In 1984 Honda commissioned the Italian car designer Pininfarina to design the HP-X (Honda Pininfarina Xperimental), which had a mid-mounted 2.0 L V6 configuration. After Honda decided to actively pursue the project, its management briefed to its engineers that its car would have to be as good as anything coming from Italy and Germany, the HP-X concept car evolved into the NS-X (New Sportscar eXperimental) prototype. The NS-X prototype and eventual production car was designed by a team led by Chief Designer Ken Okuyama and Executive Chief Engineer Shigeru Uehara, who subsequently would be placed in charge of the S2000 project. The original performance target for the NS-X was the Ferrari 328, which was revised to the 348 as the design neared completion. Honda intended the NS-X to meet or exceed the performance of the Ferrari, while offering Honda reliability and a lower price point. For this reason, the 2.0L V6 of the HP-X was abandoned and replaced with a more powerful 3.0L VTEC V6 engine. The bodywork design had been specifically researched by Okuyuma and Uehara after studying the 360 degree visibility inside an F-16 fighter jet cockpit. The NS-X was designed to showcase several Honda automotive innovations, many derived from its highly successful motorsports program.