Honda S2000

Honda SSM

X-bone frame (yellow) used in the construction of the S2000 chassis.

Introduced at the 1995 Tokyo Motor Show, the Honda Sport Study Model concept car was the design study for the production S2000. The SSM was a rear wheel drive roadster powered by a 2.0 L (122 cu in) inline 4 cylinder engine. It featured a rigid X-bone frame which Honda claimed improved the vehicle’s rigidity and collision safety. The hood was aluminium and the car had a 50:50 weight distribution.

The SSM would appear unchanged in many automotive shows for several years afterwards, hinting at the possibility of a production version. Honda later announced the production version of the SSM. Carrying on the tradition of the company’s 1960s S500, S600, and S800 roadsters, the new vehicle was named the S2000.

Models

AP1

Honda S2000 (AP1)

Production

1999-2003

Assembly

Takanezawa R&D Plant in Tochigi, Japan

The S2000 was introduced in 1999 for the 2000 model year and was given the chassis designation of AP1. It featured a front engine, rear-wheel drive layout with power being delivered by a 1,997 cc (122 cu in) F20C inline 4 cylinder DOHC-VTEC engine producing from 237 hp (177 kW) to 250 PS (184 kW), and from 153 ftlbf (207 Nm) to 22.2 kgm (218 Nm) of torque depending on the target market. The engine is mated to a six-speed manual transmission and Torsen limited slip differential. The S2000 achieved what Honda claimed as the “top level performance in the world” for a 2-liter naturally aspirated engine.

2004 AP2 and 2000 AP1 model S2000s from abovehe AP1 has OEM front lip, side strakes, and rear spoiler.

Features include independent double wishbone suspension, electrically-assisted steering and integrated roll hoops. 16 in (41 cm) wheels with Bridgestone Potenza S-02 tires were standard equipment. The compact and lightweight engine, mounted entirely behind the front axle, allows the S2000 to obtain a 50:50 front/rear weight distribution and lower rotational inertia. An electrically powered canvas top with internal cloth lining was standard. Honda made available an aluminum hardtop for additional cost.

The 2001 model was largely unchanged, but Honda upgraded the radio and added a digital clock to the dashboard display. For the 2002 model year, suspension settings were revised and the plastic rear window was replaced by a glass unit incorporating an electric defroster. Other updates included slightly revised tail lamps, an upgraded radio, and a revised engine control unit.

The AP1 was manufactured up to 2003 at Honda’s Takanezawa plant, alongside the Honda NSX and Honda Insight hybrid. In 2004 production moved to the Suzuka plant.

AP2

Honda S2000 (AP2)

Production

2004-2009

Assembly

Suzuka R&D Plant in Suzuka, Mie, Japan

The 2004 model year incorporated several revisions to the S2000 and was given the chassis designation of AP2. The 2004 model introduced newly designed 17 in (43 cm) wheels and Bridgestone RE-050 tires along with a retuned suspension to reduce oversteer. The spring rates and shock absorber damping were altered and the suspension geometry modified to improve stability by reducing toe-in changes under cornering loads. In the gearbox the brass synchronizers were replaced with carbon fiber. In addition, cosmetic changes were made to the exterior with new front and rear bumpers, revised headlight assemblies, new LED tail-lights, and oval-tipped exhausts.

2005 Honda S2000 AP2 showing revised rear end.

The AP2 also included the introduction of a larger version of the F20C to the North American market. Designated F22C1, the engine’s stroke was lengthened, increasing its displacement to 2,157 cc (132 cu in). At the same time, the redline was reduced from 9,000 rpm to 8,000 rpm with a cutout at 8,200 rpm, mandated by the longer travel of the pistons. Peak torque increased 6% to 162 ftlbf (220 Nm) at 6,500 rpm while power output was the same 237 hp (177 kW) at a lower 7,800 rpm. In conjunction with its introduction of the F22C1, Honda also changed the transmission gear ratios by shortening the first four gears and lengthening the last two. Another change was the inclusion of a clutch release delay valve. In 2006, the F22C1 engine replaced the F20C in the Japanese market as well; however, the F20C continued in all other world markets.

2005 Honda S2000 AP2 red/black interior.

Honda F22C1 engine found in the S2000 AP2.

The 2006 model introduced a drive by wire throttle, an electronic stability control system, new wheels, and one new exterior color, Laguna Blue Pearl. Interior changes included revised seats and additional stereo speakers integrated into the headrests.

JDM-spec Type-S

The 2008 model year marked the first time the S2000 was offered in more than one trim level in the United States. In addition to the base model, Honda offered a more track-oriented version of the S2000, distinguished by reduced weight, fewer amenities, and a claimed increase in performance. The S2000 Club Racer made its world debut at the New York International Auto Show on 4 April 2007. Changes for the CR included a lower ratio steering rack, stiffer suspension and all-new Bridgestone Potenza RE070 tires, widened at the rear from 245/40R-17 to 255/40R-17. A revised body kit, composed of a redesigned front lip, rear bumper, and a large spoiler, were wind-tunnel tested and claimed to reduce the overall coefficient of lift by 70-80 %. The power folding soft top was removed and replaced with additional chassis bracing topped off with a tonneau cover, while the hard top, optional on other models, became a standard feature on the CR. Finally, in an effort to reduce weight and lower the center of gravity, the spare tire was omitted and air conditioning and stereo were offered only as options. Net weight savings without the additional hardtop was 90 pounds (41 kg) relative to the standard model. The engine in the S2000 CR was unchanged from the standard trim.

Custom Honda S2000 from the movie 2 Fast 2 Furious at the Petersen Automotive Museum.

The 2008 Honda S2000 CR became available in the fall of 2007, with a base price of $36,300. Production volume of less than 2,000 units was expected. Redesigned five-spoke wheels were standard on all S2000s, with bright silver on the base model wheels and a gunmetal color on the CR wheels. All CR models were only available with yellow and black cloth interior. Honda continued both trim levels of S2000 unchanged for the 2009 model year. The price was increased to US$34,695 for the base trim and US$36,695 for the CR trim.

A variant of the CR, called the Type-S, was released in Japan. The Type-S retained the convertible soft top instead of the CR’s aluminum hard-top, and used the standard S2000’s Bridgestone RE050 tires instead of the CR’s upgraded RE070’s. The head designer of the S2000, Shigeru Uehara, stated that the CR was somewhere between the existing Type-S and what a supposed S2000 Type-R would have been like.

Production of the S2000 ceased in June 2009. Plans for an S2000 successor were scrapped in the aftermath of the automotive industry crisis of 2008. To commemorate the production run of the S2000, Honda offered a special variant called the S2000 Ultimate Edition for the European market, and a similar GT Edition 100 variant in the UK. These editions feature a removable hard top, Grand Prix White paint scheme, red leather interior, and numbered plaques.

Specifications

20002003

AP1 (F20C)

20042009

AP2 (F20C)

20042009

AP2 (F22C1)

2008-2009

AP2 CR (F22C1)

Engineering

Engine Type

naturally aspirated inline-4

Displacement

1,997 cc (122 cu in)

2,157 cc (132 cu in)

Power

237 bhp (177 kW; 240 PS) @ 8,300 rpm (US & EU)

247 bhp (184 kW; 250 PS) @ 8,300 rpm (JP)

237 bhp (177 kW; 240 PS) @ 7,800 rpm (US)

239 bhp (178 kW; 242 PS) @ 7,800 rpm (JP)

Torque

153 lbft (207 Nm) @ 7,500 rpm (US & EU)

22.2 kgm (218 Nm) @ 7,500 rpm (JP)

162 lbft (220 Nm) @ 6,800 rpm (US)

163 lbft (221 Nm) @ 6,500-7,500 rpm (JP)

Redline / Fuel cut-out

8,800 rpm / 9,000 rpm

8,000 rpm / 8,200 rpm

Bore & Stroke

87.0 mm (3.425 in) x 84.4 mm (3.323 in)

87.0 mm (3.425 in) x 90.7 mm (3.571 in)

Compression Ratio

11.0:1 (US & EU)

11.7:1 (JP)

11.1:1

Valvetrain

16-valve DOHC VTEC

Transmission

6-speed manual

Gear Ratios

1st: 3.133

2nd: 2.045

3rd: 1.481

4th: 1.161

5th: 0.970

6th: 0.810

Secondary gear reduction: 1.160

Final drive: 4.100

Reverse: 2.800

1st: 3.133

2nd: 2.045

3rd: 1.481

4th: 1.161

5th: 0.943

6th: 0.763

Secondary gear reduction: 1.208

Final drive: 4.100

Reverse: 2.800

Fuel type and consumption

Octane Rating

91 AKI / 95 RON (98 RON recommended)

City

18 mpg-US (13 L/100 km; 22 mpg-imp) (US EPA)

20.6 mpg-imp (13.7 L/100 km; 17.2 mpg-US) (UK)

Highway

24 mpg-US (9.8 L/100 km; 29 mpg-imp) (US EPA)

35.3 mpg-imp (8.00 L/100 km; 29.4 mpg-US) (UK)

Combined

20 mpg-US (12 L/100 km; 24 mpg-imp) (US EPA)

28.2 mpg-imp (10.0 L/100 km; 23.5 mpg-US) (UK)

Dimensions

Length

162.7 in (4,133 mm)

162.1 in (4,117 mm)

Width

68.9 in (1,750 mm)

68.9 in (1,750 mm)

Height

50.0 in (1,270 mm)

50.7 in (1,288 mm)

Wheelbase

94.5 in (2,400 mm)

94.5 in (2,400 mm)

Track

f: 57.9 in (1,471 mm)

r: 59.4 in (1,509 mm)

Curb Weight

2,864 lb (1,299 kg)*

* quoted weight differs according to different sources and

also varies each year due to minor changes between models

2,765 lb (1,254 kg)

(without hardtop)

2,813 lb (1,276 kg)

(with hardtop)

2,855 lb (1,295 kg)

(with hardtop + audio + AC)

Other

Tires

Bridgestone Potenza S-02

f: 205/55VR16

r: 225/50VR16

Bridgestone Potenza RE050

f: 215/45R17

r: 245/40R17

Bridgestone Potenza RE070

f: 215/45ZR17

r: 255-40ZR17

Brakes

f: 11.8 in (300 mm) ventilated discs

r: 11.1 in (282 mm) solid discs

Reviews and awards

The S2000 has received much praise from critics and motoring journalists and has received favourable reviews from such publications as Car and Driver, Car Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, and Road & Track magazine. Among the features highlighted are the high output of the engine, the high redline, the balanced handling, and the smooth gearbox. User surveys have named the S2000 as a favorite for overall customer satisfaction.

The S2000 was on Car and Driver’s Ten Best list for 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2004.

The S2000 was the highest-ranked model in the J. D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study “Premium Sports Car” class for 2004, 2006, and 2008 and has consistently held one of the top three positions.

The S2000 was ranked number #1 in the BBC Top Gear Survey in 2004, 2005, and 2006.

The S2000 was ranked as “Best Affordable Sports Car” by U.S. News & World Report in 2008 and 2009

The F20C engine won the International Engine of the Year award in the “1.8 to 2 litre” size category for five years from 2000 through 2004.

The F20C was featured on Ward’s 10 Best Engines list for 2000 and 2001.

The S2000 was on Edmunds Consumers Most Wanted for 2002, 2004, 2005, 2007.

The S2000 was one of Jalopnik’s Best10 Cars Of The Decade.

Sales and production

In the United States, the largest market for the S2000 worldwide, the suggested retail price of the base 2009 Honda S2000 is $34,995. The CR trim’s base price is $36,995 with a $1,000 option to add air-conditioning and stereo.

In the United Kingdom, the 2009 model is offered in two trims, Roadster and GT. The GT trim features a removable hard-top and an outside temperature gauge. On-the-road prices of these trims are 27,300 and 27,850, respectively.

After several years of steady production, sales of the roadster began falling dramatically starting in 2006, and the trend accelerated during the 2008 U.S. recession. Honda sold 7,320 units in the U.S for 2004, the first year of the AP2. In 2008, only 2,538 units were sold in the U.S. – a 74% decline from the 2002 sales peak. In November of that year, for the first time since its launch, fewer than 100 new S2000’s were sold nationwide during a calendar month.

Calendar Year

U.S.

U.K. & Europe

Japan

Canada

Australia

MidEast/Africa

1999

3,400

1,179

7,209

332

596

 

2000

6,797

3,955

3,422

412

521

 

2001

9,682

2,197

1,913

401

308

 

2002

9,684

2,537

1,471

336

164

 

2003

7,888

2,095

961

238

79

 

2004

7,320

2,036

1,087

250

39

 

2005

7,780

1,795

981

212

40

 

2006

6,271

1,474

1,225

146

30

 

2007

4,302

1,116

997

123

26

126

2008

2,538

709

1,228

65

15

82

2009

795

680

1,122

49

 

 

As of the end of 2008, Honda had sold 110,673 units worldwide – 19,987 of those in Europe.

References

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^ “Honda Introduces – a New Open Car Body Structure – Providing the Rigidity and Collision Safety of a Non-Convertible”. Honda European Media Newsroom. Honda. 1999-02-23. http://www.hondanews.eu/en/textresults/index.pmode/modul,detail,0,218-DEFAULT,21,text,1/index.pmode. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 

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^ Kazuhiko Tsunoda (August 2000). “Gaining New Insight Into Aluminum Body Production”. http://www.insightcentral.net/KB/development/tsunoda.html. Retrieved 2006-09-19. 

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^ Lavrinc, Damon (2007-04-04). “Honda’s hardcore S2000 is a fitting send off”. Autoblog. Weblogs, Inc.. http://www.autoblog.com/2007/04/04/new-york-auto-show-hondas-hardcore-s2000-is-a-fitting-send-off/. Retrieved 2007-04-04. 

^ “2008 Honda S2000 CR”. Car and Driver. April 2007. http://www.caranddriver.com/autoshows/12648/2008-honda-s2000-cr.html. Retrieved 2007-04-18. 

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^ “Honda S2000 GT Edition 100”. Honda UK. Mar 2009. http://www.honda.co.uk/cars/s2000/limitededition. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 

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^ Top Gear 2006 Survey

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External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Honda S2000

Official Honda S2000 sites for the U.S. and Japan

Honda S2000 at the Open Directory Project

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