I am thinking about writing one of these per day if I have the time - and every day, I will pick one car that represents the best combination of design, technology, speed and desirability for that particular brand - and it must have been sold new in the USA. Of course, many will disagree, and I’d love to see your counterpoints.
I will select from brands currently selling cars in the USA, in alphabetical order.
Acura has been around since March of 1986. They made some nice cars in their early days - Legend, Integra, NSX. People always like to give them crap for being FWD or AWD, for not having a proper RWD car, for not having a proper V8 engine, but they seem to be doing just fine selling slightly nicer, reliable Hondas.
So, now you are thinking, this is easy, he will pick the original NSX, or Integra Type-R. I’ll throw a curveball and nominate 2008 Acura TL Type-S.
I still look after these when I see one on the street. Super clean design, aggressive enough to indicate something special, fast enough to justify the looks, bland enough to still be Acura. Those 4 cannons in the back, with the pipes cut at an angle, nice dark wheels before dark wheels were really a thing. 286hp from a 3.5L V6. In my opinion, one of the best proportioned front wheel drive cars ever.
Of course, finding an unmolested one is nigh impossible. There is one in my parking garage at work - missing a front bumper, stanced....I feel so sad every time I see it.
JDM Integra Type-R was on my mind, as I prefer the front end vastly to the USA version, but it was not sold here as new. Choosing between this and the NSX was hard though.