Honda has updated its S2000 roadster for 2004. Changes include revisions to the suspension, wheels and tyres, steering and some cosmetic changes to the bodywork. The 240PS engine remains unchanged.
The S2000’s bodyshell has been stiffened to play its part in the improved chassis dynamics. Enhancements include a new performance strut between the two ends of the front frame and ahead of the radiator; together with additional bracing applied to the front suspension upper arm brackets, the rear wheel arch/bulkhead area, and the front cross member. Subtle changes to the rear suspension include strengthened upper arm bushes.
Springs and dampers are now stiffer at the front and softer in the rear suspension, while the rear anti-roll bar is reduced in diameter by 1.8mm. Bump steer characteristics in the rear suspension meanwhile have been reduced for greater stability and roadholding.
Wheels and Tyres
Part of the enhanced ride and handling package are new alloy wheels with a twin 5-spoke pattern, increased from 16 inch to 17 inch for a more aggressive appearance, and riding on wider Bridgestone Potenza tyres for increased grip. 205/55R16 tyres are replaced by 215/45 R17 ones at the front and 225/50R 16 by 245/40R17 at the rear. A corresponding change in tread pattern, from S-02 to RE050 has been made to give a better balance between wet and dry performance.
Steering characteristics don’t go unchanged, and new settings to the Electrical Power Steering (EPS) system – the steering gear ratio is now 7 per cent ‘slower’ – and a more rigid mounting provide greater precision, feel and response.
Finally Honda have tinkered with the brakes to give a lighter and more advanced ABS system that copes with limited grip situations better.
Externally, the Honda S2000’s distinctive arrow-like nose with its sweeping headlamp covers now takes on a subtly different, more sporty appearance with the adoption of a ‘triple beam’ headlamp assembly. Projector style HID (high intensity discharge) low beam headlamps are now flanked by a traditional reflector design high beam and separate indicators and parking lights.Externally, the Honda S2000’s distinctive arrow-like nose with its sweeping headlamp covers now takes on a subtly different, more sporty appearance with the adoption of a ‘triple beam’ headlamp assembly. Projector style HID (high intensity discharge) low beam headlamps are now flanked by a traditional reflector design high beam and separate indicators and parking lights.
The design motif is complemented at the rear by new triple lens taillights, which make use of LED technology for greater brightness and responsiveness, set beneath a clear lens. Innermost is the rear foglamp; next is the indicator with reflective surround, and outside of this is a combined LED brake light/ LED tail light unit. Finally, there is an LED side marker set in a reflective housing.
The bumper has also been meddled with. Its lower edge now reaches down to, and is flush with, new twin chromed and oval-shaped exhaust tailpipes.
2004 prices will be £26,500 for the basic car and £27,500 for the 'GT'.