The Honda S2000 was one of the most exciting sports cars in the early 2000s. The S2000’s lightweight body, powerful engine, and affordable price tag should’ve made it a great success. While it managed to live for over 10 years, Honda eventually took an ax and hasn’t produced a replacement since. The result is that the market in which the S2000 thrived has all but shriveled up. The two main models available are the Subaru BRZ and the Mazda MX-5 Miata. While the Japanese pair is plenty capable, the original S2000 still supersedes them in critical areas. As a result, an updated S2000 could easily dominate.
Buyers are ready for a new Honda S2000
Although enthusiasts would love to see a resurgence of the Honda S2000, it has to make financial sense. Thankfully the S2000 community is among the strongest in the car industry. So much so, earlier this year, more than 11 after its demise, Honda announced it would produce new parts for the S2000. Rather than just creating a new parts catalog of what Honda believes S2000 owners want, it took to twitter with the “#2000PartsCatalog” hashtag. Owners chimed in from across the world not only to express their desire for new performance parts but a new S2000.
Less than one year ago, Honda produced a prototype for the 20th anniversary of the S2000. The unveiling gave enthusiasts the world over the hope that renewed interest in the platform could result in a new car. Most notably, the S2000 prototype wore various new parts that are now available in the parts catalog. Given the fan base’s strength, it would not be a stretch to assume that the market is there, ready to make a new S2000 a financial success.
What made the Honda S2000 so great?
The Honda S2000 was far ahead of its competitors while using a straightforward formula. It was cheap to buy, cheap to run, and endlessly fun. Most sports cars with the S2000’s level of performance require massive premiums. Aside from being affordable, Honda’s track record for reliability meant that owners could purchase its sports car without worries. This is not to say the S2000 wasn’t exciting, given its almost 9,000 rpm redline. The S2000’s naturally aspirated engine produced 237 hp, a figure made more impressive by its 2,813-lb curb weight.
Honda also offered plenty of available parts for the S2000 so buyers could make them their own. While the standard S2000 only existed as a convertible, a hard-top was available so buyers could have a coupe-like experience. The S2000 featured a driver-focused minimalist interior and only came equipped with a manual transmission.
If Honda can revive the NSX, why not the S2000?
Alongside the Honda S2000, the Honda NSX (branded as an Acura in the U.S.) was another sports car success for the Japanese manufacturer. In 2015, Honda decided to revive its halo car and bring the NSX back into production. Given its $157,500 starting price, the NSX was never going to be a big seller. Despite this, CarSalesBase reports that Acura/Honda managed to sell just 170 NSX’s in the United States. Compare that to the Mazda MX-5 Miata’s 8,871 units sold in 2018, and it seems like Honda revived the wrong model.
Adjusted for inflation, a new Honda S2000 should cost around $50,000, much like the 2021 Toyota Supra. The revived Supra managed to sell 2,884 units in 2019, making it more profitable than the low volume NSX. Given the buyers’ eagerness to embrace the Supra, it would make sense for the market to receive a new S2000 with open arms.