Xenobiotic metabolising N-acetyltransferases (NATs) perform biotransformation of drugs and carcinogens. Human NAT1 is associated with endogenous metabolic pathways of cells and is a candidate drug target for cancer. Human NAT2 is a well-characterised polymorphic xenobiotic metabolising enzyme, modulating susceptibility to drug-induced toxicity. Human NATs are difficult to express to high purification yields, complicating large-scale production for high-throughput screens or use in sophisticated enzymology assays and crystallography. We undertake comparative functional investigation of the NAT homologues of ten non-human primates, to characterise their properties and evaluate their suitability as models of human NATs. Considering the amount of generated recombinant protein, the enzymatic activity and thermal stability, the NAT homologues of non-human primates are demonstrated to be a much more effective resource for in vitro studies compared with human NATs. Certain NAT homologues are proposed as better models, such as the NAT1 of macaques Macaca mulatta and M. sylvanus, the NAT2 of Erythrocebus patas, and both NAT proteins of the gibbon Nomascus gabriellae which show highest homology to human NATs. This comparative investigation will facilitate in vitro screens towards discovery and optimisation of candidate pharmaceutical compounds for human NAT isoenzymes, while enabling better understanding of NAT function and evolution in primates.