Monday 26 August 2013

The 2013 Roadster's Facelift

Introducing The NC3 Upgrades
The Roadster had a second upgrade in 2013, though compared to the 2009 upgrade the changes were relatively minor, focussing on safety and driving feel. A new model was introduced to the UK lineup, the Sport Tech Nav featured an integrated 5.8" TomTom touchscreen satnav unit. There were also some improvements in equipment with all models now getting air conditioning and glossy dark grey interior trim.

Pedestrian safety was improved with the addition of a newly-developed active bonnet known as the Deployable Hood System (DHS). This system added impact detection sensors to the front of the car and actuators either side of the rear of the bonnet that would instantly lift the bonnet in a frontal impact. The deployable hood increases the crumple zone between the engine and bonnet in an attempt to lessen pedestrian injuries.

In terms of appearance, the NC3 model gets a new front bumper design with a larger grille and revised foglight mouldings. The revised front end has a more aggressive sculpted appearance and incorporates two small spoilers at each corner for increased stability at speed. The NC3 front is also slightly wider at the lower corners to help smooth airflow around the front tyres. The new bumper also has some additional reinforcements and is made of a thinner plastic than the NC2, according to D-Technique's blog, the NC3 design weighs less than the NC2. There is also a new front chin spoiler available as an optional accessory.

There were some changes to colour options too with Dolphin Grey replacing Metropolitan Grey, Sparkling Black replacing Brilliant Black, and Crystal White Pearl became a standard colour option for the UK market. Additional colours were introduced to the standard range later on with Jet Black replacing Sparkling Black, Zeal Red replacing Copper Red, Meteor Grey replacing Dolphin Grey, and Deep Crystal Blue replacing Stormy Blue.

In Japan the soft top model and coupe models were given new distinctive black and silver features to set them apart. For example the headlamps on the soft top model were given a black trim whereas the coupe had chrome, the soft top used dark gunmetal alloy wheels and coupe had a bright silver (using the 3rd Gen Ltd design). These details were also seen on the USA Club spec and the UK's Sport Graphite special edition. On the soft top model, a smaller instrument cluster cowl design also made an appearance.

As well as a refreshed appearance, the NC3 also benefits from a tweak to the braking system. The vacuum brake booster was optimised to "improve brake return control and thus front-rear load distribution, particularly when braking into bends." On the 2.0 Sport Tech model a modified throttle map made for a more responsive feel and smoother acceleration.
Roadster RS
Roadster RS Coupe
Small Instrument Cowl