2012 is the Chinese Year of the Dragon, so it seems fitting that Acura chose this ‘fire red’ hue for its latest NSX Concept – on show at last week’s Auto China show in Beijing.

Although it has now appeared in three motor shows since it was first revealed in January, there’s still plenty to get excited about, not least the NSX show car’s racy new colour.

Acura sports car stars in Marvel’s ‘The Avengers’

Some confusion seems to have arisen over the identity of the Acura sportscar driven by actor Robert Downey Jr. earlier this month at the premiere of Marvel’s new super-hero film, The Avengers.

A number of people speculated that the car, driven by Iron Man Tony Stark was actually the new NSX, but according to Mike Accavitti, VP of Marketing for Honda America, “that’s not exactly true, but pretty darn close”. The one-off Acura spyder was built especially for the new blockbuster film, but sadly won’t be on going on sale thereafter.

First revealed as the Acura NSX Concept at the Detroit motor show in January, the car maker chose to badge it as a Honda for last month’s Geneva show and now, here in Beijing, it’s back to wearing the Acura badge – the luxury brand of Honda initially launched for the US market.

Apart from the change in its exterior hue (from the silver-grey finish displayed in Detroit and Geneva), the NSX Concept remains powered by the same mid-engined VTEC V6 engine with direct-injection, matched to the Japanese car maker’s Sport Hybrid SH-AWD (Super Handling All Wheel Drive) system, supported by a pair of electric motors with a bilateral torque adjustable control system driving the front wheels.

A dual-clutch automatic transmission completes the package, offering supercar acceleration with outstanding efficiency.

While most supercars have previously followed the path of least resistance to deliver their performance (i.e. lots of power), the NSX Concept champions the true racing philosophy of performance through less weight.

Like the first NSX, Honda will use its flagship supercar to showcase its engineering efficiency, by combining lightweight materials with a super-efficient hybrid powerplant.

In doing so, Honda are aiming to recapture the driving spirit of the original NSX, within a more environmentally responsible package.

The original Honda/Acura NSX was built at Honda plants in Japan from 1990 to 2005, so this will be the first time Honda has manufactured a sportscar outside of its native Japan.

The car is being developed at the Ohio Centre of Honda R&D Americas (HRA) and will be built at a (yet to be named) facility in Ohio. Sales are expected to begin in 2015.