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Thursday 13th September 2012

You Know You Want To: Honda S2000

£4,000 now gets you an early S2000. What's stopping you?



It's probably fair to say that Honda has lost its way in terms of performance cars recently. Currently there is no Type-R model on sale, the CRZ is not really the successor to the CRX we hoped it to be (where's the Mugen version gone?) and, though it continues to wow at motor shows the world over, the progress of the 'new NSX' project is slow to say the least.

As a bit of a VTEC fanboy it makes me rather sad, but the discovery of this £4k S2000, however, makes me a lot cheerier. Imagine what a Honda dealership was like in 2000; yes, a staid old Logo will have blighted your view, but the S2000 and two Type-Rs (the Integra and Accord) were available, and the NSX was presumably on offer somewhere in the dealer chain too. Now, in 2012, it's probably chock-full of Jazzes and salesman brimming with excitement at the prospect of a new CR-V. Oh joy.

An S2000 probably wasn't the best pick for a 'You Know You Want To' come to think of it. These should be about cars that are a bit of a punt, purchases that are very much high-risk and high-reward. But surely that only applies to the slightly nervous handling with an S2000? Still, let's enjoy it for what it is.

Our chosen car has a plastic rear screen which can become milky and need replacing. Annoyingly, there are no pictures of the screen in this ad to assess the quality of this one. There were a couple of recalls also relating to the seatbelts and the hood but nothing significant. Apart from that, it's all about checking the basics with an S2000; a decent service history using high quality fluids is a must and good tyres are also advisable. The numb steering and high-speed twitchiness of the S2000 won't help your confidence, so having faith in your tyres would be good...

But look at the upsides. A roadster that still looks fresh and contemporary despite being launched in the last millennium, and one of the finest engines ever to find its way into a road car, all secured with bombproof reliability. And, of course, that fantastic digital dash.

This particular car, in black with black leather, is a very subtle S2000. Being picky, I'd prefer a red one but it's got tax and an MOT, service history, some recent new parts and its four thousand pounds. And it revs to 9,000rpm! Go on, you know you want to...



Ad says: HONDA S2000

Price: £3,995

Why you should: It's an ultra-reliable, ultra-exciting roadster that's now fallen to a bargain price.

Why you shouldn't: Erm... perhaps September isn't the best time to enjoy it?

 

Matt Bird
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Author Discussion

Hellbound

Original Poster:

2,254 posts

63 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
They've held their value really well.

I'm waiting for Chris' 'Tell me I'm wrong' article on this. smile

KMB

209 posts

110 months

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Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
I owned an early S2000 for over 2 years, great cars with a gem of an engine - I do agree the best place to find the limits of the handling are on a track, but with decent tread on decent tyres you'll be surprised how good the handling is!

Do it!

essexplumber

7,405 posts

60 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Always wanted one in Grey with Red leather interior.

KMB

209 posts

110 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
with reference to the rear screen being milky, this can be recovered without the need for replacement.

Mine was very poor for visibility, but an hour of fettling with BMW plastic window cleaner and restorer paste (I forget the exact name) then it was back to new condition!

DanielJames

5,375 posts

55 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
I'd love one, but the insurance is ridiculous!
Advertisement

em177

1,727 posts

51 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Getting quotes for my next car. 21, 4 years NCB, all fully comp:

3.0 BMW Z4: £480
3.2 Boxster S: £520
Nissan 350Z: £535

Honda S2000....... £1260!!!!! (and that was a UK car... JDM version adds £500 to that!)

Otherwise there would be one on my driveway at the minute


Gorbyrev

759 posts

41 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Somewhere in the back of my memory is a stat that says over 1,000,000 V-TEC engines made and not a single warranty claim. Bit thirsty (what to expect from 9000rpm), high insurance group but great car for the money. Two neighbours have them. One of them has a sobering / fun story about spinning on a roundabout. Perhaps a great 8/10th car? Can't grumble for £4000 as you'll get a lot of that back at sale time. Didn't Vicky BH run one of these?

excel monkey

2,822 posts

114 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
em177 said:
Getting quotes for my next car. 21, 4 years NCB, all fully comp:

3.0 BMW Z4: £480
3.2 Boxster S: £520
Nissan 350Z: £535

Honda S2000....... £1260!!!!! (and that was a UK car... JDM version adds £500 to that!)

Otherwise there would be one on my driveway at the minute
Why so high compared to the other cars? Can't imagine the owner profile is *too* bad. High parts prices? Or does the (alleged) twitchy handling make them crash more often?

TommyBuoy

788 posts

54 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Love mine.

Not sure I'd go for one of the first cars - 2004 onwards are better for stability, interior, exterior etc but the overall drive is the same (mines an 06).

Twitchy handling means there are LOTS of cat D's around and I imagine that has pushed insurance up.

When looking at buying I test drove Boxster S, 350Z, Z4 3.0i and elise. I went for this after all of them.

chiefski26

615 posts

88 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Stonking vfm ..............

MIP1983

136 posts

92 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Love mine, I have the facelift 04 version. It's very geometry dependant this car, but fortunatly everythings adjustable. If you do buy one, I recommend you check that the geo has been done, and ideally the geometry adjustment bolts have been greased so they don't seize (first thing I did when I bought mine). There are excellent FAQ's on the UK section of S2ki, if you consider buying.

I wouldn't describe it as twitchy at speed, but then I've only owned this an one other car so perhaps I don't know any better (+ the facelift car is a bit different, wider rubber at the back etc). You judge:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dJiuI-C6yg&fea...



Edited by MIP1983 on Thursday 13th September 12:21

Rew

250 posts

83 months

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Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
essexplumber said:
Always wanted one in Grey with Red leather interior.
Like this smile This was my second one waiting in the Honda showroom for me to pick her up.



Had 3 of these in the past. Great cars and really fun if you grab them by the scruff of the neck and give them the revs. They can, however, bite to which I can confirm as can the local trees and bushes that I flipped it through the air into! It still did not stop me buying another though wink

WillBrumBrum

597 posts

85 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all

Here's the original concept car from 1995

Captain Muppet

8,092 posts

152 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Why no coupe version Honda? I'd have bought one years ago if there was.

Are there any fixes for the steering and handling? A chap I know had one and he said you were never sure it was going to do the same thing through the same corner twice. That's the sort of thing the aftermarket could sort with bushes and dampes isn't it?

[RaymondTerrific] Come on boffins, let's get this sorted. [/RaymondTerrific]

Chapppers

4,102 posts

78 months

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Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Insurance insurance insurance. I couldn't afford to insure an S2000 so I got a small loan and bought a Noble M12. True story.

SamGad

120 posts

52 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
Tossing up between one of these and a Alfa GTV V6 at the moment to replace my ageing (read rusting) MR2.
Black with red leather would be my preference! Just can't find any decent ones near by now that I've got the cash, doh.

mig25_foxbat2003

2,437 posts

98 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
My mate has one of these and I am unspeakably jealous. I love everything about them - going to have to tell him that he looks like a tt in it, in the hope that he'll develop a complex and I can thereby take it off his hands.

Adrian W

9,421 posts

115 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
excel monkey said:
em177 said:
Getting quotes for my next car. 21, 4 years NCB, all fully comp:

3.0 BMW Z4: £480
3.2 Boxster S: £520
Nissan 350Z: £535

Honda S2000....... £1260!!!!! (and that was a UK car... JDM version adds £500 to that!)

Otherwise there would be one on my driveway at the minute
Why so high compared to the other cars? Can't imagine the owner profile is *too* bad. High parts prices? Or does the (alleged) twitchy handling make them crash more often?
There have been an awfull lot of them backed into ditches and trees, makes for a good supply of second hand engines but not cheap insurance

vit4

3,386 posts

57 months

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Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
eek I had no idea these had got that cheap. That is very bloody tempting.

Root Ginger

36 posts

106 months

[news] 
Thursday 13th September 2012 quote quote all
excel monkey said:
em177 said:
Getting quotes for my next car. 21, 4 years NCB, all fully comp:

3.0 BMW Z4: £480
3.2 Boxster S: £520
Nissan 350Z: £535

Honda S2000....... £1260!!!!! (and that was a UK car... JDM version adds £500 to that!)

Otherwise there would be one on my driveway at the minute
Why so high compared to the other cars? Can't imagine the owner profile is *too* bad. High parts prices? Or does the (alleged) twitchy handling make them crash more often?
Twitchy handling and no stability control means they get crashed often. My mate crashed one on our way to a track day. I was in my BMW MINI turned left on a roundabout and felt the bank end step out on a patch of diesel that was caught by the ASC. I then looked in my mirror knowing exactly what was about to happen to my mate in the S2000 and nothing I could do about it. I saw him spin across a wide expanse of grass. There was nothing to hit bar a single sign post. No prizes for guessing whether he hit it or not...
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