Honda S2000 GT 100 Edition

There is nothing wrong with the Honda S2000. It is an utterly amazing car - I would like to make that clear from the get-go. Many people will tell you that Honda’s wonderful, screaming, 9000rpm, 237bhp, rear-drive sports car is a deeply flawed machine. They are wrong - it is the rest of reality that is flawed.


The S2000 nay-sayers will tell you that the little Honda is expensive, liable to throw you off the road if you attack a corner with too much gusto, has all the torque of a week-old lettuce leaf, is blighted by uncommunicative steering, and its performance is inaccessible unless the driver is given a traffic-free country road or a race track.

In those respects, of course, they are right. But here lies the rub: on the right road (ie an empty, relatively smooth B-road), in the right conditions (sunny and dry), the S2000 is absolutely sen-bloody-sational.


Get the 2.0-litre VTEC singing near its 8300rpm peak power point, use the deliciously mechanical and precise six-speed gearbox to keep it there and you will have a ball. Do that in one of the more recent S2000s, and you can keep enjoying yourself when you get to a corner, too.

In 2004, Honda made various tweaks to the suspension with the aim of making the steering more entertaining and the tail less unruly. In 2008, Honda introduced an even less edgy GT model, with uprated springs, thicker anti-roll bars and re-tuned shock absorbers from the Japanese-market Type S. Now the S2000 is a much more predictable, less nervous machine; the edge of grip arrives in a much more progressive, less snappy way. You can even chuck in the odd 'dab of oppo' moment coming out of a roundabout with out fear of vicious reprisals from the rear end.


It’s aged well, too. For a car that was introduced in 1999, the S2000 still looks sharp, its unashamedly Japanese lines marking it out as a timeless design rather than dating it. The intimate, driver-oriented cabin is also pleasingly distinctive, even if some of the switchgear is starting to show its age

But, after 10 years on sale, 2009 is the S2000’s last - this GT 100 edition that we’ve managed to lay our hands on is a sort of perverse celebration of that fact.


The S2000 will soon be gone, then. But don’t remember it for its deficiencies - think of it on an empty country road, singing its VTEC heart out. Unfortunately most of the roads, most of the time, are not like that. Like I said, it’s reality that’s wrong.

Comments (219) Join the discussion on the forum

  • FezzaDude 18 Sep 2009

    Had one of these in Monte Carlo blue about 4 and a half years ago. It was either a porsche boxter or this and im soo glad I chose this! What a 2 years, simply an awsome car, and a pleasure to drive...

  • shoestring7 13 Aug 2009

    10 Pence Short said:
    People saying the S2000 didn't develop or wasn't replaced soon enough are missing the point slightly.

    Like the NSX, the S2000 was a one off project to show the engineering ability off. It wasn't begun as a typical model line intended to continue and evolve in the same way as say the Civic or Accord. If that was the intention you'd have seen an all new model every 4 to 5 years in line with normal Japanese product scheduling.

    In reality, the fact the NSX and S2000 continued so long demonstrates there was both the demand and the engineering benefit necessary to keep production going longer than originally planned.
    ISTR the Beat was never replaced either.

    SS7

  • GravelBen 13 Aug 2009

    Berger 3rd said:
    GravelBen said:
    Berger 3rd said:
    ...biggest petrol engine in the range is 2.0 at the moment...
    confused

    Unless of course you count the 2.4 (Accord Euro, CRV & Oddysey), the 3.5 V6 (Accord V6), or the 3.7 V6 (Legend)...
    Yes sorry completely forgot about the 2.4 in the accord,

    however i was talking uk only, the legend isnt sold anymore, the crv isnt sold with anything bigger than 2.0/2.2 diesel, and the accord is not sold with the 3.5 either.

    so in the uk at least 2.4 is the max for now at least.
    Then your problem isn't with Honda in general but the UK sellers - it sounded like you were complaining about Honda not building bigger engines which isn't the case, all the cars I mentioned are currently still sold by Honda in NZ and other countries.

    ETA: I think most countries get either the Accord Euro (2.4) or the Accord V6 (US model), presumably Honda NZ can't decide which they like best and so they continue to sell both.


    Edited by GravelBen on Thursday 13th August 09:18

  • 10 Pence Short 13 Aug 2009

    People saying the S2000 didn't develop or wasn't replaced soon enough are missing the point slightly.

    Like the NSX, the S2000 was a one off project to show the engineering ability off. It wasn't begun as a typical model line intended to continue and evolve in the same way as say the Civic or Accord. If that was the intention you'd have seen an all new model every 4 to 5 years in line with normal Japanese product scheduling.

    In reality, the fact the NSX and S2000 continued so long demonstrates there was both the demand and the engineering benefit necessary to keep production going longer than originally planned.

  • Berger 3rd 13 Aug 2009

    GravelBen said:
    Berger 3rd said:
    ...biggest petrol engine in the range is 2.0 at the moment...
    confused

    Unless of course you count the 2.4 (Accord Euro, CRV & Oddysey), the 3.5 V6 (Accord V6), or the 3.7 V6 (Legend)...

    Edited by GravelBen on Thursday 13th August 08:29
    Yes sorry completely forgot about the 2.4 in the accord,

    however i was talking uk only, the legend isnt sold anymore, the crv isnt sold with anything bigger than 2.0/2.2 diesel, and the accord is not sold with the 3.5 either.

    so in the uk at least 2.4 is the max for now at least.

View all comments in the forums Make a comment