the wake coming from the tyres while cornering. Carbon fibre now adorns the front splitter, side skirts, rear spoiler and roof as standard.

Additionally, the Type S sports darkened head- and taillights, plus gloss black wing mirrors, door handles, exhaust finisher and Honda/Acura badges. The 10-colour palette includes a new Gotham Grey hue, which replaces the standard clear coat with a matte metallic fifth layer.

Inside, the Type S comes with NSX and Type S logos embroidered on the headrests and glovebox lid respectively, as well as an Alcantara headlining. As before, buyers can specify a Lightweight Package that adds a carbon fibre engine cover, steering wheel and instrument binnacle, along with carbon ceramic brakes to shave as much as 26.2 kg from the weight of the car.